Association Ethics Online Seminar Series

Association Ethics Online Seminar Series

Event Information


Jul 14, 2020 - Jul 17, 2020



United States

CAE Credits:




Member Price:


NonMember Price:



Associations rely on their code of ethics when conducting day-to-day business and implementing high-level strategic plans. A well-formulated code of ethics can help guide an association toward making informed and firmly grounded decisions. Unfortunately, many associations are working with outdated and ineffectively vague standards, causing unnecessary risk in many areas of association management. From complex public relations campaigns to new artificial intelligence initiatives, association leaders, including both staff and board members, must be informed about organization-wide best practices for ethical leadership. Clear ethics and values are great protection for an organization, so it is critical to examine the many areas that fall under leaders’ ethical responsibility.

This online seminar series consists of four 60-minute live online sessions that feature facilitated audio content and conversations. Before the first session, registrants will receive login information and links to test their computer and become acquainted with the platform. Participants will have access to recorded sessions, reference materials, and more for up to 30 days following the program.

Registration for this online seminar series will close Monday, July 13, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. ET.

Register here for the full series, or register for one or more individual sessions:

  • Agenda

    • Tuesday, July 14, 2020
      2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

      Session 1: Meeting the Ethical Public Relations Challenge

      As strategic advisers to management and clients, PR professionals help shape decisions, provide information, influence public opinion, and change behaviors. With this power comes an obligation to their organizations, stakeholders and the public to perform this work ethically. However, the path to meeting this challenge is not clear or straightforward. Decisions need to be made on which strategy, messages and tactics to choose to navigate this path. This session is designed to identify these challenges and offer advice – without preaching - on how PR pros can succeed without losing their moral compass. This session will cover the basics of the study of ethics, examine how they should be applied and provide key takeaways and best practices.

      Wednesday, July 15, 2020
      2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

      Session 2: Strategies for Creating an Ethical Tech Strategy

      As technological advancements continue to be made at a rapid rate, it is critical that associations understand how these often-exciting innovations can have a dramatic impact on their core values, their mission, and their members. Data privacy questions, AI technologies, and more are all hot button issues for associations today, but they can only be utilized with an acknowledgement of the responsibility that comes with them. Even seemingly tiny technology-related decisions can have outsized, very public and lasting effects, which is why it’s so critical for associations to have an organization-wide ethical tech strategy. Learn strategies for using your values to create an ethical tech strategy and for implementing it so that the strategy is used to drive day-to-day operations.

      Thursday, July 16, 2020
      2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

      Session 3: The Ethical Dimensions of the Board’s Duty of Foresight

      At this time of global crisis, the duty of foresight is your board’s highest responsibility. The duty of foresight is both the core belief that integrates stewardship, governing, and foresight, and the next practice that enables boards and their staff partners to understand, anticipate, and carefully examine the long-term human and ethical implications of today’s decisions for stakeholders and successors. This thought-provoking webinar will challenge participants to understand the ethical dimensions of the board’s duty of foresight and adopt a fresh perspective on how they can build new board capacity for future-focused and principled decision-making.

      Friday, July 17, 2020
      2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

      Session 4: Unpacking ASAE's Ethics Toolkit

      Implement policies from ASAE’s exclusive member benefit, the Ethics Toolkit, to create more ethical practices in your association. You will also be able to use the Toolkit to assess your association’s current policies, programs, products, and services and to plan future strategy to create a more ethical workplace. In addition, you’ll identify and apply tools from the Ethical Toolkit to help showcase your organization’s commitment to fostering an ethical workplace.

  • Speakers

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      Lawrence Parnell

      Lawrence J. Parnell, M.B.A. is an award winning Public Relations professional and academic who is an Associate Professor and director of the George Washington University Master’s in Strategic Public Relations program. He has served in this role for 10 years and has built the GW Master’s program into one of the best known and admired programs in the US. Professor Parnell also serves as an Adjunct Professor of Strategic Communications at the GW School of Business. He operates Parnell Communications, a strategic communications and leadership training advisory firm. In this role he advises government, corporate and non-profit organizations on executive development and strategic communications. Prior to coming to GW, he had a successful 35-year career in the private and public sector. He has worked in government, corporate and agency settings and in national, state and local political campaigns. He was recognized as PR Professional of the Year (2003) by PR Week and was named to the PR News Hall of Fame in 2009. The GW Master’s program was named the “Best PR Education Program” for 2015 by PR Week. He is a frequent author and speaker on communications strategy, crisis and issues management, leadership skills and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at industry conferences and universities around the world. He is quoted often on communications management and crisis communications by the national, business and trade media. He is the co-author of a leading public relations textbook – “Introduction to Strategic Public Relations – Communicating Effectively in a Socially Responsible World” from Sage Publishing. In its first year, (2018) the text was adopted by over 30 leading undergrad PR programs across the country. He also contributed as a co-author of a chapter on CSR in the book “Nation Branding and Public Diplomacy” (Peter Lang Publishing) published in Spring 2017.

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      Jeff De Cagna, FRSA, FASAE

      Jeff De Cagna FRSA FASAE, executive advisor for Foresight First LLC in Reston, Virginia, is an association contrarian, foresight practitioner, governing designer, stakeholder advocate, and stewardship catalyst. In his work, Jeff advises association and non-profit boards on strengthening their performance through the duty of foresight. A graduate of the Johns Hopkins and Harvard universities, Jeff has pursued executive development in both the work of governing (BoardSource and Harvard Business School) and the work of foresight (Institute for the Future and Oxford University). He is the author of the provocative 2018 eBook, Foresight is The Future of Governing: Building Thrivable Boards, Stakeholders and Systems for the 21st Century. In August 2019, Jeff became the 32nd recipient of ASAE’s Academy of Leaders Award, the association’s highest individual honor given to consultants or industry partners in recognition of their support of ASAE and the association community.

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      Debbie Trueblood, IOM, MSW, CAE

      Debbie Trueblood, MSW, IOM, CAE is the Executive Director of the Illinois Park and Recreation Association (IPRA). She has formerly served as Executive Director for several state and international associations through two association management companies. She has been a lobbyist for homecare, hospice, and osteopathic physicians. She has a Masters in Social Work from University of Illinois at Chicago and BSW from MacMurray College. She is a board member for the National Association of Park Foundations. She is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) and a graduate from the Institute for Organization Management (IOM). She was a Dunn Fellow with the Illinois Governor’s Office and a graduate of the Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership (IWIL). She was a recipient of the Association Forum’s “Forty Under Forty” award. She was 2018-2019 Chair of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) Ethics Committee, coordination the creation of the ASAE ethics toolkit. She has been featured in national publications several times related to nonprofit turnaround success, the design of mentoring programs, and the art of public speaking. She presents nationally on ethics, glass ceiling issues, association turnaround, job hunting, public speaking, designing mentoring programs, etc. She has served on the MacMurray College Board of Trustees since 2012.

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      Billy Williams

      Billy M. Williams (he, him, his) is the Senior Vice President for Ethics, Diversity, and Inclusion at the American Geophysical Union (AGU), a global scientific community that advances the understanding of Earth and space through cooperation in research. Williams was the Principal Investigator and lead organizer for the September 2016, NSF-funded workshop, Sexual Harassment in the Sciences: A Call to Respond and serves as a co-Principal Investigator on the 2017 NSF Grant, ADVANCE Partnership: From the Classroom to the Field: Improving the Workplace in the Geosciences. He currently serves as the Principle Investigator on Catalyzing Cultural Change in the Sciences with New Resources and Tracking Tools, a project funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Williams was a member of the 2017-2018 National Academy of Sciences’ Committee on Impact of Sexual Harassment in Academic Science Engineering and Medicine, and the 2019-2020 Committee on Increasing the Number of Women in STEMM. Prior to joining AGU as Science Director in 2012, he served as a Senior Program Officer at the National Academy of Sciences and as a Global R&D Director at Dow Chemical Company. Williams is the 2019-2020 Ethics Committee Chair for the American Society of Association Executives, and serves on the Advisory Board for Stem Equity Achievement (SEA) Change Initiative at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He also recently co-led the development of the Societies Consortium on Addressing Harassment in STEMM – an initiative to advance professional ethics, conduct, climate and culture.

  • Policies

    • Our Guarantee

      Our goal is to provide truly exceptional offerings and service, and we won't be happy until you are. If any programs, products or services of ASAE do not fulfill our promise, we will make the situation right.

      Cancellation, Refund & Substitution Policy

      Submit all requests to ASAE Registration via email at [email protected] All registration cancellations and refund requests must be made in writing by July 7, 2020 to receive a full refund, less a $75 administrative fee. Refunds cannot be approved for requests received after this date, to include no-shows. Substitutions are gladly accepted at any time. Badge sharing, splitting, and reprints are strictly prohibited.

      Event Cancellation or Postponement

      ASAE reserves exclusive right to modify, postpone/reschedule or cancel programs for any reason, including but not limited to emergency, inclement weather or other 'acts of God.' If there is an event cancellation, every attempt will be made to reschedule, and registration fees will be applied to the rescheduled event date. Any travel, lodging, or incidental expenses incurred related to a cancelled event cannot be refunded under any circumstances. If a cancelled event cannot be rescheduled, ASAE will determine an equitable basis for the refund of a portion or all of the registration fees, after due consideration of circumstances and expenditures.

      Consent to Use of Photographic Images

      Registration and attendance at, or participation in, ASAE meetings and other activities constitutes an agreement by the registrant to the use and distribution of the registrant or attendees' image or voice in photographs, videotapes, electronic reproductions and audiotapes of such events and activities by ASAE and other third parties, including but not limited the venue, the host city and the host CVB.