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Outsiders learn the ropes of nonprofit world

CEOs from industry, government find new set of rules in association leadership

Evans
Evans

July 27, 2018
By William Ehart

Ryan Findlay had to learn to honor tradition more when he moved from the corporate sector to the association world and to serve farmers from a policy perspective rather than a product-sales view.

Rick Helfenbein, longtime leader of a media-shy private company, had to get comfortable going on TV as the voice of his members.

Arthur Evans thought—wrongly—that things would be simpler when he left government.

Associations sometimes choose CEOs from outside the ranks of association management for a different vision or a greater bottom-line focus. But those leaders must navigate unfamiliar waters to lead their associations where they need to go.

CEO Update asked Evans, CEO of the $135 million-revenue American Psychological Association since March 2017, what it was like to have more “bosses” as leader of an organization with a board of directors.