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AWMI Central Region–Developing and Leading Successful Business Industry Associations

May 19, 2020 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


Debra Mervyn of The Mervyn Group

Debra Mervyn works with organizations to develop and implement systems to support business strategies, operational improvements and transformational change.   From design through launch, production and delivery, Debra and The Mervyn Group discover new ways to improve performance, profitability, market share, teamwork and communication.

Debra’s metals industry background and experience includes energy research, investment casting, metals heat treating and manufacturing, sheet metal fabrication and product design and manufacturing for the medical device and aerospace industries.  Debra has a M.S. in Metallurgical Engineering from Columbia University, New York, New York and a B.S. in Biology from Willamette University, Salem, Oregon.

Developing and Leading Successful Business Industry Associations

Debra will discuss her experience forming and leading a professional speakers and writers bureau and as a board member of an industry association.  She will share strategy and tactical planning, marketing and sales, member retention, board member selection, volunteer recruitment and management, lessons learned, and case examples.

The presentation will begin with an assessment of Purpose, Market and Value.  Successful business and professional associations understand their purpose and value (to sponsors and members) and serve their market and its needs. Their purpose and value adapt, grow and change with the market, without compromising mission and vision.  With these foundational elements in place, attracting and retaining board members, members, partner organizations and sponsors becomes easier and sustainable.   Tactically the foundational processes of publicity/ marketing and sales, leadership and management and accountability, and event planning and implementation need to be laid and refined in a continuous improvement model.  Most organizations lack one or more of these elements of success which presents an opportunity for AWMI to fill a much-needed roll in each region.

Specific case examples from leaders or board members of successful and failed industry associations in the Northwest will be described.  These associations include aerospace, manufacturing, medical device, metals and accountancy.  Debra will facilitate a question and answer session to assist AWMI leaders in planning for growth of local and regional chapters.


May 19, 2020
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


Becky Dolan

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