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Careers in Association Management

". . . and I can’t imagine a person in organization management in Georgia not being a member of GSAE. As I’ve said before, for a member of an organization to find that their staff person is not a member of GSAE, to me would be like finding out that your preacher is an atheist or your lifeguard can’t swim."

Abit Massey, CAE, President Emeritus, Georgia Poultry Federation



Looking for a new career path? Consider working at an association or nonprofit organization.  Whether fresh out of school or changing careers, you can leverage networking and internship opportunities to land the perfect job in this dynamic and growing field. Check out GSAEtv to hear from association professionals in their own voices.

Types of Nonprofit Organizations

There are many different types of nonprofit organizations. 

  • Associations, typically professional or trade organizations, are a community of people who have something in common, such as accountants (professional) or retail stores (trade).
  • Organizations that raise funds for philanthropic purposes are considered charitable organizations and often have special tax-exempt status from the IRS, such as the Arthritis Foundation.
  • Nonprofit groups, like college alumni associations, may not be able to collect tax-exempt donations, but they are still comprised of people with similar interests.
  • Association management companies are in a category all their own.  While AMCs are typically corporations, their purpose is to assist in the daily operations of running a nonprofit organization.  An AMC employee might serve as the Executive Director for more than one organization.

Types of Positions & salaries

No matter what your area of interest or expertise, there is a position within a nonprofit organization that is perfect for you.  Consider

  • Administration
  • Communications
  • Marketing
  • Design - web and social media
  • Finance
  • Event planning
  • Education
  • Government relations
  • Information Technology

Salaries vary, depending on location, size and type of the organization, as well as the position and prior experience.  GSAE offers a Multi State Compensation & Benefits Study, updated every two years. Ordering info here. Average salary ranges:

  • CEO-level             $95,000+
  • Director-level        $55-70,000+
  • Manager-level       $40,000+
  • Coordinator-level $34,000+
  • Support staff         $28,000+ 


CareerPhilly, created by Innovation Philadelphia and the Knowledge Industry Partnership, is the Greater Philadelphia Region’s student retention initiative to entice the 300,000 students attending the 83 colleges and universities, and the 50,000 that graduate annually, to remain and begin their professional careers in the Region. CareerPhilly’s mission is to link the Region’s students to regional employers to find employment after they graduate, and link the students with employers through internships while they are in school. CareerPhilly also offers an innovative “Internship In A Box” program which includes a detailed manual that tells organizations how to design an internship program. The manual provides step-by-step instructions for beginning an internship program.
Learn More

Guide to Nonprofit Careers — from

This free book is written for everyone from first-time job seekers to experienced professionals and includes chapters on Nonprofit Speak 101, How to Find a Career or a Nonprofit That Is Right for You, Networking: Is It Really All About Who You Know?, How to Make Yourself a Stronger Candidate, Evaluating Organizational Culture and much more.
Read More

Ready to Lead? Next Generation Leaders Speak Out — from

A skilled, committed and diverse pool of next generation leaders would like to be nonprofit executive directors in the future, according to a new national survey of nearly 6,000 next generation leaders. However, the survey also finds that there are significant barriers: work-life balance, insufficient life-long earning potential, lack of mentorship and overwhelming fundraising responsibilities which may prevent many younger nonprofit staff from becoming executives.
Read More

Featured Members
Lori K. Spear2017 Chair's Award
Jim Moody2017 Clifford M. Clarke Award
Julia Boyd2017 Sharon Hunt Emerging Leader Award

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