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


Advancing your career


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 $90,000+
  • Director-level $50-70,000+
  • Manager-level $40,000+
  • Coordinator-level $34,000+
  • Support staff $28,000+
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