In last month’s issue, I stated that I hoped to announce the hiring of a new executive director for ASHI.
It is with great pleasure that I introduce you to Mr. Jeff Arnold. Jeff comes to ASHI as an experienced association executive from the Chicago area. He has had a variety of experiences in the plastics and manufacturing industries. His resume includes varied abilities such as strong fiscal management, visioning and planning, committee function, conference planning, board and staff relationships, etc. The search team felt very fortunate to have such a capable and equipped executive apply for our position.
Thanking Dick Bennett
First, my sincere thanks to Dick Bennett for his capable leadership as our acting executive director for the past seven months. He assumed the additional executive duties in addition to his job as finance director and human resource administrator, and worked very hard to keep the ASHI house in order. Thanks, Dick!
Immersing in the culture and history
The first step in getting Jeff ready for his new job was to immerse him in the culture and history of ASHI. I met with him for three days in a Chicago conference room for a working retreat. As his experience is not in the housing industry, we had much to discuss concerning the founding of ASHI, our history, our strengths and our weaknesses. We talked about a broad range of issues, including the Examination Board for Professional Home Inspectors (EBPHI) and the National Home Inspection Exam (NHIE), the National Association of Home Inspectors (NAHI), InterNACHI, AAI, AHIA, and the many state associations. We discussed our standards and ethics, membership requirements, public relations, legislative initiatives and our lobbying efforts. We explored the challenges of having many diverse chapters all around the country. Jeff is eager to help ASHI maintain and grow its preeminence as the most respected and professional association in the country!
We agreed that it was a positive experience to “unpack” ASHI together before he went to the office to get down to business. He has a good working knowledge of our profession and some of the issues we face. He is also familiar with many of the venders and partners that ASHI has around the country. Although we spent considerable time and energy in our discussions, we knew we only scratched the surface of many of the aspects of ASHI in the time allotted. It will take some time for Jeff to become more deeply acquainted with our culture and needs. Jeff was very perceptive in his analysis of ASHI and our profession, and I am confident that he is ready to get to work.
Developing staff/volunteer partnerships
Jeff also brings strong staff development skills to our association and is committed to developing good working staff/volunteer partnerships. He is meeting with each of our staff members to gain a better understanding of their special skills, their job descriptions and areas of responsibility. He has been attending committee conference calls to gain a better awareness of the workings of our committee structure and personnel.
As of the writing of this article, Jeff has been on the job for two weeks. We have conducted an online board meeting, and he has met with David Tamny, our treasurer, to more fully understand our finances and budget process. He is scheduling meetings with many of ASHI’s vendors and partners. It will take some time for Jeff to grasp all the details of our organization, but he is
certainly running on high speed!
Looking to the future
ASHI is fortunate to have an experienced new executive like Jeff Arnold on board and we anticipate great things for the future of our organization!