Sixth Annual National Association Conference

High Five Fun
  • 9/18/2019
  • Chicago, IL
  • Hosting Speaking

Financial and operations executives gathered in Chicago again to connect on issues that are challenging association and membership organizations nationwide.


8 – 8:30 a.m. Continental breakfast

8:30 – 8:40 a.m. Opening remarks

8:40 – 9:30 a.m.

Legal Pitfalls and the CFO Role

Paula Goedert, Barnes & Thornburg

No matter what the job description says, the CFO is often the first person under fire when something goes wrong. From insurance exclusions to failure to secure copyright to an automatic renewal of an unwanted vendor contract, fingers point at the CFO. Delineating responsibilities, and making sure that you — or someone — is actually following through on necessary steps to protect the financial well-being of the nonprofit, is an important role of the CFO. This session will review common legal pitfalls and how to avoid them. 
CPE: 1 credit Business Law 

9:30 – 10:20 a.m.

Tax Update

Karen Gries, CLA

The IRS continues to issue new guidance for taxpayers in virtually every industry, including tax-exempt organizations. This session will discuss the potential impact of the law on associations and membership organizations and clarify some of the key issues in this new financial landscape.  
CPE: 1 credit Taxes 
Download Tax Update presentation

10:20 – 10:35 a.m. Break

10:35 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Disaster Planning and Business Continuity

Bob Mellinger, Attainium

This session drops you in the middle of a real-life disaster situation as it unfolds. You will make the critical decisions any organization would have to make, and deal with the consequences of those decisions. After you've finished, we’ll discuss lessons learned and how they can help prepare you for the unexpected. 
CPE: 2 credits Specialized Knowledge 

12:15 – 1 p.m. Lunch

1 – 2:40 p.m. Keynote

Andy Zimney: Leading Through Change with Strategic Intuition

This session combines best practices of organizational leadership, insights from neuroscience, and wisdom from the world of applied improvisation to create a highly interactive and energizing session for participants to explore the Four Key Disciplines of change-oriented and forward-thinking teams. It’s a session of big ideas and practical applications to help teams get unstuck and accelerate progress.  
CPE: 2 credits Management Services 

2:40 – 2:55 p.m. Break

2:55 – 4:10 p.m.

Accounting Update

Cathy Clarke, CLA Chief Assurance Officer, member of the AICPA Not-For-Profit Entities Revenue Recognition Task Force and the FASB Not-For-Profit Advisory Council, and former chair of the AICPA Not-For-Profit Expert Panel

The Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (FASB) changes to accounting standards play a significant role in how associations and membership organizations prepare financial statements and how others will view the health of these organizations. This session will be an overview of the latest developments, including revenue and lease standard changes. The session will break it down to help you prepare for implementation, and provide association-specific examples and related implementation methodologies.  
CPE: 1.5 credits Accounting 
Download Accounting Update presentation 

4:10 – 5 p.m.

Financial Modeling to Drive Investment Policy

Mark Griffin, CliftonLarsonAllen Wealth Advisors, LLC. 

Financial modeling can help many organizations map out their future by factoring in the many variables that drive their costs and revenues. Similar to a financial plan for an individual, the financial model can also help inform investment and reserve policies with the risk budget and target returns needed to satisfy the organization’s goals. This session will discuss the practical applications of using financial modelling to derive target returns, risk tolerance, and overall investment policy.  
CPE: 1 credit Finance 
Download Financial Modeling presentation 

5 – 6 p.m. Reception



111 South Wacker Drive
Chicago, Illinois 60606


Early bird rate through July 19, 2019, is $175.
After July 19, 2019, fee is $225.
Fee includes learning materials, continental breakfast, lunch, and reception.


If you’re interested in overnight accommodations, you can take advantage of a CLA’s room block for September 18 at the nearby Club Quarters Hotel Central Loop, 111 W. Adams Street. The room block rate is available until August 18, reference discount code: CLA918.


At the end of this session, you'll be able to:

  • Summarize the proposed changes and impact to accounting standards
  • Recognize impact of tax reform and discuss other tax topics that impact membership organizations
  • Explain legal pitfalls that CFOs should avoid
  • Discuss disaster planning and best practices to put in place in the event of an unexpected emergency
  • Discuss key disciplines of change-oriented and forward-thinking teams
  • Recognize how financial modeling can drive investment policy

Recommended CPE can be found in each session description
Prerequisites: None
Program level: Overview
Advance preparation: None
Delivery method: Group Live

View CPE sponsorship information.

CLA is a CAE approved provider. This program linked below meets the requirements for fulfilling the professional development requirements to earn or maintain the Certified Association Executive credential. For more information about the CAE credential or Approved Provider program, please visit

Event materials

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