"In the 1950's a number of the larger church
and YMCA sponsored conference center administrators felt a need for
the opportunity to share the unique aspects of operating their
facilities and formed a loosely organized group named the
"Fellowship of Conference Center Administrators and Camp
They elected a Chair and a Secretary-Treasurer,
and conducted an annual fall conference at a host member site that
determined the program topics and meeting structure. Each year the
next host site administrator was elected to chair the group.
Membership was by invitation only and usually
restricted to the executive director or an appointee and the group
was limited to not more than 40 centers.
The purpose was to enjoy a meaningful
fellowship, share experiences and ideas, encourage and help each
other, and learn of new and better operational methods, equipment,
supplies, programs, financing plans, and personnel policies.
In the early 70's with a new generation of
center directors and a rapidly changing society and regulatory
environment, many felt there was a need for a more formal and
professional organization. A dialog began in 1970 at the Green Lake
Conference, a task group was appointed and discussions continued
over the next five years resulting in a historic action at the
Geneva Point Center Conference in 1974. A storm on Lake
Winnipesaukee canceled a cruise and the group sat around a bright
birch log fire in the lodge and pursued the concept of an
International Association of Conference Center Administrators.
The result was the formal appointment of a Task
Committee with Frank "Scotty" Washburn, YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly, as
Chair. Committee members were R.D. Trotter, South Dakota United
Methodist Camps; Dr. Charles Wallace and James Long of California's
United Camps Conferences and Retreats; Sheila J. Beam of Sienna
College in New York; Ed Guerrard of Grotonwood in Massachusetts;
William Riley of Rock Springs 4-H Center in Kansas; Dwight Ellis of
Lakeside in Ohio; and Donald Barnes of Cedar Glen in Ontario,
The Task Committee proposed the formal
organization of IACCA that was approved by the membership at their
winter meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1976. This action
included a revised statement of purpose and opened the membership to
individuals with no restriction on the size of the
Afterward: Present Day IACCA
The International Association of Conference
Center Administrators celebrated its 25th Anniversary at its annual
fall conference at YMCA Snow Mountain Ranch, Winter Park, Colorado,
October 23-30, 2001. Original members Otis Moore, and Dr. Charles
Wallace gave keynote addresses to a captive audience that has grown
in diversity and vitality demonstrating a renewal of 21st century
conference center administrators and entrepreneurs to the industry.
Attendance at the annual fall conference has grown from the forty
attendees in the beginning to over one hundred today. Membership in
the organization has increased to over two hundred and fifty members
Today’s IACCA is for the Conference Center
Professional and proudly waves its motto "Helping Conference Center
Professionals do a better job." Just as today’s nonprofit conference
center professional has had to become adept at flexibility, growth
and diversity in his or her position, so have the opportunities
available to IACCA members.
Today’s IACCA has grown to five sections across
the United States of America offering the same learning, sharing,
and fellowship that the International conference boasts, only on a
local and more centralized level. The annual IACCA Fall Conference
is a more concentrated venue for learning, sharing, and fellowship.
Today IACCA is recognized as the organization where entrepreneurs of
the nonprofit conferencing industry can receive certification as a
Conference Center Professional through Key Content Workshops held
each spring and each fall. Scholarships are available to those who
wish to pursue certification, and/or attendance at IACCA's
International Conference or Seminars.
For more information on how to join IACCA log
on to IACCA's national / international web site today and see why
IACCA can give you the spirit once again to say "I love what I do!"
http://www.iacca.org/ or email
IACCA's International office firstname.lastname@example.org
Someone once said, "To become quality, one must
associate themselves with quality." This is it!