Preparing for the Future: Early Career Executive Directors/Assistant Directors

NADO’s research has shown a trend in executive director retirements, which is not too surprising given the sheer number of baby boomers that are considering retirement in the near future. As today’s executive directors start to plan for their departure from their organization, there is a class of deputy or assistant directors in the wings ready to take on the challenges and opportunities that leading an RDO presents. This presentation by Dr. Monica Scamardo during the 2015 NADO Annual Training Conference was designed to help emerging executive directors (those that have held the position for three years or less as well as those deputies that are gaining the needed experience to run an RDO) identify the characteristics of a strong and successful executive director and help them develop a strategy for assuring they become one in the future.

View the presentation below:


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Joe McKinney serves as Executive Director of the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO). Headquartered in Washington DC, NADO provides advocacy, education, research, and training for the nation’s 500+ regional planning and development organizations.

Joe has thirty-one years of experience having served in city, county, regional, national association, and government management since 1991. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy Analysis from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is a candidate for a master’s degree in Public Administration from UNC-Chapel Hill.

McKinney has provided congressional testimony on numerous occasions regarding the importance of regional development organizations in helping shape the nation’s economic growth. He is nationally recognized for promoting innovative solutions in areas such as planning and economic development, workforce development, transportation and transit, and aging services.

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