The American Association of Sleep Technologists (AAST) has selected SmithBucklin to provide full-service association management. Abigail Lynn, a 12-year veteran of SmithBucklin, will serve as AAST’s chief executive, and headquarters will move to SmithBucklin’s Chicago office on July 1.
Established in 1978, AAST is committed to promoting and advancing the sleep technologist profession while meeting the professional and educational needs of more than 4,200 members. The association’s mission is to promote sleep wellness and to lead the sleep technology profession through education, resources, and advocacy.
Since 2003, the AAST has operated under a management contract with the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM), during which time it has experienced many positive changes, including a significantly improved operational and financial foundation.
“The AAST BOD [board of directors] recognized that for our organization to respond to the rapidly changing and increasingly complex needs of our members, we needed access to advanced association management technology and focused executive directorship,” Laura Linley, AAST board president says in a release. “AAST members have high expectations of our value and relevance, and there are many time pressures on our members that can make it challenging to find time for day-to-day, operational volunteer duties.”
Following a five-month evaluation process, the AAST board of directors came to a unanimous decision to transition headquarters and staff management to SmithBucklin. In choosing SmithBucklin to provide association management, the AAST board of directors noted SmithBucklin’s 68 years of proven experience in serving professional associations and its ability to meet the needs of AAST’s membership amid rapid changes occurring in sleep medicine and the healthcare market overall.
“The board is excited about our partnership with SmithBucklin,” Linley says. “We were impressed with SmithBucklin’s depth and breadth of resources, proven practices, and respected thought leadership. And, most importantly, the board feels that SmithBucklin’s culture surrounding volunteerism and leadership development aligns closely to AAST’s values of service to others and continuous improvement, which will allow us to serve our current and future members at the highest level possible.”
SmithBucklin will provide AAST with a complete management solution. In her role as executive director, Lynn will work with the AAST board of directors to establish strategic objectives and be accountable for developing and executing plans that achieve results. She also will lead a team of professionals who will be responsible for all aspects of the association’s operations, membership recruitment and engagement, financial management, marketing, communications and publications, technology, and conference management. The SmithBucklin team also will support AAST’s education initiatives, including its continuing education credit (CEC) offerings.
“The field of sleep technology is evolving so quickly as more advancements are being made every day. I am thrilled to serve this dynamic organization that is really making a difference in helping people to sleep better so they can lead more productive and healthful lives,” Lynn says.
SmithBucklin’s Healthcare + Scientific Industry Practice supports the missions and objectives of healthcare and scientific organizations serving a broad spectrum of physician, nursing, dental, clinical research, academic, and multidisciplinary groups. SmithBucklin offers these client organizations access to a team of professionals with healthcare association expertise and specific knowledge of the issues, challenges, and actions distinctive to the changing healthcare environment.
“More than a decade of collaboration between the AASM and the AAST leaders helped grow the AAST membership and led to important achievements such as the establishment of accredited education programs in sleep technology and the passage of licensure laws that defended the profession in numerous states,” says AASM president Ronald Chervin, MD, MS. “The AASM is proud to have helped advance sleep technology, and we are confident that the AAST will continue to lead the profession in the years ahead.”