Insights from Steve Pacheco President & CEO, American Advertising Federation


September 2021
The Power of AAF Volunteer Leadership…

Many don’t realize how many volunteer leadership opportunities exist within the AAF.

At each and every level of the AAF, there are numerous opportunities for you to step up and stand out through volunteering your time and talents to the AAF in an effort to help us remain as “The Unifying Voice for Advertising”.

The awesome power of our dedicated volunteer network is a key component (and a  critically important piece) of how we get things done.

The relatively small AAF Staff is supported by this volunteer network at every turn and relies on them to make big things happen all across North America.

It all starts with our Board of Directors; these volunteer positions help govern the Federation and provide oversight and guidance on how we manage our organization each day. This year’s AAF Board Chair is Tiffany R. Warren from Sony Music Group. Tiffany came up through the AAF ranks, first as one of our “Most Promising Multicultural Students” and she later served as an NSAC Coordinator helping get Colleges and Students up to speed on our National advertising competition. Tiffany was Secretary of the AAF Board for 7 years and was instrumental in many of the industry advancing programs. She is also a member of the 2010 Class of AAF Hall of Achievement and won the Barton A. Cummings Gold Medal Award in 2017.  Vice Chair of the AAF Board is Carter Murray—Worldwide CEO of FCB—an agency that continues to contribute a massive amount of volunteer support to the AAF. Both are awesome examples of volunteerism at its finest.

And our volunteer leaders shape the Council of Governors, Ad 2 National and the AAF “grass roots” National Club Network at the Local and District level.

Larry Brantley is the President of a national executive search firm, Chaloner, and the current national AAF Chair for the Council of Governors (COG) which is comprised of 15 districts across the U.S. and Puerto Rico the Caribbean and over more than 30,000 professional members.

Tina Tsang is the Associate Media Director at Firehouse and the current Ad 2 National Chair. Ad 2 represents young professionals in the professional space 32 years of age and younger.

Both of these professionals are also committed volunteers and help the AAF manage the Club Network infrastructure and governance.

Volunteering has its own rewards, and we find unique ways to recognize and honor our top volunteers in many ways throughout the year.

AAF Club Ovation Awards honor Club leaders who have shown great volunteerism while leading their Clubs through a successful year… Every club in the network has the opportunity to achieve these top honors! In addition to the Ovation Awards, during our annual Salute to Achievers event, we also salute the club leaders receiving the Betty Riehl, Pat Martin and Chic Davis Awards.

The AAF Barton A. Cummings Gold Medal Award—established by the AAF’s board of directors in 1994 to recognize distinguished individuals for their service to advertising through volunteer work with the AAF. It is AAF’s highest volunteer service award and is awarded annually.

The award is named in honor of the late Bart Cummings, former Chief Executive Officer of Compton Advertising (now Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising), whose extraordinary career was dedicated to industry service and to advancing the social and economic values of advertising. Cummings’ volunteer work included serving as Chair of the AAF, the 4As, the Ad Council, the Advertising Educational Foundation and The AAF Foundation. His many honors include induction to the Advertising Hall of Fame. Bart’s daughter—Ann Iverson—continues to keep his legacy alive—and his love for the AAF by overseeing this award nomination process, final selection and awarding the Gold Medal each year.

Volunteering helps you personally and professionally in so many ways.

  • Sharpen your skills and add more meaningful experience to your resume.
  • Become more valuable to current employer / possible future employers.
  • Stay current on fast changing dynamics of Advertising, Media & Marketing industries.
  • Learn more about important topics:  leadership, technology, creativity and marketing.
  • Give back to the community and industry that you have benefitted from.
  • Make a real difference in the lives of others.

Volunteerism at the AAF is alive and well and opportunities are always open to all AAF Members – find the right spot for you at www.aaf.org and join us as we harness the power of volunteer leadership and provide volunteer leadership opportunities at every level.



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