Association Leadership Awards go to Caldeira, Blake and Hatcher

Resilience. Innovation. Collaboration. Three executives to be honored by CEO Update have displayed these leadership strengths and more both throughout their careers and during this past year of unprecedented disruption and change.

The 2022 honorees are:
Trade Association CEO of the Year Steve Caldeira, Household and Commercial Products Association
Professional Society CEO of the Year Pat Blake, Heart Rhythm Society
Lobbyist of the Year Jennifer Hatcher, FMI—The Food Industry Association

Steve Caldeira

Trade Association CEO of the Year Steve Caldeira, of the Household & Commercial Products Association since 2017, represented a critical industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. He led a successful campaign to have cleaning and disinfectant manufacturers and their workers declared essential by the federal government. And throughout his 12-year association career, he has awed peers with his energy and determination to strengthen the fabric of the association community.

Caldeira chaired the ASAE board in 2020-21, co-leading the search for the association of association executives’ CEO, which resulted in the selection of Michelle Mason. Caldeira was honored this spring with ASAE’s Association Policy Leadership Award.

The Alzheimer’s Association’s National Capital Area Chapter will recognize Caldeira May 6 with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his long service on the group’s Brain Ball Committee.

After joining HCPA, then known as the Consumer Specialty Products Association, Caldeira led a rebranding and reorganization of the trade group to clarify and strengthen its mission. He was previously CEO of the International Franchise Association for five years.

Patricia Blake

Professional Society CEO of the Year Patricia Blake, of the Heart Rhythm Society since 2019, has delivered policy wins and resources for her members during the pandemic, and has promoted DEI throughout the organization.

She restructured the process of board and officer applications to be more open and inclusive and required unconscious bias training for staff, leadership and committee members. Other DEI initiatives at HRS under her leadership include programs to highlight disparities in health care research, institution of a leadership program for early-career women electrophysiologists and creation of a DEI task force that she elevated to a DEI Council reporting to the board.

HRS is Blake’s third CEO role. Her first was with the Emergency Nurses Association. The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy hired her in 2002 to transition the group from an association management company to a stand-alone organization with its own employees. During her 17-year tenure, ASGE grew to a staff of 50 and about 15,000 members.

Blake chaired the ASAE board in 2019-20, helping to guide the group’s work on a new strategic plan. As immediate past chair the following year, she helped lead its transition from the leadership of the late John Graham to Susan Robertson to Mason. Blake serves as a mentor for ASAE’s Diversity Executive Leadership Program. She has also been chair of the Chicago-based Association Forum.

Jennifer Hatcher

Association Lobbyist of the Year Jennifer Hatcher is chief public policy officer and SVP of government and public affairs at FMI—The Food Industry Association. She has held this top role overseeing federal, state and regulatory efforts for the food retail industry since 2009. Before joining FMI in 1998, she was chief of staff for former Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.)

During the pandemic, Hatcher established daily calls with members to provide updates from government officials and to discuss supply chain issues and other critical topics.

Hatcher’s advocacy is also credited with ensuring that the 12,000 supermarket pharmacies were able to administer COVID-19 vaccines, which expanded the distribution of the vaccines, including to underserved communities. Hatcher also played a key role in combatting the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s vaccine mandate for large employers. She worked with other associations and plaintiffs on litigation that led to the U.S. Supreme Court blocking the mandate in January.

Hatcher is on the board and is a previous chair of the Friends of the National Arboretum. She is also on the Washington, D.C., board of Common Threads, a national nonprofit that provides education about cooking and nutrition to families and children in under-resourced communities.

ALA Selection Panel

This year’s Association Leadership Awards honorees were selected as part of a process launched four months earlier, with a community-wide call for nominations. The online form asked nominators to explain how their candidate for the award embodied a clearly defined set of criteria for accomplishment and for giving back to the community.

CEO Update then convened a panel of 12 people to review and discuss the submissions before choosing one person for each of the three categories. The panel includes current and former CEOs, recruiters and consultants who have in-depth knowledge of the association world.

The 2022 panelists are:

Steve Anderson, National Association of Chain Drug Stores
Julian Ha, Heidrick & Struggles
Art Herold, Webster, Chamberlain & Bean
Leslie Hortum, Spencer Stuart
Kevin Keane, American Beverage
Lorraine Lavet, Korn Ferry
Michelle Mason, ASAE
Tonya Muse, Odgers Berndtson
Susan Neely, American Council of Life Insurers
Dawn Sweeney, formerly with National Restaurant Association
Jeffrey Tenenbaum, Tenenbaum Law Group 
Jay Timmons, National Association of Manufacturers
Stephanie Tomasso, Russell Reynolds
Jim Zaniello, Vetted Solutions

About us

The Association Leadership Awards is CEO Update's annual recognition program