An Overview of OSAP

Since its 1938 founding, the Ohio Society of Association Professionals (OSAP) has provided a variety of tangible benefits, products and services that enhance growth, development and professional expertise among its membership. The association profession is diverse, its leaders knowledgeable and its experiences truly unique. OSAP supports, celebrates and communicates these messages on behalf of our diverse membership. 

OSAP is a leading resource of specialized learning experiences for industry professionals–building and nurturing relationships that often last a career and span a lifetime. If you seek an experienced peer network, new ideas and an organization that takes pride in ensuring each member's success - look no further!

Understand the impact associations have in Ohio!

OSAP is the best place for Ohio-based association professionals, industry peers and business affiliates to form meaningful connections and lasting relationships with their peers. Our mission is to foster an environment of collaboration and professionalism that strengthens and enriches association professionals' development. OSAP does this while enhancing the professionalism of association leaders and those who support our various industries and communities. 

As a nonprofit serving Ohio's powerful association industry, OSAP is committed to its leadership role among Ohio's associations -- to serve as the indispensable resource for association executives -- assisting you as you make vital contacts both within and outside your particular industry.

Together, all of our nonprofit organizations comprise a powerful body of support for Ohio's businesses, association management industry and for the state's citizens. If you are an association professional or provide products or services to Ohio's association community, your involvement with OSAP will strengthen your career and your connections. We build relationships!

Our Mission:

OSAP fosters an environment of collaboration and professionalism that strengthens and enriches association professionals' development. 

Our Values:

OSAP's Highest Honor: The R. Thomas King Distinguished Service Award

Who Was R. Thomas King

Tom King was a 19-year member of the Ohio Society of Association Executives , now the Ohio Society of Association Professionals (OSAP) and served as the organization’s president in 1997. In his honor, the R. Thomas King Distinguished Service Award was created as a result of his commitment to OSAP.

Please select this link to learn more about the award.

General Description

The R. Thomas King Distinguished Award is the highest honor of the Society.  It is intended to recognize an individual who has provided superior service to the Ohio Society of Association Professionals and to the association management profession over many years.  Further, the award is intended to recognize those who make superior individual contributions per se, rather than the contribution of an individual representing the accomplishments of many. This highest honor is not given lightly.


To be eligible for the R. Thomas King Distinguished Service Award, a person shall:

  1. Have served OSAP as an Officer, Director or Chair of a Committee.
  2. Have provided significant contributions, over a sustained period of time, to OSAP and the association management profession in the form of leadership, teaching (including seminar speaking), writing, mentorship of other members, volunteerism in support of the profession and the Society, and/or promotion of the interests of the profession and OSAP. 
  3. Have the respect of his or her peers in the profession.
  4. Have not served on the Board of Directors for at least three years prior to the date of presentation of the Award.
  5. Have been a member of OSAP in good standing for at least ten (10) cumulative years.
  6. Have been engaged in the association management profession for at least 20 years.


The King Award Committee shall evaluate candidates and submit any nomination to the OSAP Board of Directors.  The nomination submission should include a written report on the nominee’s qualifications and contributions to OSAP and the association management profession.  Members of the King Award Committee are eligible to submit nominations similar to any current OSAP member by the designated deadline.  If no nominations are received by the deadline, an award will not be given that year.