IRTA Director of Membership & Marketing Earns Prestigious CAE Designation

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Nathan Mihelich, the Director of Membership & Marketing at the Illinois Retired Teachers Association (IRTA), has earned the esteemed Certified Association Executive (CAE) designation from the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). This notable accomplishment has been met with praise and congratulations from his colleagues and associates.

Sharon Teefey, Chair of IRTAPAC, recognizes Nathan’s achievement as an advancement for the organization itself. “Nathan’s achievement goes beyond personal accomplishment. It’s a significant boost for our organization,” Teefey remarked. “His enhanced expertise will indeed streamline strategic planning and boost operational efficiency at IRTA. As members of IRTA, we all benefit from his work and talent.”

Mike Schmidt, Chair of the IRTA Membership Committee, also commended Nathan’s dedication and leadership. “Having had the opportunity to work with Nathan for over seven years I’ve come to appreciate his dedication, his insights, his professionalism, and his ability to work with us volunteers in the IRTA,” Schmidt said. He further pointed out that Nathan’s work has contributed significantly to the growth of the association’s membership, which has increased from 36,000 to more than 40,000 since Nathan’s has been on board. “He is a terrific person to work with.”

Larry Newman, Regional Vice President of AMBA, emphasized Nathan’s professionalism and the value of his partnership. “I have partnered with Nathan on numerous projects over the years. He has and continues to work with our staff and brings a high level of professionalism and ethics. His earning the CAE certification reflects his continued growth in the field. This not only bolsters the confidence in our ongoing collaborations with IRTA but also signals stronger and even more strategic partnerships in the future.”

Bill Funkhouser, President of IRTA, expressed collective pride in Nathan’s achievement. “Nathan’s attainment of the CAE certification is a cause for collective pride. As advocates of continuous education, we recognize its value. This achievement not only enhances our organization’s stature but also signifies our commitment to uphold industry standards and practices.”

Jim Bachman, IRTA Executive Director, congratulated Nathan for his achievement. “Nathan’s constant desire for professional development and drive to stay at the forefront of our industry is a valuable asset to IRTA. I’m proud of what Nathan has accomplished, and I’m excited to see how his continued learning will benefit IRTA in the years to come.”  

The Certified Association Executive designation, conferred by the ASAE, is recognized as the highest professional credential in the association industry. The achievement represents expertise, experience, and commitment to the field, setting the recipients apart as leaders in the community.

Nathan’s accomplishment indeed underscores his commitment to professional growth and the advancement of the IRTA. His colleagues and IRTA members alike anticipate the contributions his enhanced expertise will bring to the organization.

To learn more about the IRTA, please visit For more information about the CAE designation and the ASAE, visit