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NCRA Executive Director Mark Golden to Leave Association in May 2012

November 21, 2011

Jim Cudahy


Vienna, VA, November 21, 2011 – Mark Golden, executive director and chief executive officer of the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA), announced today that he will leave the association upon the expiration of his current contract, which is May 31, 2012.

The announcement comes shortly after Golden received the American Society of Association Executives’ (ASAE) highest honor—the Key Award—which recognizes his lifetime of service to the association community and coincides with NCRA reaching a major turning point in its history. In his nearly 13 years at NCRA, Golden’s strategic leadership accomplishments have been many, culminating in a membership-wide dialogue to establish a clear direction for NCRA’s future. Appropriately entitled "Writing Our Future," NCRA members were able to reach a consensus that calls upon the association to engage in a variety of sustained efforts to protect and advance the interests of stenographic court reporters. "I am proud of my part in helping the membership to bridge its differences and forge a common bond that all can rally around," Golden said.  "NCRA is now in a strong position to move forward with new unity and purpose. Accordingly, it is a good time for the association and for me to make a change.  It’s a good time for me to take the substantial knowledge I have accumulated at NCRA and my passion for association leadership and apply them to new challenges, with a new constituency."

"Mark has been a tireless champion for our profession and for NCRA's membership, as well as an accomplished chief executive for the association for more than a decade," NCRA President R. Douglas Friend said.  "He has served the elected leadership and membership through his vision, passion, innovation, problem-solving skills, and advocacy for the profession.  Under his leadership, and despite a hostile economic environment, NCRA's balance sheet has remained strong. The association's finances are well managed and secure. Reserves are at a higher level than they ever have been, and NCRA continues to display the resilience and flexibility to react to unexpected events.  He has built a strong staff, which has achieved unprecedented levels of productivity, effectiveness, and focus under his direction."

Golden joined NCRA in December 1998 and is credited with guiding a 100-year-old association into the digital age. Among his largest achievements at NCRA were a focus on education that included expanding the association’s support to schools and mobilization of efforts to modernize court reporting program curricula and facilities nationwide. Based on Golden’s previous accomplishments in advocacy and government relations, it was no surprise that he was able to initiate federal lobbying efforts at NCRA that ultimately secured grants for court reporting schools that have exceeded $15 million to date and are scheduled to deliver $100 million over time.

In the meantime, Golden likewise was responsible for redesigning and modernizing NCRA’s governance processes, shifting the Board of Directors’ focus from an administrative perspective to a more strategic mindset, which allowed for a more informed and engaged leadership.

Long recognized as a leader in the association community, Golden is past chairman of ASAE’s Center for Association Leadership and currently chairs ASAE’s “Power of A” Committee, managing a nationwide public relations campaign to increase awareness of the role associations and non-profits play in serving society. During service as chair of the ASAE Foundation Research Committee, he performed key roles in producing landmark studies. This included a hallmark study entitled Measures of Success: What Remarkable Associations Do That Others Don’t (conducted in cooperation with Jim Collins, and applying his research methodology from Good to Great to the association sector). Another study with which Golden was closely involved was entitled Mapping the Future: Environmental Scan Report.

Golden received the Key Award this past August, which recognizes the association CEO who “demonstrates exceptional qualities of leadership in his or her own association and displays a deep commitment to voluntary membership organizations as a whole.”

Before joining NCRA, Golden had a distinguished career with the Personal Communications Industry Association (PCIA), where he was deeply involved in activities at the Federal Communications Commission, with domestic and international standard-setting bodies, and with the U.S. Congress to create the business environment, rules, and regulations that ushered in the introduction of ubiquitous, affordable wireless telephone, and texting services in the United States.  

Prior to this, Golden worked at the Association of Telemessaging Services International (ATSI), where he increased the visibility and credibility of the industry through coalition building, fostering inter-industry cooperation, and performing other related activities. This included serving as mediator in negotiations, as press liaison, and as a spokesperson for the profession. His efforts at ATSI exerted a lasting influence on the emergence of enhanced telecommunications services (such as voicemail), the deregulation of basic telephone services, and the creation of an open and competitive telecommunications market in the United States.  

According to Friend, the NCRA Board will begin work immediately to form a search committee that will initiate a process to hire the association’s next executive director.