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Posted 2 months ago


Founded in 1900, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) is the world’s oldest and largest dental specialty organization. It represents more than 19,000 orthodontist members throughout the United States, Canada, and abroad. The specialty of orthodontics is the oldest and largest dental specialty recognized by the American Dental Association. 

The AAO is a professional association of educationally qualified orthodontic specialists dedicated to ethically advancing the art and science of orthodontics, improving the health of the public by promoting quality orthodontic care, and supporting the practice of orthodontics.

The AAO encourages and sponsors key research to enable its members to provide the highest quality of care to patients, and is committed to educating the public about the need for, and benefits of, orthodontic treatment. The AAO promotes the highest standards of excellence in orthodontic education and practice, and provides a collective voice specifically for orthodontists through grassroots engagement and advocacy.

The mission of AAO is to advance the art and science of orthodontics through education, advocacy and research.

The vision of AAO is that we are the most qualified, trusted and accessible resource for delivering excellence in orthodontic patient care.

AAO’s core values are:

  • Our members come first
  • We embrace diversity and inclusion
  • We are data-driven
  • We seek active engagement
  • We are ethical

Based in St. Louis, Missouri, the AAO has 60 employees, annual revenue of $24 million, and healthy reserves.


The Chief Executive Officer is the key management leader of the American Association of Orthodontists.  The Chief Executive Officer is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs, and strategic plan of the organization. Other key duties include responsibility for non-dues revenue, marketing, and related entities and organizational outreach. The Chief Executive Officer reports directly to the Board of Trustees. The Chief Executive Officer serves as Secretary/Treasurer for the AAO Foundation (AAOF), the charitable arm of the AAO, which provides support to orthodontic education programs and orthodontic research. The AAOF is incorporated as a 501©(3) not-for-profit corporation in the state of Missouri. Learn more at http://www.aaofoundation.net. The Chief Executive Officer also oversees and ensures the operations of the American Association of Orthodontists Services, Inc (AAOSI).


Board Governance: Works with the Board to fulfill the organization’s mission and is responsible for:

  • Leading the staff team in a manner that supports and guides the organization’s mission as defined by the Board of Trustees and House of Delegates.
  • Communicating effectively with the Board and providing, in a timely and accurate manner, all information necessary for the Board to function properly and to make informed decisions.

Financial Performance and Viability: Develops resources sufficient to ensure the financial health of the AAO, and is responsible for:

  • The fiscal integrity of the AAO, including submission to the Board of a proposed annual budget and monthly financial statements, which accurately reflect the financial condition of the AAO.
  • Fiscal management of the AAO that generally anticipates operating within the approved budget and ensures maximum use of resources and maintenance of a strong financial position.
  • Innovative membership recruitment and retention efforts to maintain strong dues revenue.
  • Non-dues revenue and developing other resources necessary to support AAO’s mission.

Organization Mission and Strategy: Works with the Board and staff to ensure that the AAO’s mission is fulfilled through programs, strategic planning, and collaboration opportunities with dental and other healthcare-related organizations. Responsible for:

  • Implementing AAO’s programs that carry out the organization’s mission.
  • Contributing to ongoing environmental scanning and strategic planning to ensure that the AAO can successfully fulfill its mission into the future.
  • Enhancing AAO’s image by being active and visible in the profession and by working closely with other dental, healthcare, manufacturers, and related organizations.

Organization Operations: Oversees and manages available resources to ensure that the operations of the organization, including American Association of Orthodontists Services, Inc (AAOSI) and AAOF are appropriate.

Responsible for:

  • Effective administration of all AAO’s operations.
  • The hiring and retention of competent, qualified staff.
  • Signing all notes, agreements, and other instruments made and entered into on behalf of the organization.


Education and/or Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Health Services Administration, Public Health or similar field; a Master’s or other advanced degree is preferred; CAE desirable.
  • Minimum 10+ years of leadership experience in professional health care, medical, or other professional member-based association.  CEO/Executive Director experience preferred.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Deep knowledge of leadership and management principles is essential.
  • Forward-thinking, energetic, and optimistic leadership style with the ability to lead by example, and able to motivate, communicate, advocate, and arbitrate.
  • Ability to inspire and establish a sense of common direction and vision.
  • Strong business acumen, with an understanding of finance, membership and other functional areas within an association.
  • Diplomatic, decisive leadership able to address difficult issues and strong, demonstrated negotiating and alliance-building skills.
  • Ability to think strategically and creatively and embrace change as an opportunity.
  • Politically astute with the ability to build consensus, rally support around common goals, and motivate diverse groups and individuals.
  • Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal skills with the ability to provide the AAO with a polished, credible spokesperson both internally and externally.
  • Sound ethical character, with unquestioned integrity, honesty, and transparency, and a commitment to the AAO’s principles and ethics.

The CEO position requires a commitment to on site, in office presence at the AAO office in St. Louis. Residency in or near St. Louis strongly preferred. Evening calls are required for council and committee work.  Approximately 20 – 25% travel required, including 1 international trip per year.

AAO offers a competitive salary and benefits package.

To learn more about the AAO, visit https://aaoinfo.org. Learn more about the city of St. Louis at http://explorestlouis.com.


This search is being conducted by Jill Christie, President, Tuft & Associates, Inc. Those interested in applying should send a resume and cover letter indicating qualifications and scope of experience by November 27, using one of these options::

  • Complete the resume submission form below, and include your resume and cover letter.
  • Email your resume and cover letter to Jill Christie, President,Tuft & Associates, Inc. at cbabjak@tuftassoc.com.

Job Features

Job CategoryOpen
LocationSt. Louis, MO