The Mission Evolution
In June 1992, The AMAF was established by action of the American Marketing Association (AMA) Board of Directors with the mission:
- 1992-1998: "To foster the development and adoption of marketing practices which will benefit society.”
The AMAF worked to accomplish this good cause through programs such as the East Europe Book Drive (now known as the International Journal Distribution Program). Organizations in the former Soviet Bloc were transitioning from centrally directed to market-driven economies. A group of volunteers from the AMA Knoxville Chapter traveled to Czechoslovakia in 1990 and 1991 and discovered the need and desire for marketing assistance and publications. The Foundation worked with the AMA and its Chapters to gather and send marketing materials and journals to organizations in Eastern Europe.
During this time period, the AMAF also began to recognize excellence in marketing and promote training programs through several endowed awards and programs. These include the John A. Howard/AMA Doctoral Dissertation Award, David K. Hardin Award, and the AMA/Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium.
In 1999, the AMAF mission evolved and the charge of the Foundation became:
- 1999-2002: "To benefit society through marketing knowledge and practice."
The AMAF continued its work with diverse, international populations through the expansion of the International Journal Distribution Program by providing 21 business libraries in emerging economies with subscriptions to several AMA journals. The Foundation also recognized additional marketing excellence through the awards such as the Berry/AMA Book Prize for the Best Book in Marketing, the Thomas C. Kinnear/Journal of Public Policy & Marketing Award, and the Sheth Foundation/Journal of Marketing Award.
In July of 2002, the AMAF, in partnership with the AMA, also undertook the first Nonprofit Marketing Conference bringing together over 210 nonprofit marketing professionals. This experience, along with nonprofits'/foundations' growing need for marketing knowledge, best practices, and resources challenged the AMAF to evolve the mission:
- 2003-January 2011: "To be an essential resource to nonprofits, helping them achieve greater success through effective marketing. As the nonprofit philanthropic arm of the American Marketing Association (AMA), the AMAF achieves this goal through support of nonprofit marketing conferences and other training initiatives, scholarships, research, on-line and electronic resources. It works in partnerships and other strategic collaborations with the AMA, AMA chapters, marketing practitioners and academics, and scores of voluntary and community organizations. The Foundation also champions and supports excellence in marketing and diversity in the marketing profession."
With a focus on nonprofit organizations, the AMAF continues to provide tools, resources, and training that assist nonprofit organizations to market more effectively and raise additional funds for their good causes. This support comes in the form of the AMA Nonprofit Marketing Conference, Nonprofit Marketing Boot Camps™, AMA Professional and Collegiate Chapter Community Service Grants, and on-line resources.
The AMAF also desires to increase diversity in the marketing profession through programs such as the International Journals Distribution Program and its Valuing Diversity Ph.D. Scholarship Program.
- February 2011-Present: "The American Marketing Association Foundation (AMAF) champions the marketing profession by encouraging excellence and investing in marketing that benefits society."
On Nov. 1, 2012, the American Marketing Association Foundation (AMAF) took its strategic alliance with the American Marketing Association (AMA) to the next level. In order to achieve greater efficiencies and maximize the resources available to champion the marketing profession by encouraging excellence and investing in marketing that benefits society, the AMAF has merged with the AMA.
The AMAF was established in June 1992. One of its first programs was to provide AMA journals to libraries located in Central and Eastern Europe to help meet the demand for marketing assistance after the fall of Communism in 1989. Recent AMAF initiatives have focused on diversity through the Valuing Diversity Ph.D. Scholarships Program, on nonprofit issues through the nonprofit marketers’ CMO Roundtable, and on the recognition of marketing excellence through awards such as the Erin Anderson Award for an Emerging Female Marketing Scholar and Mentor, the Nonprofit Marketer of the Year Award, the William L. Wilkie “Marketing for a Better World” Award, and the Williams-Qualls-Spratlen (WQS) Multicultural Mentoring Award of Excellence. The programs and initiatives of the AMAF will continue under three main categories: diversity, nonprofit and awards.
Following the merger, the AMAF will continue to carry out its mission and activities without interruption as a standing committee of the AMA and will continue to be known as the American Marketing Association Foundation or AMAF. Many current members of the AMAF Board of Trustees will continue to lead the AMAF as the initial members of the AMAF Committee. The new AMAF Committee will continue to provide strategic direction and stewardship for AMAF activities and initiatives, establish AMAF policy, and work to develop and oversee the AMAF’s activities and budget.
Jerome D. Williams, chairman of the AMAF Board of Trustees and the Prudential Chair in Business at the Rutgers Business School-Newark and New Brunswick, and William L. Cron AMAF Treasurer and the J. Vaughn and Evelyne H. Wilson Professor in Business at the M.J. Neeley School of Business at Texas Christian University, worked closely with Dennis L. Dunlap, the AMA’s CEO; Beth Taylor, the AMA’s CFO; and Michael E. Kullman, past chairperson of the AMA’s Board of Directors and director of corporate marketing at DuPont, to oversee the merger and manage the process of obtaining approval from their respective boards.
“I’m especially pleased that the merger will support the continued focus on one of the core missions of the AMAF, namely, to bring greater diversity to the marketing profession, especially in academia,” William says. “In the over 30 years that I have been a member of the AMA, I have seen a significant shift in the landscape of faculty demographics in terms of gender and racial or ethnic diversity. I believe AMAF programs such as the Erin Anderson Award, the WQS Award and the more than 40 Valuing Diversity scholarships to Ph.D. students from underrepresented racial and ethnic backgrounds have played a key role in this shift, and I’m delighted that with this merger we will be able to continue working with AMA to support this mission.”
Adds Dunlap: “We are extremely happy that the merger with the AMAF is complete and feel that it is best for both organizations. By maximizing AMA administrative and support resources, the foundation is in a better position to efficiently focus on its mission and programs, which excites us.”
As the AMA is now the successor to all AMAF agreements and obligations, it will be responsible for carrying out all of the AMAF’s obligations thereunder. All endowments and restricted gifts will continue without disruption or change. Future donations to the AMAF will be held in a restricted fund for the sole benefit of the AMAF Committee to be used to further its mission and purposes.