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Governance & Leadership
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CSI is like any not for profit organization. It requires many volunteers doing at least a little bit to help it succeed in moving toward its mission and goals. Some volunteers give more time and effort than others and certainly that is true of officers, committee chairs, the Exemplar editor, the Web Editor,and Chapter Faculty Advisors. As a fundamentally democratic organization in spirit, it requires a structure that supports its chapters and members over time. So in addition to volunteers, we have a small headquarters staff (three full-time employees) who oversee the day-to-day operation. In addition, there are vendors and outsourcing of functions to supplement the staff's efforts. What follows is further elaboration on how CSI meets its obligations to its membership.

Executive Council (EC)

The working EC is composed of the elected officers (presidents past, elect, and present, secretary, and treasurer), two CSI Leadership Interns, and the Chief Executive Officer. Editors of the Soceity's publications may be invited to attend. All have a voice in the meetings but only the officers may vote. Officers are elected by the membership in an open nomination and democratic election process. As provided in the CSI Bylaws, the EC carries out the work of the Society.

An annual business assembly of delegates from chapters (i.e., the CSI Annual Delegate Business Meeting) convenes each year in conjunction with the American Counseling Association Conference & Expo. In addition, chapters participate through email and surveys when appropriate. Any active member of CSI and the chapter may be a delegate for the chapter.

Officers, Leadership Interns, and Editors when required to be at the Executive Council meetings receive reimbursement for travel. Officers receive expenses for lodging and meals for the EC meeting prior to the conference and all expenses for the EC spring/summer planning meeting. There is no other compensation for volunteer members of the EC.

Officers (past and present) and committee chairs accept speaking invitations to chapters and other professional occasions as representatives for CSI without compensation. They are reimbursed actual expenses by CSI and/or its chapters.


Committee chairs and members are selected from among volunteers who express an interest in various CSI initiatives to the president, any officer or committee chair. Every effort is made to include all such volunteers in the work of the Society. To learn more about the CSI committees, please review the volunteer leadership position descriptions.

Typically, committee chairs serve as members of a committee prior to being appointed chair. The charges to committees are issued annually and may be found by reviewing the committee descriptions or by writing the Committee Chair whose email is included in the Leadership Directory. The president with EC approval, however, may modify and augment the general charges to committees each year.

Committee Chairs are responsible for semi-annual reports and are expected to attend CSI's Annual Delegate Business Meeting without reimbursement.

Chapter Faculty Advisors (CFAs)

CFAs (Primary and Co-/Back-Up CFAs) are selected by their respective counselor education department to serve in this critically important mentoring role. Perhaps no responsibility is more important than that of a CFA. They serve a multitude of functions including reviewing and endorsing virtually every nominee from their chapter, helping to identify talent among the membership who aspire to make a difference through leadership, service, and advocacy, and guiding them in wise decision making associated with their leadership roles. According to the CSI Bylaws, they are the key person through which all CSI correspondence and initiatives are sent.

The CSI Bylaws provide for chapter accountability that rests in large measure with the CFAs to comply. Most will attend either ACA or ACES conferences where CSI conducts special CFA Trainings. Many serve without recognition or credit from their administrators or colleagues. A strategic planning Membership Survey which included CFAs indicated that serving in this capacity was principally the most satisfying part of their various responsibilities as a faculty member. Apparently intrinsic satisfaction and not external rewards or recognition is their chief motivation for being a CFA.

CSI Headquarters

CSI has three full-time paid employees, the Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, and Administrative Professional. CSI outsources many functions related to business including shipping, mailing, merchandise, publications, database, web services, and accounting. The CSI Headquarters staff is involved daily with these services, however, and provides oversight in all matters of substance in keeping with the Executive Council's expectations. The goal is to ensure effective service to members and chapters.

The chief functions of the Headquarters Staff relate to supporting chapters, CFAs, officers, committees, and members. The CSI website, email, telephone, and digital correspondence (e.g., CSI E-News and newsletters) are their major tools. The Society's Editors work, for example, closely with Headquarters as members of a working team. While the academic year provides seasonal changes, the CSI Headquarters Office is open throughout the year and serves the 400+ chartered chapters in the U.S. and abroad, CSI's task-forces and committees,and 14,000+ annual dues paying members. The Headquarters Office staff also processes more than 7,000 new member applications and 7,000 renewals per year, and facilitates conference planning.

CSI's Volunteer Leadership Structure:
Facilitators, Editors, Committees, and Task Forces

CSI's volunteer leadership structure includes editors for CSI's publications (notably the Exemplar, the Journal of Counselor Leadership and Development, the Counselors' Bookshelf, and several areas of, standing or permanent committees and temporary task forces, as well as periodic review panels for awards, convention programs, and chapter grants. Descriptions of these activities are provided below and on CSI's Volunteer Opportunities page.

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