Introducing Our New  Executive Directors

Introducing Our New Executive Directors

By 911

We are pleased to announce that we have expanded our executive team with three new executive directors: Colleen Bagnasco, Gayle Irvin, and Joél Payne.

Colleen Bagnasco, CAE CMP

Colleen BagnascoAs executive director of the Meetings team, Colleen oversees a team of 10 meeting planners who plan and execute the logistics of 911’s client partners’ educational conferences and events.

Colleen came to 911 from the Society of Actuaries (SOA), where she spent the past 17 years in senior-level roles, progressing from director of meetings and events to her most recent position as senior director, events. In that role, she led the planning of more than 200 events, negotiated hundreds of contracts with vendors that resulted in savings for the SOA and attendees, and developed innovative meeting concepts. 

“We are very pleased to have Colleen join the 911 team. Her deep expertise planning complex events with an eye on cost-savings and delivering creative and customized experiences for attendees supports 911’s customer care strategy and will enable us to deliver even more value-added service to our clients,” says Scott Engle, 911 CEO.

Of her role at 911, Colleen says, “I’m looking forward to working with a team of dedicated and highly skilled meeting planners and collaborating with 911’s clients to create memorable events that draw new attendees year after year.”

Colleen received her bachelor of science in Hospitality Management from Roosevelt University and is a member of the American Society of Association Executives, the Professional Convention Management Association, the Greater Midwest Chapter of PCMA (for which she has volunteered with many committees), and Association Forum, for which she is currently vice chair of the Meeting Professionals SIG.

Gayle Irvin, MPH CAE

Gayle IrvinAs the executive director for our founding client, the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (ARN), Gayle oversees all administrative and program responsibilities for ARN including its strategic plan, operations management, resource development, business planning, membership and marketing, and partnership with its board of directors.  

Gayle brings 18 years of experience in healthcare association leadership roles to 911. Most recently, she spent 4 years at the American Osteopathic Association as the vice president of affiliate affairs and member services, where she lead strategic initiatives to increase horizontal integration throughout all related departments and standardized support center processes. She has also served as associate executive director at the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, vice president of administrative services at the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, and held various leadership roles at the Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development of the American Hospital Association.

According to Scott Engle, 911 CEO, “We are excited to have Gayle join 911. With her expertise building trust with boards, leading strategic initiatives, and developing value-based member recruitment and retention campaigns, she will be a strong leader for ARN and a great addition to 911’s executive team.”

Of her new role at 911, Gayle says, “I am looking forward to being a part of the 911 team and working with ARN and the nurses who make a positive impact on the specialty of rehabilitation nursing. I was drawn to 911’s highly supportive culture and the opportunity to tap into the expertise of my peers to lead ARN to reach even greater heights.”

Gayle has a master’s of public health from Benedictine University, holds a Certified Association Executive (CAE) credential, and earned a certificate in non-profit management from the University of Illinois.

Joél Payne

Joel PayneAs the executive director of our Professional Relations and Development (PRD) team, Joél oversees all aspects of PRD functions for 911’s client partners—including advertising and exhibit sales, corporate relations, sponsorships, grants, and fundraising—and manages a team of 18 experienced professionals.  

Joél brings more 10 years of sales, marketing, and corporate relations experience to her role. Before joining 911, she was the director of corporate development for the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE), where she built successful relationships with industry partners, spearheaded cross-functional teams, revitalized the corporate development department, and consistently exceeded budget goals. Prior to her role with AADE, Joél served as director of development, senior manager of corporate development, and manager of corporate relations at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the Plastic Surgery Foundation, and held several sales manager roles at AT&T Corporate and Ameritech Corporate.

911 CEO Scott Engle says, “We are eager to have Joél join 911, lead the PRD team, and collaborate with our client executive directors to design comprehensive strategies for corporate relations and development. Her experience building strong relationships, aligning strategies with cross-functional teams, and securing funding supports 911’s customer-centric approach and will be a benefit to our client partners.”

About her role at 911, Joél says, “I am excited to lead such a dynamic team of professionals and be a part of an organization with a culture that fosters its core values of caring, mutual trust, and respect. I look forward to collaborating with my new colleagues to provide even more value-added service to 911’s clients.”