On February 1, 1979 all members of the Illinois Adult Education Association (IAEA) and the Public Adult and Continuing Educators Association (PACE ) became official members of a new organization, the Illinois Adult and Continuing Educators Association, Incorporated (IACEA). The IACEA History document, linked under “About IACEA,” gives a detailed history of these two organizations and why they merged.
In 2002, IACEA’s board engaged OMNI Communications Group to work with them to develop a strategic marketing plan. There were three stages to their work. First they conducted internal interviews of board members, committee chairs, and members. They also reviewed IACEA materials. Next they developed and distributed an external survey instrument to gather information from other stakeholders identified by the board. Finally, they developed a comprehensive marketing plan. Research had determined that
- IACEA was the name by which most members referred to the association, and
- Adult educators, but not continuing educators, made up the membership of the association.
One of the recommendations of the plan was for Brand Development with this new brand to provide an attractive and desirable package, and finally, to provide members a reason to be a part of the group. A key part of this recommendation was that we revise the Association’s name to better reflect the organization and its role. Since adult education advocacy is what the study revealed was ranked as very important by our members, we wanted that message to be part of our new brand. After much consideration, the board decided to keep the familiar acronym, IACEA, but to no longer use The Illinois Adult and Continuing Educators Association as the brand, but rather to use IACEA – the Voice of Adult Education in Illinois. This kept the familiar IACEA, so we did not lose name recognition, and it also communicated a key value to our membership. That is why, though the Illinois Adult and Continuing Educators Association continues to be our legal identity, the brand the Association now uses is the one you have been seeing the last few years: IACEA – the Voice of Adult Education in Illinois.