Aug. 11 2021 08:24 AM

She served as the association’s CEO for 15 years.

The Irrigation Association, Fairfax, Virginia, is announcing that its CEO, Deborah Hamlin, CAE, FASAE, is retiring from the association at the end of the year.

Hamlin has served as the CEO for 15 years and led the association through numerous milestones, including establishing a new brand and mission, consolidating industry training and developing a profitable online learning center. During her tenure, she also bolstered the certification program to third-party accreditation, created a standards and codes arm and expanded into the publishing arena with two industry magazines. Mostly recently she led the association through its toughest year, pivoting to an all-virtual Education Week and a series of online conferences while leading a capital campaign in the wake of a canceled Irrigation Show in 2020.

“My years at the IA have been incredibly fulfilling,” says Hamlin. “I have thoroughly enjoyed working with all of the amazing individuals in our industry as well as the professional staff. The strong staff-volunteer partnership is what has allowed us to achieve such success. Working and interacting with those teams is what I will miss the most.”

The IA board of directors has appointed a volunteer search committee led by John Newlin, CIC, CIT, CLIA, IA president-elect, to begin the process of finding Hamlin’s replacement. The board plans to have the new CEO attend the Irrigation Show in San Diego in December.

“During the last 15 years, Deborah has led the IA and supported irrigation industry members through seasons of expansion, growth and innovation, including most recently as she successfully steered the IA through the monumental challenges of 2020,” says IA President Bryan Wynen, CIC, CLIA, CLWM. “On behalf of the industry, I thank Deborah for her leadership, energy and vision in serving our association and its members. We wish her all the best as she transitions to this new chapter in her life.”