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AIGA publishes its audited financial statement as a commitment to transparency and accountability in governance, as soon as the statement is accepted by the national board of directors.
The audit is conducted by an independent auditor, Friedman LLP, a regional firm in the New York metropolitan area with a strong not-for-profit practice that has been auditing AIGA’s books for the past four years. The board regularly re-evaluates the engagement of its audit firm to assure it remains objective and independent in its evaluation of management.
AIGA’s fiscal year concludes on September 30 each year. The draft audit is normally completed in late December. The auditors report their findings to the Treasurer, who serves on the board of directors, and review the audit with him/her. The financial statements are then reviewed by the executive committee of the national board before being submitted to the full board for acceptance, at which point it is considered final.
The financial statements include standard accounting presentations of AIGA’s financial position at a single point in time, September 30. The notes that begin on page 5 provide a review of the activities that drive financial performance and condition.
There are a few additional notes that are probably useful in reading the statements. For more than two decades, AIGA has planned for cyclical income; years in which the biennial design conference occurs typically have higher revenues than in alternate years. This means planning for some years with net revenues and others with net losses, since the approach has been to level out services so that they, too, do not rise and fall every year. Our policy has been to manage through up and down cycles, rather than dramatically increase and reduce services in years with alternating performance, with the resultant impact on member experience and loyalty that would impede longer-term growth.
Since each conference occurs in October, the amount of deferred revenue and prepaid expenses varies greatly from year to year, based on which conference is happening just a few weeks later.
AIGA is fundamentally sound financially. As with most associations and many small businesses, it is under-capitalized and faces weakened market conditions, although this does not impact its continuing operations.
The financial condition is a natural outcome of a number of policy and strategy principles that the national board has followed over the past several years:
AIGA should be inclusive, not exclusive.
Chapters are doing remarkable work today and AIGA, at the national level, should give high priority to chapter support.
AIGA should become a platform for member engagement in design, the community of design and society.
AIGA should allocate its resources to maximize its flexibility and should invest in services and experiences that will stimulate growth for AIGA.
AIGA should use its available resources, even during periods of economic weakness, to strengthen services for the long haul rather than reducing service, so that it will be appealing enough to grow as we emerge from down cycles.
Chapters and members are trusted to create much of the AIGA experience, complemented by national activities that benefit from a single professional voice or coordination of chapters' and members' activities
Management has had a long-term commitment to raising working capital levels, not to build reserves that will not be used, but rather to have the funds available to weather ups and downs and to make initial investments in new activities that will sustain growth longer term (and rebuild working capital, when successful). Indeed, healthy reserves built up in the early 2000s sustained AIGA through the Great Recession.
In 2009, we assumed that the recession might last 18–24 months, and recommended investing in functions in order to position AIGA strongly as the nation emerged from the recession. These included a new website, with greater capabilities for members to participate; and chapter development, web support, event registration, and email capabilities for chapters that were integrated with national systems. An extended recession resulted in four consecutive years of net deficits, but AIGA returned to net revenues in FY 2012.
Before we introduced the new membership structure in 2012, we projected that revenues would plateau or decline in the 18-24 months following its introduction.
At the end of 2013, AIGA’s membership is up 11 percent.
The number of new members is up 22 percent compared to 2012.
Most new members are joining at the Contributor level ($50), which we expected. Reassuringly, when members renew, they have typically been selecting the same level they were already at, as opposed to selecting a lower level.
The new model allows members at the Supporter level and above to pay monthly, and many members are choosing that option. This reduces revenue in the short term, compared to previous years’ reporting when the entire dues were received at the same time. So year-to-date revenues are down approximately 10 percent, consistent with our expectations that revenue would drop before it grows.
AIGA Financial Statement FY2012
AIGA Financial Statement FY2011
AIGA's auditorFriedman LLP
policies contribute to the board’s ability to maintain
accountability over the soundness and integrity of the organization.
Section: About AIGA -
AIGA’s 15-member board is elected by the entire professional membership
and plays a crucial role in determining the mission of AIGA.
AIGA has a long history of engaging stakeholders in defining the vision for the organization.
Each year, AIGA provides a report of
activities and accomplishments to members and stakeholders; the current
report is shown here in full.
Section: About AIGA -
AIGA chapters fulfill AIGA’s mission at the local level, supporting members through organizing projects and events to educate, inform and connect designers.
Section: About AIGA
NEW YORK—February 20, 2014. AIGA is celebrating its
centennial by awarding a special class of 24 design leaders with the
prestigious AIGA Medal, the highest honor of the design profession.
NEW YORK—February 11, 2014. AIGA’s Design Leaders
Confidence Index ticked upward in the fourth quarter of 2013 to 101.26,
up from the previous quarter’s 95.94.
In 2014 AIGA turns 100. AIGA is celebrating this moment by looking forward toward inspiration, relevance, leadership and opportunity for every designer in the decades ahead.
AIGA Los Angeles
Member since 2013
Espace GO Branding
Cossette / Identica Branding & Design
NowThatsRich (Andy Rich)
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