The Executives’ Association of San Diego celebrates 100 years

The Executives Association celebrated 80 years in 2003.
(The Executive Association of San Diego)

The Executives’ Association of San Diego celebrated 100 years on Feb. 6 at the Brigantine’s Portside Pier with many of its past presidents and others who support its mission of helping local businesses grow and network.

“We’re going forward and looking for businesses to join the association and help other young entrepreneurs that are out there and business people who have been in business for years and want to grow their business in San Diego,” said Charles Murch, a past president of The Executives’ Association, member for more than 20 years and residential realtor.

According to a news release, the purpose of The Executives’ Association is to “promote, facilitate, and further the interchange of business information that will enable members to secure new business.”

The Executives’ Association started in the 1920s in response to the economic uncertainty stemming from World War I, according to the organization’s website. Over the years, its members have helped each other and the community navigate everything from the Great Depression to the Great Recession and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic.

Speakers at the 100th anniversary celebration included Chris Williams, CEO of the west region at insurance company Marsh McLennan, and Malin Burnham, a local philanthropist.

Moving forward, the organization wants to continue growing its membership with everyone from longtime brick-and-mortar businesses to modern startups. Membership requires an application process, an initiation fee, monthly dues and at least 50% attendance at regularly scheduled meetings, according to The Executives’ Association website.

“We’re always looking to grow the membership,” said Murch, who grew up in Del Mar and moved back there about five years ago. “Online referrals are great, but word of mouth referrals are still generally the best that you can get. What we’d really like to see are young business owners and entrepreneurs that are looking to come in and grow the business.”

Current members include Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Brigantine Restaurants, First Pacific Bank, Kahala Travel, Landscape Resource Group, Lloyd Pest Control, Park West Dental Group, and many other businesses in a wide array of industries.

“We have a proven ability to grow businesses through personal interaction and superior service, and the reputation of our members is unparalleled for networking and business-building groups,” Wade Aschbrenner, past president of The Executives’ Association, said in a statement. “Personal relationships and recommendations are stronger than online reviews, and members refer others from both inside and outside of the association.”

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