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Employee Spotlight: Emily Kresse

Updated: Apr 5

Meet Emily Kresse. As an Associations Manager, Emily loves being able to work with organizations and help them grow. When she’s not drinking key lime La Croix, Emily is managing the Chicago Advertising Federation (CAF), planning conferences and organizing networking events. Read on to learn more about Emily, including her favorite warm weather activity and dream vacation.


What do your family and friends think you do?

My family thinks I’m an event planner and I write a lot of emails, and that’s pretty accurate. I think my friends have no clue what I do.


What do you actually do?

I am an associations manager. I manage the Chicago Advertising Federation (CAF). The Celtic associations team serves as the home office for small to mid-sized clients that have mostly volunteer boards of directors. For CAF, I support all of their member and sponsor outreach, and I plan their events and programming throughout the year. We set up learning opportunities for our clients to network with and learn from other people in the industry. We plan events to help celebrate, educate and bring people together.


What got you interested in associations?

I wanted to work in some capacity with a non-profit, so this was the best of both worlds. I’m getting to manage a non-profit, but I am also working for a well-run corporate entity in Celtic.


What is your favorite part of your job?

It offers such a variety of things. We have many different kinds of programming with the CAF that I get to help facilitate and run. I get to work with different personalities and people bringing in their backgrounds and building something together. Because CAF is a new client to Celtic, I love implementing structure and helping them identify optimization opportunities. I also love my coworkers.


What did you study in college?

I studied history in school. I wanted to get a degree in something I cared about. History really teaches you how to process information, process different perspectives and use different resources and documents to come up with a new argument.


What is your go to warm weather activity?

I love going out to eat and trying new restaurants. My list is never ending in Chicago. I love being able to sit outside and soak up the weather. I love to get out and ride the lakefront trail. I’m bad at it, but I love to rollerblade.


What is your dream vacation destination and why?

I always want to get the biggest bang for your buck. I want to go to South America and go to Peru and Machu Pichu, and then maybe go to Argentina. I love South American cuisine. I also speak some Spanish and lived in Mexico for a year. I would like to try that out again.


What are one thing you can’t live without?

Key lime La Croix. It is the only way I’ll stay hydrated.