Our Team

Dr. Don I. Tharpe

Senior Vice President, Lexington/Central Kentucky Market, and Senior Consultant

A native of Mayfield, KY, Dr. Don I. Tharpe’s career in association management spanned more than 30 years. He served as Chief Operations Officer of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., a nonprofit organization serving the public interest by promoting the value of professional, competent, and ethical financial planning services; President & CEO of the Pan American Health and Education Foundation; and President & CEO of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, a nonpartisan institute focusing on public policy, research, and education.

Earlier, Don was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Council on Foundations, a nonprofit membership association of more than 2,000 grantmaking foundations and corporations with a staff of 110 and budget of approximately $18 million. In addition to serving for 12 years as Executive Director of the Association of School Business Officials International (ASBO), Don held several senior positions at the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) during his seven-year tenure with the organization.

Don has consulted for a number of organizations, authored articles on association management, and served on several nonprofit boards, including United Way of the Bluegrass and the Bluegrass Chapter of the American Red Cross. He was a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and a former vice chair of its board. Don is an ASAE Fellow, an honor bestowed on fewer than 200 association executives from ASAE’s 25,000-plus membership.

Don earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees in industrial education from Murray State University, which named him the 2005 Distinguished Alumnus and recognized him with the 2018 African American Heritage Lifetime Achievement Award. Appointed to the Murray State Board of Regents in 2017, Don became the first African American chair in the institution’s history in 2022, and in 2023, the university dedicated the Dr. Don I. Tharpe Lecture Hall in the School of Engineering. Don holds a doctorate in higher education administration from Virginia Polytechnic & State University in Blacksburg, VA. He resides in Nicholasville, KY.

Learn more about Don in his “At Bat for Ashley|Rountree” profile!

Board Governance