Certified Chair Executive Program™

Delivering Value and Impact to Businesses

Formalised Advisory Boards are a proven management tool that can support businesses to gain clarity on priorities, and build internal confidence in decision making and strategy execution. Consider joining this movement by gaining your credentials as a Certified Chair™. Following the completion of your certification, you will be able to establish and facilitate Advisory Boards with confidence.

The Certified Chair™ Executive Program

In 2005, Advisory Board Centre Founder and CEO, Louise Broekman, established an advisory board to support the growth and international expansion of her own business. Following a successful exit, she wanted to share the positive impact well-run advisory boards can have with other business owners and leaders.

After carefully researching best-practice across the globe, she found there were no guidelines for a formal structure, no recognised frameworks or formal qualifications or certifications to set minimum benchmarks for professional standards in the advisory sector.

The Problem

The informal advisory sector was highly fragmented, fraught with unethical behaviour and misaligned expectations. Without clear principles to bind the global sector together, many practitioners and organisations were forced to create ad-hoc advisory boards. Even when the intentions were well-placed the outcomes were often compromised due to the lack of structure and focus. Organisations and high-quality advisory board members deserve better.

The Solution

In 2017, the Advisory Board Centre was founded as an independent, global professional body to provide a strong foundation, best-practice frameworks and professional excellence to support the rapidly growing advisory sector. The Certified Chair™ Executive Program has been thoughtfully designed according to research and evidence-based methodologies. We now provide the world’s first executive education program and formal credentials developed specifically for the advisory sector.

With a global professional community of independent professional advisors, we are leading the cause to provide critical support, best-practice frameworks and credentials to the rapidly growing advisory sector. Our purpose is to collectively raise the standard of the global advisory sector – driving value for professionals and the organisations they serve.

How You Can Get Involved

We’ve repeatedly proven and quantified the critical value well-run advisory boards can provide to organisations and their strategic priorities. Advisory boards have an important complementary role to play, sitting alongside existing governance boards, non-executive directors, consultants, and mentors. Certified Chairs™ are uniquely qualified to support the establishment and chairing of advisory boards, executive committees, councils, panels or board-level meetings.

Based on experience talking with hundreds of professionals, you should identify with one of these three career positions.

  • You have significant business experience
  • Previous roles in the C-suite, NED, advisory or senior consulting
  • Acknowledge the value of continuing professional development (Executive Courses, MBA, GAICD, etc)
  • You’re already doing advisory work and are seeking to enhance the strength of your portfolio
  • You are familiar with governance structures and seek to be stimulated intellectually in a non-fiduciary, value-adding capacity
  • You’re motivated to impart your business wisdom for the benefit of others and to enhance business resilience and success


Read how we can assist you

  • You have current or very recent C-suite leadership experience with a high degree of practical, applied knowledge
  • You’re motivated to help other business leaders leverage your experience to prevent avoidable mistakes and mis-steps
  • You may have had a recent exit or been elevated from an operational role into a leadership, governance or advisory capacity
  • You’re looking to establish an Advisory Board internally for your current organisation or for others
  • You’re investing in your credentials now with a long-term view of building a portfolio career
  • You wish to build strong professional networks outside your current sector and circle of influence

Read how we can assist you

  • You’re considering commencing a professional advisory and/or consulting portfolio
  • You might be currently doing some informal advisory, coaching or mentoring to small business owners or friends
  • Your career is in a state of flux or change
  • You are exploring different options for additional work and training
  • You’re looking for your next corporate role or project





Read how we can assist you

A Global Leadership Footprint

World’s first professional body for the formal advisory board sector

Trusted by over 500 advisory board professionals in 15+ countries

First to create a professional best-practice framework for advisory boards

Global research council and technical committees driving best practice and ethical engagement


A few of the organisations we collaborate with:



A Podcast about Advisory Boards

Louise Broekman speaks about the emergence of advisory boards and why they are a growing area of work for executives and professional service providers.

Nicky Mackie

Current Advisory Board Chair
Mentor – VCCI and Board Member at a local community bank
Previous senior roles at Accenture, Jaycar Electronics

“Thank you again for the Certified Chair™ program, it has been life changing and I’ve applied the principles with the CEO from my NFP organisation that I am on the Governance Board of and have had some great outcomes.”

View Nicky’s Linkedin Profile

Mark Veyret

Current Advisory Board Chair
PwC Global Business Development Leader, Entrepreneurial and Private Clients
Former Asia Pacific Chief Operating Officer, PwC

“I searched the globe for a Chair qualification. I’ve done executive programs in four different universities – Harvard, NYU, Stern, etc…but the Certified Chair™ Executive Program was the one that was actually ‘on purpose’. It was the only one around, that I felt had quality to it.”

View Mark’s Linkedin Profile

David Nash

Current Advisory Board Chair
Principal – DLN Advisory
Previous senior roles at PWC, Collins Foods Group

“The Certified Chair™ Executive Program is one of the top three learning experiences of my professional career. The sharing of knowledge and experiences among the participants and the quality of the network is fantastic”

View David’s Linkedin Profile

What is an Advisory Board?

An Advisory Board is a structured and collaborative method for organisations to engage with external advisors. They act as a sounding board for the owners, directors or shareholders of a company to test strategic thinking and access expertise and connections that may not be readily available. Read more

What’s the difference between an Advisory Board and Board of Directors?

A Board of Directors, also known as a governance or statutory board, has fiduciary, legislative and regulatory responsibility for the organisation. The directors are legally responsible for the governance, control, direction and management of the organisation. It operates as a decision-making model which is binding on the individual directors and the organisation.  A Board of Directors is highly structured and bound to operate within the constitution of the organisation.

An Advisory Board provides non-binding, strategic advice and members are not authorised to act for or make decisions on behalf of the organisation. It’s a problem-solving model which provides critical thinking, robust analysis and strategic insights to inform the business owner, executives or directors, who in turn will make the decisions. Advisory Boards are highly flexible and can be adapted to meet the needs of the organisation. A Board of Directors, or Governance Board, is a group of individuals who are legally responsible for the governance, control, direction and management of the organisation. Directors have a fiduciary duty to govern the organisation on behalf of the shareholders or members of the company. In simple terms, a Governance Board is a decision-making model where decisions are binding on individual directors and also on the organisation. An Advisory Board provides non-binding advice and member are not authorised to act for or make decisions on behalf of the organisation. An Advisory Board is a problem-solving model to provide critical thinking, robust analysis and strategic insights to inform the business owner, executives or directors.

What’s the difference between consulting and advisory?

Consulting involves making recommendations of what a person or organisation should do based on that consultant’s individual experience. Consultants are often involved in the implementation phase of a project or scope of work. Advisory is empowering someone else to make informed decisions themselves, supported by critical thinking and leveraging experience and strategic foresight.

How is this program different to other recognised governance and directors courses?

The Certified Chair Executive Program™ is a unique qualification designed to support the evaluation, implementation and chairing of Advisory Boards, Executive Committees, Councils, Panels or Board-level meetings.  It is the only credential globally based on the ABF101 Advisory Board Best Practice Framework. Many successful Certified Chairs™ have also undertaken specific professional development on corporate or not-for-profit governance responsibilities and regulations to support their professional portfolio of work.

What is the exact role of an Advisory Board Chair and what would I be doing in this role?

As a Certified Chair™, you will guide the organisation leaders to evaluate, establish and facilitate a best-practice Advisory Board structure and meetings.  The role of the Chair includes being a trusted sounding board for the Business Owner, Executives or Directors.  You will actively participate and add value to Advisory Board discussions, draw out the best in others around you and support the organisation to gain the insight and foresight needed to support their strategic priorities.  Read More

What is the calibre of the professional Advisory Board Centre community in general?

As a professional body, the Advisory Board Centre provides membership and credentials on an invitation-only basis following a comprehensive selection process.  We intentionally keep the quality of the professional Advisory community very high. This is a critically important aspect of our organisation which benefits everyone. We invite you to learn more about the professional community through the Advisor Insights series.  Read More

What program materials will I get receive as part of the Certified Chair Executive Program™? Templates, models, resources, etc?

To support your professional development in the program, you will be provided with a copy of our ABF101 Advisory Board Best Practice Framework which sets the world-class standard for best practice in Advisory Boards and Committees. You will also receive and be upskilled on a suite of practical tools and resources to support “freedom within a framework’ evaluation, implementation and facilitation of highly effective advisory structures. Development of your personal portfolio engagement strategy and other research-backed, evidence-based content resources and methodologies for practical application.

After the credential process, how will I secure opportunities to chair Advisory Boards?

The Certified Chair Executive Program™ covers a 12 month period where we will support you to develop your network, personal profile and portfolio. It is your responsibility to reach out to your network, respond to opportunities and forge your own path ahead. Organisations actively seeking Advisory Board Chairs and Advisors can be supported through our independent Advisor Concierge service where we facilitate connections to our global Certified Chair community.

What are the expected number of board engagements and financial returns from Advisory Board work?

Each portfolio is as unique as the individual Chair.  Independent Certified Chairs set their own rates and portfolio structures to suit their preference.  According to our Advisor Engagement Market Rate Analysis 2020 – 2021 Report on average, Certified Chairs sit on 5.5 different boards. The majority of Advisory Board roles are remunerated.  Remuneration rates vary based on the individuals’ organisations budget and Advisory Board Charter.

I’m already an Advisor so what is the main benefit of this credential?

Maintaining your professional currency and investing in formal credentials clearly demonstrates to the market your commitment to best-practice and ethical engagements.  The knowledge, tools, resources and networks within the program add depth to your current offering with many existing Chairs noting a direct improvement in both the efficiency and impact of their current Boards following the completion of the program. This certification helps strengthen your credibility and professionalism when serving at a Board level.


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