It’s that time of year when DSEF’s Board of Director’s roster changes. We salute our consumer and academic board members who complete their terms in 2011. These individuals worked passionately to help fulfill our mission, especially in the areas of consumer rights and protection, education and research, and women’s entrepreneurship and economic empowerment. While making their contributions, each of these devoted volunteers has also gained a new perspective about the direct selling industry, and DSEF will continue to benefit from their involvement, support and insight.

Maria E. Canabal Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, Texas State University, San Marcos, serves as DSEF Consumer & Community Program Committee member.

"DSEF has given me the opportunity to familiarize myself with the direct selling industry, its business model and the diversity of the firms and the people involved. As a consumer educator and advocate, it’s important for me to understand both sides of the market—sellers and consumers. It’s also been valuable for me to be able to represent DSEF abroad and to introduce some of my professional organizations to DSEF, forming long-lasting partnerships."

Greg W. Marshall, Ph.D., Professor of Marketing, Rollins College, served as Chair of the DSEF Education Initiative Committee.

"I’ve come to very much appreciate the direct selling business model and the power of the independent salesperson to control her or his own destiny through hard work and tenacity. It’s a brilliant strategy for DSEF to promote such high levels of academic / executive interaction, and I firmly believe that the single most opportunistic initiative for DSEF continues to be fostering research collaboration between top scholars and top industry executives, directed toward addressing critical research questions for the future of the industry."

Susan G. Duffy Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Strategy & Entrepreneurship, Simmons College, serves on the DSEF Education Initiative Committee, and the Women’s Initiative Committee.

"It has been an honor to serve on the DSEF board. As an entrepreneurship educator, I found the direct selling opportunity to be an ideal, accessible model of new venture creation for my students. Everything we want students to learn about launching, managing and growing a venture is available to them in a direct selling company. I aim to use my energy every day for a net positive gain. DSEF has been an inspiring place to entrepreneur positive outcomes."

Elizabeth Owen, Executive Director, National Association of Consumer Agency Administrators, served as Chair of the DSEF Consumer & Community Program Committee.

"I learned firsthand the direct selling industry’s dedication to promoting consumer protection. Its support is generous, unwavering and creative, and for that the entire consumer protection community is grateful. No other industry comes close to that commitment. As I rotate off the board, I am so pleased to see this organization celebrating a renewed mission, defined goals, and an eye for the future. On a personal note, each board meeting was a pleasant reunion with people I grew to call friends."