Rhea Steele

Chief Operating Officer

Rhea Steele is a 13-year veteran in the association and non-profit industry and is a leading culture engineer and process architect. She serves as the Chief Operating Officer for the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, where she aligns operational activities to achieve strategic goals while cultivating formal and informal avenues for idea generation and incubation.


Prior to her current position, Rhea was at the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), where she was the Director of Information Technology and Operations. At CCSSO, Rhea led a team of nine and oversaw a budget of more than $1M distributed across the information technology, office management, membership, and meeting services departments.

Her higher education experience includes six years at the University of Colorado which spanned roles in the College of Arts and Sciences and Division of Student Affairs.   

 Rhea is an active member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), where she serves on the Technology Section Council, and was previously Chair of the National Capital Advisory Council. She is a member of the National Architectural Accrediting Board where she serves as the public member of the Finance and Audit Committee. The Association Forum and USAE named her a Forty Under 40 award winner in 2016 and she was honored in 2017 as Association TRENDS Young and Aspiring Association Professional.

Rhea has a Masters of Science in Museum Studies and a Bachelors of Arts in Anthropology and Studio Arts from the University of Colorado at Boulder.