​​​​​​​​​​​​Eight (8) hours of annual Continuing Education
  • Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are calculated based on number of contact hours. One hour of contact time equals to 0.1 CEU; 8 hours of contact time equals to 0.8 CEU.
  • NRECA will conduct random audits of CKAEs to verify the completion of continuing education. (There is no need to submit documentation each year)
  • CKAEs are responsible for maintaining records to support credits claimed and agree to make those records available to NRECA upon request to ensure good standing.
  • Records include, but are not limited to: Attendance verification records, such as certificate or letter of completion along with the type of activity claimed, summary description of event/course, sponsoring organization, location, duration, instructor's or speaker's name, and credits or hours earned.
  • CKAEs should retain their records for three years from the date continuing education was completed.
  • If an audited CKAE fails to provide requested information on continuing education, NRECA may request additional continuing education requirements or suspend credential.
  • Annual recertification fee of $80
  • The CKAE certification will be suspended if the annual 0.8 CEUs and fee requirement requirements are not met. Re-instatement guidelines are outlined below. (Each January, NRECA will send an invoice for the professional fee. You may be asked for documentation of the Continuing Education completed in the prior year. All Continuing Education information should be held you in case you receive an audit notice.)

Eligible Continuing Education Activities
​Training, education, and events in communication and leadership, sales and marketing, accounting and finance, and economic development that builds and hones your Key Accounts competencies qualify for CEUs towards CKAE® recertification.

The following list by no means is a comprehensive resource of the approved continuing education activities, but it will help you get started with your research. You are welcome to explore education outside this list, but before proceeding, please vet your selection with us to ensure it qualifies for CKAE Continuing Education.

1. Pursuing/Earning a Bachelor’s, Master’s or Doctorate degree automatically recertifies you for the year.
2. Attending college/university semester courses for credit.
3. Attendance at an online or in-person seminar, event, and continuing education program:
​a. NRECA sponsored (for example, participating in NRECA online or in-person seminars, SMDP and CCEP programs. Attending NEXT or the Connect Conference will automatically recertify you for the year).
​b. Participation in the National Rural Economic Developers Association (NREDA)​ annual conference is pre-approved for 1.0 CEU each year.
c.     Third-Party sponsored professional development activities may qualify. Submit program agenda for review. Participation is subject to verification. ​
​​4. NRECA statewide sponsored economic development workshops. ​​Approval of workshop agenda prior to attending is recommended.
​​a. 2-day program earn up to 1.0 CEU.
​​b. 1-day program earn up to .5 CEU.

Suspension/Re-Certification Guidelines
​The CKAE certification will be suspended if the annual CEU and fee requirement requirements are not met. CKAE recipients who have been decertified may appeal for reinstatement by making a formal written request to the CKAE Program Manager. Requests will be reviewed as received.

​The following guidelines will be used to determine if reinstatement is appropriate:

  1. The reinstatement candidate can be no more than three years in arrears for continuing education and/or annual certification fees.
  2. If the decertified period is less than three years, the following are required:
    • Continuing education documentation must be submitted that shows the equivalent continuing education was obtained as if the candidate had current CKAE status (e.g. if you failed to submit documentation of continuing education for the last year and wish be re-certified this year, evidence of 16 hours or 1.6 CEUs must be submitted).
    • The candidate must make payment for professional certification fees equivalent to the arrears period. (e.g. if you became decertified three years ago and wish to be reinstated, payment of professional fees must be brought up to date including current year).
If candidate has lapsed certification for more than three years, please contact CKAE Program Manager for review, these will be handled on a case by case basis.

Charu Gupta, Program Manager, 703-907-6577,
Angie Hylton, Senior Associate, ETE Certifications, 703-907-5656,