Certified Auctioneers Institute

CAI is different from NAA’s other designations. It’s a three-year program in which attendees spend a week each year onsite at Indiana University. It’s an intensive program involving late nights working on proposals and other projects that happen in the time between classes.

CAI, unlike other designations, focuses on the business of the auction industry rather than on a particular asset class. While attendees learn about different types of auctions, the focus is on business planning, development and structure. Attendees register for CAI I, CAI II, and CAI III in successive years. Gaps between CAI I, II and III of more than two years require approval of the Education Director, and often are addressed by having attendees audit CAI classes for a year before returning to the program.

Want to know more about CAI week?

Requirements for CAI

NOTE: To attend CAI an application must be submitted and approved

To apply for CAI you must:  
  • Be at least 21
  • Have at least two years in the auction industry
  • Hold a high school diploma or its equivalent
  • Submit an application with references
To obtain the CAI designation:
  • Attend all three full weeks of instruction.
  • Complete an auction proposal, which is critiqued by the CAI Committee (between CAI I and II)
  • Work in committees to plan and execute the CAI Benefit Auction in CAI II
  • Complete a business plan (between CAI II and III)
  • Present the above business plan to their class and a team of examiners in CAI III
  • Be a current member of the NAA

What CAI can do for you

Earning the CAI designation proves your commitment to the auction industry by taking the time to obtain the premier NAA designation. Many clients look for designations when trying to find the right auction professional, CAI sets you above the crowd as a well-rounded, elite auction professional who:
  • Has strong professional relationships and networks
  • Has a mastery of auction methods and asset classes
  • Has educated business intelligence
  • Is an ethical business professional
  • Has business technology literacy
  • Is an invested auction professional
  • Has leadership mentality
  • Is an exemplary #NAAPro

Trisha Brauer, CAI, BAS describes this class as helping you learn how to strategically grow your business and learn strategies to best service your clients. CAI covers all the bases of being a stellar auction professional and enables like-minded students to have the opportunity to network that sets graduates apart from the rest of the industry.

2023 UPDATE: The Biddle Hotel on the IU campus is sold out!

Alternate hotel lodging options within a mile of the Biddle Hotel

NAA does not have a room block or special rate at these properties, but their quality and rates are comparable to the Biddle.

CAI Week:
March 27-31, 2023

CAI Class I students must apply and be approved for the program prior to registering. 
CAI I Apply Now

Once approved, Class I students can register with the same form as Class II and III.
Register for CAI II & III

Looking for information on CAI Next?
Register for CAI Next

Future CAI Dates:

March 25-29, 2024
March 31-April 4, 2025
March 30-April 3, 2026

The last Monday of March!


CAI Member Registration Costs:

  By Feb. 25, 2023   After Feb. 25, 2023
CAI I   $1270  $1370
 CAI II  $1270  $1370
 CAI III  $1270  $1370

CAI designation renewal fees: $150 per year (due Oct. 31)

CAI Non-Member Registration Costs:

  By Feb. 25, 2023  After Feb. 25, 2023 
CAI I   $1595  $1695
 CAI II  $1595  $1695
 CAI III  $1595  $1695

CAI designation renewal fees: $150 per year (due Oct. 31) and NAA membership required

CAI Class I Money-Back Guarantee:

We are so confident in the CAI program that after you complete year one, if you don’t pick up one nugget that will allow you to grow your auction business or become a more efficient auction professional, we’ll refund your CAI year one registration fee.


Cancellation requests must be submitted in writing and received by the NAA no later than February 25. Canceled registrations will be refunded the registration fee minus the $250 non-refundable deposit. No refunds will be issued after February 25. Hotel reservation and full tuition must be paid by February 25 to attend CAI. 

Classes Overview

Click each CAI year below to view a list of classes. Click on an individual class to learn more.

CAI I (Year 1) – Auction Business Foundations: Learn the various auction methods, asset classes, and business skills.

MON. A.M. - Welcome and Orientation  
CAI Leadership and Class Advisor

MON. P.M. - Using Your Auction Proposal to Increase Revenue and Efficiency  
David Hudgins, CAI, AARE

MON. EVENING - CAI Social Event

TUE. A.M. - Making Money for You and Your Benefit Auction Clients  
Christie King, CAI, AARE, BAS  

TUE. P.M. Exploring Online Auction House Operations 
Jack Christy, Sr., CAI, BAS, CES, MPPA

WED. A.M. - Capitalizing Personal Property Opportunities
Tim Luke, CAI, BAS, MPPA

WED. P.M. - Presenting, Evaluating, and Reviewing Auction Proposals
David Hudgins, CAI, AARE

WED. EVENING - CAI Benefit Auction Event
CAI Class II

THUR. A.M. - Mastering the Art of Negotiation
John Hamilton

THUR. P.M. Increasing Business Productivity and Efficiency 
David Hart, CAI, AARE

FRI. A.M. - Building a Lucrative Real Estate Auction Business   
Barbara Bonnette, CAI; Beth Rose, CAI, AARE, AMM

FRI. P.M. - Class I Wrap-Up & CAI Class III Graduation
Class Advisor 

CAI II (Year 2) – Business Operations Management: Learn what it takes to run and support a successful auction business.

MON. A.M. - Welcome and Orientation  
CAI Leadership and Class Advisor

MON. P.M. - Business Planning for Professional Growth 
Jimmie Dean Coffey, CAI, AARE, AMM, BAS, CES MPPA

MON. EVENING - CAI Social Event

TUE. A.M. - Determining and Analyzing Your Business Value   
Ailie Byers, CAI, AMM, BAS

TUE. P.M. - Protecting Yourself and Your Business 
Rich Schur, CAI, AMM, BAS, MPPA

WED. A.M. 1 - Ethical Business Strategies for Long-Term Success 
Tim Mast, CAI, AARE

WED. A.M. 2 - Gaining Loyalty through Customer Experience
Tim Keller, CAI, AMM, CES

WED. P.M. & THUR. A.M. - Embracing Your Brand and Developing Compelling Marketing  
John Schultz, AMM; Sara Rose Bytnar, CAI, AARE, AMM

WED. EVENING - CAI Benefit Auction Event
CAI Class II

THUR. P.M. - Utilizing Partnerships, Joint Ventures, and Referrals  
Mike Fisher, CAI, AARE, AMM, BAS, CES, GPPA; Phil Gableman, CAI, AMM, GPPA

FRI. A.M. 1 - Born, Bought, or Built: Ensuring a Business with a Future 
Willie Baker, CAI, AMM; Jack Christy, Sr., CAI, BAS, CES, MPPA

FRI. A.M. 2 - Structuring Your Business Plan 
Class Advisor and Instructors

FRI. P.M. - Class II Wrap-Up & CAI Class III Graduation
Class Advisor

CAI III (Year 3) – Auction Business Development: Learn how to grow or specialize your business for long-term success.

MON. A.M. - Welcome and Orientation  
CAI Leadership and Class Advisor

MON. P.M. - Capitalizing Banks, Bankruptcy, and Government Opportunities 
Mark Manley, CAI, AARE, CES, MPPA

MON. EVENING - CAI Social Event

TUE. A.M. - Honing Your Business Sales Communications
Tim Luke, CAI, BAS, MPPA

TUE. P.M. - Utilizing and Protecting Data as an Asset
John Schultz, AMM

WED. A.M. - Advanced Online Auction Strategies & Efficiencies 
Chris Rasmus, CAI, AMM

WED. P.M. - Mastering the Art of Business Development
Barbara Bonnette, CAI; Jack Christy, Sr., CAI, BAS, CES, MPPA; Tim Keller, CAI, AMM, CES; Will McLemore, CAI

WED. EVENING - CAI Benefit Auction Event
CAI Class II

THUR. A.M. & P.M. - Business Plan Presentations 
Panel of Examiners

FRI. A.M. 1 - Building Business through Relationship Marketing
John Nicholls, CAI, AARE, AMM

FRI. A.M. 2 - Maximizing Your Leadership Potential
Aaron Ensminger, CAE

FRI. P.M. - Class III Wrap-Up & CAI Class III Graduation
Class Advisor 

CAI 2023 Committee

T. Kyle Swicegood, CAI, BAS, GPPA (Chair)
Ken "Whitey" Mason, CAI (Vice Chair)
Jack L. Christy, Jr., CAI, ATS, BAS, GPPA (CAI III Advisor)
Jennifer A. Gableman, CAI, ATS (CAI II Advisor)
Bradley A. Stoecker, CAI, AARE, AMM, CES (CAI I Advisor)
Willie Baker, CAI, AMM (2023 Recruiter)