DES PLAINES – Executive Director Frank Lesh has retiring after serving the American Society of Home Inspectors organization for nearly 30 years. James Thomas, formerly campus director for the SAE Institute of Technology Chicago, has been appointed as the new executive director.

thomas jamesWith almost 20 years of business and management experience working with companies such as Sylvan Corporate, Kaplan and Language Stars, Thomas (shown) will be charged with driving strategic financial and marketing objectives with oversight for business planning, finance, regulatory compliance and budgeting in his new role.

"I'm honored to serve ASHI in this capacity,” Thomas said. “Mr. Lesh has set a standard of excellence in his time here and has built a legacy through the numerous roles he held. I hope to build on these successes and continue to help ASHI provide excellent service to our members, partners, and the community we impact. I'm excited to help ASHI continue to move forward, and I'm humbled to have been chosen to do that.”

Lesh joined ASHI in 1990 and has served in many roles, including member of the Council of Representatives, secretary, vice president, president-elect and president.

Lesh took over as executive director in 2013 where he grew membership from 5,100 to more than 8,300 members and doubled the organization’s financial reserves.

“It has been an incredible pleasure serving ASHI and its members in so many capacities during my 28 years with the organization,” Lesh said. “Along with spending more time with family in retirement, I look forward to continue being involved with ASHI and serving as a mentor and resource to members, especially to new home inspectors getting started in the industry.”