From 1999 to 2001, Alan R. Andreasen, PhD, professor of marketing at Georgetown University, Washington, and William D. Novelli, then president of the Center for Tobacco-Free Kids, Washington, (now president and CEO of AARP), worked with a team of experts in communications, marketing, research, business and public policy to lay the groundwork for the Center for the Advancement of Social Marketing, later named the Social Marketing Institute.
The vision for the institute called for it to "accelerate, improve and document the practice of health and social change in the United States and elsewhere."
During the grant, the following was accomplished:
- The Social Marketing Institute was formally incorporated in Washington as a nonprofit organization.
- The advisory committee selected three strong candidates for executive director from an initial pool of 120 following a formal search.
- The committee established a board of directors for the institute.
- The committee developed a five-year business plan for the institute that included detailed revenue and budget projections.
- Staff designed and launched a website at social-marketing.org.