Non-Profit Volunteers, Staff Offer Tips on Recruiting Successful Board Members
White, Nelson & Co. LLP sponsored a nonprofit forum discussion on board development for nonprofit organizations on April 15, one in a monthly series of presentations for non-profit leaders in Orange County.
The 90-minute discussion included tips on identifying prospective board members, recruiting them to serve on boards and encouraging their active participation in the organization. It was held in the board room of CresaPartners, Fashion Island in Newport Beach, with 25 non-profit leaders in attendance.
“Quite often, when we’re recruited to serve on a board, we don’t know how we fit in to an organization. We need to be taught,” commented Jeff Shepard, founding principal of CresaPartners and Chairman of the Board of the Child Abuse Prevention Center in Orange. Shepard noted that he had recruited 15 board members since he began serving on the Center’s board, not all of whom turned out to be a good fit for the organization. “It’s important to find someone who has a passion for your cause, and has the time and ability to commit to serve on the board,” he continued.
Donald Voska, CFO of Goodwill Industries of Orange County, noted that Goodwill had a rigorous interview process for serving on its board, to ensure that Board members will be successful in their volunteer role. Voska explained, “We believe that those willing to go through the process are promising candidates to serve on the Board.”
Dawn Reese, General Manager and CFO of The Wooden Floor (formerly St. Joseph Ballet) in Santa Ana, believed that an important consideration for recruiting Board members was the life cycle of the organization. She explained, “Newer non-profits, for example, might have a greater need for technological expertise as they establish their offices, rather than organizations that have been in existence for a long time.” She also believed that term limits for Board members can help keep a Board fresh and motivated.
Attendance at the event was limited to 25, explained Scott Jones of White Nelson, to encourage active participation of participants. The event was one in a series offered by the Orange County Nonprofit Management Forum, sponsored by White Nelson, Brown & Streza, BNY Mellon Wealth Management, Hays of California Insurance Services and CresaPartners. Its purpose is to provide important managerial information to non-profit executive directors, CFOs, COOs and other senior management officers, and to provide them with a peer-to-peer forum to discuss related topics.
The next non-profit forum will feature a lunchtime discussion of tax compliance and audit issues at White Nelson’s offices in May. New participants are welcome. For information, contact Scott Jones at via email at email@example.com