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New Directors Onboard: Start 2016 with a New Director Orientation and Board Boot Camp

The start of a new year often brings change to nonprofit boards, as new directors arrive to replace those whose terms have ended.  As your organization prepares for its first board meeting of the year, one of its priorities should be to welcome and orient new board members.  An early orientation will provide a solid foundation for each new board member throughout his or her tenure, and will help ensure that new directors are active, engaged participants in the board’s work.  In addition to providing information about the organization’s mission, history, and strategic goals, the orientation should:

  • Educate new board members about their fiduciary duties and responsibility for financial oversight of the organization;
  • Provide each board member with a copy of all the organization’s governing documents, including articles of incorporation, bylaws, conflict-of-interest, whistleblower, and other good-governance policies;
  • Provide training in basic financial literacy to board members who do not have a background in finance or accounting.

You may also wish to include in your new board member orientation packet two D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center publications: Welcome to the Board of Directors, which provides an overview of the directors’ role in governing the organization, and The Role of the Board of Directors in Financial Oversight, which focuses on the directors’ responsibility to oversee the organization’s finances.

To assist nonprofits in educating new and existing board members, the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center and the Center for Nonprofit Advancement will host a Board Boot Camp on Saturday, February 27, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  This all-day course will give participants an overview of the board’s duty to ensure that the organization has sufficient funds to carry out its mission and in providing proper oversight in the expenditure of those funds.  The course will also discuss how the board should evaluate and compensate the CEO, methods for assessing risk with respect to the organization’s operations, and planning for the future of the organization.
Taught by professionals with expertise in the running of nonprofit organizations, the course is designed for individuals who have recently joined a nonprofit board, and existing board members who wish to enhance their skills as directors.

To register, please click here.