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W459: How to Engage, Communicate, and Get More Out of Your Nonprofit Board Members

December 4, 2023 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm EST


Serving on a nonprofit organization’s Board of Directors can be a rewarding and often life-changing experience. Senior management for nonprofit organizations needs to be more active helping their Board members to learn how to be more effective during their Board service term helping Board members find and align their passion and capacity to serve while meeting the needs and expectations of the nonprofit organization they will represent. We will discuss three specific aspects of the Board member lifecycle:

  1. New Board Member Planning and Preparation
  2. Pathways to Effective Continuing Board Leadership
  3. Past Presidents and Retiring Board Members Can Be a Powerful Resource or a Missed Opportunity



  • – Learn about how to help new Board members to get off to a faster start and quickly learn how to be more effective during their first year of Board service.
  • – How to take a proactive approach to help Board members to find a pathway for continuing their Board leadership roles and find leadership styles that meet their skills and time constraints.
  • – We will discuss different tactics for how to optimize and consider continued using and finding interactive opportunities to use retiring Board members especially Past Presidents (Past Board Chairs) in a manner that brings enjoyment to the individual while helping the organization and not getting in the way of the current seated Board of directors.


Resources and Source Articles and Two Series from the SE4N Website

  • New Board Member Planning and Preparation
    • Serving on a nonprofit organization’s Board of Directors can be a rewarding and often life-changing experience. The first year of Board service will set the stage for the remainder of your time on the Board and directly affect opportunities for engagement, impact, visibility, quality of experience, and advancement.
    • This 4-part series aims to help new Board members set basic goals and develop realistic expectations for success during this critical early stage of their Board tenure.


  • Pathways to Effective Board Leadership Series
    • To be an effective Board member you must consider how your own passion and capacity to serve align with the needs and expectations of the nonprofit organization you will represent.
    • This 4-part series will help you assess and choose the leadership path that is best aligned to the organization as well as yourself, so that you will be in a position to complete your Board service without regrets or second guesses.


  • Past Presidents Can Be a Powerful Resource or a Missed Opportunity
    • I have looked at many lists of Past Presidents for nonprofit organizations and been amazed by the roster of names, but I am often disappointed at how many Past Presidents have become lost connections. High performing nonprofits keep their Past Presidents engaged and connected with meaningful active roles that are thoughtful and strategic.
    • The position of President or Board Chair is usually short-term however the title of Past President lasts a lifetime. We can learn from the organizations that put a high value on this important resource and have worked to maintain a long-term connection with their Past Presidents. Common themes and tactics used include a strong emphasis on continuing service, active use of their knowledge, support and network, and amplification of their voice as spokespersons and ambassadors.
    • Continuing service is a key point of emphasis. Organizations need to develop guidelines for active continuing engagement of Presidents after their terms expire and/or following completion of their term as Immediate Past President. Engagement must be active and regular, driving home the point that Past Presidents will have a meaningful continuing service role. These roles can be divided into two categories: ceremonial roles and specific functions.

To Watch this Webinar on the Media Library CLICK HERE!

Level Intermediate
NASBA (Field of Study) Information Technology
CAE (Subject Domain) Member and Stakeholder Engagement and Management
Prerequisites and advance preparation needed 1 years operations experience. No advance preparation required
Reviewer Wade Tetsuka, CPA
CPE/CAE Credits 1.0
Cost Free
Delivery Group Internet Based

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A. Michael Gellman, CPA, CGMA
Co-Founder at Sustainability Education 4 Nonprofits
Mr. Gellman, CPA, CGMA, is an independent Fiscal and Financial Strategist for Nonprofit Organizations. He has more than 35 years’ experience in nonprofit fiscal, financial…
Paul Preziotti, CPA
Partner, Johnson Lambert LLP
I provide audit, compliance and operational solutions to nonprofit organizations and sponsors of employee benefit plans. Paul likes to wind down by hitting the links,…