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Governance + Leadership
Nonprofit boards of directors are responsible for defining the organization’s mission, vision and values and for providing overall leadership and strategic direction to the organization. They are responsible for maintaining the ethical and legal integrity of the organization. Nonprofit boards actively set policy and ensure that the organization has adequate resources to carry out its mission, and that its activities and expenses align with mission focus. The effectiveness of a nonprofit depends in large part on the board’s ability to recruit a talented and visionary professional to fill the role of chief executive, and on a collaborative relationship between the board of directors and this chief executive.
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A helpful overview of key issues related to nonprofit overhead, including what counts as overhead, how different charity watchdogs report overhead, tips for allocating expenses appropriately so you don't over-represent your true overhead costs and more.
MANP, Robert H. Levin
This MANP white paper, written by attorney Robert H. Levin, outlines the difference between casual usage of the word “member” and the legal definition, and provides information to help nonprofits determine if membership in the legal sense is appropriate for their organization(s).
Stern International Consulting
Based on a past MANP SkillBuilder, this document provides an overview of the collaboration continuum, the opportunities and challenges of alliances, and guidance about the role of the board in creating effective partnerships.
Advisory councils, committees and boards can be a valuable way to gain a deeper understanding of stakeholder needs, and to expand capacity to accomplish targeted projects. Learn more about advisory boards, how they differ from boards of directors, questions to consider before starting an advisory group, and find a sample committee member invitation to help you get started.
Free Management Library
A compilation of advice, articles, tools, templates, guides, and legal information for boards.
This handbook explains the two types of responsibilities that all-volunteer organization boards have and provides a checklist that helps assess the work of the board. Helpful for sports leagues, neighborhood associations, clubs, event organizing groups, "friends of" groups, service clubs and more.
Nonprofit management support organization providing consultant/service provider database, event calendar, job board, resource center, and FAQ.
A national source for resources and assistance to support, facilitate, and expand the delivery of pro bono legal assistance.
Nonprofits incorporated in Maine are required to file an annual report with the Secretary of State's office. This web page provides more details, including forms and filing fees.
Nonprofits that fail to file their annual return with the IRS (Form 990, etc.) are subject to penalties and fees.
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Sample/Template
The following resources provide a thorough overview of financial audits for charitable nonprofits, including what an audit is, who should have one, audit alternatives, state by state requirements, the role of the board/audit committee, and a step-by-step approach to managing an audit.
- Absent the Audit: How Nonprofits Can Demonstrate Accountability without One (Steve Zimmerman and Jeanne Bell)
- Controlling the Audit Process (CPAs for the Public Interest)
- Audit Committee Roles and Responsibilities (National Council of Nonprofits)
- Audit Committee Activity Checklist (National Council of Nonprofits)
A user-friendly guide with how-tos for CEOs, board members and potential members on making the most of in-kind and pro bono resources.
This article examines the role of the board of directors in establishing organizational sustainability.
The online magazine of American Nonprofits with articles and opinions on nonprofit governance and leadership. Subscribe for free to receive the magazine by email.
A downloadable introductory guide to nonprofit board service for new board members and for those who have served on boards for some time but still have questions about whether their board is living up to its legal, financial and other obligations.
A compilation of resources on forming and managing board committees, including standing committees and ad hoc committees.
- Typical Board Committees (Free Management Library)
- How to Staff and Support a Committee (Blue Avocado)
- Board Standing Committee Charters (AGB)
- How to Write a Charter for a Committee (BoardEffect)
- Are Your Board Committees Working (BoardSource)
- Sample Board Committee Charters (BoardSource - Member Only)
The culture of your board has a big impact on your board effectiveness in advancing the organization's mission. These articles and guides will help you identify ways to shape and nurture a positive board culture that is strengths-based, inclusive, and drives outcomes.
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Sample/Template
Resources to help you have legal, effective board meetings. Learn about Robert's Rules of Order, read MANP's white papers on meeting minutes and disclosure, and find a wide variety of resources to set and manage agendas and ensure rich conversation.
These resources provide a brief summary of the basic responsibilities of each officer of a nonprofit board, as well as template you can use to create a board member job description for your organization.
A thoughtful orientation process is an essential step in bringing on new board members and laying the groundwork for your board team to advance strategic goals. The following resources will help you design an orientation process and board manual that gives new board members a clear sense of the organization's history, mission, goals, and expectations.
Mentoring can be a valuable component of integrating new members to your board.
Every board needs to plan for board officer succession: how to identify leadership qualities, elect the best candidates for the positions, train the officers for their roles, and ensure timely rotation. This resource outlines the roles of officers, the process for electing officers, and both short- and long-term strategies for when you don't have board members willing to step up to a leadership position.
This guide provides a great overview of reasons boards consider portals and other online collaboration tools, as well as a summary of pros, cons and costs of various file sharing tools (such as dropbox and and google drive), project management tools (such as Basecamp or Central Desktop), and dedicated board portals (such as BoardPaq) that organizations may consider.
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Sample/Template
Find a variety of free resources to help your organization assess board needs and recruit new volunteer board members.
- Forming the First Board (BoardSource)
- Strategic Board Recruitment Toolkit (MANP)
- Keys to Successful Board Recruitment (MANP)
- Board Composition and Recruitment (BoardSource)
- Board Recruitment Matrix (BoardSource)
- [Alternative Perspective] Ditch Your Board Composition Matrix (Blue Avocado)
- Board Member Job Description (BoardSource)
- CEO Dos and Don'ts in Recruiting Nonprofit Board Members (BoardSource)
- Diversity on Boards (Various)
- Linkedin Board Match
- What to Ask Every Prospective Board Member (GuideStar)
- Youth Board Members: Can minors serve on a nonprofit board? (Nonprofit Law Blog)
While different nonprofits will have different expectations of board members based on their size, mission, or particular challenges, there are some legal responsibilities as well as generally accepted practices of nonprofit boards. The following resources and trainings can help board members understand their roles and responsibilities.
- What Organizations Need From Their Board Members (BoardSource)
- Guide for Board Members of Charitable Corporations (Maine Office of the Attorney General)
- Board Basics Handbooks (MANP)
- Board Roles & Responsibilities Checklist (BoardSource)
- Recommended Governance Practices (BoardSource)
- Governance Models (Blue Avocado, etc.)
- Training: Board Boot Camp (MANP)
Even the best organizations need a periodic check-up to ensure they not only survive but thrive in today’s environment. A board self-assessment is the best place to start to check your board’s vital signs and identify practices and strategies for a healthy and energized board.
These articles provide guidance to help nonprofit board treasurers be successful in their role.
The relationship between an organization's CEO and its board is critical to the success of the organization's mission. These articles outline common tensions between a nonprofit board and Executive Director, their potential root causes, characteristics of a trusting relationship, and steps to take to create an effective partnership.
- The Nonprofit President/CEO: How Much Board and CEO Trust Is Involved? (Huffington Post)
- "Let's Work Together" - The Sweet Sounds of a Board-CEO Partnership (NRMC)
- Board/Executive Director Tensions (Governance Matters)
- Building Trust with the Board (BoardSource)
- Clash of the Nonprofit Titans: Managing Board and CEO Conflicts (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Steal This: The Secret Sauce is Trust (MANP Blog)
- In the Board Room: Staying in the Loop and Out of the Weeds (NonprofitQuarterly)
- Effective Board Chair-Executive Director Relationships: Not About Roles (NonprofitQuarterly)
- Board Chair and Chief Executive Communications (BoardSource)
- Board-Staff Interaction (BoardSource)
E-newsletter with ideas, information, opinion, news, and resources to help nonprofit board members.
Board of directors recruitment and placement website.
Minnesota Council of Nonprofits
Learn about the financial responsibilities of a nonprofit board.
Strategies for involving board in resource and fund development activities.
Board of directors support organization recognized nationally as the central source for nonprofit boards and board development, wich provides resources including faqs, articles, advice, e-newsletter, links, tools, personal email responses, consulting, and training.
Welcoming and orienting a new leader is an essential, but often overlooked part of a successful executive transition. The following guides and articles will help board members set their new leader up for success and manage common challenges.
- The Nonprofit Board's Role in Onboarding and Supporting a New CEO (Bridgespan Group)
- You Hired Your New Leader - Now What? (MANP Blog)
- Should the New and Old CEOs Ever Overlap? (NPQ)
- When New Leaders Inspire an End Run: Tips & Scrips for Board Members (Georgia Center for Nonprofits)
- Managing Big Change: Top Tips for New Executive Directors & CEOs (Blue Avocado)
A clear mission and vision is the foundation for any nonprofit's work. These resources define the difference between mission, vision and values statements and provide suggestions for developing clear guiding principles for your organization's work.
These articles and guides explore ways that organizations can build their leadership capacity, develop emerging leaders, and effectively prepare for inevitable transitions.
- Building Leadership Capacity: Reframing the Succession Challenge (Bridgespan Group)
- The Nonprofit Leadership Development Deficit (Stanford Social Innovation Review)
- Ready to Lead? Next Generation Leaders Speak Out (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
- Up Next: Generation Change and the Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
- Nonprofit Leadership Development: What's Your "Plan A" for Growing Future Leaders? (Bridgespan Group)
- Nonprofit Leadership Development Toolkit (Bridgespan)
- Next Shift: Beyond the Nonprofit Leadership Crisis (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
If your nonprofit organization changes its address you'll need to notify both the Secretary of State's office (if you are incorporated in Maine) and the IRS.
Many nonprofits and foundations develop a statement of values and code of ethics to help guide their policies, decision making and operations. The process of developing values and a code of ethics can prompt rich conversation. The following resource provide a suggested process as well as samples from other organizations that can be used as a starting point.
This is a national organization that supports community associations including nonprofits like homeowners associations, road associations and condo associations. While these kinds of associations share many things in common with charitable nonprofits, this organization is able to provide resources more targeted to these types of associations. Resources and tools include governance guidelines, information on disaster preparedness and recovery, and a "reading room" with articles on topics such as insurance and risk management, governance, homeowner resources, maintenance, meetings and more.
National Council of Nonprofits
This resource provides several sample confidentiality policies for nonprofits to use as a starting point when developing their own policies to guide how employees, board members and volunteers interact with sensitive client information.
Form 990 asks organizations to indicate whether they have adopted a conflict of interest policy. While this policy is not required, it is recommended and the IRS may increase their scrutiny of returns from organizations that have not adopted recommended policies. The following resources will help you understand this topic. The sample policies provide a basis from which nonprofits can create their own policy, and are not intended for verbatim use without careful review.
A consent agenda is a strategy for improving board meeting efficiency, shifting time spent away from rote administrative work and freeing up time for rich and valuable conversation. The board chair would group several items together on the agenda and vote on them as a single entity rather than having separate discussions and votes. The following resources will help you use consent agendas effectively.
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Periodical, Video/Tutorial
Directors and Officers Insurance, commonly called D&O Insurance, offers protection against a breach of "duty" by the directors and officers. Whether or not to carry this kind of coverage can be a complicated question. The following articles provide information to help nonprofits decide, and offer advice on finding coverage.
- Nonprofit Directors and Officers Insurance: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Guidestar)
- About Directors & Officers Insurance for Nonprofits (American Bar Association)
- Who Can Sue a Nonprofit Board (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Directors and Officers Liability Insurance: Why It’s Worth the Cost (Nonprofit Quarterly)
- Recorded Webinar on Nonprofit D&O: What You Need to Know (NRMC webinar vault)
- What Do You Know About D&O (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
A variety of articles and guides to help nonprofits prepare for emergency situations.
- Disaster Preparedness (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Is Your Nonprofit Disaster Ready? (LaPiana Consulting Group)
- Disaster Planning, Emergency Preparedness & Business Continuity (Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York)
- Disaster Planning and Recovery for Nonprofits, Charities, and Libraries (TechSoup)
Some nonprofits must make the painful decision to close their doors. MANP provides the following resources and recommendations to help Maine nonprofits navigate the decision to dissolve and the dissolution process.
An alternative perspective on the popular board composition matrix as a tool to assess board needs and develop recruitment strategies.
Article/Blog, Assessment, Guide/Tool, Research/Report
A compilation of resources to help nonprofit boards consider ways to bring new ideas and perspectives to the table.
- Diversity on Nonprofit Boards (National Council of Nonprofits)
- The Inclusive Nonprofit Boardroom: Leveraging the Transformative Potential of Diversity (Nonprofit Quarterly)
- How to Catch a Unicorn: Diversify Your Nonprofit Board Like You Mean it (BoardSource)
- Race to Lead: Confronting the Racial Leadership Gap (Building Movement Project)
- Building a More Diverse Board with Intention (Blue Avocado)
- Different is Better: Why Diversity Matters in the Board Room (Russell Reynolds)
- 10 Steps to a More Diverse Board (National Council of Nonprofits)
It is best practice for organizations to have an emergency succession plan in place to safeguard the mission and work of the nonprofit when faced with the unplanned departure of an executive director.
These links include a wealth of suggestions and sample tools for conducting performance evaluations for and executive director or CEO.
- Evaluating the Chief Executive: Your Role as a Board Member (First Nonprofit Foundation)
- Evaluating the Chief Executive (Free Management Library)
- Evaluating the Executive Director (Blue Avocado)
- Sample executive director assessment survey (Blue Avocado)
- Performance Appraisal Process for a CEO (Simone Joyaux)
- How to Conduct a Chief Executive Performance Assessment (BoardSource)
This one-page handy reference guide outlines the various documents to which your board needs to pay attention.
Chronicle of Philanthropy
These resources include a model employment agreement for a nonprofit executive director, articles on negotiating contracts and key legal elements of contracts, and an article on how contracts can support effective succession planning conversations.
Learn why executive sessions are important, who should attend, what might be discussed, and how to keep them effective.
Periodic newsletter with information for tax-exempt organizations and tax practitioners - attorneys, accountants, and others - who represent them.
This resource provides nonprofit boards with a framework to decide whether an exit agreement for the departing executive director is needed and, if so, what might be included. The article outlines different types of agreements, case examples, and risk management factors.
This tool helps organizations spot if they're in financial crisis crisis or coming close to one.
National Council of Nonprofits
A great collection of resources related to how boards can become financially literate, managing cash flow, and the financial management policies and procedures a nonprofit needs.
Developing and adopting a written financial policy is a valuable practice for any nonprofit organization, no matter how small or large. Financial policies clarify the roles, authority, and responsibilities for essential financial management activities and decisions. Use this sample and guide to help you develop your organization's policy.
The following resources will help you find and manage consultants and vendors, whether for a defined project, or ongoing support. If you need a referral for support on fundraising, strategic planning, legal issues, accounting issues, meeting facilitation, technology, or any other outside support, start here. (Many of the consultants and vendors in MANP's Yellow Pages offer nonprofit rates.)
These resources provide an overview of the different versions of IRS Form 990 and how to complete this annual return (due the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of your fiscal year, which means May 15 or November 15 for most organizations).
- 411 on Form 990 (MANP Blog)
- IRS 990 Decoder Worksheet and Resource (Propel Nonprofits)
- How to Read IRS Form 990 (Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York)
- 990N E-Postcard Filling FAQs (IRS)
- Making the Most of Your 990: A Red Flag Guide for Nonprofits (NonprofitQuarterly)
- Stay Exempt: 990 Overview (IRS)
- Recorded Webinar: New Nonprofits Boot Camp - Legal & Tax Best Practices (MANP)
- Telling the Not-for-Profit Story Through Form 990 (Journal of Accountancy)
- Recorded Webinar: Is Your IRS Form 990 Telling the Right Story? And What Can You Do About It? (Nonprofit Quarterly)
- Recorded Webinar: Filing Error-Free Forms (IRS)
Fundraising is a key responsibility of nonprofit board members, but in order to be successful, they must have the appropriate tools. This toolkit helps board members communicate with potential donors by providing concise, easily-digestible information about the organization, including:
talking points about the organization
key selling points of the organization
outcomes, evaluation, and effectiveness
stories and testimonials
These articles outline different governance models for nonprofit boards, and help organizations better understand the role of the board versus staff leadership.
For some nonprofits the painful decision to close the doors must at some point be made. MANP has created a page dedicated to the helping nonprofits navigate dissolution, as well as a white paper on the topic.
There are times when a board member becomes destructive or demoralizing to the mission of the organization and the rest of the board needs to make a decision about removing one board member for the good of the whole. This article provides good guidance as to when this might be appropriate, and some approaches to consider.
These resources give nonprofit boards insight into the benefits of an Interim CEO. Learn about what an interim executive director does and doesn't do, and read case studies of nonprofits that have used interim CEOs during leadership transitions.
Detailed guide with information on most types of tax exemption, including rules and restrictions related to fundraising and lobbying.
Guidance and advice for Maine nonprofit boards that will help them strengthen their recruitment strategies and process.
These articles provide a helpful overview of the different types and terms used when discussing liability insurance, including general liability, workers compensation, professional liability, directors and officers (D&O) coverage, limited coverage and umbrella coverage.
Maine Attorney General
Guide from the Attorney General's Office of Maine regarding the rights and responsibilities of nonprofit board members.
State of Maine
Searchable text of TITLE 13-B: MAINE NONPROFIT CORPORATION ACT
This article provides an interesting case study of the decision-making process new organizations must go through when choosing whether to incorporate as a for profit or nonprofit. The article includes a summary of the key differences related to ownership, transparency and profit. The article is based on a 2 part series by the New York Times.
We all want to ensure the sustainability of our organizations’ missions far into the future. To do so, board and staff leaders must be ready to successfully navigate executive transitions. When done thoughtfully, these transitions can bring positive organizational change and growth. Following is a compilation of resources related to managing successful leadership transitions.
- Stepping Up: A Board's Role in Leadership Transition (Tim Wolfred)
- Capturing the Power of Leadership Change (Annie. E. Casey Foundation)
- Nonprofit Leadership Transitions and Organizational Sustainability: An Updated Approach that Changes the Landscape (NPQ)
- Free Webinar Series on Executive Transitions (Nonprofit Quarterly, BoardSource and Raffa)
- The Long Good Bye: Advice, How-Tos, and Cautionary Tales for Extended Leadership Exits (Building Movement Project)
- Flying Monkeys: Organizational Considerations in an Executive Transition (NonprofitQuarterly)
- Founder Transitions: Creating Good Endings and New Beginnings (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
- Making Founder Transitions Work (SSIR)
- Hiring or transition to a new chief executive (Free Management Library)
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) outlines expectations and agreements for a formal partnership. These resources will help you with the process of vetting partnerships and crafting a clear agreement.
Paul Connolly, TCC Group
Tips to help you keep your board of directors engaged with your organization and energized by their board service.
A free online training tool designed to help people who want to volunteer in their communities and learn more about becoming a member of a nonprofit board. Users can attend interactive sessions about board service, talk with animated characters, and watch short videos of others talking about their nonprofit board experiences. The site also offers a short self assessment about board service.
Bylaws outline the rules of internal operation for a Board of Directors, and because regulations are state-specific, there is quite a bit of variation. A Maine nonprofits will want its Bylaws tailored to state law, in particular to the Maine Nonprofit Corporation Act. We caution against modeling bylaws on a non-Maine nonprofit’s bylaws, and organizations should note that even using another Maine nonprofit's bylaws as a template is tricky, as they may not be what's best for your organization.
The following articles provide information about nonprofit bylaws, links to sample bylaws (to be used with caution), and a checklist of what your bylaws should include.
The following articles provide information about nonprofit bylaws, links to sample bylaws (to be used with caution), and a checklist of what your bylaws should include.
- Bylaws & Articles of Incorporation: Key Similarities & Differences (BoardSource)
- About Bylaws (GrantSpace)
- Bylaws Dos and Don'ts (BoardSource)
- Bylaws: Effective Rules for Your Board (BoardSource)
- Bylaws Checklist (Blue Avocado)
- Nonprofit Bylaws & Sample (Harbor Compliance)
- Nonprofit Bylaws Resources + Samples (Free Management Library)
- Maine Nonprofit Corporation Act
- MANP's Yellow Pages (to find an attorney to help write your bylaws)
The Wallace Foundation
This website has a broad range of resources to support nonprofits in developing strong nonprofit management practices, including tools for budgeting, planning for growth, planning for uncertainty, calculating the cost of programs, projecting cash flow, understanding and interpreting financial reports, managing government contracts, strengthening internal controls and efficiencies, and much more.
Resources and information on good practices in all areas of nonprofit management, including a section on volunteerism.
Popular nonprofit magazine that provides advice, interesting articles, and resources.
A long-time MANP Partner, NRCM provides risk management support including a wealth of articles, links, a newsletter, risk management policies, risk management advice, and assessment and planning tools. Resources cover topics related to insurance, employees, volunteers, special events and much more.
A nonprofit magazine (digital or regular mail) for nonprofit executives.
Every organization experiences lifecycle passages and changes. Nonprofit leaders who are aware of their organization’s development stage are positioned to be more strategic about planning for its future. Use these tools to assess your organization's leadership – the chief executive and board of directors – and identify what stage of development your organization is experiencing.
The Philanthropy Journal is a program of the Institute for Nonprofits at NC State University in Raleigh, N.C. delivering news, resources, announcements and job listings via daily website updates and free, weekly email bulletins.
Panel on the Nonprofit Sector
Guide composed by the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector that outlines 33 principles of ethical conduct, accountability, and transparency. The Panel incorporated a careful review of more than 50 self-regulation systems, counsel from a diverse committee of experts, and significant feedback from the field in the development of these Principles.
A sample charter for a public policy committee or advocacy committee.
Incorporated nonprofits must have a registered agent who is the contact for the organization with the Secretary of State’s office for reminders (electronic) to file your annual report or other questions from the Secretary of State's office. Some organizations hire a lawyer or other individual to do this, but most choose the board president or other committed individual. If you do hire someone, that person would be a “commercial registered agent”. This link can help you find a commercial registered agent, if your organization chooses that approach.
The Board is responsible for short and long term planning, and they must ensure that systems are in place for administering effectively using resources, and guarding against misuse. In order to fulfill their responsibilities, board members must be able to rely on financial information that is accurate, timely, in context, and appropriate. This resource outlines the types of financial reports that are needed as well as how to present the information to the Board.
Nonprofit Risk Management Center has developed affordable tools that assists nonprofit leaders in creating customized risk management plans and policies for their organizations that reflect the organization’s needs, priorities and culture. MANP is an Affiliate Member, which means our members receive great pricing. Start with their free benchmarking app to get a sense of how your organization's risk practices compare to your peers!
Many nonprofits host fundraising, recognition or networking events. This guide is designed to help manage the risk of serving alcohol at your event by recommending policies/practices which will protect attendees and your organization. The guide includes details about Maine law and a helpful planning checklist.
Free Management Library
A sample board resolution nonprofits can use as a model.
Independent Sector, BoardSource, GuideStar
These resources outline provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and how nonprofits can put in place effective oversight.
A self-declared 501(c)(3) nonprofit is a qualifying charitable organization that chooses not to seek official recognition of its tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These qualifying charitable organizations receive all the benefits of tax-exempt status if they operate in compliance with all rules and regulations that govern other tax-exempt organizations under IRS code 501(c)(3). If your organization is wondering whether or not to apply for official tax-exemption and has annual gross receipts less than $5,000, this white paper is a must-read.
Nonprofits have moral, ethical and legal obligations to ensure safe, harassment-free places to work. The following resources can help nonprofit board and staff leaders--especially those with limited HR resources--navigate these issues.
Council on Foundations
The question of whether an executive director should serve on the board is a common question, especially for newer nonprofits. This article provides a thorough analysis of the pros and cons, as well as key questions to help you decide what is right for your nonprofit.
Alliance of Nonprofits for Insurance, and Nonprofits Insurance Alliance of California
This guide outlines tips to help nonprofits have safer events, including tips on event planning, legal considerations, and how to handle the situation should an accident occur. The guide also includes sample planning checklists and forms, such as a sample waiver.
Management support organization for nonprofits, foundations, and socially responsible businesses which provides articles, strategies, tools, podcasts and training.
Maine-based Starboard Leadership Consulting's blog features topics related to board governance and recruitment, leadership development and transition, and strategic planning.
The process of starting a new nonprofit organization can be daunting and is something to consider and research carefully, and the process breaks down into two distinct phases - incorporating as a nonprofit in Maine, and applying for tax-exempt status with the IRS. MANP has dedicated a section of our website to this topic, including questions to ask yourself before you begin, a recommended process in a checklist format with corresponding resources, links and samples, and a list of frequently asked questions.
This recorded IRS webinar helps new nonprofits stay legally compliant. It covers annual filing requirements, what records to maintain, what to do to meet the "operational test", how to avoid jeopardizing 501(c)(3) status, and what tools are available for tax compliance as an organization grows.
Nonprofit Risk Management Center
A free guide with a state-by-state review of the evolving landscape of charitable immunity and volunteer protection laws.
It can be a challenge for an executive director to determine the best time to step down, or how to approach what is an important transition both individually, and in the organization's life cycle. These resources provide some guidance to an executive director on executing a successful departure.
- Am I Still the Leader this Organization Needs? Questions for Self-Reflection (CompassPoint)
- Executive Director Legacy Statement (CompassPoint)
- Founder Transitions (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
- What I Learned From My Executive Transition (Tim Wolfred)
- Planning Your Leadership Transition (New York Nonprofit Media)
An interesting article outlining the skills a leader needs to manage technology planning, and how they are comparable to the way other types of projects are managed. The article also includes aspects to consider and pitfalls to avoid when doing technology planning.
Guide/Tool, Sample/Template, Video/Tutorial
To ensure organizational stability, nonprofit leaders and boards should actively discuss and prepare for how to manage the planned or unplanned departure of an executive director, including developing leadership capacity and putting an emergency succession plan in place.
- Avoid Transition Trauma with a Succession Plan (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Building Leaderful Organizations (CompassPoint)
- Executive Succession Planning Best Practices (BoardSource)
- Succession Planning for Nonprofits (National Council of Nonprofits)
- Succession Planning for Nonprofits of All Sizes (Blue Avocado)
- Building Leadership Capacity: Reframing the Succession Challenge (The Bridgespan Group)
- Risk Management Webinar: Succession Planning (NRMC Webinar Vault)
- Nonprofit Executive Succession-Planning Toolkit (Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City)
- Stepping Up, Staying Engaged: Succession Planning and Executive Transition for Nonprofit Boards of Directors (Annie E. Casey Foundation)
- A Succession Readiness Checklist (CompassPoint)
- The Importance of Linking Leadership Succession, Strategy and Governance (Nonprofit Quarterly)
- A Practical (and Possibly Provocative) Approach to Leadership Transitions (Nonprofit Quarterly)
- Succession Planning for God's Gift (NonprofitQuarterly)
Major changes were made to the Nonprofit Corporation Act in 2001. This white paper provides a summary of those changes, which include updated conflict of interest rules as well as duty and enforcement changes relevant to nonprofit directors and officers.
Chronicle of Philanthropy, Blue Avocado, Charity Lawyer
These articles outline arguments for and against the use of term limits, and present different options for structuring term limits for your board of directors.
Board members, as community leaders and champions for your mission, can help increase the likelihood of your nonprofit’s success by engaging in advocacy. This quick guide provides an overview of why and how board members can be involved.
Nonprofit management support organization providing events, publications, articles, and trainings.
Organization dedicated to nonprofit leadership/executive transition assistance, providing resources such as guides, articles, e-newsletter, FAQ, help line, and job board.
It is not necessary to incorporate as a nonprofit in order to apply for tax-exemption from the IRS, but there are many advantages to incorporation. This article provides an overview of what an unincorporated nonprofit is and some of the challenges.
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