Charting Change: 2019 Nonprofit Finance Conference

2019 Breakout Sessions

Attendees will select which breakout sessions they wish to attend on the day of the conference.

Round One – 10:30am-11:45am

1A. Managing Multiple Grants: A Pathway to Simplicity
Presenter: Kathy Finnell, FINN Accounting
Accounting for multiple grants can be complex – different grant periods; overlapping uses; shared costs; pools and more. This session discusses how to develop universal accounting processes that are adaptable to a changing environment.

Learning Objectives:
1. What is a Grant
2. Common challenges in Grant Accounting and Reporting
3. Practical solutions for tracking data and reporting that will save you time and grey hair

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, finance, fundraising and operations staff; intermediate to advance content.

1B. Ten Steps to Cybersecurity Maturity
Presenter: Joshua Peskay, RoundTable Technology
It’s easy to be overwhelmed by cybersecurity. Whether it’s data breaches, ransomware, hacked webcams or botnet armies powered by millions of smart light bulbs, many of us in charge of protecting our organizations’ and our clients’ information can be forgiven for wanting to curl up into a ball and hide. There are so many threats, how can we even keep track of them, let alone protect ourselves, our organizations and our constituents from them? This workshop will help you get a plan you can start on right away. We will break down cybersecurity into common-sense, understandable components that you can use to help your organization move toward greater cybersecurity maturity. We will help you understand how to think about what information is important to protect and how much protection it might need. Then we’ll give you specific tools, practices and templates to help you get started.

Key Takeaways

  • Understand the components of a risk analysis
  • Improved understanding of current information security at your organization
  • Templates, tools & services to help you take action
  • The top three things your organization can do to immediately improve cybersecurity

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, Board Member, Finance Staff, Operations Staff

1C. Why the Right Endowment Game Plan is More Important Than Ever
Presenter: Jack Moore, Harpswell Capital Advisors
The only constant we can count on is change. Volatility and fear of a downturn can present additional challenges to organizations and boards that count on invested endowments for operations funding. During these times, it’s important for non-profit leaders to be prepared and have proactively considered how their endowment policies reflect the risk tolerances of their institution. A game plan that foresees the inevitable periodic downturns in the market is imperative as markets are cyclical by nature.

This session will start with a market overview and outline what leaders should expect from their endowments in the future. The session will also discuss the risks of market downturns and how successful institutions have optimize their prospects for success well ahead of time. This is a timely topic and one that all endowment committees need to consider.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Directors, board members, leadership and finance staff. Intermediate to advance content.

1D. Givers, Takers, and Spenders: How Diverse Financial Values Can Benefit Your Board
Presenter: Tom Shepard, shepard FINANCIAL
Every Board member is wired to do money and value in a particular way. This invisible diversity presents a challenge. Unlike personality, knowing one’s financial nature can bring clarity and collaboration to competitive disagreement. In this session, you will learn how you are wired to view the trading of what you have for what you want, and how other people trade differently. There are those who\ protect the organization from potential financial ruin, those who manage finances but don’t move forward, and there are those who pursue and spend; this is the diversity that matters. The outcome is healthier Board function and better relationship with money.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Directors, board members, leadership staff.

1E. Labor Costs as a Mission-Aligned Program
Presenters: Bryan O’ConnorNicole Nadeau, Good Shepherd Food Bank
As nonprofit organizations, we all strive to improve the lives of the communities we serve. At times, budget constraints and external pressures compromise our ability to take care of some of our most important constituents- our employees. In this session, Good Shepherd Food Bank’s Finance and HR leaders will share measures they’ve taken in the best interest of their 80 statewide employees from a revised compensation philosophy to a poverty-informed benefits package.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive directors, board members, finance staff; suited for all levels

1F. Auditing Standard Updates: The Impact on Your Financial Statements
Presenter: Gisèle Couturier, Albin, Randall & Bennett
This session will provide a high-level overview of the various Accounting Standards Updates (ASUs) applicable to nonprofits in the current year and near future.
We’ll cover ASUs currently being implemented, such as revenue recognition and clarification of contributions. These ASU’s may have a significant impact on how grants and contributions are reported. Then we’ll look at some of the ASUs coming down the pike, such as new lease accounting standard, which nonprofits need to be thinking about right now.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, Board Members, Finance Staff; intermediate content.

Round Two – 1:00pm-2:15pm

2A. Fueling Up Your Organization with Effective Dashboards
Presenters: Jason Badeau + Nathan Dunlap, BerryDunn

When taking a trip, we regularly check in with our car’s dashboard, assessing our speed and the fuel we have available for the journey ahead. Like our vehicles, our organizations need constant assessment in order to make forward progress. Without useful data and a dashboard through which to track results, your organization may run out of the fuel it needs—funds, staffing, clients—to continue moving forward.

In this presentation, Jason Badeau and Nathan Dunlap provide tools to help not-for-profit leaders assess whether their organizations are in good running condition. In addition to providing attendees with insight on how to choose the data and key performance indicators that are right for their organizations, Jason and Nathan will distribute data questionnaires and facilitate a group discussion that will help leaders and their organizations continue on the road to success.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEOs, Board Members, finance, operations and fundraising staff; advanced level content.

2B. Fraud Prevention for Nonprofits
Presenters: Nicki Pellenz + Jeremy “JC” Clough, Machias Savings Bank
Fraud schemes can fly under the radar until it’s too late, resulting in costly remediation for the organizations affected. Data from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners shows that organizations lose approximately 5% of revenue due to fraud. This presentation will discuss fraud prevention from an organizational level down to individual employees, touching on risk assessment, internal control, and types of fraud, ending with a live demonstration of creating a realistic phishing email. Participants will learn:

  • How to recognize fraudulent emails (phishing)
  • The ins and outs of payments security (keeping your payments safe)
  • Fraud prevention strategies (employee fraud & external fraud attempts)

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Nonprofit leadership, board members or other finance professionals. Novice to intermediate content.

2C: How Endowment Managers Can Be Effective Partners for Your Nonprofit: Panel Discussion
Panelists: David Casavant, Bangor Area Homeless Shelter, Peter Nicholson + Christopher Shelton, First National Wealth Management
Once you’ve determined an endowment is right for your organization, there are a number of questions to be asking yourself like: Who is the best investment manager to oversee the administrative and fiduciary requirements to properly maintain the endowment? How do you go about finding services to manage your endowment? What other things should you be considering?

In this session, local nonprofit Bangor Area Homeless Shelter (BAHS) will share insights and lessons learned from their own investment manager selection process – questions they asked, how they determined First National Wealth Management was the right fit was to oversee their endowment, and how effective a successful partnership can be for the nonprofit.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Representatives and Board members from nonprofit Organizations who are looking to maximize and utilize their endowment.

2D. Change Management for Nonprofits
Presenter: Joshua Peskay, RoundTable Technology
Projects are judged by the impact they have on the organization and for the majority of projects that impact is going to be hugely dependent on behavioral changes of people. And getting people to change is hard. In fact, resistance to change is often cited by leaders as the biggest obstacle to making organizational improvements.

Why is change so hard? And more importantly, what can we do to make it easier?

This session will look at how differing perspectives can challenge our efforts to affect change and what we can do to put ourselves, our projects, and our organizations in the best position for success!

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Everyone at all levels.

2E. Employment and Human Resources Essentials for Nonprofits
Presenter: Tara Walker, Bernstein Shur
Everything to know in a nutshell: What you need to do now to ensure your organization is compliant and to mitigate risks in all aspects of hiring and managing employees.

Key takeaways will include:

  • How to ensure your focus is on fulfilling your mission, not getting sidelined with employment issues;
  • What most people don’t understand about wage and hour laws; and
  • Lessons from the trenches: trends in employment litigation and what they mean for you.

Topics up for discussion include:

  • Employment laws 101: from hiring to terminations, a thumbnail sketch of best practices.
  • Overtime and minimum wage issues; and
  • Recent changes in employment laws and how they will affect your organization.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEOs, finance + operations staff, board members; novice to intermediate content.

2F. Form 990-T: Understanding Unrelated Business Income and Tax Reform Changes
Presenters: Nick Crosman + Joel Riemersma, Wipfli
This session will provide you with a general understanding of unrelated business income (UBI), help you identify potential sources of unrelated business income, and outline certain income sources and activities that are excluded from UBI. The session will also touch upon changes that were made as part of tax reform, which include the new employee parking rules and the new UBI silo rules.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive directors, board members, finance staff; suited for all levels.

Round Three – 2:30pm-3:45pm

3A. What Your Form 990 Tells the IRS, Donors and the Public About Your Organization
Presenters: Shannon Brown + Jason LeBlanc, Albin, Randall & Bennett, CPAs
The publicly available information on your organization’s Form 990 is being used by sophisticated affluent donors, foundations, lenders, community leaders, and others to form impressions about your organization. Although there is less flexibility compared to the presentation of your Annual Report, you do have the chance to tell your organization’s story or highlight your programs and their impact. We will review each part of the Form, as well as common supporting schedules. Our discussion will highlight key sections and essential areas where your organization can effectively communicate its mission and accomplishments through the Information Return.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive directors, board members, finance staff, fundraising staff; novice level content.

3B. Accounting Standard Updates for Leases
Presenters: Peter Montano + Margaret Williams, PGM Accounting
The new Accounting Standards for Leases are effective at the start of fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019. For calendar year nonprofits, that means January 1st, 2020. Are you ready?

Now is the time to prepare! We will show you how to calculate operating and finance lease entries. You may request in advance our Excel templates and follow along as we walk you through the calculations. You can leave with tools to comply with the new Lease standards right away.

The workshop is designed for Lessees, and covers:

  • What constitutes a lease under the new standards;
  • The impact on your financial statements;
  • Practical accounting expedients allowed under the amended standards;
  • How to calculate lease assets, liabilities, and expenses; and,
  • Transition entries.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
CFOs, financial directors/managers, anyone responsible for organizational finances.

3C. The Investment Policy Statement: Mapping your Organization’s Financial Destiny
Presenter: Michael Neff, People’s United Bank
Writing an effective Investment Policy Statement is a crucial process for investors to take control of their financial outcomes and move towards realizing investment objectives. This session will focus on writing the Investment Policy Statement (IPS) as an institutional investor. The act of writing an IPS can be educational for participants in the investment process and encourages the writers to think through the unique circumstances impacting their organization’s finances. The IPS serves as a governing document that can be highly customized to the needs of an organization and should therefore be given time and attention beyond the convenience of a template. While this can seem like a daunting task, the process serves to ensure that constraints, objectives, and attitudes about risk and return are properly understood and defined. The IPS becomes a living document that can reliably guide the parties responsible for the investment process during market or organizational upheaval when the absence of a plan can lead to irrational decisions. The IPS is instrumental in setting the organization’s asset allocation, so participants will also learn a great deal about considerations related to asset allocation decision.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, Board Member, Finance Staff, Operations Staff. Novice to intermediate content.

3D. Promoting Financial Literacy Among Board Members: A Primer
Presenter: Ryan Kelley, Pierce Atwood
When a nonprofit’s board of directors is unfamiliar or uncomfortable with the finances of the organization or, worse yet, uninterested in them, problems tend to lurk and can ultimately threaten the successful achievement to the organization’s mission. Join Pierce Atwood attorney, Ryan Kelley, for an interactive session that will cover the nuts and bolts of a nonprofit director’s responsibility for financial management. We will discuss the basic documents and metrics with which any board member should be familiar as well as strategies for fostering and increasing board member’s engagement in financial stewardship of the organization. Using a hypothetical nonprofit’s financial statements, the group will work together to create a strategy for establishing and maintaining financial sustainability and success while identifying and addressing red flags to ensure that the organization can continue to serve its mission.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, Board Members, Finance Staff; novice to intermediate content.

3E. Safeguard Your Nonprofit Funding: How to Prepare for the Next Recession
Presenter: Laura Achee, Unemployment Services Trust
This session presented will share the top HR and unemployment pain-points nonprofits faced in 2019 and will cover best practice tips on how to combat these costly concerns… regardless of the state of the economy!

Join this session to discover how to better manage your unemployment claims while ensuring compliance with the latest Maine laws. The presentation will also explore UST’s strategies—including expert claims advice, on-demand HR resources, outplacement services and online employee training—for protecting your bottom line throughout the next economic downturn.

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Executive Director/CEO, Board Members, Finance Staff, Operations Staff. Content for all levels.

3F. Navigating Indirect Cost Rates & Uniform Guidance Highlights
Presenter: Alyssa Hemingway, Albin, Randall & Bennett, CPAs

This session will focus on navigating indirect cost rates, who’s required to have a negotiated indirect cost rate (NICR), and options when your nonprofit does not have an NICR. We will review the definition and classification of indirect costs and acceptable allocation methods. The group will be encouraged to discuss challenges and share experiences when dealing with indirect costs related to federal funds that are received indirectly and passed through another agency, such as a state agency.

In addition, this session will quickly highlight recent changes to the audit requirements in Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards at 2 CFR 200 (UG or Uniform Guidance) and the 2019 Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Compliance Supplement (Supplement).

Intended Audience + Level(s)
Finance staff, executive directors; intermediate level content.