Generosity in quotes

“God is working out his purposes in ways we cannot imagine, and grace shines in the least expected places. When it does, and we notice, we are blindsided by its glory. All we can do is to stand humbled and delighted in the midst of tears.” Melinda Heppe, Lutheran pastor and contributing editor to In […]

My apologetic for shared governance, without apology

If getting a bunch of college, university, or theological school trustees riled up is your idea of fun, try this. Mount a defense of shared governance. It works every time for me. Case in point, a letter to the editor of In Trust magazine in follow-up to a pair of pieces that my provost husband […]

Investments in board development reap guaranteed returns. I promise.

“Though diverse in their missions, [nonprofit] organizations often face a common – and potentially devastating – challenge. They have selected boards of directors loaded with smart, talented, accomplished people. But, as a team, these boards are not coming close to reaching their potential.” So begins an article from the newsobserver.com blog. Fortunately, after starting bleak, […]

Have assignments, will travel . . . perhaps to a city near you

Just as the weather here in the northeastern U.S. is cooling down, my travel schedule is heating up. I have a wonderful mix of consulting and speaking assignments coming up — all of which give me opportunity to proclaim the good news that fundraising and board work are ministry too. I look forward to making […]

Essentials of good faith governance

Earlier this year, I took the first crack at bringing together into a single document the best of two decades of In Trust wisdom on the topic of good faith governance within the world of theological education. As you can appreciate, twenty years of teaching is a lot to condense into six essentials, plus commentary. […]

Evaluator, do no harm

CEO evaluation in the hands of a well-meaning, but inexperienced, board is a fearsome thing. The nonprofit landscape – including territories occupied by faith-based organizations — is littered with the sorry remains of careers done in by performance reviews gone wrong.  Yet evaluate boards must, which begs advice on how to do it right. When […]

Don’t make strangers of former board members

For the most part, I agree that term limits for board members are spot on. There’s nothing like the fresh insights, enthusiasm, and connections of  newcomers to board service to jump-start organizational governance. However, there’s a potential downside to the rotation system. It can (and does frequently) make strangers of some of the organization’s best friends.   For a […]