You made governance fun! – Workshop Participant


Boards of directors for nonprofit organizations are unique in structure and function. The board of directors is comprised of community leaders who share a deep commitment to the mission of the organization. The focus of the board is to provide visionary leadership to a nonprofit organization in pursuit of its mission while fulfilling its fiduciary responsibilities.

In this workshop we review the common roles and responsibilities of a nonprofit board of directors as board members, committee members, and with relation to the CEO. We discuss two different but complimentary frameworks for board governance that include and go beyond fiduciary duty.

Participants will discuss and understand the fiduciary role of nonprofit boards, the leadership role, and the ambassador role. They will discuss the differences between fiduciary thinking (conformance), strategic thinking (performance), and generative thinking (sense-making). Throughout, the participants will discuss which roles are board roles, which roles are CEO or staff roles, and which are shared.

Participants will leave with a board assessment tool that mirrors the workshop’s content and can help board’s determine where within each role they may need to develop.



This workshop requires only a basic understanding of what a board of directors is. The workshop will benefit new and veteran board members and also staff.


This is a half-day workshop. It is appropriate for board development, board orientation, or multi-board trainings. It pairs well with our half-day Facilitative Leadership workshop or Mission-Based Decision Making workshop to create a full day of organizational leadership training.

Previously Presented at

  • Northwest Minnesota Foundation
  • Minnesota Alliance on Crime