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What Is A Nonprofit Board of Directors?


You've decided to start a nonprofit, and now you're looking for ways to grow it. One of the best things you can do is make sure your organization has a board of directors. A board helps set the vision for your nonprofit and gives guidance on how that vision should be executed. Whether you're just starting out or have been around for years, getting involved in this aspect of running a nonprofit is crucial—and can be incredibly rewarding!

The Basics: What is the board of directors?

A board of directors is defined as a group of individuals who are responsible for overseeing the operations of your organization. The board's main functions include setting policy and direction, monitoring performance, ensuring accountability to stakeholders, raising funds, and ensuring compliance with relevant laws and regulations.

The role of the board in your nonprofit

The board of directors is a group of people who have been elected to serve on your nonprofit's governing body. As members of this group, they are responsible for overseeing all aspects of your organization and making sure it continues to run smoothly.

The board is responsible for ensuring that your charity's mission and goals are being met in an efficient manner. They make sure that there is an effective process in place for evaluating these goals and finding ways to improve them as needed.

The board also has the power to appoint key leaders within the organization like its CEO or CFO (Chief Finance Officer). If you're looking at starting up a nonprofit organization, be sure you understand this role before moving forward!

Board responsibilities

A board of directors performs several important functions. These include but are not limited to:

  • Monitoring the organization's performance. This involves monitoring the organization's activities, finances and programs to make sure they are operating within its mission statement, budget and policies and procedures.

  • Making sure that an organization is following its policies and procedures. A board of directors should also help ensure that an organization follows its bylaws or other governing documents; for example, if a nonprofit has a policy stating that it cannot accept donations from individuals who live in another country or state than where the nonprofit is based (for example), this policy must be followed strictly so that tax exemption status can be maintained with relevant government agencies such as Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

  • Fundraising to help move the mission of the organization forward. Nonprofit board members should be assisting with raising funds to help with initiating the programs and services of the organization. When board members work collectively to fundraise, this eliminates all of the pressure being solely on the nonprofit founder to generate income for the organization.


The board of directors is an important part of any nonprofit organization. It’s the group of people who oversee the organization and make sure that it’s running smoothly, so it’s crucial for any new board member to know what they’re getting into before joining. The best way to do this is by learning about the different roles and responsibilities of each position within a nonprofit.

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