What advice would you give to any oncoming board presidents at other nonprofits?
- Connect with other Board Presidents whom you admire. Ask lots of questions.
- Meet with each of your board members at the onset. Find out how they benefit from serving on your board so you can help keep the precious time they invest in volunteering as meaningful as possible. The hurdle is to then continue those conversations.
- Speak with Spokes. Things move fast and can get challenging so it’s essential to have a strong foundation in the basic responsibilities of a nonprofit board. Spokes can help ensure your board colleagues and you are positioned for success.
I’ve been fortunate to work on the Spokes board since its headquarters was moved to San Luis Obispo 5 years ago. From our launch point, I’ve seen Spokes become more ingrained in the community, build meaningful partnerships, and adjust services to meet the needs of our local nonprofits. Over the next 5 years, I see this pattern continuing at greater speeds. We are refining and revving up our processes, procedures and plans to implement important structures and programs that will allow our lean, hard working team to do more good for more nonprofits. As a result I believe we will see even more collaboration between Spokes and the greater community.
What will you miss most about serving as Spokes Board President?
Luckily, a big part of what I loved as Board President — collaborating with Lesley and fellow Board Members to increase our impact — I can continue to do as a board member of Spokes. I am most excited about seeing our Board and organization grow and adapt under the leadership of our new Board President Erika Schuetze. She has a lot of experience with nonprofits and has a strong vision. Plus, she’s a lot of fun, which is something we find important at Spokes!