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Chroncle of Philanthropy Article Claims Boards Still Uncomfortable With Fundraising

October 22nd, 2012 Posted in Fundraising

Nonprofit board members continue to fall short in meeting the fundraising expectations of their chief executives, a new survey has found.

The Nonprofit Governance Index, conducted every two to three years by BoardSource, a nonprofit group that works to strengthen boards, this year asked more than 1,300 chief executives about their trustees’ performance, policies, and involvement in fundraising and other issues.

Since the studies began in the 1990s, board members have become more likely to attend fundraising events and to make personal gifts, with nearly three-quarters of chief executives reporting financial contributions from at least 90 percent of their trustees this year.

But as was the case in 2010, chief executives ranked fundraising as the weakest area on a “board report card” that assessed how well their trustees perform 10 basic responsibilities such as financial oversight, evaluating the chief executive, and legal oversight.

Forty percent of the chief executives said their boards are reluctant to engage in fundraising, relying mostly on staff members to carry out that responsibility. Nearly 60 percent said their trustees are not comfortable asking others for contributions.

What can nonprofit leaders do to increase board members’ comfort level with fundraising and their willingness to help raise money? What has worked for your organization? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

Holly Hall

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