Ready To Serve
on nonprofit boards is one of the best ways to build a network while also
serving your community and developing leadership skills. However, knowing what’s expected and how to get
involved can be difficult. That’s why the Women’s Fund of Omaha developed the Ready To Serve workshop.
Ready To Serve was launched in 2009 after Women's Fund research showed the need to get more women involved in leadership roles in the community. Since then, more than 500 participants have
attended the training.
The Women’s Fund of Omaha’s Ready To Serve board training workshop on Feb. 8, 2011, trained nearly 170 participants on the nuts and bolts of serving on a nonprofit board. In addition, speakers stressed the importance of board members being passionate about the organization’s cause.
“If you are passionate, you are going to be more interested and committed to helping that organization succeed,” said Sara Woods, associate dean in the College of Public Affairs and Community Service at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.
Anne Steinhoff, president of Steinhoff and Associates, said board members have two key roles – governance and support. Governance involves attending meetings and using your brain power. Support involves going out and telling the organization’s story. “You need to personally feel excited about the mission before you can get other people excited about the organization,” Steinhoff said.
Speakers and panelists talked about the various responsibilities of board members and shared tips on exploring possibilities for service and developing a personal action plan. Workshop topics ranged from the importance of mission, vision and values to nonprofit funding to legal responsibilities.
Next Workshop: Details are still being worked out for a collaborative board service training program in 2013. To be added to the notification list for this workshop, email email@example.com.
from left, Anne Hindery, Hillary Nather-Detisch, Jamie Moore and Kathe Oleson
Lyons talked about possibilities for board service.