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Community Leaders
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Program Design and Goal

The Community Leaders program is built on the principle that an engaged and empowered Board of Directors is critical to a nonprofit organization’s success and sustainability. In these times nonprofit organizations are being faced with an increased demand for accountability while trying to sustain their operations and programming in a recession.  Now more than ever, nonprofits need strong and committed board members who are practicing the principals of good governance.  A national report from Board Source, a leading authority on board governance, has recently said, “Strong board leadership will be the means through which many nonprofit agencies survive.”


The Community Leaders program is designed to educate and engage diverse professionals of all ages to strengthen nonprofit governance, and to increase civic engagement and philanthropy for the Baton Rouge area nonprofit community.


Time Commitment

Sessions are held from September – November 2019. This program takes part over five training sessions from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m on Thursday nights.  There is a strict attendance policy for all training sessions.  The 2019 session dates for the Baton Rouge area Community Leaders program will be announced soon.


Financial Commitment and Fundraising

Part of the Community Leader experience is to learn the important role board members play in fundraising.  Most nonprofit boards require members to raise funds and to make a financial commitment.  As a way of teaching this technique, LANO has included a philanthropic component in the program called the Change Fund.  The class is charged with raising $10,000 or more for a worthy nonprofit program in the Baton Rouge community.  Each participant will be required to donate $200 and raise an additional $200 for the fund.  The Change Fund experience helps leaders gain confidence while practicing the art of fundraising. 


Educational Component

The five trainings include: Roles and Responsibilities of Governing Boards, Fund Development, Financial Management, Conduct and Procedures of the Board, and hearing presentations for the Change Fund.  Upon completion, LANO facilitates a matching session to connect the leaders to nonprofit organizations for potential board or committee service.


Training Session


Training sessions are based on the nonprofit best practices from LANO’s governance curriculum and from best practices shared with our training staff from other state associations.  Each participant will receive a binder of tools and templates that will be useful in any future board placement. Sessions will feature guest speakers and panel discussions with nonprofit staff, board members, and foundation representatives from the community.


Board Governance

  • 10 basic responsibilities of board members
  • Why nonprofit organizations have boards
  • The board’s responsibility and how it relates to the mission and vision of the organization


Fundraising and the Role of the Board and Making the ASK

  • Fundraising expectations of board members
  • Understanding how finances and fundraising are linked
  • Learning to identify and approach potential donors in the community


Procedures and Conduct of the Board

  • Importance of conflict of interest statements
  • Role of the board and the executive director
  • Bylaws and articles of incorporation
  • Legal and fiduciary responsibilities


Financial Issues of Nonprofit Boards

  • Financial and legal questions board members ask of nonprofit organizations 
  • Learn to read financial statements, basic budgets, cash flow and balance sheet
  • Audits and the IRS Form 990
  • Budget planning with restricted and unrestricted fund



Change Fund Presentations

  • One session of the program will be dedicated to hearing proposals presented by nonprofit organizations competing for the Change Fund Award.  Leaders will come up with their own criteria for selection and will vote on the recipient before being challenged to raise money for the recipient.  


Community Leader Application

The application for the Community Leaders Baton Rouge class can be accessed here!



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