Four Takeaways from PILP’s Discusses Charitable Board Services

Lisa Goodheart, President of the Boston Bar Foundation; Allison Bauer, Senior Director of Health and Wellness for the Boston Foundation; and Stacy Malone, Executive Director of the Victim’s Rights Law Center, spoke with PILP about getting involved with charitable board service.

Lisa Goodheart, President of the Boston Bar Foundation; Allison Bauer, Senior Director of Health and Wellness for the Boston Foundation; and Stacy Malone, Executive Director of the Victim’s Rights Law Center, spoke with PILP about getting involved with charitable board service.

Lawyers have the ability to provide their services in several different ways, and last Wednesday the PILP class learned about the value of charitable board service. The discussion was led by Lisa Goodheart, President of the Boston Bar Foundation; Allison Bauer, Senior Director of Health and Wellness for the Boston Foundation; and Stacy Malone, Executive Director of the Victim’s Rights Law Center.

The speakers began with a discussion of how they got involved with charitable board service, and then transitioned to providing practical advice and considerations to make when choosing non-profit boards to serve on. Below are the four most important points that came out of the discussion:

  1. Volunteer or work with the organization before making the commitment to serving on their board. This will provide the opportunity to familiarize yourself with the work the organization does and see if you truly connect with both the organization’s mission as well as their staff.
  2. Do your research, and make sure you understand the organization’s expectations of its board members. Every organization is different so it is important to be aware of term lengths, fundraising requirements, time commitments, etc. before signing on to be a board member. Don’t be shy about reaching out to existing board members to find the information you are looking for!
  3. Serving on a non-profit board is a donation of your time and efforts. It is important that you are not taking on more responsibilities than you are capable of, and that you are enjoying the work you are doing! Find an organization that you are both passionate to be a part of, but also utilizes your skills. Many organizations have fundraising requirements for their board members – if you are uncomfortable reaching out to people for donations, serving on that organization’s board might not be the best fit for you. Just because you don’t serve on the board does not mean you can’t help the organization in other ways!
  4. Don’t be afraid to shop around! Again, serving on a non-profit board is a donation of your time and efforts. Be sure that you are enjoying the work you are doing, and the people you are working with!

The BBA would like to thank by Lisa Goodheart, Allison Bauer, and Stacy Malone for speaking to the PILP class. If you’re interested in learning more about charitable board service, save the date of April 28th for our CLE regarding charitable board service! More details are forthcoming!

Interested in applying for the 16-17 PILP class? Click here to learn about the program and the application process!

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