Once Again! Should a Nonprofit CEO Be a Voting Member of the Board of Directors?
I was surprised to read in a Board Source nonprofit report that this board of directors’ question is one of the most frequently asked. From a Google search, I was also surprised to find that, outside of a few vague references that there may be legal issues involved with the decision, not one got to the heart of the matter.[i] The first question that needs to be answered is whether or not the state in which a nonprofit is chartered will allow it. Some do while others see it as a conflict of interest. Consequently, any nonprofit considering this issue first should have legal counsel review its state regulations on the question.
Also of concern is the question of whether or not the CEO wants full operating responsibility to become president/CEO. Many growing nonprofit get to this point. As a result, the board also has to decide whether or not the CEO has the background and drive to assume this expanded operational responsibility.
[i] The third edition (2011) of Policy vs. Paper Clips alerts reader to this fact. For example, I have read that California does not allow it and have board experience, which showed, that at one time, New York did allow it.
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It was really a very confusing question before i read your article. Thanks for sharing.