Board of Directors

The role of the Board of Directors is to provide leadership and oversight of the activities of the association. In both areas it will strive to represent the interests of members and the broader community.

Key duties of the Board

- Determine mission and purpose
- Select the executive staff through an appropriate process- Ensure effective organizing planning
- Ensure adequate resources and manage them
- Determine and monitor programs and services
- Enhance public image
- Provide ongoing support and guidance for the Chief Executive Officer

No action or directive of an individual board member can have any force or effect unless it is approved by the full board!

Glossary:

Board of Directors:
A group of people chosen to govern the affairs of an organization or institution.

Board of Officers:
At a minimum, 3 positions are often legally required within a board: president (or chairperson), treasurer and general secretary. These positions can be elected among board members by board members following their election, or by members of the organization at the General Assembly.

Trustee: a member of a governing board elected or appointed to direct the policies of an institution

Executive Committee:
When a board of directors is large, or meets infrequently, or is widely scattered geographically, it may decide to create a smaller group, often called the “Executive Committee”, that can act for the board as a whole before meetings.

The membership, powers and reporting responsibilities of the Executive Committee need to be spelled out carefully in the board’s own rules (often called the By-Laws). Boards may also hand over specific problems or questions to such a committee for research, decision or action. Doing so must be permitted by the By-Laws. The By-laws may set limits on what can be delegated in this way.

It’s important to remember that the board of directors holds both the authority and the responsibility for every action the organisation takes. The board can, in certain circumstances, delegate its authority.

Checklist for a board information system

Every board must decide for itself exactly what information it needs. For most groups, however, the following checklist is a starting point :

At least two weeks before each board meeting:
- Agenda
- information about issues for discussion
- financial information
- Committee reports

At least two weeks before the board meeting at which it’s discussed:
- Annual budget
- Audit report
- Strategic plan

After each board meeting
- Minutes
- Notice of next meeting

Monthly/Quarterly
- Financial report

Resource materials as well as selected links to other websites that also offer useful information on leadership and management topic

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