No. of Recommendations: 0
A great resource for established as well as for new board members is It will be well spent money for you to join individually or the new organization to join as a group.

I have been involved with non-profits as CFO, CPA and board member for many years and here are some of my recommendations:

Hire an attorney very familiar with 501(c)(3)'s for the incorporation, by-laws, federal and state filings for exemption. It will be money well spent. At a minimum have the attorney review all documents prior to filings.

Hire a CPA very familier with exempt organization filings. Will also be money well spent. Form 990 for non-exempt organizations has been expanded to include pages of questions you don't want to answer incorrectly.

Make sure the organization has liability and D&O insurance prior to opening its doors. Make sure the insurance agent is familiar with non-profits.

Look at the business plan and proposed budgets prior to joining the board. Being a board member involves lots of responsibilities. The Board is the decision maker and the ultimately responsible party for the organization. Even if someone is hired to run the day to day operations, the Board is still responsible (hence the Directors and Officers insurance).

Being involved with non-profits and the programs and projects they run is a very rewarding and challening endeavor. I hope your friend is successful in seeing her vision come to fruition. But remember, if you are on the Board and she is the Executive Director you will be her boss.

Thank you!

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