Board member titles

Board member titles

What Positions Make Up a Board of Directors?

A board of directors is the group of people responsible for the strategic management of a for-profit or nonprofit corporation. Depending on the size of the board, the members might run the business activities of the organization or oversee office staff that handle the day-to-day duties. The board operates by following the corporation’s bylaws, a set of rules that governs how the organization must pursue its mission and activities.

BoardSource has been fielding governance-related questions posed by nonprofit leaders for over 30 years. Here are the answers to those questions most frequently asked about board dynamics and processes.

BoardSource has been fielding governance-related questions posed by nonprofit leaders for over 30 years. Here are the answers to those questions most frequently asked about board dynamics and processes.

Many board decisions are not unanimous. Board members contribute varying, sometimes controversial, and at times conflicting perspectives to a deliberation. New and different ideas assist the board in reaching an objective and balanced decision. Most board decisions are based on majority rule, which automatically creates compromises and occasionally dissenting opinions. However, consensus building and healthy debate are ways to improve governance and make better decisions.

Establishing the Organization’s Mission and Purpose

Establishing the Organization’s Mission and Purpose

Board members spend the bulk of their time in organizational planning. They determine and monitor the organization’s products, services, and programs. In addition, they keep up to date on competitors and developments in the organization’s field. Board members should periodically review the strategic plans and review whether goals are being met.

20 Key Board of Director Terms and Definitions

20 Key Board of Director Terms and Definitions

Given that we now have chairman/CEOs, executive chairs, non-executive chairs, president/CEOs, chairman/president/CEOs, it’s not surprising that lead directors, managing directors, presiding directors, investors, regulators, customers and sometimes even employees wonder just who is in charge of the place. Layer on top the myriad CFOs, COOs, CMOs, CIOs, CTOs, CHROs, CLOs, CAOs, CISOs, CSOs cluttering the hierarchy, and the question arises: Are there simply too many chiefs?

Find Your State Association of Nonprofits

Find Your State Association of Nonprofits

For over a quarter century, I have observed, served on, and studied boards of directors. In the process, I have developed a healthy skepticism about the prevailing and generally accepted concepts of boards of directors. What my experience bears out has, in fact, little relationship to the classic statements concerning their appropriate functions.

Board Officers and Committees: What Structure Works Best?

Board Officers and Committees: What Structure Works Best?

The board of directors accomplishes much of its work through committees, which undertake work delegated by the board, make recommendations to the board for discussion and action, and enhance board productivity.

Corporate Structure and the Hierarchy of Governance

Corporate Structure and the Hierarchy of Governance

A second reason for using an executive board is to discuss and make decisions on confidential matters, like an impending lawsuit or a corporate takeover. This limits the number of people who will be involved, preventing information leaks. The executive board can review all of the confidential information and either make a decision for the board of directors or make a recommendation to be voted on by all board members.

Is a Board of Directors Elected or Appointed?

Boards vary according to the country in which they operate and the company they serve. Each company establishes guidelines for its boards under the state corporation commission guidelines. Boards may consist of any number of people, with most boards including anywhere from three to 30 members. Large, complex publicly-traded companies often have larger boards, while small, privately-held corporations have smaller boards.

Board Responsibilities and Structures — FAQs

Legally and in practice, all of these definitions describe the same governing body of a nonprofit. The term “trustee” originally referred to the person who has the fiduciary duty for a charitable trust or a foundation. By tradition, higher education institutions also tend to refer to their board members as trustees.