Case Study: A Good Board That Won’t Fundraise

What would you do?

Forrest Sinclair said good night to the last of his board members and closed the door of the office. He liked his board members, and the quarterly meeting of the board had gone relatively well. As chief executive, Forrest felt good about the direction the Elizabeth Waters Wildlife Sanctuary (EWWS) was heading. The sanctuary was more involved in educational outreach, had initiated collaborations with other conservation projects in the region, and was investigating opening a small retreat center as a source of earned income. Forrest felt secure in the support of his board as the organization pursued these projects. At the same time, he was frustrated about the board’s level of participation in fundraising.

This case study exercise can foster a robust discussion among board members to find solutions to a common board challenge. The exercise includes a scenario, a worksheet, and two helpful responses to the scenario that you can use with your board.

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