On Monday, August 10, 2009, I had the pleasure of serving as a faculty member for a National Business Institute presentation entitled “Legal and Financial Aspects of Tax-Exempt Organizations." It was a pleasant change of pace because, unlike most continuing legal education programs that are attended solely by attorneys, this program also targeted representatives and employees of non-profit organizations.
While mingling between sessions, I was able to meet the attendees and learn about the wide array of noble missions their organizations carry out. In hearing about those accomplishments, it occurred to me how important it is for those organizations to protect themselves so that they can continue to carry out their missions. This includes not only finding qualified board members, officers and employees, but also avoiding conflicts of interest, following the rules and regulations regarding lobbying and political activities, proper financial management, and protecting the organization from a litany of potential liabilities and pitfalls. Fortunately, we were able to address many of these issues during the seminar.
In addition, I have recently posted a checklist for a healthy non-profit organization. In the near future, I will be posting information on using the IRS Form 990 as a marketing tool for donations. I invite you to check back on the blog from time to time for other postings related to effectively running a non-profit organization.