Presidents Governance Academy

January 3, 2023

Generously supported by the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations

Please note: Pre-registration is required for this program. Inquire at the CIC Registration Desk.

Thomas L. Hellie, Senior Advisor and Co-Director, Presidents Governance Academy, CIC; and President Emeritus, Linfield University
Michele D. Perkins, Senior Advisor and Co-Director, Presidents Governance Academy, CIC; and Chancellor, New England College

7:30–8:15 a.m.


7:30–8:15 a.m.


8:30–9:00 a.m.

Welcome and Introductions

  • Mission and goals of the Academy
  • Ground rules
  • Results of survey and interviews

9:00–9:30 a.m.

Mini Case Studies

  • Maplesap College
  • Social media

9:30–10:00 a.m.

Nonprofit Boards: Definitions

  • What is a nonprofit board and why does it exist?
  • What are the board’s main responsibilities?
  • What are trustees’ individual responsibilities?
  • What is the president’s role?
  • What is the relationship with the board chair?
  • What is the relationship with other trustees?
  • What is the relationship between senior staff and other trustees?

10:00–10:15 a.m.

Refreshment Break

10:15–11:15 a.m.

Board Practices and Culture

  • What makes a board effective?
  • Changes in board roles and responsibilities
  • Engaged boards versus micro-managerial boards
  • Disengaged boards (apathy)
  • Conflicts of interest
  • Trustee interactions with other trustees and with other constituencies
  • Case studies and discussion

11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m.

Board Bylaws

  • Case study: Smallville University
  • Discussion of your review of your institution’s bylaws, scoring according to Tom Ingram’s rating sheet
  • Requirements and best practices
  • Standing committees
  • Ad hoc committees
  • Common or possible pitfalls

12:15–1:15 p.m.


1:15–2:30 p.m.

Board Composition, Cultivation, Professional

  • Development, Evaluation
  • Case study: Ambrosia University
  • Size, diversity, backgrounds, and experience
  • Faculty and/or student trustees
  • Identifying and recruiting new trustees
  • Trustee orientation
  • Ongoing professional development for trustees
  • Term limits, attendance requirements, giving requirements
  • Trustee evaluation
  • Board self-evaluation
  • Presidential evaluation

2:30–3:00 p.m.

The Board and Fundraising

  • What is the board’s role in fundraising?
  • How are campaigns structured?
  • How does the board determine priorities for major gifts and grants?
  • How does one yield major gifts from trustees?
  • What does the president need from the board in order to accomplish ambitious fundraising goals?

3:00–3:15 p.m.

Refreshment Break

3:15–4:00 p.m.

The Board and Issues of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • The dynamic of board culture and institutional culture
  • The president’s role managing potentially opposing opinions
  • Building a board that is more diverse
  • Programs versus curricula and individual course content

4:00–4:30 p.m.

Nuts and Bolts

  • Length of meetings
  • Meeting locations
  • Trustee retreats
  • Virtual meetings
  • Paperless boards and applications
  • Impact of social media

4:30–5:00 p.m.

Wrap Up and Takeaways

6:00–8:00 p.m.

Reception and Dinner