United Way of Central Ohio has been deeply engaged in efforts to prepare diverse candidates for service on nonprofit boards for more than 25 years. It is clear that our board training programs and other efforts in the community have helped to fill a huge need in our community to identify and educate a diverse group of leaders. But did these efforts and others like them make central Ohio’s nonprofit boards more diverse and inclusive than we have seen on a national level?
To answer that question, United Way formed a council consisting of experts from the public, private and nonprofit sectors. The council shaped the survey that went to United Way’s funded partner network, which netted an 83 percent organizational response rate from the 41 organizations. There were 806 board members surveyed, and 35 percent responded.
This is the summary of the survey. It’s not a rigorous academic study, but these initial findings indicate we have a lot of work ahead of us. This summary is a catalyst for a community conversation about creating the diverse and inclusive nonprofit boards we need to ensure everyone has the opportunity to succeed.
Click here to see a video of the Columbus Metropolitan Club forum, The Power of Diversity, where Lisa Courtice presented the results of the Nonprofit Board Diversity and Inclusion survey.