Advisory boards are important for the health and success of any nonprofit organization, including alumni associations. Schools and school districts will often use advisory boards to get community feedback. These boards have the added benefit of engaging alumni and community members and keeping them involved in their schools even after graduating.

Advisory boards are different from school boards in that they do not have a legal responsibility to make decisions about how the school is run, or indeed, even any authority to do so. Instead, they simply provide advice and feedback for certain decisions.

So how do you create an advisory board? Here’s a brief overview of what you should know.

  • Gather members: Begin by gathering people who might be interested in being involved with an advisory board. These could be people who are already involved in your alumni association or in the community, or simply people you know to be strong school advocates.
  • Determine the operation of the board: How will the board operate? Consider the frequency of meetings, the guidelines you’ll have for membership and other types of general expectations, such as how meetings will be run.
  • Name leadership: There should be a chair of the board who will be tasked with managing the board’s operations. This could be an existing community leader or someone who is involved in the community as an alumnus.
  • Consider how the board can be most effective: What can you do to get the most out of an advisory board? There should be a clear vision and mission statement in place so the board has an actual direction and tasks to accomplish. Make sure to regularly recognize the work of the members, who are volunteers.

For more tips and information about running an advisory board in the most effective manner, contact us at Alumni Nations.