New Haven Land Trust, Board Responsibilities

1. Board Attendance

Board members will attend all board meetings or obtain an excused absence. If absence is necessary, a written notice should be sent to the secretary and president in advance of the meeting.  Board members should also be active participants in their committee, planning efforts and board annual evaluation. 

2. Organizational Participation

Members should actively participate on at least one committee, attend at least one fundraising event, one educational event and one cleanup event every year. Sitting in on each committee (fundraising, garden, preserve) at least once is encouraged.

3. Fiduciary

As required by law it is a Board member’s duty is to oversee the organization's finances. Board members will ensure that funds are spent responsibly and effectively to meet the goals and policy objectives that the Board formulates. The Board will establish appropriate financial policies and diligently administer and enforce those policies.

  4. Financial Gift Expectation

Board members are expected to make an annual financial contribution to the organization. The donation should be significant enough that the Board member cares how their contribution is managed and spent. When 100% of board members are donors the Land Trust is in a better position to ask outside donors to give and to ask for grant money.

5. Fundraising

Board members should speak effectively and positively on behalf of the organization to maintain and improve community relations.  Members are expected to develop contacts, reach out to new prospects and funders, and be willing to ask for donations.

6. Planning

As a team, the Board of Directors will create a long-term (3 – 10 years) written strategic plan that outlines the general future course of the organization. Annually, the Board will review its own performance and take steps to improve its performance.

7. Championship

Board members are expected to promote the visibility and vibrancy of the organization by annually leading a special project or initiative to advance the organization. Examples include: organizing or co-organizing a gathering, event, special committee, grant submission, donor meeting, cleanup or inter-organizational dialogue.

8. Care and Loyalty

Board members must have a rational business purpose behind decisions made for the organization.  Alternatively stated, Board members must believe it is in the best interest of the corporation to act (business judgment rule) as a reasonable prudent Director would act in same situation. Board members should read corporate documents including the articles and bylaws that outline the operational ground rules for running the corporation, including resolutions and minutes.

Approved by board 10/13/2014