Seattle Works

A blog that documents all things Seattle Works…and much much more!

“Board membership isn’t as scary as I thought!” February 27, 2013

Filed under: Bridge Partners,The Bridge — seattleworks @ 3:51 pm

Among all their busy-ness, some Microsoft employees took the day yesterday to learn about nonprofit board service in The Bridge. It was a jam-packed day of training, but the participants walked away with a better understanding of what is expected of board members. Jake Groshing, Founder & Executive Director of Balagan Theatre, lead the group through the overview of the nonprofit sector; followed by financial and legal responsibilities with Nathan Hartman, Partner at Peterson Sullivan LLP. Next we took a breather by having a quick board service Q&A panel. After lunch, Sergey Smirnov, Advancement Associate at Hamilin Robinson School, put the participants’ minds at ease when dealing with fundraising. And finally, Mike Quinn from Social Venture Partners provided some cultural differences between Microsoft and the nonprofit world.

We asked participants to tell us what their most significant takeaway was from The Bridge, check out what they told us:

  • I need to do my homework and find the right fit of an organization.
  • The connections made in the classroom.
  • Better context and understanding for opportunities to serve as board member for a nonprofit.
  • Board membership isn’t as scary as I thought!
  • End to end overview of what it means/takes to be an effective board member. Thanks!
  • There are a lot of people who want to do more in their community.
  • Demystified the process, reasons, research to be done before getting involved and while serving on a board.
  • Really liked hearing from the panel about their experiences. Also found the Microsoft in the Nonprofit World helpful in explaining what to expect and how to prepare.
  • Look before you leap – make sure the nonprofit is healthy and a good fit.

If you’d like to find out how to get The Bridge to come to your company, contact


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