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  • 13 minutes

Common Guiding Principles For Effective Boards for 501(c)(3) Organizations


Determine board focus and information needs.

It is important to have a stated goal for the organization and that the directors understand the mission of the organization. The directors should develop a strategy, with management, to carry out the mission. A board that develops strategy without consulting with management could result in a strategic plan that is completely unworkable.  

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Anita Pelletier

Anita Pelletier

Nixon Peabody LLP

  • Counsel in the Rochester, NY office of Nixon Peabody LLP
  • Represented organizations ranging from the very small to the very large on all matters relating to nonprofit governance and related issues; also worked with several organizations to guide them through IRS and regulatory audits; assisted numerous charities navigate the various rules regarding charitable solicitations in a market that necessitates the use of social media and electronic communications
  • Conducts regular seminars and workshops on nonprofit governance, issues relating to tax-exempt status and charitable solicitations
  • Member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA) and a member of the Legal Resources Committee and is also involved with the Greater Rochester Association of Women Attorneys, previously serving as a board member as well as chair of their Media Committee and co-chair of the Program Committee; also a member of the American, New York State, and Monroe County bar associations
  • Received numerous awards for her commitment to pro bono service; in 2003, she received the William E. McKnight Award from the Monroe County Bar Association; in 2005, she received the Legal Aid Society of New York City Pro Bono Award
  • A recipient of Nixon Peabody’s Rodman Peabody Pro Bono Award, winning in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011 to 2015
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2018 in the field of Nonprofit/Charities Law and has been listed in Best Lawyers since 2017
  • J.D. degree, summa cum laude, Syracuse University School of Law; M.P.A. degree, Maxwell School of Public Administration; B.A. degree in economics, St. John Fisher College
  • Can be contacted at 585-263-1164 or [email protected]
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