Strengthening Nonprofit Governance & Management
 2800 Springport Road, Jackson, Michigan 49202
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Nonprofit Network strives to be a model of inclusion. 

We engage all people with dignity and respect. 

We believe that bringing diverse individuals together is essential 

to effectively address the issues that face current and prospective partners. 


Nonprofits are in the business of making their communities healthier, stronger and more enriching for all of its members.  Whether they are involved in health care, the arts, civil rights, religious activities, or any other worthwhile charitable cause, nonprofits influence the quality of life for people in the communities they serve. In a community as culturally diverse as Jackson, organizations that value diversity – diversity in thought, planning processes, and recruitment strategies – are stronger.


Diversity and inclusion, also referred to as Cultural Competency, leads to sustainability, better decision making, a more inclusive process, an increase in independent thought and a 360° organizational perspective.  Cultural Competency is commonly defined as having the knowledge, skills, and values to work effectively with diverse populations and to adapt institutional policies and professional practices to meet the unique needs of client populations. 


Capacity builders, like Nonprofit Network, can contribute to organizations who desire to be more diverse and inclusive, by helping them develop a vision for an inclusive environment, and provide concrete tools, practices and processes that eliminate barriers to success.  Nonprofit Network is responsible for ensuring that all nonprofit organizations in Michigan have affordable access to best practices that help them to be efficient and effective.  Ignoring how diversity and inclusion affects an organization’s ability to fulfill their mission and serve the community would be ignoring our mission.


“Culturally-based” capacity building is defined as providing transformational technical support and training services for individuals, organizations, and communities in their unique cultural contexts based on knowledge, awareness, and sensitivity to the issues of race/ethnicity, language, gender, sexual identity, socioeconomic status, age, disability, and religion. Nonprofit Network will foster capacity building through concrete community engagement, organizational development, and relationship building strategies.


Tested and proven methods of transforming communities in the areas of diversity and inclusion include the following key starting points:

·         Developing the leadership capacity of Individuals

·         Strengthening the Capacity of Community Institutions

Nonprofit Network will accomplish this through:

·         Implementing a leadership development program for underrepresented minority groups through the L.E.A.D. (Leadership Exploration Achieving Diversity) cohort program

·         Engaging community members in implementing effective community outreach/education programs

·         Building trusting cross-cultural relationships

·         Engage in, facilitate and lead cross-cultural bridge building

·         Build core organizational capacities to better lead, manage, govern and adapt to external changes 

Diversity and inclusion is not a luxury, but an important foundation for organizations – making it possible to serve all communities, bridge across differences, and ultimately improve the social, health and educational outcomes of children and youth. However, this is a long journey that cannot be addressed and fixed in a few months.  The conversation we start will take years to complete.  

Nonprofit Network's L.E.A.D. (Leadership Exploration Achieving Diversity) Cohort

The Goal of the L.E.A.D. Cohort:

For decades, much has been written about developing diverse boards in the nonprofit sector, but to date there has been slow progress to not only recruit, but retain board members. Therefore, the goal of L.E.A.D. (Leadership Exploration Achieving Diversity) cohort is to recruit and train diverse leaders to provide meaningful representation in service to the community.

Nonprofit Network believes that meaningful diversity and representation on boards will help to increase the level of leadership and provide valuable perspectives to further the goals of our community organizations.  With funding from the Jackson Community Foundation and the James A. and Faith Knight Foundation, we are excited to offer a five-session leadership cohort with no participation fee.

Schedule of Meetings - All meetings will take place from 5:30 - 7:00 pm on Tuesdays or from 

9:00 - 10:30 am on Saturdays (Location TBD)

Tuesday, February 24 - Kickoff & Cohort Orientation.  Cohort will have an opportunity to network with each other, be introduced to the program and sign a letter of commitment.
Saturday, March 7 -  Introduction to Nonprofit Board Service.  Cohort will learn the basics of serving on a board, roles, and responsibilities of boards of directors.
Tuesday, March 10 - Leadership 101. Cohort will learn what it means to lead and have the opportunity to learn their own leadership style.
Tuesday, March 24 - Finance and Sustainability. Cohort will understand nonprofit finance and sustainability from a board’s perspective.
Tuesday, March 31 - Selecting a Nonprofit.  Cohort will learn the ins & outs of evaluating which nonprofit might be a best fit for them and understand how aligning personal core values are important in selecting the best form of service.

Tuesday, April 7 - Participant Interviews and Placement Opportunities. Cohort members will meet one-on-one with Nonprofit Network staff member to identify opportunities for board and/or community service.

Participant Commitment Form


Katena Cain

Management Consultant

2800 Springport Road

Jackson, MI 49202

Phone: 517.796.4750 x 158



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