The fundraising chair is a nonprofit board member who is responsible for creating a fundraising plan to ensure the organization is fully funded for the services it provides. Most nonprofits rely on regular donations in order to provide their services to the community. Unlike for-profit corporations that sell products or services for a profit, nonprofits aim to help others without making a profit. This means that budgets are tight and money is spent wisely so that donors feel they are making a good investment.
What is a Fundraising Chair?
The fundraising chair sits on the board of directors of a nonprofit organization. They typically serve as volunteers who take on the responsibility of ensuring that the organization is fully funded for the annual budget approved by the board. The budget might be partially funded through fees for services, grants, regular monthly donations and board donations.
Though this money is vital, there is almost always a gap between the money the nonprofit is guaranteed to receive and what they actually need to provide their services. The fundraising chair is responsible for creating a plan that bridges the budgetary gap and then oversees the fulfillment of that plan.
Board Meeting Responsibilities
The fundraising chair is responsible for being present at all general board meetings. She may meet with the executive committee to help prepare the agenda and will present on her fundraising plans in order to engage the board moving forward. The fundraising chair works with the finance chair to oversee the financial health of the organization and decide on what matters should be discussed during fundraising committee meetings.
Committee Meeting Responsibilities
Some fundraising chairs sit on more than one committee for the nonprofit's board. They are the head of the fundraising committee, but may also be present at finance committee meetings or executive committee meetings, depending on the organization. During fundraising committee meetings, the chair is responsible for presenting fundraising ideas to be brought to vote, as well as breaking down fundraising plans into actionable steps.
The fundraising chair helps to delegate responsibilities to other fundraising committee members in order to work efficiently toward the organization's goals.
Donor Care Responsibilities
Because the fundraising chair is responsible for raising funds for a nonprofit organization, they also have a vital role in donor care. Donors want to feel that they have a personal relationship with the nonprofit and that their dollars are going to wherever they will make the largest impact in the community. The fundraising chair is often responsible for spearheading donor care efforts, like thank you notes, lunches and appreciation events.
Gala Event Chair Responsibilities
Many nonprofits plan one or two major galas per year to help raise money toward the operating budget. The aim of these galas is to raise a large sum of money to provide adequate funding without having to work as hard to get small donations throughout the year.
Gala event chair responsibilities are numerous and often include the following:
- Venue selection.
- Food planning.
- Entertainment planning.
- Silent auction planning.
- Raffle planning.
- Theme and decoration planning.
- Guest relations planning.
- Invitations and RSVP oversight.
- Event evaluation .
Fundraising Ideas for Organizations
Fundraising for a nonprofit can be tedious, but the fundraising chair can help choose the fundraisers that are likely to yield the largest benefits with the least amount of effort for your organization. Fundraising ideas could include the following:
- Fundraising gala.
- Church donations.
- Public speaking.
- Monthly donor drives.
- Car washes.
- Selling goods.
- Online donations.
- Text donations.
- Social media campaigns.
- House parties.
- Email campaigns.
- Newsletter campaigns.
- Restaurant fundraisers.
- Silent auctions.
- Yard sales.
- Business donation days.
- Corporate sponsorship.
The fundraising chair can work with other members of the board, as well as the fundraising committee, in order to determine which combination of fundraising efforts are most likely to work for the size, mission and vision of your organization.
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Anne Kinsey is an entrepreneur and business pioneer, who has ranked in the top 1% of the direct sales industry, growing a large team and earning the title of Senior Team Manager during her time with Jamberry. She is the nonprofit founder and executive director of Love Powered Life, as well as a Certified Trauma Recovery Coach, certified HRV biofeedback practitioner and freelance writer who has written for publications like Working Mother, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Houston Chronicle and Our Everyday Life. Anne works from her home office in rural North Carolina, where she resides with her husband and three children.