How to Join a Non Profit Board

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A nonprofit organization has a board of directors to make major decisions. The ideal board comprises people with a professional attitude, a personal interest in the mission of the organization and a broad range of strong skills and qualities that combine to help the organization.

Finding a board position can prove difficult and competitive. To be successful, you must demonstrate that your character and abilities benefit the board in a way that complements the talents and skills of the other members.

Write a Resume

Type your name, phone number and email address in bold at the top of your resume.

Write a section about your education, listing each qualification or institute on a separate line and mentioning especially any qualifications that relate directly to the nonprofit organization you would like to join.

Write a section about your volunteer and work experience, especially including experiences that relate to the organization or that demonstrate the qualities and skills you will bring to the board. List each experience on a separate line, adding brief explanatory notes if they relate to key skills.

Find a Board

Contact local or national organizations you would like to serve as a board member and ask about vacancies. Choose groups that reflect your passions, interests and values.

Search websites such as BoardNetUSA, Bridgestar and Idealist to find vacancies for nonprofit board positions.

Follow each organization's own application process, or send your resume and a cover letter to the organization whose board you would like to join. A cover letter should summarize your interest in the company or group and explain concisely why you believe your presence would benefit the board.


  • Volunteering for other aspects of an organization's work before you apply for a board position increases chances of success.

  • Show your interest and enthusiasm by asking to attend board meetings before the nonprofit accepts you as a member.