WILMINGTON – Proving their investment in the causes they represent, many of the more than 40 area non-profit leaders and board members who attended Tuesday’s free non-profit power training peppered the speaker with questions during a fast-paced two-hour program.
Beth Short, with the charitable law division of the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, literally ran out of time for more questions as well as battery life on her computer during her presentation sponsored by the Clinton County Foundation at the Robert Moyer Community Room of the Wilmington Municipal Building.
Although most of those who attended represented Clinton County charitable organizations such as the United Way and the Rails to Trails Coalition, several Clinton County elected officials attended as did a few individuals from charities in Highland County.
Short stared and ended her program with “thank you,” understanding that probably the vast majority if not all of those in the room and across the state, promote good causes voluntarily and receive no stipend.
“The quality of life for all Ohioans is enriched by the important efforts of the charitable sector,” she said. “My job is to help good people do good work the right way.”
She summarized that the responsibilities of all non-profit board members are:
• Duty of care – This involves being active in the organization’s activities and understanding its mission.
• Duty of loyalty – Board members must acknowledge that the interest of the charity and its work must be the top priority. Charitable boards should develop and follow conflict of interest policies to avoid transactions that unfairly enrich the charity’s leaders.
• Duty to manage accounts – A charity must be fiscally accountable. Board members must track budget data and establish and monitor internal controls.
• Duty of compliance – Charities have important legal obligations. Board members must ensure that their charity follows registration requirements, solicitation laws and tax provisions.
For more information about charitable giving laws in Ohio, Short encourages use of the online resources available on the attorney general’s web site, to contact her at 614-644-8586 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Clinton County Foundation was founded in 1985 as a charitable community organization with a 15-person governing board. Its assets are held locally at Peoples Bank. More programs such as this are planned for the future according to executive director Jan Blohm.
For questions about the foundation or local charitable giving, she can be contacted at 937-566-1634 or email@example.com.