Questions all nonprofits need to ask

By Tish Morgan and Jack Owen
TribLive (Pittsburg [PA] Tribune-Review

It is with great sadness that we have read the various articles on the August Wilson Center — a story that brings into question the role of a nonprofit's board of directors and its fiduciary and financial oversight. However, there is good news that can help nonprofit organizations.

The Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations (PANO) has adopted a nationwide program known as the Standards for Excellence Ethics and Accountability Program (Standards), which requires a nonprofit seeking the Standards' Seal of Excellence to undergo a comprehensive review requiring compliance with 8 Guiding Principles and 56 Standards. The Standards stress the critical need for the board to understand its legal and ethical roles.

PANO teaches even the smallest nonprofit organizations how to educate and engage their boards. The August Wilson Center case points out the grave importance of the board's oversight role, especially considering the huge amount of community money invested in this organization.

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