Panel Names 10 Leaders to Head Work Groups
Release Date: 11-08-2004
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(Chicago, IL, November 8, 2004)—At its inaugural meeting yesterday, the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector announced the creation of five specialized Work Groups that will assist the Panel as it prepares recommendations for Congress on improving the oversight and governance of charitable organizations.
Panel co-conveners Paul Brest and Cass Wheeler also named co-conveners for each of the five groups. These leaders represent organizations from across the country that serve diverse missions and communities.
During the meeting, the Panel also discussed its mandate, strategies for reaching out to the field, and the very short timeline for fulfilling its responsibility. INDEPENDENT SECTOR formed the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector last month at the encouragement of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee, which has asked for initial findings and recommendations by February 2005 and a final report in spring of 2005. The Panel will continue its work through the fall, when it will offer final observations.
The Panel’s newly formed Work Groups will focus on areas of central importance to the nonprofit community. These five groups and some of the issues they will consider are:
- Governance and Fiduciary Responsibilities, including conflict of interest policies, fundraising, and board compensation, size, and composition. See the biographies of the Work Group members (.pdf, 191 kb).
- Legal Framework, including donor advised funds, investment rules, the prevention of self-dealing and other conflicts of interest, and tax regulations. See the biographies of the Work Group members (.pdf, 178 kb).
- Oversight and Self-Regulation, including enforcement of existing legal standards, improvements to those laws, and areas that are best enforced through self-regulation. See the biographies of the Work Group members (.pdf, 179 kb).
- Small Organizations, including special concerns related to administrative expenses, board requirements, disclosure issues, financial audits and reporting, user fees, and supporting organizations. See the biographies of the Work Group members (.pdf, 179 kb).
- Transparency and Financial Accountability, including disclosure measures such as reform of Form 990 and 990PF, audits and reviews, and electronic filing of tax returns. See the biographies of the Work Group members (.pdf, 182 kb).
Experts and leaders of charities and foundations from across the country will comprise the membership of the five groups, each of which will be led by co-conveners:
- Governance and Fiduciary Responsibilities: Ellen S. Alberding, president, The Joyce Foundation, Chicago, Ill., and Deborah S. Hechinger, president and CEO, BoardSource, Washington, D.C.
- Legal Framework: Robert Boisture, senior member, Caplin & Drysdale Exempt Organizations Practice Group, Washington, D.C., and LaVerne Woods, partner, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, Seattle, Wash.
- Oversight and Self-Regulation: John E. Marshall, III, president and CEO, The Kresge Foundation, Troy, Mich., and Valerie S. Lies, president and CEO, Donors Forum of Chicago, Chicago, Ill.
- Small Organizations: Audrey R. Alvarado, executive director, National Council of Nonprofit Associations, Washington, D.C., and David M. Nee, executive director, William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund, Hamden, Conn.
- Transparency and Financial Accountability: Michael Bailin, president,
The Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, New York, N.Y., and Walter D.
Bristol Jr., CPA, executive vice president of corporate operations and
CFO, American Heart Association, Dallas, Texas.
“We have made significant progress in developing a roadmap for our work ahead,” said Paul Brest, president of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and co-convener of the Panel, after the first meeting. “Even at this early stage, we are encouraged by the widespread support expressed by so many in the field and their willingness to offer advice and help for this initiative.”