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Making Your Nonprofit Board Meeting Efficiency

Creative ways to celebrate volunteer board trustees and increase engagement


Volunteer board trustees are the unsung heroes of mission-driven organizations, tirelessly dedicating their time and expertise to help drive positive change. They are the backbone of charities, nonprofits, schools and community organizations, offering their time, skills and leadership to advance meaningful causes and make a difference in the world. Yet, all too often, their remarkable contributions go unnoticed.

Events such as National Volunteer Week in April, are opportunities to celebrate and say thanks to our volunteer board members who give so much of themselves.

Why Celebrate Your Board Trustees?

Here are a few reasons to celebrate board trustees:

  • Celebrating trustees is a great way to show your appreciation. These volunteers believe in your organization’s work and want to help it succeed. Celebrating them shows that you value their hard work and dedication.
  • They provide valuable skills and expertise. Board trustees come from a variety of backgrounds and bring a wealth of skills and expertise to the board table. This diversity of perspectives and experiences is essential for making informed decisions and ensuring the long-term success of the organization.
  • It boosts morale. When board trustees feel appreciated, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated. Celebrating them can help to create a positive and productive board culture.
  • It helps with trustee recruitment. Potential board trustees want to know that they will be valued and appreciated. Celebrating your current board trustees is a great way to show potential candidates that your organization is a rewarding place to volunteer.

How to Thank and Recognize Your Volunteer Board Trustees

Looking for fun ways to celebrate your trustees? Here are a few ideas that will show your appreciation, boost morale and foster a sense of community within the board and organization.

  • Host a board appreciation event. This could be a simple lunch, dinner or picnic, where trustees and their contributions can be celebrated in a festive atmosphere.
  • Honor trustees at an award ceremony. Host an annual gala or awards ceremony to recognize and celebrate outstanding trustees. Create categories like “Trustee of the Year” or “Board Leadership Excellence.”
  • Send personalized thank-you notes. Let your board trustees know how much you appreciate their service and contributions.
  • Feature board trustees in your marketing materials. Highlight the accomplishments of your board trustees in your newsletters, website, and social media pages.
  • Nominate your board trustees for awards. There are many awards and recognition programs available specifically for nonprofit board members.
  • Give board members meaningful gifts. This could be a gift certificate to a local coffee shop or restaurant, a book by their favorite author, or a donation to another of their favorite charities in their name.
  • Create a board appreciation wall. Hang photos of your board members in a prominent location in your office, along with thank-you notes and other expressions of appreciation.
  • Thank your trustees in your official communications with donors and partners to showcase their commitment to your organization.
  • Give them recognition in your annual report that quantifies and illustrates the positive impact of your trustees’ work, providing concrete evidence of their contributions.

Best Practices for Celebrating Volunteer Board Members

  1. Be sincere and specific. When you thank your board members, let them know exactly what you appreciate about their service and contributions.
  2. Be timely. Don’t wait until the end of the year or the end of their term to celebrate your board members. Show your appreciation throughout the year.
  3. Be creative. There are many different ways to celebrate your board members. Get creative and come up with something that is meaningful and special to them.
  4. Be inclusive. Make sure to celebrate all of your board members, regardless of their position or length of service. Everyone should feel appreciated.
  5. Be consistent with your celebrations. Make sure to celebrate your board members regularly, not just on special occasions.

No matter how you choose to celebrate your volunteer board trustees, make sure it comes from the heart. They deserve to be recognized for the amazing work they do.

Using Board Management Software for Celebrate Your Trustees

Showing your appreciation is even easier with board management software. Here are a few ways you can use your platform to elevate your celebrations:

  • Host a virtual board appreciation event. Use your board management software to send out invitations, manage RSVPs, and distribute event materials. You can also use your board management software to host live streaming or video conferencing for the event.
  • Gather information from board members using your board management software. This can include their work, hobbies and interests. Use this information to write informative and engaging articles about your board members, or give them a spotlight in your organization’s newsletter.
  • Use your board management software survey tools to collect feedback from board members about how they would like to be celebrated. This will help you to tailor your celebrations to their individual preferences.
  • Track board members’ accomplishments and milestones on your board management solution. This information can be used to nominate board members for awards from your organization, other nonprofits or professional associations.
  • Send personalized thank-you emails to board members on their birthdays, anniversaries with the organization or other special occasions. Use your board management software to create templates for these emails, so you can easily personalize them for each board member.

Learn how BoardEffect can help you celebrate your volunteer board trustees in fun and creative ways by requesting a demo today.


Jill Holtz

Jill is a Content Strategy Manager at Diligent. Her strategy background and content expertise working across a variety of sectors, including education, non-profit and with local government partners, allows her to provide unique insights for organizations looking to achieve modern governance.

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