A bi-weekly update from the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network.                                        

Celebrate, Share & Support
Join us on June 8 for MNN's annual Nonprofit Awareness Day celebration, presented by Citizens Bankwhen hundreds of  nonprofit and business leaders, plus elected officials, will gather to highlight the impact that nonprofits have on communities across Massachusetts. 

The highlight of the celebration, MNN's Nonprofit Excellence Awards, will be presented to eight nonprofit organizations and employees that exemplify the most innovative, creative and effective work being done throughout Massachusetts. 

Join the celebration:
Monday, June 8th
State House, Great Hall

Don't miss the opportunity to celebrate the vibrant and thriving nonprofit sector, share your impact, and support causes across across the state! 

Contest Philanthropy: Is a potential windfall worth a swim with the sharks?

The ever-evolving nonprofit sector is experimenting with a new way to produce capital: a competition modeled after the popular reality show Shark Tank. If you're not familiar with the show, it features entrepreneurs who present their service or product to a panel of judges- well known, successful business leaders. These no nonsense judges grill the entrepreneurs and pick their favorite to invest in.

As reported in the Boston Globe, Boston is set to host one such contest, with a nonprofit twist, organized by venture capitalist and MA native, Todd Dagres. After finding his usual forms of donations unfulfilling, Dagres was compelled to increase his philanthropic giving beyond the traditional approach of simply writing and sending out big checks. Thus, the idea of a Shark Tank-style competition for nonprofits was born.


In Dagres' competition, nonprofits just starting-off are given the chance to pitch their missions to potential investors. The investor would then serve on the advisory board of the winning nonprofit, providing financial guidance and management to the growing organization. One of the main objectives of the competition, according to Dagres, is to give up-and-coming nonprofits the opportunity to break through the fray of larger, well-known organizations that get a lot of attention and available funding...Read more to learn about similar contests and the pros and cons associated with this trend.


Sounding Off: Nonprofit leaders voice their opinions on corporate volunteers 
In response to last week's front page Boston Globe article "Corporate volunteers can be a burden for nonprofits" many nonprofit leaders have put pen to paper to share their side of the story. Today, the Globe published three Letters to the Editor: " Creating win-win experience is key for nonprofits, volunteers" from Cradles to Crayons founder and CEO Lynn Margherio; "When you tally the hours, donated service amounts to a valuable resources" from Community Serving CEO David Waters; and "Support is available to help forge successful partnerships" by People Making a Difference founder and executive director, Lori Tsuruda.

We've heard similar responses from many of you, from various organizations working with diverse groups of volunteers, and hope you'll continue to use this article to highlight the effective, innovative volunteer engagement taking place across the Commonwealth. 

As stated by Lynn Margherio in her letter: "Let's keep this conversation going. The awareness will lead us to stronger relationships and more fulfilling outcomes."

Lend your voice for a stronger nonprofit workforce

MNN's 2015 series of regional meetings focuses on building a strong and stable nonprofit workforce. We hope you'll add your voice to this important conversation and join MNN to learn about ways that your organization can support and develop its employees. There are just two meeting left! Register now to attend one of the last two sessions which take place this week.


If you can't make it to the meetings, we hope you'll take three minutes to complete MNN's Workforce Training Needs Survey. This survey compliments the regional meetings and the findings will help guide the resources and trainings provided by MNN.

See and Be Seen: Sponsor an MNN Event
Sponsorship with the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network is a great way to showcase your company's offerings to the nonprofit community. You'll gain local and statewide visibility and have the opportunity to highlight your commitment to the nonprofit sector through MNN's two signature events.
MNN's celebration of Nonprofit Awareness Day, presented by Citizens Bank, brings together nonprofit and business leaders, as well as elected officials, to celebrate the the outstanding contributions of the nonprofit sector through the Nonprofit Excellence Awards. MNN's annual conference in October is one of the largest local gatherings of nonprofit professionals and convenes 650+ nonprofit and business leaders to learn, share, and network.


PILOTs Gain Ground 

Last week in Philadelphia, the City Council approved a non-binding resolution calling on the city's Mayor to seek PILOTs (payment in lieu of taxes) from big nonprofits.  You can read the full story in the Daily Pennsylvanian. This news comes as Maine's Governor proposes a budget that would end exemption of local property taxes for the state's nonprofits. This recurring nonprofit hot button issue probably isn't going to go away anytime soon, but it will be interesting to see how nonprofits in other states respond.

Earned Sick Time Tips for Nonprofits
By Paul Holtzman,  Krokidas and Bluestein LLP

In November 2014, Massachusetts voters approved a ballot initiative entitling all employees in the state to earned sick leave, making the Commonwealth one of few states to adopt mandated sick leave policies.

Just as Massachusetts is a leader in addressing issues related to workplace policies, the state's nonprofits are at the forefront of issues related to inequality, championing efforts to improve the lives of our residents.  With the Earned Sick Leave Act scheduled to go into effect on July 1, 2015, it is more important than ever for the state's nonprofits to ensure compliance with this new law, both for the sake of their own employees and to advance the goal of expanded economic opportunity which they advocate.


Learn the five key points that nonprofits should keep in mind as they adjust to the Earned Sick Leave Act... Read more.

Director of Finance and Operations, Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts

Senior Director of Development, MENTOR

Executive Director, Upham's Corner Health Center

Manager of Foundation Relations, Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center

Executive Director, LIFT Boston

Executive Director, Community Legal Services and Counseling Center

Development Director, Museum Institute for Teaching Science (MITS)

Social Innovation Fund Manager, Third Sector capital Partners

Major Gifts Officer/Capital Campaign Manager, Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership 

Chief Financial Officer, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay

Director of National Development, Jumpstart

Chief Development Officer, Helping Hands Monkey Helpers for the Disabled

Family Programming Manager, The Trustees of Reservations

Executive VP, Development, Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston

President & CEO, Foodshare

Executive Director, Vietnamese American Initiative for Development

Digital Media Strategist, National Center on Time and Learning

Grant & Award Opportunities

Trainings & Events 
*Discounts for MNN members

MNN Northeast Regional Meeting: Leveraging State Resources to Invest in Your Staff, Lowell, April 1

MNN Metrowest Regional Meeting: Leveraging State Resources to Invest in Your Staff, Natick, April 2

Logic Models: Visualizing Your Organization's Goals, Boston, April 1

Fundamentals of Strategic Planning Workshop, Boston, April 2

Employment Misclassification: Volunteers, Interns, and Independent Contractors, Boston, April 7

Human Resource Directors Roundtable, Springfield, April 7

Nonprofit Incorporation Workshop, Boston, April 7

*Tech Literacy for Nonprofit Leaders, Boston, April 9

What Nonprofits Need to Know about Digital Security, Boston, April 10

Employment Law 101, Holyoke, April 14

We Have to Start Meeting Like This!, Brookline, April 14-15

Introduction to Community Economic Development, Boston, April 15

*Creating Highly Functional Teams, Boston, April 16

Women's Forum: Getting Healthy Staying Healthy, Boston, April 16

HSF Administrative Professionals Event, Holyoke, April 22

Intro to Programmatic Outcomes Management, Boston, April 22

Financial Management: Best Practices, Boston, April 23

Cultivating Community Leaders, Boston, April 28

For-Profit Subsidiaries of Tax-Exempt Organizations, Boston, April 28

Finding your Middle Class Millionaires, Hyannis, April 29

Moving Beyond Icebreakers Level 1: Understanding the Power of an Interactive Model, Boston, April 20

*Succession Planning: More Than Assessing Bench Strength, Boston, April 30

*Get on Board! One-Day Board Service Bootcamp, Boston, May 1

Institute for Nonprofit Management and Leadership, early application deadline, May 1

*Fearless Presenting, Boston, May 7

Next Steps Workshop for Nonprofit CEOs, Hartford, CT, May 11-12

Nonprofit Incorporation Workshop, Boston, May 12

Using Community Preservation Act Funding for Affordable Housing, Worcester, May 12

Exploring the World of Corporate Sponsorship, Boston, May 28


Want to Lower Your Energy Bill? The Help for Energy Hogs program provides owner-occupied nonprofits with expensive energy efficiency upgrades, which are paid for by the energy bill savings. This program is currently being offered in Cambridge, Quincy, Salem and Boston. To learn more, click here


Executive Transitions: Critical Guidance Webinar: If you are a nonprofit Board member or Executive planning to transition out of your role, don't miss this informative 4-part webinar series that will help you move out of leadership while keeping the strategic and management capacities of your organization intact. Register here!


Office Space available: 161 square foot office available at 1 Florence Street in Roslindale for $500/month including all utilities. Space also available at 434 Jamaicaway in Jamaica Plain, 3,324 s.f. for entire space ($3,750/month), or 2,213 s.f. sub-lease ($2,800/month). If interested, please contact Simone Auster, Rogerson Communities, at auster@rogerson.org or call 617-469-5810.


The Harvard Business Community Action Partners (CAP) program is now seeking nonprofit clients for its fall 2015 Projects. CAP volunteers help nonprofits apply management skills to business challenges through pro-bono consulting in a variety of areas. Visit here to learn more!


Check out MNN's online Business Directory for companies throughout MA. 

New & Returning Affiliates
*Discount for MNN members


The firm's sincere approach to business and service excellence has attracted the best and brightest CPA and consulting professionals, that provide best-value assurance, tax, business consulting, and information technology advisory solutions to nonprofit organizations. AAF donates 10% of its net profits annually to nonprofit organizations.

All I.T. Supported

All I.T. provides I.T. support and consulting services to nonprofit clients, offering a virtual I.T. department at a a fraction of the cost of a full time employee to fully leverage their clients' technology budgets. *MNN members are eligible for a 20% discount on all services and support contracts, as well as a free evaluation of current I.T. needs.



Fullbridge's mission is to prepare young professionals to succeed in the global economy by offering blended learning programs that accelerate development of 21st century workplace competencies using technology and personalized coaching. Discounted pricing offered depending on size of cohort. 


Funding Change

Funding Change is a small shop owned and operated by Tina Cincotti, a fundraising veteran that works with grassroots organizations to give them the skills, tools, training, and confidence they need to raise more money form their supporters. *MNN members are eligible for a 5-10% discount.


The firm works with individuals and organizations to identify workplace challenges (e.g. communication and style differences, performance issues) and then supports them with facilitation and training, management consulting, and coaching solutions to address issues in one to one, group, or workshop formats. *First time clients that are MNN members receive 10$ off facilitation fees.


Nonprofit Professionals Advisory Group

The group was founded from the notion that every organization, regardless of budget or geographic footprint, can better fulfill it's mission with a highly-tailored, innovative, and strategic approach to acquiring and retaining it's most important resource: talent. The group unbundles traditional executive search and leadership transition packages and offers sophisticated services tailored to clients' various needs.


Tech Networks of Boston

Tech Networks of Boston helps mission-based organizations in Greater Bostons strategically plan and collaborate between technology and leadership to help nonprofits meet their mission. Services include: IT strategic planning and assessment services, project management, data integration, software development, web design, and more.