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Participate In Training as a Current Board Member


Are you a business professional currently serving on the board of an arts or cultural organization in the Greater Philadelphia Region? Do you wish you had been better prepared for your role and that you knew more about what good board governance looks like? Would you like to strengthen the board you currently serve on and enhance your own leadership skills in the process?

Business On Board provides an extensive training program on effective board governance. Since 1996, we have trained and placed nearly 500 business professionals on the boards of more than 150 arts groups in our region. Beginning in 2011, we are making this program available to current board members, too.

Program Basics

  • Four full-day training sessions provide instruction in the legal, ethical and financial responsibilities of nonprofit board members, with an emphasis on understanding the dynamic arts and cultural sector.
  • Our guest faculty includes regional and national leaders from business, arts, academic and nonprofit consulting arenas.
  • Varied and interactive coursework includes panel discussions, case studies, and readings and homework that help you apply what you learn in the classroom sessions.
  • Attorneys who participate in the program are eligible to receive one CLE credit in the ethics category through Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts for content presented during the first session.
  • Observing a board in action is a component of your training.


"As a newly elected board member, participation in the 2014 Business On Board class provided me with necessary tools which enabled me to contribute and add value almost immediately. "

MINDY MAZER, Senior Manager, Corporate Staffing AMETEK, Inc., Participated in Business On Board 2014 as a current board member of Mighty Writers.

Is Business On Board for you?

The ideal Business On Board candidate has a minimum of 7 years of business experience, and preferably management experience. Current board members who are relatively new to board service or those who may be on track to assume leadership positions on an arts board would benefit greatly from this program. View a Business On Board 2015 class list.

When + Where

Four full-day, Friday sessions in 2017, held at Center City cultural venues:

  • January 27 – Location TBD
  • March 3 – Location TBD
  • April 7 – Location TBD
  • May 5 –Location TBD

Attendance at all four training sessions is required.

How to Apply

You can apply online. Before you begin, please be sure you have an updated resume available electronically. Also, be sure you know the current operating budget and the current number of board members for your arts organization before you begin.


Current board members can participate in Business On Board for $1,500a significant discount compared with the $3,000 fee for prospective new board members. This discount reflects the fact that you are already an active board member and our program staff will not be matching you with an arts organization to observe or helping you secure a new board placement.

The $1,500 fee includes 25 hours of classroom time, materials, breakfast and lunch on the classroom dates, ongoing coaching and networking opportunities with other business professionals.

Many companies subsidize this fee, recognizing that Business On Board participation provides valuable leadership and professional development opportunities for their employees.


We are pleased to offer a number of full scholarships for the 2016 Business On Board program for current board members of smaller arts organizations who are actively looking to enhance board governance. The basic criteria for these scholarships are:

  • Located in one of the Greater Philadelphia, 11 County region.
  • At least one full-time (paid) employee.
  • Current operating budget between $100,000 and $750,000
  • Board that meets at least on a quarterly basis.

Nominations for these scholarships, in the form of a letter of support from the board chair and/or executive director and a resume for the board member, must be received by ABC by December 18, 2015. Please review thefull criteria and expectationsfor scholarship candidates.


Contact Eileen Cunniffe, Director, Governance + Consulting Services at 215.790.3621 or


Business On Board is presented with Producer Circle Support by:

North Highland


Business On Board is supported in part by:

Alkemy X   Connelly Foundation   

Dolfinger-McMahon FoundationGovernor's Woods Foundation


Media Partner:


Business On Board Current Board Member Scholarships are also made possible through the support of the CHG Charitable Trust.

200 South Broad Street, Suite 700 | Philadelphia, PA 19102-3896 | Tel: 215.790.3620 | PVLA: 215.790.3836 x1