M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust

General Board Leadership & Development Program Fact Sheet

The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust is delighted to invite your organization to participate in the invitation-only Board Leadership and Development Program—a unique training process and experience for select CEOs, board members and senior team members.

Designed specifically for nonprofit organizations, the program addresses strategic competencies that are essential to board and organizational health. The content has been researched and developed by a team of experienced and skilled consultants and advisors assembled by the Murdock Trust.

Helping You Build Capacity and Sustainability

The Board Leadership and Development Program will equip you to fulfill the unique mission of your nonprofit organization as you build the capacity of your board and staff. The process will also help you identify the strategic next steps and benchmarks needed to create a sustainable future.

The 6-month program is built on a cohort-learning model that will include surveys, assessments, resource readings, interactive faculty presentations, and in-the-trenches practical dialogue and interaction both with colleagues from your organization and with other nonprofit leaders. 

Customized Coaching

A unique feature of the Board Leadership and Development Program is the coaching component. Each participating organization will be assigned a coach who will provide guidance, mentoring, and hands-on board support. Based on your specific needs, your assigned coach will suggest how to allocate the provided 16 hours of coaching over the program’s five phases:

  • Phase 1: Pre-reading, baseline surveys and pre-coaching calls (prior to Session One)
  • Phase 2: 1.5 days of training based at or near your organizational site. Training may take place along with one other organization in proximity to the site (between September and December).
  • Phase 3: Enrichment Assignments and Completion of Strategic Next Steps (with coaching accountability)

Practical, Focused, & Transformational

The Board Leadership and Development Program will address the most strategic issues, challenges, and opportunities of board leadership. Participation will help each board:

  • Clarify the board’s role and the CEO’s role—eliminate fuzzy responsibilities
  • Become increasingly characterized by mission-centric discernment
  • Embrace and implement a policy governance model that fits your board’s DNA
  • Leverage the four phases of board development: cultivation, recruitment, orientation, engagement
  • Balance board roles (the three hats): governance, participant, volunteer
  • Identify appropriate committee structures—and how to fix dysfunctional committees
  • Maximize the most critical relationship: the board chair and the CEO
  • Set the engagement bar high and foster a culture of continuous learning
  • Align your mission, vision, and values with measurable results and S.M.A.R.T. goals

Participation Requirements

To participate, each organization must commit to the following:

  1. The Executive Director/CEO and the board chair/future board chair must participate, as well as the majority of the board.
  2. A program fee of $500 per organization is due upon registration. This fee will cover 1.5 days of board training either on site or close to your location along with one other organization, as well as 16 hours of personalized coaching and all program materials.
  3. Participants must complete all readings and assignments before, during, and after the sessions.
  4. Participants will be expected to complete surveys related to the program.


One person from your organization will submit one registration with each member who will be attending the training. The $500 fee will be collected at the completion of your organization’s registration.

The $500 covers the 1.5 days of training, 16 hours of personalized coaching, coaching travel, and program materials. Organizations will help coordinate (and pay) for the on-site location and meals for the 1.5 training day.

If you need additional information or have questions, please contact us at boardleadership@murdocktrust.org or 360-694-8415.

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The Trust guides nonprofit organizations through every level of their development through grants and other resources.

Sectors the Trust is committed to enriching in the Pacific Northwest:

The Trust has a wealth of knowledge and experience that can make all the difference to you and your organization.