Business On Board

Business on Board trains professionals in nonprofit board service and matches them with arts and culture nonprofits seeking board candidates. Professionals seeking to serve on a board and those already serving on a board are equipped with the knowledge, strategies, and tools to maximize their effectiveness and understanding of board leadership.

Board members can play an extraordinary role in shaping the direction of the arts and culture field. With an economy reopening, organizations are reexamining their purpose, practices, and sustainability for a new future. Nonprofits strengthen their innovation and resiliency when their boards are diverse in sector representation, skillsets, and backgrounds.


Board-Executive Partnership Evaluation (Board, Executive, Programs) Onboarding
Board Engagement Financial Management Power, Privilege, and Bias
Board Role Descriptions Fundraising Recruitment
Communication Governance Strategic Planning
Community Engagement Legal and Fiduciary Succession Planning
Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access Nonprofit Structure Vision, Values, and Mission

New this year: the Arts +Business Council has added to the curriculum a special workshop to help teach inclusive onboarding practices to nonprofit organizations and professionals who currently serve on boards. Learn more in our Inclusive Onboarding Workshop and register below.




Meet your cohort before aligning your values with a nonprofit’s mission and vision strategy. Review key components of the nonprofit structure based on organizational life cycles and size and how they relate to board governance. Round out the week by homing in on board legal and fiduciary responsibilities.

Tuesday, January 9 | 8:30AM Breakfast | 9:00AM – 12:00PM In-Person Participatory Session* | 12:00PM Informal Lunch
Thursday, January 11 | 3:30PM – 5:00PM | Virtual Recorded Webinar



Exercise big-picture and growth mindsets in relation to nonprofit strategic plans. Learn how to effectively navigate board committees, the board-executive partnership, board-staff roles, and evaluate organizational activities.

Tuesday, January 16 | 8:00AM – 10:00AM | Virtual Participatory Session*
Thursday, January 18 | 3:30PM – 5:00PM | Virtual Recorded Webinar



Think critically about diversity as it relates to board leadership. Know the signs of whether an organization is actively working towards inclusive growth. Carry a ‘belonging lens’ to frame meaningful board recruitment, onboarding, and engagement practices. Finish the week with a deep-dive into important policies and procedures for an organization’s financial health.

Tuesday, January 23 | 8:30AM Breakfast | 9:00AM – 12:00PM In-Person Participatory Session* | 12:00PM Informal Lunch
Thursday, January 25 | 3:30PM – 5:00PM | Virtual Recorded Webinar



Broaden the possibilities of how board members can grow and bring resources to an organization. Embrace fundraising through new frameworks while also leaning into the ‘traditional’ monetary ask. Practice being an organizational representative and build a toolkit for how to enter new work cultures and dynamics.

Tuesday, January 30 | 8:00AM – 10:00AM | Virtual Participatory Session*
Thursday, February 1 | 3:30PM – 5:00PM | Virtual Recorded Webinar



Align your individual vision, values, and mission towards impactful community engagement. Feel confident in the ways your unique skillset and background can contribute to an organization and learn how to engage thoughtfully with the communities your (next) organization serves.

Thursday, February 8

11:30AM | Lunch Served
12:00PM – 5:00PM | In-Person Participatory Session*
5:00PM – 7:00PM | In-Person Alumni Reception


Observership check-ins are scheduled every other month for those in current observerships. While check-ins are optional, they are highly recommended to gain the most out of the board observership experience.

Wednesday, May 29 | 9:30AM– 10:30AM | Virtual Participatory Session*


Siah McCabe
Consultant, Crowe

“While we were preparing for board service, what I took away from the program applies to my leadership style in all capacities. What I found most interesting was learning about board dynamics and people management. To ensure progress with the organization’s interest in mind, it is important that boards are clear on how best to utilize their strengths, talents, and connections through formal and informal support. I enjoyed the opportunity to grow my network and learn from those in the cohort who served on boards or had board experience.”

Joseph Mukurazia
Director, Investment Strategy & Advice, Private Wealth Management, SEI

“Business on Board provided a very engaging and meaningful way to learn about nonprofit board governance, build relationships with professionals in Philadelphia, and get plugged into the nonprofit community. I appreciated the hands-on support to find a board that was a good match for my strengths, skills and interest, as well as the opportunity to observe my board before officially joining them. Finally, I found the curriculum to be highly engaging and full of valuable information – I felt very prepared entering my board service. ”

Kelly Fromuth

Executive Director, PA Automotive Association Foundation

“All the sessions and presenters were insightful and I picked up tips and tricks from each one. One that stood out was how to manage digital presence by being more mindful and present. I now feel empowered and qualified to put my skills to use as a board member in a more meaningful capacity. Not only does ABC set you up for success by preparing you to serve, but they also assess your skills and experience to match you with organizations who will benefit most from your involvement as a board member”

Program Structure

The Business on Board curriculum will be a hybrid format over 5 weeks from January through February 2024. The format includes a blend of mandatory participatory sessions and recorded webinars that can be viewed anytime. Participants should plan to be fully present for the entire program, including attending/viewing all sessions in full, completing prework assignments and actively engaging with facilitators and the cohort throughout the program.

Immediately following curriculum completion, those individuals participating in an observership will select, and be introduced to, an organization. The organization and participant will engage with each other for a period of time determined at their discretion. ABC will hold a May observership check-in to provide additional support.

2024 Facilitators

Candace Kenyatta

Candace Kenyatta is an esteemed practitioner with two decades of experience as an educator, learning and development professional, change management leader, executive coach, researcher, and knowledge management consultant. Candace is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Grovider, a knowledge management consulting firm committed to optimizing organizational performance and enhancing human lives. Candace uses her practitioner experience and her training in quantitative and qualitative research methodology to design research and data-informed solutions for leaders across industries.

Peter Mostachetti Headshot

A 24-year IBM veteran, Peter Mostachetti started out as a storage specialist, and eventually followed his passion to Leadership Development, and Talent Transformation. With experience engaging audiences in the U.S., South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, Peter specializes in engagement, feedback, managing dilemmas, fostering collaboration, transformational leadership, and using Agile techniques to drive cultural transformation. Peter is an accomplished actor having performed in and around the Hudson Valley and Off-Broadway. He is a sought-after speaker at both national and international conferences, and a four-time speaker at the United Nations. As a NYS Licensed Master Social Worker, he has always been committed to mentoring, coaching, leading teams; helping people to find their hidden strengths and values with a mind toward moving forward. In his spare time, he’s an executive coach, and works with local area schools through the Gay, Lesbian, Education Network (GLSEN) to develop students and educators, making schools safer for all.

Jenn Richards Headshot

Jenn Richards is a nonprofit consultant with over fifteen years of experience in fundraising, strategic communications, project management, and program design. She has worked with nonprofit organizations including Teach for America, the Association for Public Art, and the Girl Scouts. In 2018, Jenn founded High Gear Consulting Group to provide leadership and integrated strategic support to nonprofit leaders and boards during times of change or growth. She frequently serves as Interim Executive Director for organizations undergoing leadership transitions.

Laura Solomon Headshot


Founder, Laura Solomon & Associates

Laura N. Solomon, Esq. is the founder of Laura Solomon & Associates. LS&A is a law firm devoted to the representation of nonprofit, charitable, and other tax-exempt organizations and philanthropic individuals. Ms. Solomon and her associates serve as outside, general counsel to hundreds of organizations, providing a full range of corporate and tax legal services that include representation for mergers, joint ventures, affiliations, and complex financings. LS&A clients include public charities and private foundations, community foundations, museums, hospitals, schools, religious groups, business, environmental, animal welfare, amateur sports organizations, social clubs, and political action committees. These organizations range in size from small start-up organizations to large social service providers and multi-national charities that conduct international grant-making.

Observing an Organization

The observership component serves two purposes: 1) The goal is to create a pathway to an official elected board position; and 2) It supplements the Business on Board curriculum by applying learnings in the field with an arts and culture board. ABC conducts a thorough evaluation based on the skills and interests of both parties to identify compatible matches between organizations and participants. Once participants are introduced to an organization, they receive individual support as they learn about and engage with the organization and consider becoming a board member. Participants receive further support as they become part of Business on Board’s network of over 900 alumni. Observerships may last a few months to over a year depending on the circumstance.

ABC is grateful to have a long-standing reputation and following in the area with arts and
culture organizations. Over 70 organizations participated as host organizations each year. Their range of disciplines varies widely; arts education, music, theatre, the performing arts, and visual
arts are among the top represented.

For Professionals Interested in Business On Board

When considering the program, individuals may choose whether to participate in the curriculum only or to participate in the curriculum and be matched with an organization through the observership component.  The Arts + Business Council recommends the following rates depending on the size of the business or organization. A 15% discount may be arranged when multiple individuals participate from the same institution. A 10% discount is offered to chamber members for individual participation. Payment is due prior to the first session.

Category With Observership Curriculum Only
Businesses Sponsoring Employees
     Large (>50 employees) $3,000 $1,500
     Small (<50 employees) $2,000 $1,000
     Business Professionals Paying Out of Pocket or Self Employed $1,000 $750
Nonprofits Sponsoring Current Board Members
     Mid-Size and Large ($5M->$10M Budget) $1,000 $750
     Grassroots and Small (<$1M-$5M Budget) $800 $600
Nonprofit Professionals Paying Out of Pocket   $700 $500

Companies and employers benefit from Business on Board in a few key ways: 1) Increased visibility for the company. Employees are appointed to public leadership positions and engage with new audiences as a nonprofit board member and with ABC’s network. 2) Increased community engagement. Companies demonstrate their support of volunteerism and giving back to the local community. 3) Increased leadership skills and confidence for employees through professional development training.

Inclusive Onboarding Workshop

ABC welcomes nonprofit organizations and professionals who currently serve on boards
to a special workshop on inclusive onboarding practices.

This workshop is separate from the main Business on Board curriculum.

In-Person Participatory Session | Saturday, February 10, 2024 | 11:30AM Lunch Served, Program from 12:00PM – 5:00PM

Learn tools to assess board makeups to identify underrepresented skills and backgrounds. Extend beyond personal networks to effectively and thoughtfully diversify boards to reflect the communities the organization serves. Plan beyond recruitment to ensure new and diverse board members feel included and welcomed for the long haul.

With Chamber Membership Without Chamber Membership
Active Host Organizations – 1 Representative $0 $0
Active Host Organizations – Additional Representatives $135 $150
Nonprofit Organizations $180 $200


Organizations are expected to provide participants with information in advance to attend any board-related activities, including board meetings, over the course of the observership. Organizations are encouraged to share activities and materials that further highlight and provide insight into their organization, such as upcoming events, promotional material, internal documents, and introductions to other board members, board alumni and organizational staff. Organizations are under the impression that participants are observing all activities as a guest.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until the cohort is full. The Arts + Business Council encourages early application submission to ensure a spot.

Yes! While the majority of Business on Board’s participants have a business background with limited experience in the arts + culture nonprofit sector, ABC welcomes participants from all sectors who are interested in learning the fundamentals of board leadership.

Yes! Professionals already serving on a board are welcome to participate in the curriculum only and not in the observership component. Please see the “Curriculum Only” column in the Rates section for more details.

During the five-week curriculum portion, participants can expect to dedicate approximately 45-60 minutes per week on pre- and post-work, in addition to attending or viewing all the sessions. Observership weekly time commitments and overall length will fluctuate based on the organization a participant is matched with.

Anyone is welcome to participate that can travel to Philadelphia for the in-person sessions.

Matching organizations and participants internally through an objective assessment is a key component to the success of the match. For this reason, ABC does not typically share a list or accommodate placement requests. We encourage participants to trust the process with the understanding that the Arts + Business Council is committed to finding the right match.

This program is designed and led by the Art + Business Council’s program manager, Ajené Livingston. You can contact Ajené at [email protected].

For Organizations Interested in Recruiting Through Business on Board

The Arts + Business Council works with over 70 organizations seeking board candidates. While more activity happens during the Business on Board program season, matches take place throughout the year. Organizations are encouraged to complete the application below at any time if they are interested in recruiting board members through the Arts + Business Council.

There is no cost to be an active organization and host a participant. However, there is a $250 placement fee if an organization elects a Business on Board participant or alumnus into its board of directors. For questions regarding financial assistance or organization eligibility, please contact [email protected].


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