Building Smart Nonprofits: A Roadmap for Mission Success


Product Details

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Publish Date
6.2 X 9.1 X 1.0 inches | 1.3 pounds

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About the Author

David J.O'Brien enjoyed a career in the for-profit sector over a span of 45 years, with broad based experience in multi-industry corporate development, finance, and management of organizations ranging from Fortune 500 conglomerates to startups. David has served as Board Chair, Committee Chairs, and Director/Trustee of numerous nonprofits in diverse fields including education, international health NGO's, social services, and the arts. He resides in rural San Diego county with his wife, Dr. Paula Cordeiro, and when not active in the nonprofit community, enjoys sailing Colibi, his 60 year sloop, cooking, oil painting, and accompanying Paula on her travels working with NGO's in Africa, & Central/South America. Matthew D. Craig is a Vice President and Senior Relationship Manager with JPMorgan Chase, where he specializes in providing a broad range of services to governments and nonprofit organizations. With over 20 years of experience in the financial sector, he has held positions in credit underwriting, commercial and small business banking, and private wealth management. Throughout his academic and professional careers, Matt has been an active volunteer and advocate for myriad social organizations. He is a philomath, teacher, traveler, and mediocre beach volleyball player. Matt currently lives in Escondido, CA with his wife Courtney and their twins, Kerrigan and Landry.


In Building Smart Nonprofits, David O'Brien and Matthew Craig share decades of experience and insights into nonprofit leadership. By bringing together interviews with more than 60 industry leaders, they have created an impressive compendium of best practices for the nonprofit world. This book is a must-read for nonprofit executives, foundation heads, board chairs and philanthropists.--Jonathan A. Greenblatt, CEO and National Director, Anti-Defamation League
Absolutely, THE collection, of the most important, current and innovative work happening throughout the country to strengthen nonprofits and expedite organizational potential. A must read for leaders, board members and anyone who cares about changing the world.--Yolanda Coentro, President and CEO, Institute for Nonprofit Practice
In a fast changing world, the nonprofit sector is continually looking for creative new ways to keep up. In Building Smart Nonprofits, David O'Brien and Matthew Craig emphasize that historical fundraising models are not sustainable, and they offer a roadmap for mission success. This book is a must read for any nonprofit leader.--Dace West, Vice President of Community Impact, The Denver Foundation
Effective leadership is just as important in the nonprofit world as it is in the for-profit world. O'Brien and Craig show how good leadership can help build sustainable funding models, and why good boards are paramount to a fully functioning nonprofit organization. No nonprofit and no philanthropist should be without a copy of Building Smart Nonprofits.--Ali R. Malekzadeh, PhD, President, Roosevelt University
Whether you are a board member of a nonprofit, work for a foundation, or involved in running a nonprofit organization, Building Smart Nonprofits is a must read. The authors skillfully cover the core fundamentals of nonprofits, supplemented by keen insights on major trends affecting the sector. The book is rich with best in class examples and thought provoking suggestions for improving the governance, funding and operations of nonprofits. I can't wait to explore several new ideas with the organizations I currently serve.--Bruce Hoyt, director, IndieDwell Colorado, former Senior Vice President, Gary Community Investments
O'Brien and Craig provide a practical set of pathways to reach one of the most elusive goals for any nonprofit organization: financial sustainability. In an accessible and engaging style, drawing on the work of many nonprofit organizations and their talented leaders, they unpack the elements that contribute to financial sustainability. Theirs will be an important contribution to the growing literature on the nonprofit sector.--Jim Canales, President and Trustee, Barr Foundation
O'Brien and Craig have produced a work of significant insight for nonprofits. It will be of great value not only to their target audience of small to mid-sized organizations, but for the big guys as well...and should help all of us achieve a higher level of success as we advance into a very rapidly changing future.--Clifford Hague, Trustee, San Diego Zoo Global
The wide range of challenges and approaches that our non-profit sector seeks to address has grown exponentially over the past two decades, while we have simultaneously seen an unprecedented creation of wealth, so it begs the question about how well we are connecting those with this capacity to support those who seek to do good. O'Brien and Craig have created a highly readable, unique, compelling, and timely road map for non-profits to understand this landscape and fulfill their missions.--John Vasconcellos, President, Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts