OutGrown started as a small grassroots movement and is now an organization with branches in more than 300 cities, towns, and rural areas all across North America. We are at an exciting stage of development as we grow to an established, dynamic nonprofit organization that provides resources, community support, and advocacy for families to get out into nature with their children from birth.
We are always ready to talk with people who are interested in serving on our Board of Directors or on a working group! We seek individuals who are passionate about our mission and bring a range of lived experience, professional background, and perspective. With their help, we aim to serve our community and build a strong, effective, stable organization both now and into the future.
We are a Working Board, and each member participates in board committees or topical work groups according to their interests, skills, and talents. There are opportunities to support programs and communication, technology, strategic development, and many other areas as we work to equitably serve all families who want to get on the trail. Every single member of our Board and working groups makes a real difference in our ability to serve tens of thousands of families in the OutGrown community.
OutGrown values equity and diversity as key elements of a strong and vibrant community. We welcome people of diverse backgrounds, abilities, and lived experiences, especially those who identify with groups historically underrepresented in the outdoors. The perspective such individuals bring will strengthen our Board and our whole organization, and will make us better able to serve our mission and our member community.
If you would like to join us, or know someone who might, please reach out! Send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what kind of involvement is interesting to you.
An overview of our mission, vision, and values. It also highlights our thoughts on equity, diversity, and inclusion as they relate to our work at OutGrown. This is an important and evolving area of focus for the organization, and is critical to our purpose-driven work.
They may be a small team, but they sure get the job done (along with many incredibly dedicated volunteers who devote countless hours to helping families get outside in all kinds of ways).
In addition to our nonprofit Board of Directors, there are also opportunities to be engaged through our Advisory Board. Advisory Board members do not hold governance responsibilities, but provide incredibly important counsel, support, and expertise.
Staff & Board/Advisory members Courtney, Kayla, Dini, & Jessica at our Atlanta Bring it Outside Family Festival.
Staff members Corie & Kayla & Board member Nicholl hosting OutGrown's Family Camp Zone at the Big Gear Show.
QUESTIONS ABOUT BOARD SERVICE?
Would you like to know more about what board service is like? Click below for answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. Feel free to email us at email@example.com if your question isn't answered.
Do I need previous board experience?
No! Some of our Board members have previously served on nonprofit boards, and some have not. Having a range of experience is actually really helpful. The most important thing is that you have a commitment to OutGrown’s mission, and the time to be involved and bring your knowledge and talents to the organization.
The OutGrown bylaws include a volunteer Board of Directors with 12 seats. This includes 4 officer positions that are elected by the Board from among currently-serving members.
How often do you meet?
The full Board of Directors meets 4 times each year, on a quarterly basis. One annual meeting is in-person (when possible), and the others are held via teleconference. Standing committees and working groups meet more frequently, on a schedule set by the specific group.
What is the time commitment for a Board member?
Most Board members commit about 10 hours per month to their OutGrown Board service (including Board and Committee meetings, engaging in regular Board communication, individual projects in their areas of expertise, and work groups). OutGrown uses email and Slack to coordinate our work. Board members are asked to commit time on a weekly basis to engage with these channels of communication in order to keep up with what is happening in the organization.
What is the most important skill I would need to be a board member for OutGrown?
As a young organization, OutGrown can benefit from a wide range of skills and experience. For each Board application cycle, we identify some areas of knowledge that would be particularly beneficial to the organization’s current work. However, the most critical things we look for in all Board members is a commitment to the mission, and the time to engage in a meaningful way. Board service can look a lot of different ways, but fundamentally we need people who have the excitement to take on work projects and the dedication to follow them through. We have a small staff team, so it’s ideal for Board members to work with staff to identify specific needs and then help to carry that work forward.
How long is a board term?
Each initial board term is 2 or 3 years. Initial term length is determined in conversation with applicants at the time of joining the Board. (3-year terms support strong succession planning for the organization, but we recognize that some candidates may prefer to commit 2 years initially.) Board members in good standing can request to be reappointed at the conclusion of their term.
What exactly does the board do?
Like all non-profit boards, OutGrown’s Board of Directors is the highest governing body of the organization. Our main role is to advance OutGrown’s mission through a range of activities from strategic planning and program development, to advocating for OutGrown’s work, to fundraising and public communication. The Board has governance responsibilities that include legal and financial oversight, and also is responsible for hiring and providing support to the Executive Director of OutGrown. The Executive Director (ED) oversees the daily implementation of strategy and operations at OutGrown, in alignment with the organization’s mission, vision, and values. The ED directs all activities of staff teams, program administration, and financial management. The ED also serves as the primary liaison between Board and Staff, and as such participates in many working meetings along with the Board of Directors. The ED is not a member of the Board, and does not cast a vote in any voting actions by the Board.
I don’t know if I have time to be a Board member right now. Can I just be on a committee or working group?
Absolutely! Standing Committees, including the Finance Committee and Board Development Committee, generally hold brief meetings on a monthly basis. Working groups involve Board members, staff members, and other volunteers in specific shorter-term projects or areas of development. We have a variety of working groups at any given time, depending on the current needs of the organization and focused in areas such as partnership development, equity topics, brand and marketing, community outreach, and more.
How do I get involved?
Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org telling us a little bit about yourself and your interests. We will connect you to a current Board member who can talk with you about next steps, share information about the next annual application cycle, and identify opportunities to engage in committees or work groups in the meantime.