MaryBeth Matzek: Conference puts spotlight on what makes nonprofits successful

This is an excerpt from a column posted at BizOpinion.

Nonprofit organizations may not like to think of themselves as businesses, but they are an industry. An essential one at that, according to Vicki Clark of BoardSource, a national organization focused on board governance.

Clark was the keynote speaker at the innovative Enterprising Nonprofits conference held Wednesday in Appleton. First Business Bank-Northeast pulled the first-time event together to educate business leaders, executive directors and community partners on what it takes to make a nonprofit be successful.

“Nonprofits are a vital industry in this country,” Clark said. “I know nonprofits don’t think of themselves as an industry, but they are. They play a big economic role.”

First Business Bank-Northeast President Mickey Noone said the bank works with a lot of nonprofit organizations and saw the conference as a way to bring people together and bounce ideas off each other.

“If you have strong nonprofits, you have a stronger community,” he said. “There’s also very close ties between nonprofits and businesses in this area. Many business leaders sit on nonprofit boards and get very involved so we also saw this as a networking opportunity, too.”

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