Nonprofit Management Forum

Each Executive Director Forum is comprised of 10 to 12 executive directors facilitated by two ECofOC coaches who are experienced  nonprofit management consultants. The monthly meetings use a proven process to guide the group to practical solutions for issues brought to the table by each participant.

Members have the opportunity to:

  • Hear from peers who have experienced similar nonprofit management and leadership issues and concerns
  • Gain better insights into their organizations by having knowledgeable, unbiased peers present their perspectives
  • Get fresh ideas to solve difficult or complex issues
  • View their situations and organizations strategically
  • Learn tips to solve everyday problems from similarly situated peers

This program responds to the typical executive director concern that “it’s lonely at the top”. EDs typically have few opportunities to interact with peers about specific nonprofit management and leadership issues facing their organizations.

Executive Director Kari I says: “I believe the ED forum is a dynamic environment to discuss challenges and brainstorm program solutions. I’m gaining insight from my peers that I would otherwise not receive. This is valuable time well spent!”  

Sessions are held monthly from 8:15 to noon and include a continental breakfast and snacks throughout the meeting. The cost is $20 per month, paid each six months in advance.

Membership Criteria
Executive Director Forum candidates must be in an executive director or similar position on a full-time basis. The nonprofit must have:

  • A Board of Directors
  • At least two employees (ED +1)
  • An annual budget of at least $150,000
  • A commercial-based (non-home-based) office

Member Commitments
To ensure the success of each forum, members must commit to:

  • Attend all of the Forum monthly meetings (exceptions for travel and vacations)
  • Participate as an active Forum contributor and good listener
  • Demonstrate a sincere interest in the success of the Forum and its members
  • Maintain the confidentiality of all Forum discussions
  • Follow the Forum process

Executive Director Forum Members
Following is a sampling of our Executive Director Forum member firms:

  • 2-1-1 Orange County
  • Algalita marine Research Foundation
  • Breast Cancer Solutions
  • Habitat for Humanity Orange County
  • Institute for Women Entrepreneurs
  • Junior Achievement of Southern California
  • Women Helping Women/Men2Work

Forum Meeting Leaders
Our Executive Director Forum meeting leaders are:

John Benner started his career as a CPA with Price Waterhouse and held financial and general management positions with major retailers, finishing his career as Senior Vice-President Administration, Lucky Stores Division of American Stores. Since 1995 he has been a strategic planning consultant to non-profit organizations.

Dave Blankenhorn was the President, CEO and a Director of the American Security Bank in Newport Beach, which under his leadership grew from $260 million in 2004 to $430 million in 2012. Dave is also on the Board of Second Harvest Food Bank and the Orange County Council of Boy Scouts of America.

Adrianne Geiger DuMond was responsible for Executive Development and Succession Planning at Owens-Illinois, First Interstate Bancorp and McDonnell-Douglas. She has a Ph.D. in Organization Development from USC and has served on the Boards of the United Way, Family Services of Orange County and Wiseplace.

Karen Haren was the CEO of Harvesters Community Food Network. She has a track record of success in mission driven strategic planning and performance management, leadership development and succession planning, fund raising and community engagement, board development, capacity building and organizational effectiveness.

Robin Noah was the Executive VP of Human Resources of a commercial insurance company. Prior to that, she managed field and staff operations for Pacific Telephone for 30 years. Robin is a certified mediator and has an independent consulting company specializing in management and personal growth systems.

Ernest Stambouly did product development in the  aerospace and defense industries. He then worked as a business consultant on incubating, launching and managing change in small technology companies. Ernest also has ten years experience in coaching corporate teams in professional development and in using social media to promote his business.

Nonprofit Management Forum Next Steps:

By completing and submitting the Nonprofit Management Forum application, you are indicating that you are interested in ECofOC’s Executive Director Forum program and would like to learn more. You will be contacted by one of our nonprofit management consultants to discuss the program and consider which of the forums best suits your needs. Submitting this information indicates only that you are interested and does not bind you to participation.