Speaking & Training


I love helping executives and board members navigate chief executive transitions. These are watershed events for their organization, defining moments for the board, and huge turning points in the executive’s career.

Whether it’s a conference talk where they’re inspired to take action, a workshop where they learn more, or an intensive retreat where they dig deep, my singular goal is for them to leave with a clear eye about how to manage these transitions and greater confidence to tackle the challenge.

Since 1993, I have spoken at or facilitated events attended by literally thousands of nonprofit leaders. Venues have included…

  • Philanthropic programs such as Bank of America’s Neighborhood Builders Program, Columbus Foundation, J. M. Kaplan Fund, and Virginia Piper Charitable Trust.
  • National associations such as BoardSource, InterAction, Jewish Funders Network, National Disability Rights Network, NeighborWorks America, Society of Animal Welfare Administrators, and The Arc of the US.
  • Regional associations such as the Center for Nonprofit Advancement, Kansas Nonprofit Centre, Louisiana Association of Nonprofits, and Maryland Association of Nonprofits.
  • Nonprofit capacity building organizations such as the Foundation Center, Nonprofit Learning Lab, and the Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits.
  • And academic-related programs such as ARNOVA, the College of Southern Maryland, and the Maxwell School at Syracuse University.

Below is a list of my signature topics, but I love to explore just about any subject that involves governance, executive leadership and strategy.

 Signature Topics

  • The Nonprofit CEO Succession Roadmap. A two-day intensive event for nonprofit chief executives to prepare themselves and their organizations for their eventual transition out of the CEO role. Based on a new book, the event covers: (1) taking charge of your exit, (2) preparing your organization for CEO succession, (3) preparing yourself for life’s next chapter, and (4) leading the organization through the transition. Audience: Soon-to-retire nonprofit CEOs.
  • Moving In, Moving Up, and Moving On: Learning to Lead at Every Career Turn. This talk explores leader development and learning at three career stages: moving into a leadership role, moving up into your next leadership role, and moving on – the leadership in leaving your role. Formats: plenary or breakout session. Audience: Nonprofit executives and staff.
  • Seven Steps to Successful Leadership Succession
 explores the critical path from decision to departure from the CEO role. Formats: plenary or breakout session, or half-day workshop. Audience: Nonprofit CEOs and board members.
  • Six Keys for Building a Sustainable Nonprofit
. Many nonprofit leaders mistakenly think that organizational sustainability is about money. Research shows it’s much deeper than that. This session digs into the six fundamentals of sustainability. It includes several assessment tools that participants can use to map out a sustainability plan for their organization. Formats: plenary or breakout session, or half-day workshop. Audience: Nonprofit CEOs, senior staff, and board members.

If you’re ready to help your members or grantees plan for a more sustainable future, please call me at (240) 813-4681 or send me an email.

Upcoming Events

October 24, 2019 – McPherson, KS
Strategic Conversations for Chief Executive and Board Chair Teams
Kansas Nonprofit Centre – Kansas Nonprofit Leadership Summit

Sample of Prior Events

June 14,  2019 – Washington, DCcenter
Planning: What Works?
Center for Nonprofit Advancement – Executive Preparation Institute

April 27,  2019 – Washington, DCdcbar_logo
Six Strategies for Better Planning
DC Bar Association/Center for Nonprofit Advancement – Board Basics A-Z (10 presentations since 2015)

February 7,  2019 – Washington, DCboa-logo
Six Strategies for Better Planning
Bank of America – Board Basics A-Z  (3 presentations since 2016)

July 28,  2018 – Silver Spring, MDcenter
Six Planning Challenges and How to Overcome Them
Center for Nonprofit Advancement – Board Member Boot Camp

May 4, 2018 – Baltimore, MD
Sustaining Vision, Sustaining Mission, Sustaining Leaders
J.M. Kaplan Fund Innovation Prize

April 15, 2018 – New Orleans, LA
Moving In, Moving Up and Moving On: Learning to Lead at Every Career Turn
ANCOR Foundation Leadership Academy

March 9 & 22, 2018 – Washington, DC & New York, NY
Going Solo, Going Big: Launching Your Consulting Practice
Foundation Center

February 21, 2018 – Shreveport, LALANO logo
Succession Connection: For the Future and Experienced Leader
Louisiana Association of Nonprofit Organizations

November 13, 2017 – Miami, FL
Avoiding Disappointing Departures
Society of Animal Welfare Administrators

November 8, 2017 – San Diego, CA
Going Solo. Going Big. Setting Up Your Consulting Practice
Grant Professionals Association – Pre-conference Session

April 19, 2017 – onlineLearning Lab Logo
The Nonprofit CEO Succession Journey: Prepare Yourself and Your Organization for the Transition
Nonprofit Learning Lab

November 17, 2016 – Washington, DCarnova
Executive Succession: Closing the Gap Between Ideals and Practice (Moderator)
ARNOVA & Alliance Joint Annual Conference

September 29, 2016 – Baltimore, MDMaryland Nonprofits
Nonprofit CEOs: Preparing Yourself and Your Organization for Leadership Transition
Maryland Nonprofits – Annual Conference

June 21-22, 2016 – Columbus, OHThe Columbus Foundation
The Nonprofit Succession Roadmap
The Columbus Foundation

April 29, 2016 – La Plata, MDcsmi150
Organizational Sustainability & Succession Planning
College of Southern Maryland – Annual Nonprofit Institute

April 20, 2016 – McLean, VAnnlc150
Moving IN, Moving UP, and Moving ON: Learning to lead at every career turn
National Nonprofit Leadership Conference

July 28, 2015 – Baltimore, MDtg
Next Steps for Founders and Long-Term Executives
TransitionGuides, Inc.

June 9, 2015 – Norfolk, VAvaaccses2015
Organizational Sustainability, Leadership Succession & Talent Management
vaACCSES Provider Conference

October 9-10, 2014 – Washington DCbsource
Exits From The Top and
Seven Steps to a Sustainable Nonprofit
BoardSource – Board Leadership Forum

May 23, 2014 – Syracuse, NYmaxwell
Preparation for the CEO Role
Maxwell School, Syracuse University – Transnational NGO Leadership Institute

csmMarch 28, 2014 – LaPlata, MD
Don’t Let Succession Smash Your Mission
College of Southern Maryland – Nonprofit Institute

January 31, 2014 – Washington, DCacp
Leadership and Sustainability
Association of Philanthropic Counsel

October 1, 2013 – Virginia Beach, VAvaaccses
Successful Leadership Succession
vaACCSES – Annual Conference

August 1-2, 2013 – Denver, COsfai
Next Steps for Founders and Long-Term Executives
State Fiscal Analysis Initiative Network

May 11, 2013 – Roanoke, WVcrh
Sustaining Leaders. Sustaining Organizations. Strategies for Managing Leadership Succession and Transition
Center for Rural Health Development

November 13, 2012 – Harrisburg, PApar
CEO Succession & Transition: Case Study Lessons
PAR Solutions Conference

October 18, 2012 – Cumberland, MDmacs
-Sustaining Organizations: CEO & Senior Leadership Succession & Transition Planning
-Grow Your Own Leaders: Identifying, Developing Retaining Talented Leaders
MACS Annual Conference

April 12, 2012 – Phoenix, AZpiper
Building Sustainable Organizations for Executives & Boards
Piper Academy
Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust

March 12, 2012 – Washington DCndrn
Developing a Leadership Pipeline through Talent Management
National Disability Rights Network

March 6, 2012 – Tulsa, OKokcntr
Building Sustainable Organizations for Executives & Boards
Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits

December 7, 2011 – Arlington, VAiaction
The Sustainable CEO
InterAction CEO Retreat

December 9, 2011 – Oklahoma City, OKuwcok
Introduction to Nonprofit Executive Succession & Transition
United Way of Central Oklahoma

September 17, 2011 – Oakland, CAalliance
Leadership: Chief Executive Selection
Alliance for Nonprofit Management

August 6, 2011 – Baltimore, MDarc-nce
Dancing with the Board
NCE Summer Leadership Institute
The Arc of the United States

May 2, 2011 – Indianapolis, INiga
Succession Planning – Maximizing Your Success
Indiana Grantmakers Alliance

March 22, 2011 – Philadelphia, PAjfn
Executive Succession and Organizational Sustainability
Jewish Funders Network International Conference

January 7, 2011 – Midland, TXnmc
Building Sustainable Organizations
Nonprofit Management Center of the Permian Basin