Board Charters

Board Charters are documents that set out the job description and overall role of the board — from the composition, purpose, role, and responsibilities to job descriptions for committees — reminding Board members that they are part of a group with authority over, and liability for, the organization.

To govern consciously, the Board needs to have a Board charter that clearly outlines roles, responsibilities, ethical expectations and operational details of the Board. This enables Board members to have a shared understanding of how the Board works. This is particularly useful in the Board induction process and Board evaluation process.

The information that goes into a Board charter should include at least the following:

* Purpose of charter

* Purpose of the Board

* Roles and Responsibilities

* Membership and team

*Nonprofit Board/CEO relationship

* Induction and continuing education

* Board performance

* Conflicts of interest

* Access to management

* Access to independent professional advice

* Confidential information

* Board Culture

* Reporting

* Review of charter

* Publication of the charter