These are some good times for the Native Plant Society. We have some strong programs. Our Bring Back the Monarch to Texas program and our Native Landscaping Certification have struck a chord with our target audience. Our Operation NICE! program continues to be popular. Our website and social media initiatives are helping to get our message out. As a result our membership has been taking off.
I’ve just concluded two years of serving as president of this organization. I was surprised at how much work there was to be done. What I learned from that experience is that we need a full-time director in order to keep up the growth and fulfill our mission. Don’t get me wrong. Volunteers have accomplished a lot and we are always going to need them. However it is unrealistic to expect volunteer officers and committee chairs to put in the time required to accomplish all that there is to do.
A few years back the Society proposed hiring a professional executive director to lead the organization’s efforts. It’s time to bring back that proposal. That’s why I was pleased that the State Board took a step forward at its April meeting and passed a resolution establishing a list of the responsibilities of the executive director. You can see the resolution here.
Most organizations of our size have an executive director who works together with the State Board. Our resolution specifies that the director would report to the board and would carry out duties as defined by the board, including creating and fulfilling a long-range strategic plan.
Financial health of the organization would be a key responsibility. The director would develop an annual budget for approval and would submit financial statements. The director would also be responsible for developing financial resources through fundraising and grant-writing, and would manage operations and programs to stay within the budget.
The executive director would serve as spokesperson for the organization, by speaking and presenting in public and and by taking an active role to enhance the image of the Society.
These are all things that would greatly advance our mission and turn the Society into a professionally-run organization. Finances are always the major obstacle. We’ve set up up an Executive Director Fund so that you can help us achieve this goal without having to sacrifice any of our existing programs. Please contribute if you can at npsot.org/donate/DirectorFund.