Cultural Inclusion Program

The Cultural Inclusion Program for Non-profit Boards addresses the fact that over 74% of Lawrence is Latino; however the overwhelming majority of the city’s non-profit Board members are white with minimal ties to the city. Yet, there is a growing number of young, savvy “minority” professionals who have a rich understanding of Lawrence and possess the necessary skills and passion to assume leadership roles on our non-profit Boards.

The Program Goals are to recruit, train, place, retain and engage new Board members who have the professional skills needed by Boards and reflect the demographic of the community.

Our program emphasizes that diversity is more than a checkbox. Therefore our Board trainings include facilitated dialogue on creating Board cultures that are welcoming and inclusive, so that all have a voice at the table.

Participation in this program is by application only. Call 978-604-8803 for more information.

Board placement involves a 3-phase process.

1. Preliminary Screening

"Minority Recruits" must:
  • Live, work, or have roots in the community
  • Participate in a personal interview with Community InRoads staff
  • Commit to full participation in all trainings
  • Complete an application
  • *The Cultural Inclusion Nominating committee makes final determination of participants
Participating non-profits must:
  • Participate in a personal interview with Community InRoads
  • Commit to sending Board representatives to all trainings
  • Be committed to exploring new ways to creating inclusive Board environments

2. Workshops on Board Governance and Inclusion

  • Workshops include: (1) Kickoff and intro to inclusive Boards (2) Facilitated dialogue on inclusion and leadership; (3) Board fundamentals, (4) Board Walk, (5) Financial oversight, (6) Fundraising roles and strategies, (7) Facilitated dialogue on inclusion and power, (8) Legal oversight
  • All "minority recruits" and at least one board member from participating non-profits are required to attend all sessions.
  • All sessions are delivered by subject matter experts.

3. Board Matches

  • The Board Walk provides a speed dating format where representatives from participating Boards and the recruits formally meet and learn about one another.
  • Community InRoads meets individually with recruits to determine Boards they would like to explore further. Following the meeting, we facilitate in-depth interviews with the non-profits of interest.
  • The ultimate "match" is mutually determined between the recruits and the non-profits in order to meet the passions of the recruits and the needs of the non-profits.
  • Recruits are assigned a "Board Peer" by the chair to help welcome and acclimate them to the Board.