A Steadying Hand: The Critical Role of Non-family Board Members

Non-family trustees have played a vital role in the work of The David and Lucile Packard Foundation for more than 45 years. This special Passages Issue Brief written by NCFP Distinguished Fellow Susan Packard Orr describes the various skills, expertise, and perspectives that non-family board members can provide, as well as some of the common challenges for families seeking to add their first non-family board members, and tips for how to set clear expectations for this role.

“Non-family board members provided the critical steadying hand that we needed as we dealt with the future of the foundation without our parents. It was a rocky transition, and we were very grateful that they were with us at the board table.”