2019 JPNA Best Article Award


The Journal of Public and Nonprofit Affairs’ (JPNA) editorial team has selected Dr. Judith L. Millesen and Dr. Joanne G. Carman’s article titled Building Capacity in Nonprofit Boards: Learning from Board Self-Assessments,” as the recipient of the 2019 JPNA Best Article Award.

In their article, Drs. Millesen and Carman argue that periodic review of a board’s capacity to effectively govern a nonprofit charitable organization is warranted given the board's responsibility for serving essential purposes and performing critical agency functions. Therefore, using data collected from 800 individuals serving as board members of 42 different performing arts nonprofits, they report on board member evaluations of their individual and collective participation in the governance process through a self-assessment undertaken to inform decision-making and build capacity at both the board and organizational levels.

Their findings suggest the need for more (or better) training/orientation opportunities; focused, intentional, and tailored recruitment processes; clear communication, greater role clarity, and specificity regarding board performance expectations; greater understanding about best practices and the need to add value; and time to cultivate openness and collegiality among the board members and between the board and staff.

As the most viewed/downloaded article of Volume 5, the findings from Dr. Millesen and Dr. Carman’s research should provide greater insight into the individual and collective perceptions that nonprofit board members have regarding their role in the governance process.

The JPNA editorial team congratulates Dr. Millesen and Dr. Carman on this award.