Board of Directors: Roles and Responsibilities (Approved by the Board of Directors – May 29, 2012)

Position: Board member

Position Summary:

A volunteer position, elected by the membership, entrusted with collective and individual responsibilities.  It is required that to be elected to the Board, an individual must be a voting member of the congregation in good standing.  You will commit to active engagement in Board meetings including any committee on which you serve.  You will participate in collaboration with senior management in the development and advancement of MCC Toronto’s mission, vision and strategic plan. You will build relationships with the congregation, donors and staff; participate in fundraising activities, exercise fiduciary responsibilities; and strive to support good governance. 

Knowledge and Competencies

  • Board members will be committed to MCC Toronto’s Mission, Vision, Beliefs, and Values.  You will have knowledge of, and be prepared to learn more about MCC Toronto policies, programs, services, strengths and needs.
  • Board members will reflect, and role model the MCC Toronto cultural values of trust and appreciation.  Your starting position will provide the benefit of the doubt and assume ‘good intent’ in deliberations with other Board members, staff and congregation.   You will seek to handle conflicts and grievances in a healthy, professional and mature fashion.
  • Board members will demonstrate strong leadership skills in their interpersonal relationships by interacting well with others, demonstrating good communication skills, giving and receiving candid feedback, being open to different viewpoints, showing respect for others, maintaining appropriate boundaries in both personal and professional relationships, using diplomacy and tact and by be willing to work in a team context when needed.

Key Expectations

The Board represents the membership by:

  • Supporting the articulation of our Mission (our purpose:  whom we hope to benefit and how, what we claim as core values – whose lives do we intend to change, and in what way?) and our Vision (when we achieve our Mission, what will be the result?)
  • Approve major long-term goals and strategies to support our Mission and Vision;
  • Regular monitoring of long terms goals;
  • Ensuring responsible management of resources;
  • Periodically reviewing its own performance to identify needs, effectiveness, and opportunities for growth.

Good governance

  • Approve policies to ensure sound management.  Policies will reflect our Mission, Vision, Beliefs and Values and guide decision-makers while empowering them;
  • Participate actively in ensuring the sound management and adequacy of entrusted resources and sound management and administrative practices of the Board and the MCC Toronto as a whole;
  • Ensure effective organizational planning and monitoring of Church goals and objectives consistent with the mission, vision, and strategic plan.

Fiduciary Responsibility

  • Fiduciary responsibility is defined as exercising a duty of care, diligence, obedience and skill that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in comparable circumstances. The duty of obedience is specifically defined as the duty to act within the scope of the governing policies of the organization and within the scope of other laws, rules and regulations that apply to the organization. Also, you are called to a duty of loyalty – to act with honesty and in good faith with a view to the best interests of the corporation.
  • Ensure the development and approval of the annual budget.
  • Have at least a basic understanding of financial statements;
  • Carefully review the Church’s financial statements and ask questions or seek clarification as appropriate to fulfill the Board’s fiduciary obligation;
  • Ensure that the Church is in adherence with all laws and regulations and MCC Toronto’s Mission, Vision, Beliefs and Values.

Fundraising

  • Ensure adequate resources and institute plans for effective fund-raising.  Assist the fundraising initiative and activities of committees and staff through the implementation of fundraising strategies through personal influence with others (corporations, individuals, foundations, congregation);
  • Giving financially according to personal means.

Meetings

  • Prepare for and participate in Board and Committee meetings;
  • Ask timely and substantive questions consistent with your conscience, convictions and available information;
  • Maintain confidentiality of the Board “in camera” sessions and other Board discussions;
  • Seek to work towards consensus as often as possible. Support majority decision and represent a unified voice – recognizing there may be occasions when your convictions lead you to respectfully disagree with other members of the board;
  • Abstain from representing yourself as the “voice of the Board” unless specifically authorized;
  • Suggest agenda items for meetings to ensure significant activities, initiatives and policy matters are addressed;
  • Hold yourself, other Board members, and the Senior Pastor accountable for promises made, for obligations of office, and for good board process.

Relationship with staff

  • Counsel the Senior Pastor as appropriate and counsel her or him through difficult relationships with groups or individuals;
  • Avoid asking special favours from staff or making extensive or special information requests without prior consultations with CEO/Senior Pastor;
  • The Senior Pastor has ultimate responsibility for all personnel matters;
  •  The Senior Pastor is directly responsible to the congregation and works in partnership with the Board.  However, the Board of Directors can support the Senior Pastor with timely information or constructive feedback on matters and issues of importance to the well-being of the church.

Relationship with Congregation and Conflicts of interests

  • Serve the congregation as a whole as opposed to any special interest group, friends or constituency;
  • Avoid any conflict of interest or perception that you ‘represent’ anything other than the best interests of MCCT or a situation that may embarrass the Board or organization;
  • Disclose any possible conflicts of interest to the Board as soon as they are identified;
  • Maintain independence and objectivity and operate to a high standard of fairness, ethics and personal integrity.