The State of YNPN Boston: 2016 Goals and Priority Areas


Hello, emerging leaders! 2016 has been an exciting year for YNPN Boston, and we’re just getting started! We’ve got new leadership (including our new roles as co-Chairs – hello!), and new organizational priorities for the year.

Our goals are ambitious and center around tackling issues that we know are deeply embedded not only in our own organization, but in the sector as a whole. While we feel confident that we’ll have plenty of successes to report on, this year will be a learning opportunity, and we know we’ll still have more work to do in 2017 to achieve these priority areas.

Here’s what you can expect us to be working on and growing towards in 2016:

1. Deepen programming and expand partnerships

Facilitating high-quality, engaging programming, like our signature series, Networking with a Twist, is crucial to achieving our mission of connecting and empowering tomorrow’s nonprofit leaders. This is why, in 2015, we dedicated ourselves to building systems to bring you regular programming without a single paid staff person.

With that strong foundation, this is what you should look out for in 2016:

  • Professional development events that dive deeply into issues and skills you prioritize, as revealed in our 2015 Young Nonprofit Professional survey.
  • Programming that comes to you! We’ll host live events in new parts of Greater Boston, and we’ll make sure there are plenty of opportunities for you to build your skills with us virtually - such as this year’s #npsquadgoals challenge series. Look out for announcements on our free listserv.
  • A continued commitment to partnering with like-minded organizations, such as the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network and EPIP Boston, to help young nonprofit professionals connect with one another. 


2. Increase our commitment to and operationalize Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

We were thrilled to participate in YNPN National’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion committee last year. Together, we created an official stance on why Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion must be woven into the very fabric of how we work, and we developed a toolkit to help chapter leaders operationalize this core value. Check out the work of this national committee here.

Here’s how we’re committed to living out our EDI values in 2016:

  • Setting an ambitious goal to increase the number of young leaders of color on our leadership team to better reflect the diversity of the Greater Boston social sector.
  • Change up our events locations, and talk about EDI issues, such as intergenerational communication in the work place, at our events.
  • Diversify our online presence, by expanding the sources we draw on for social media, creating a bank of our own diverse stock images, and refreshing our website to increase accessibility for folks with disabilities. 
  • Open dialogues with our leadership team to make sure they have the tools they need to succeed in operationalizing EDI in their area of work. 


3. Develop our own leadership team pipeline 2.0

One of the reasons YNPN Boston was founded nine years ago was to provide the opportunity for advancement that we often found missing in our day jobs in the nonprofit sector, and we want to make sure we’re walking the walk as well as talking the talk. Behind the scenes, we’re working on increasing the professional development, internal communication, and leadership opportunities available to our leadership team. In addition, we’re committing to creating a pipeline that makes it easier for members to become ambassadors and ambassadors to join the board.

These goals won’t change how you interact with us, but we think you’ll feel the benefits of a stronger leadership team.

4. Strengthen alignment with YNPN National

In 2015, the national network grew to more than 40 independently-functioning chapters across the United States, and we expect that growth to continue. This year, we will continue to work closely with YNPN National to take advantage of best practices to serve you even better.

We are really excited to spend 2016 growing and flexing towards achieving these priority areas, and we know they’ll have a big impact on our ability to serve you in 2016. Change doesn’t happen in a vacuum, so help us out by leaving a comment! Tell us about your experience working towards one of our priority areas. What worked or didn’t work? What do you wish you got to try but didn’t get enough institutional support to do it?

Onwards and upwards,
Matt Gelman and Will Malan
YNPN Boston co-Chairs

Matt Gelman is the co-chair of the board of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of Boston. He's been involved with the organization for five years, originally serving as an Ambassador and then as the Director of Ambassador Talent & Recruitment for two years. By day, Matt can be found at The Theater Offensive, a nonprofit LGBTQ arts organization, in his role as the Associate Managing Director, overseeing various components of fundraising, communications, and operations. In his spare time, he can be found on and off stage in various community theater productions, or you can find him working on his culinary skills.

Will Malan is the current co-Chair and former Director of Member Experience at YNPN Boston. He currently works as the Manager of Volunteer Programs at the Trustees, the oldest land conservation non-profit in the country that protects 116 properties across the state of Massachusetts. When not wrangling volunteers, you can find him in the woods birdwatching or in his garage building his woodworking skills.

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