Last week’s New York Times article, Romancing the Stars, describes how some New York arts organizations have gone a step further in seeking celebrity support by asking them to sit on their boards.
I cringe every time I read about a celebrity joining the board of an organization. Board members are trustees and each board member is equally accountable for insuring that the organization is properly governed. These roles include:
- Determining the Organization’s Mission and Purpose
- Selecting the Executive
- Supporting the Executive and Reviewing His or Her Performance
- Ensuring Effective Organizational Planning
- Ensuring Adequate Resources
- Manage Resources Effectively
- Determine and Monitor the Organization’s Programs and Services
I doubt if most celebrities realize that if the organizations fails to pay its payroll taxes the individual board members are legally liable or if the organization is in debt and has to close, the board is the body to blame. If an organization wants to engage a celebrity they should consider asking them to be on an honorary board or co-chair of an advisory body to the board.