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Open Call for Board Members — Forward Through Ferguson


Overview | Who We’re Looking For | How to Apply | Selection Timeline

Forward Through Ferguson seeks to add four to six new members to our Board of Directors.

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Forward Through Ferguson (FTF) is the nonprofit organization formed to carry on the work of the Ferguson Commission. FTF’s mission statement: Embracing the Ferguson Commission’s mandate, Forward Through Ferguson centers impacted communities and mobilizes accountable bodies to advance racially equitable systems and policies that ensure all people in the St. Louis region can thrive. FTF’s focus is to serve as conscience and catalyst in leading our region on a path toward Racial Equity—a St. Louis where outcomes are no longer predictable by race—by advancing a three-pronged strategy:

  • Advocating for policy and systems change;
  • Strengthening regional capacity for Racial equity work; and
  • Securing financial sustainability for FTF and a regional Racial Equity Fund.

(Learn more at forwardthroughferguson.org/implementation-2/)

As a Board, we are particularly focused on:

  • Strengthening the organizational infrastructure to sustain and expand the work of FTF moving forward;
  • Developing a robust fundraising program that allows FTF to fund its work and mission, and catalyze the work of others to advance racial equity;
  • Creating a Community Governance model that centers and elevates the voice of the community that volunteered more than 30,000 hours ours to compile an exhaustive policy roadmap following the uprising after the killing of 17-year old Michael Brown, Jr. in 2014; and
  • Supporting the Lead Catalyst and staff in implementing the three-pronged strategic plan.

Through this work, we are committed to helping our region by:

  • Championing a regional understanding of Racial Equity, why it matters, and how it differs from diversity, inclusion, and equality;
  • Serving as a catalyst to bring key regional players and accountable bodies to shared tables;
  • Challenging institutions to support Racial Equity and to use their influence to do so;
  • Connecting those institutions and others doing this work with the partners and resources they need to effect change;
  • Shining a light on racial inequity and amplifying efforts of those institutions addressing it;
  • Monitoring and reporting on our region’s progress in responding to the Calls to Action outlined in the Ferguson Commission report; and
  • Remaining accountable to the thousands of St. Louisans who participated in the development of the Report, people of color, and systemically disadvantaged communities.

We’re looking for you if you have some combination of the following:

  • Board experience (either non-profit or for-profit) and can see clearly how the board structure can be leveraged to support experimentation, risk, and unproven strategies;
  • No board experience, but are an engaged member of a community organization who feels your voice and perspective is often missing in board or executive-level deliberations and decision-making;
  • Ideas about how to create a new Community Governance model that includes youth voice and creates accountability between the fiduciary board of FTF and the community whose reality and racial equity aspirations it represents;
  • Represent “youth voice” through your lived experience/expertise; 
  • Experience with policy change (Big “P” and little “p”) as a policymaker, advocate, community organizer or other changemaker role; 
  • A communications background that will help us amplify the work of FTF in traditional media outlets, digital media platforms, and community-based networks; 
  • Experience, ideas, and energy around transformative resource development.
  • Expertise and experience in nonprofit finance and robust financial procedures.
  • Commitment to practicing radical listening and collaboration;
  • A growth mindset that questions the default and is comfortable challenging the status quo; and 
  • Don’t want or need another line on your resume, don’t expect much praise or glory, and don’t need this work to feed your ego, but deeply, passionately give a damn and are willing to be vulnerable in doing work that is often unprecedented, scary and overwhelming.

Interested? Here’s what we need to know:

  1. Why does this matter to you?
  2. Who vouches for you as a great fit and why (in their words)?
  3. The core principles of this work are Racial Equity, Radical Listening, Policy over Programs, and Collaboration. What does that mean to you and/or to our region specifically?
  4. How do you anticipate contributing to the sustainability of the organization and the execution of our strategic plan through policy work, community governance, fundraising and/or racial equity capacity experience/expertise?

Your submission can take whatever form you feel expresses you best—from a traditional cover letter, resume, and letters of recommendation to a video, manifesto, or vision board.

Whatever the format, cover all the bases and submit everything to board@forwardthroughferguson.org (for #2, have them submit their thoughts to you to deliver with the rest of your answers or have them send directly to us on your behalf using this address).

If you would like to nominate someone for this board, please submit their contact information at https://bit.ly/FTF_BoardNomination.

Selection Timeline:

Application packets are due by 11:59 AM on September 16.

We will interview candidates this fall and make selections by the end of the year. We will share a more detailed timeline with candidates who reach the finalist stage.

If you have questions about the process that are not answered here, please submit them to board@forwardthroughferguson.org.

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