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Breakout Sessions

8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
Round 1 Workshops

A Bad Day at the Office: Good Ways to Deliver Bad Financial News
Bad things happen. Good communicators know how to manage unpleasant news and still preserve their reputations. Today, chief financial officers as well as senior organizational spokespeople need to be prepared to share news about lost contracts, budget shortfalls, staff layoff and programming cuts. If you are terrified of delivering disappointing news, feel stressed when less-than-positive comments are shared about your organization or panic at confrontations, this workshop is for you. You’ll leave with the tools and language needed to address even the most difficult situations without coming off as the bad guy.
Melissa DeLay, message maven, TruPerception 

Everybody (No Matter Your Size) Can Have Internal Controls
Track: Finance Professional 101
Does it feel like your organization is too small to have proper internal controls? You’re wrong! Any organization with more than one employee or volunteer can have proper internal controls. And during today's session we’re going to go over how they do it. It might mean being creative; but it is possible. 
Peter S. Olsen, chief financial officer, YWCA St. Paul

Financial Storytelling Through Dashboards and Other Financial Documents
All nonprofits must conduct the essential function of preparing accurate, timely and detailed financial reports. However, that is only a small part of the financial role in your organization. Translating financial information in a manner that is meaningful to the readers of the financial documents is critical. Organizations that fail to tell the story behind the numbers may leave the readers (management, board, funders) to interpret the numbers themselves. The readers may draw conclusions without having important context or other programming/operational information. Join this session to learn how to see the story themes in your financial statements, audit report and form 990. We will demonstrate ways to measure financial dashboards against organizational benchmarks and how to write narratives that tell the story behind the numbers.  
Mary Cleary, nonprofit accounting & fiscal management consultant, president, Cleary Consulting Group and Adam Hennen, audit principal, Olsen Thielen CPAs

Government Contracts: Maximizing Revenue and Managing the Complexity
Join this session to engage in a conversation about maximizing nonprofit contracts with government agencies. In an era of lean government budgets, how can you maximize the revenue for your organization? And in an era of increased expectations about reporting and oversight, how can you work to manage the complexity of the contract? Whether you're already receiving government funds or you're considering a new contract opportunity, this session will help you understand the issues and consider the options. Leave the session with ideas for maximizing the mission of your nonprofit.
Benjamin Bio, director of government contracts & accounts receivable and Tim Savaloja, vice president of financial services, Metropolitan Alliance of Connected Communities

Succession Planning – Is Your Next Executive Director You?
Track: Radical Reinvention
Ever wonder what an executive director really does? Do you wonder what it takes – and why anyone would want the job? This session explores two different paths to an E.D. role, looks at what the job demands outside of the job description and includes time for you to use a check list to go beyond the job description and determine if this next career jump is right for you. You’ll be working in groups of 4 with people from different sub-sectors to determine a skills and experience To Do List that will prepare you for your first E.D. role.
Gaye Adams Massey, C.E.O., YWCA St. Paul and Dawne Brown White, executive director, COMPAS  

11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Round 2 Workshops

The Entrepreneurial Operating System for Nonprofits
The Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) is based on the book Traction, by Gino Wickman, and followed by hundreds of businesses throughout the Twin Cities. Learn how nonprofits can apply the same principles and concepts Traction teaches leadership teams to gain clear focus of where the organization is going...and how it's going to get there. Through this session, attendees will understand the six key components: Vision, People, Data, Issues, Process and Traction. Plus, you’ll understand how it works to create alignment within leadership teams; master discipline and accountability to achieve the vision; and create a healthy, functional and cohesive leadership team to lead the organization forward.
Michele Krolczyk, EOS implementer, Vivid360; Chad Schwitters, executive director, Urban Homeworks; and Elaine Wyatt, executive director, WomenVenture

Compliance or Complicity: Navigating the New FASB Standards
For those of us who are battling to overcome the Overhead Myth, how do we comply with new accounting requirements recently issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Bureau (FASB) without becoming complicit in supporting outdated views of nonprofit finance? In August 2016, FASB issued the first major changes to nonprofit accounting standards in over 20 years. Among the changes issued in Accounting Standards Update 2016-14 are provisions requiring nonprofit audit presentations to show line item detail breaking out their expenses into functional categories of program services, management and general, and fundraising. Other changes we’ll cover in this session are standards related to donor restriction and liquidity.  Join this Overhead Myth Buster and learn what FASB is really requiring of us, while at the same time exploring some ideas about how we can turn our compliance into something other than complicity.
Curtis Klotz, vice president of finance and chief financial officer, Propel Nonprofits

Findings from the Minnesota C.F.O. Survey
MCN and partners will present the results of an examination of current finance practices among the state’s nonprofit organizations, including the role of the Chief Financial Officer/Finance Manager. The survey addresses a broad range of internal and external issues, including use of credit, role of board finance committees, measures of financial health, changes in reliability of revenues, relationships with other departments, and accounting and reporting software – and compares the results by organization size and activity area. For the first time the survey takes a deeper look at the position of C.F.O. – their preparation, tenure, compensation, job duties, relationship with the C.E.O. and board, and professional development. 
Kari Aanestad, development manager, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits; Kate Barr, president and C.E.O., Propel Nonprofits; and Jon Pratt, executive director, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits

HR for the Non-HR Professional
Track: Finance Professional 101
Often, nonprofit human resource functions get intertwined with those of the finance office, especially in small organizations or volunteer-led groups. During this workshop, we will review key HR labor laws. You’ll learn what every organization needs to know to remain compliant. In addition we will discuss recordkeeping and retention requirements along with best practices when onboarding and offboarding staff. The presentation will conclude with a reminder of recently passed ordinances in the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Monica Murdo, HR business consultant, CliftonLarsonAllen

Jeopardy - 990 Tournament
A nonprofit’s IRS Form 990 is a key document for providing accountability to government agencies and maintaining transparency with donors. But how well do you really understand the form and its use? In this episode of 990 Jeopardy, categories will include Overview of the IRS Form 990; Common 990 Errors; IRS Focus; and 990 Tips. Participants will select a category, hear the answer, and the group will respond with the question. The show hosts will comment on each topic to provide a rich learning experience.
Steve Anseth, nonprofit group leader, Abdo, Eick & Meyers, LLP and Becky Johnson, finance manager, WomenVenture

Leading in Uncertain Times
Track: Radical Reinvention
The world is unpredictable, and the capacity to navigate uncertainty and ambiguity has become an essential 21st century leadership skill. Doing so requires clarity of purpose, and a willingness to be bold while leading through uncharted territory. An important aspect of this is to build and sustain authentic partnerships that help move our work forward. Let’s reach toward one another as we create bold strategies which will allow us to lead now.
Akaya Windwood, president, Rockwood Leadership Institute

1:45 – 3:00 p.m.
Round 3 Workshops

Airplanes to Zoos: Complex Gifts 101
Track: Finance Professional 101
This session will discuss the unique giving landscape of 2018 from an accounting, tax and operational perspective. Donors are becoming more and more creative with their gift strategies and as a result, nonprofits must be even more well-versed on the potential consequences of accepting unique and complex gifts. Join us for a spirited discussion on practical considerations of such gifts and what we should think about before gift acceptance. Whether you work on the development or accounting side of the donation, this session will have ideas for you to consider.
Mary Larson, finance director, Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners; Stan Ponkin, senior tax accountant and Sarah Reichling, principal, CliftonLarsonAllen LLP

Board Governance - Worst Practices
We’ve heard the horror stories of board failures including conflicts-of-interest, lax oversight and malfeasance. In many cases, board failures lead to financial ruin for the organization. Unfortunately for those failed nonprofits, it doesn’t need to be this way. Nonprofit boards can become high functioning systems that effectively support and lead the organization. In this session we will discuss board responsibilities, responsibilities of individual board members and ways to improve nonprofit board operations. We will also touch on current issues some nonprofit boards may be facing as well as provide tools that boards can use (dashboards, etc.) to monitor various responsibilities.
Nicki Donlon, partner, Baker Tilly and Andrea Martinson, manager, financial reporting & compliance, Be The Match

Recognizing and Claiming your Amazing Innovativeness
Most nonprofits truly are amazingly innovative -- identifying, developing and executing ideas that solve a challenge or take advantage of an opportunity for their clients and communities. In this session, we'll talk about innovation, exploring how this philosophy has shaped today’s Propel Nonprofits, and specifically how its Equity Builder program came out of this inventive spirit. The session then will turn to the participants discussing their past innovations, sharing their future ground-breaking dreams and identifying the resources and support needed to get there.
Janet Ogden-Brackett, vice president of lending, Propel Nonprofits

Social Enterprise Case Study: Balancing Mission and Financial Impact
Hear case studies from two social enterprise professionals, about their experiences in balancing mission impact with financial sustainability. By attending this session, you’ll learn about the challenges of real social enterprises (Bright Endeavors and CityKid Java), and be more prepared to proactively address challenges in a social enterprise. Plus, bring your own organization's challenges and work through them with your peers in an interactive group problem solving activity. 
Jennifer Kramm, strategic services consultant, Propel Nonprofits; Kelli Nelson, workforce development manager, HIRED; and Bethany Palm, founder, Social Good Impact

Trust Your Balance Sheet: Using QuickBooks to Track the Details
You know that you should be tracking prepaid expenses, deferred revenue and restricted assets within your financial software. But for many of us, we don't know the best way to actually DO it. In some cases, it’s because we’re unclear about the definition of deferred versus restricted. For some of us, we’re unclear how to track these easily and quickly in the software. In this session, we'll go deep on how to record and track this information in that most common of softwares, QuickBooks.
Megan Genest Tarnow, principal, The Mobius Group

When Everything Changes
Track: Radical Reinvention
Hear leaders from four nonprofits share their experience leading organizations through a seismic shift in their finances and business models. When a nonprofit has significant growth, is faced with funding cuts, or completes a merger, every part of the organization is affected. How do organizational leaders assess their options and navigate through big changes? How does leading big change affect their approach to leadership? 
Kate Barr, president & C.E.O., Propel Nonprofits; Sarah Clyne, executive director, Domestic Abuse Project; Peggy Korsmo-Kennon, chief operating officer, American Swedish Institute; and Adair Mosley, president and C.E.O., Pillsbury United Communities

3:15 – 4:15 p.m.
Round 4 Workshops

Accounting for Social Enterprises: Lessons Learned
Have you started or are thinking about starting a social enterprise? Come learn from an experienced practitioner about guidelines to make sure social enterprise is right for your organization. We’ll discuss practical ways to make sure social enterprise adds to your nonprofit. And we’ll examine various ways to measure whether your social enterprise is having the financial impact you’re seeking. 
Chris Vanecek, accounting and finance consultant, Propel Nonprofits

Cash and Culture: The Role of Finance In Fostering Diversity, Inclusion and Equity
What are diversity, inclusion and equity? What role can the finance function and finance leaders play in increasing diversity and inclusion internally and externally? Why should finance professionals care about equity? In this interactive workshop we’ll explore how workshop participants are grappling with these questions and share Greater Twin Cities United Way’s journey.
Craig F. Warren, finance professional

How to Hire an Auditor
Track: Finance Professional 101
Is your audit worth the paper it is printed on? Do you know how to determine if it is? In today's session we will hear from a former nonprofit auditor who made the conversion out of the dark side and into the light. Learn from his experience as we discuss how to conduct an RFP, where to find audit firms who specialize in serving the nonprofit sector, how to get your board of directors involved and what audit firms are thinking when they get your RFP.
Peter S. Olsen, chief financial officer, YWCA St. Paul

Managing Cybersecurity Risk
Your organization relies on data and systems to provide services. With the increase in cyberattacks, no organization, small or larger, is immune from being a target. Explore the cybersecurity threat landscape and discuss recent data breaches and successful hacks. Identify how the perpetrators can compromise security controls nad learn steps to mitigate security risks and avoid common pitfalls. Discuss ways to implement a cost-effective information security and data protection strategy. Walk away with a roadmap you, your organization or your clients cna use to reduce the risk of cybersecurity attacks.
Robert Cedergren, partner, Wipfli LLP

Sought & Found: Practical and Legal Counsel for Executive Search and Selection
Join this workshop to gain tools and tips for conducting a successful executive search process. During this session we’ll discuss issues surrounding the recruitment process including the practicalities of running a good search and the legal issues that can arise in recruiting. We’ll spend time focusing on the selection process with a focus on the practicalities of conducting the interview and background check/reference process in a legally compliant way. The discussion will include tips about what can and can't be asked, FCRA/background check statutes, social media searches, and doing reference checks. Next, we’ll talk about how to set compensation in a competitive, financially prudent, and lawful way (e.g. considering pay equity, tax considerations regarding salary). And finally, we’ll take time to consider onboarding with tips for supporting a recent hire—particularly an executive—once they arrive in a new organization.
Veena Iyer, shareholder, Nilan Johnson Lewis; Lars Leafblad, co-founder / principal, Ballinger Leafblad; and Heidi Neff Christianson, shareholder and chair, corporate and transactional services, Nilan Johnson Lewis

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Nonprofit Finance and
Sustainability Conference

April 19, 2018
7:30 a.m. - 4:15 p.m.
Earle Brown Heritage Center
6155 Earle Brown Dr. 
Brooklyn Center, MN 



Minnesota Council of Nonprofits



Thank You to Our Sponsors