Nonprofit leaders invited to forum

James L. Cox, CEO and president of the United Way of NNY, poses for a portrait in September in Thompson Park. Sydney Schaefer/Watertown Daily Times

WATERTOWN — Nonprofit leaders eager to learn new management skills can attend an upcoming conference from United Way of Northern New York’s new North Country Center of Nonprofit Excellence.

The organization will host its Leadership and Management Symposium from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday at the Ramada Inn. Speakers will discuss strategic and operational planning, budgeting and fiscal management, pinpointing alternative revenue streams, team building and more.

United Way CEO James L. “Jamie” Cox said the symposium aims to help train nonprofit directors, CEOs, board members and management to improve their efficiency, although it can also aid other officials and for-profit workers. As philanthropic donations have declined in the past decade, Mr. Cox said nonprofits have smaller budgets to perform the same, if not more, duties. External funding remains essential, and Mr. Cox said if north country nonprofits lack optimized operations, they cannot garner the necessary funds.

“If you can’t do it faster, cheaper and safer than your competitors, than you’re going to be passed,” up for funding, he said.

Ty A. Stone, president of Jefferson Community College, will serve as the keynote speaker, followed by former Watertown mayor Joseph M. Butler Jr., who now serves as the Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for New York; Diane H. Leonard, owner of DH Leonard Consulting, Clayton, Tom Piche, president and CEO of Carthage Savings and Loan; Massena Mayor Timothy J. Currier and Mr. Cox.

The symposium will also feature a lunchtime panel with Mr. Currier, Thomas H. Carman, CEO of Samaritan Medical Center, and Natalie Burnham, chief operations officer of Carthage Area Hospital. John B. Johnson, a member of the United Way board of directors, will moderate the panel.

“I couldn’t be more thrilled with the lineup we have for that date,” Mr. Cox said.

The North Country Center of Nonprofit Excellence, which United Way developed in collaboration with the Northern New York Community Foundation, aims to provide training sessions for local nonprofits with guidance that should help improve their operations.

Mr. Cox pushed for the creation of the center after he joined United Way in June. The Leadership and Management Symposium serves as the inaugural nonprofit training workshop of 19 planned for this year.

“It’s to create a professional community of nonprofits that are more effective and more efficient to serve the residents of the north country,” Mr. Cox said.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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