ABOUT MARYLAND NONPROFITS
For 25 years, Maryland Nonprofits has worked to promote a thriving and effective nonprofit sector. Through our nationally acclaimed Standards for Excellence program, education, resources, and consulting, we help build strong organizations at every stage of the lifecycle, from start-up to growth to peak performance and renewal. Maryland Nonprofits leads public policy advocacy, raising our collective voice for needed investments, governmental transparency, and community empowerment. In these uncertain times, strong networks are critical as we work with nonprofits, communities, business and government to create a better future together. Maryland Nonprofits is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Membership in Maryland Nonprofits is open to 501(c) nonprofit organizations, and Associate Membership is available for students, individuals, businesses and government, and Emerging Membership is available to organizations in the process of obtaining their 501(c) status. Maryland Nonprofits has approximately 1,300 members and associate members. Benefits of membership include access to educational resource materials, discounted workshops and conferences, discounts on products and services such as liability insurance and background checks, and representation in Annapolis and on Capitol Hill regarding the shared public policy priorities of Maryland’s nonprofit sector.
Maryland Nonprofits created and operates the national Standards for Excellence program that provides resource materials, educational programs and credible, third-party review for accreditation of nonprofit organizations that meet the highest standards of ethics and accountability. Organizations from Maryland and from across the nation participate in the Standards for Excellence program and Standards for Excellence Institute.
Maryland Nonprofits aims to improve the Quality of Life in Maryland and by working together with business and government to create a shared vision for the future, and to track how well Maryland is doing key metrics measuring quality of life and equity.
Maryland Nonprofits' mission is to strengthen organizations and networks for greater quality of life and equity.
Nonprofit organizations are well-resourced and nonprofit leaders are effective agents of change, for greater equity, creativity, sustainability, and community well-being.
We are inclusive and promote equity, whereby organizations and systems create opportunity for everyone.
We promote and embody excellence, ethics and accountability.
We embrace and foster community empowerment.
We are bold, courageous and innovative.
The story of Maryland Nonprofits began with a broad dialogue among nonprofit leaders that expressed the need for an organization that could encourage nonprofits to “band together in promoting, enhancing, and strengthening their services to the people and communities of Maryland.” Our predecessor organization, the Health and Welfare Council, worked with Partners in Giving to convene more than 200 people representing all sectors of the Maryland Nonprofit community in 1990. The group reflected on the paper released by Johns Hopkins University Institute for Policy Studies, entitled More Than Just Charity, that was funded by the United Way and Maryland Chapter of the National Society for Fundraising Executives, which joined forces to become “Partners for Giving” to implement the report’s recommendations.
Overwhelmingly, people across the state agreed with the recommendation from More Than Just Charity, “For nonprofit organizations to operate more effectively in the current climate, they must become more visible and develop ways to work together on common problems.” Indeed this goal is just as true today as it was in 1990.
Maryland Nonprofits was incorporated in 1991 by members of the Partners for Giving (Jan Rivitz, Tim Armbruster, Andrea Krupps, and Sandy Skolnick) and received its tax-exempt status in 1992. In order to build an association of enduring value, they based Maryland Nonprofits on the strongest elements from highly successful associations such as the California Association of Nonprofits, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits, and Washington Community Foundation. In 1992, the Founders hired the first Executive Director of Maryland Nonprofits, Peter Berns, who served in that role for 16 years. Subsequent chief executives were Darryl Jones, Greg Cantori, and, currently, Heather Iliff.
Today, Maryland Nonprofits is one of the most active nonprofit associations in the United States, serving over 1,200 members. Maryland Nonprofits' members represent every county in the state and all sectors of the nonprofit community, including human services, health, educational, cultural, environmental, religious, and other charitable organizations and foundations. Our members range from all-volunteer organizations to major institutions.
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