Resources

The documents below are not intended as legal advice. Your organizational purpose, values, bylaws, and goals should drive creation of documents, policies, and procedures.

Focus on Sustainability: A Nonprofit's Journey

Whether you are a seasoned nonprofit leader or you’re just getting started, this book provides helpful insights into what makes a sustainable organization – and it’s about more than money. Instead, sustainability is a journey taken every day by nonprofits to help them become resilient and better able to meet challenges they may encounter along the way.

The book is based on a Foraker’s Nonprofit Sustainability Model. Each chapter explores a factor in the model and clearly articulates how nonprofits can use that factor as a lens to make strategic decisions. The central factor is focus – or a clear understanding of why the organization exists.

Focus on Sustainability contains many tips and tools that readers can use right away. It is short – something busy readers can complete in an evening when they get home from work. While the concepts are complex, they are presented simply so readers can easily grasp the intent without getting overwhelmed by the theory. 

Focus on Sustainability is designed to be a guide, an inspiration, and a chance to shake up long-held nonprofit management theories. We encourage readers to return to it often and use it in different contexts, such as board and staff meetings and perhaps as the subject of a retreat. It is intended to be a useful aide for the dedicated board members and staff who serve the sector every day.

What others are saying about Focus on Sustainability

“This book covers both strategies and practical applications for why and how to build the necessary elements of sustainability. It should be in everyone’s professional library.”
    - Mary Stewart Hall, Ph.D., author and founder,
Seattle University Master of Nonprofit Leadership Program

“Dennis McMillian brings a rock solid base of knowledge into Focus on Sustainability. This book will help you and your organization to a more productive and effective future.”
    - Edward C. Schumacher, author and faculty member,
the Fund Raising School at Indiana University

“Foraker reminds us that sustainability is not just financial! In fact, the book notes that funding ‘may not be the most important element…’ This book is actually short enough that you could expect all your staff to read it. You could even get some of your board members to read it…Read the book.”
    - Simone Joyaux, international consultant in fund development, strategic planning and board development. Read the full review here on Simone's blog.

“If you serve on a nonprofit board of directors, as I do, invest the $25 and buy Dennis McMillian's Focus on Sustainability: A Nonprofit's Journey. Buy this book and read it. Mark it up with highlighters and sticky notes, and leave it in a convenient spot for easy reach… Having a passion for your chosen cause is necessary, but not sufficient. For board members serious about their board responsibilities, this little book is a great investment.”
    - Patty Ginsburg, board member, American Lung Association of the Mountain Pacific. Read the full review here on the Rasmuson Foundation blog.

“After reading your book, I knew it would be a great tool as we move forward. I have purchased a copy of Focus on Sustainability for each board member and key staff. We have dedicated time at the next several board meetings to discuss one chapter at a time and work our way through the book. I'm confident the insight gained will be tremendously beneficial to our board, staff, and organization as a whole.”
    - Josselyn O’Connor, development director at the Kenai Watershed Forum

“Managers, funders, and capacity builders alike are constantly searching for practical resources that help to make sense of the inherently complicated nature of organizations that are driven by mission rather than profit. I am pleased to note that Dennis McMillian’s initial foray into the rapidly expanding world of nonprofit practitioner literature helps to fill this need…Through its simplicity and forthright approach, this book offers the sector a helpful tool through which it can facilitate planning and day-to-day decision-making.”
    - Matthew Downey, M.P.A., program director, Nonprofit Services, Johnson Center for Philanthropy. Read his full review here in The Foundation Review from Grand Valley State University.
Available on Amazon for $25.00
or at the Foraker office. Reduced pricing is available for organizations purchasing multiple copies in one order. Call Foraker at 907-743-1200 for details.