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University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate

Nonprofit Management
Executive Certificate


Honing Your Skills as a Successful Nonprofit Leader

Nonprofit leaders are faced with the responsibility and challenge of furthering the goals and mission of their institution during a time of economic volatility, a competitive philanthropic marketplace, and increased accountability demanded from governing boards, donors, charity rating services and the IRS. This executive certificate programs offers you the critical ability to hone management skills needed to lead your organization to long-term success.

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September 13-14, 2022
Hawks Hall, 730 N. 14th Street, Lincoln, NE 68588
Register Now
Register by Tuesday, September 6
Cost assistance opportunities are available. Email for more information.

Key Benefits

Successful nonprofits use long- and short-term planning for optimal use of resources. Nebraska’s Nonprofit Management Institute offers nonprofit leaders the skills to engage in successful planning and build financial resources through fundraising, marketing and communication, financial management, and effective board management.

Why the Center for Executive and Professional Development Program?

UNL faculty/nationally recognized facilitators and guest speakers to share cutting-edge practices that you can immediately implement in your organization


Networking opportunities with other non-profit professionals


Interactive and immersive learning experience


State-of-the-art facilities in the new HLH conveniently located on the UNL campus

Who Should Attend?

Nonprofit executives responsible for fundraising, marketing and communications, human resources and volunteer management, and operations.

Nonprofit leaders (executive directors), board members, and community leaders.

Program Content and Objectives

The overall goal of this program is to assist you in developing a deeper understanding of nonprofit management and to hone your managerial skills in order to lead your organization to accomplish its mission.

The program focuses on the following objectives:

  1. Examine the organizational structure of a nonprofit organization and discuss how crucial it is that all elements of the organization work together in order to accomplish its mission.
    1. What is the legal and functional structure of the organization? What makes it a nonprofit?
    2. What are the roles, responsibilities, and duties of the governing board?
    3. What is the makeup of a successful nonprofit organization’s workforce?
  2. Discuss how nonprofits obtain and manage financial resources.
    1. What types of marketing programs are found in nonprofit organizations?
    2. How important are fundraising activities to nonprofits?
    3. How should we read and analyze financial statements?
  3. Describe a nonprofit organization’s planning process, which involves the following aspects:
    1. Strategic planning for the future
    2. Annual planning and budgets
    3. Planning for sustainability
Program Schedule
Day 1
8:30 - 9 a.m. Program and Participant Introductions
9 - 10:30 a.m. Management and the Nonprofit Organization
Session Leader — Jim Croft
Guest Presenter — Vincent Pettinelli, Author of Getting It Done Right: Pragmatic Wisdom for Human Service Managers
10:30 - 10:45 a.m. Break with Refreshments
10:45 a.m. - 12 p.m. Managing a Nonprofit - The Executive Director
Session Leader — Jim Croft
Guest — Kevin Miles, Executive Director, Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Dakota
Guest — Akriti Agrawal, Co-Founder, Girls Code Lincoln
12 - 1 p.m. Lunch
1 - 2:30 p.m. The Nonprofit Organization Workforce
Session Leaders — Jim Croft, Ashley Ramchandani
Guest — Shawn VanDerziel, Executive Director, National Association of Colleges and Employers
2:30 - 2:45 p.m. Break with Refreshments
2:45 - 3:15 p.m. The Nonprofit Organization and the Governing Board
Session Leader — Jim Croft
3:15 - 4:15 p.m. Communicating with the Governing Board
Session Leader — Katy Scrogin
Case studies in Board Communication
4:15 - 4:45 p.m. Applied learning from the day's activities
4:45 - 5 p.m. Wrap-up
Day 2
8:30 - 8:45 a.m. Introduction to Day 2
8:45 - 10:15 a.m. Marketing and Communications
Session Leader — Jim Croft
Guest — Jeri Bingham, EdD, Nonprofit Marketing Communications Executive, Chicago
10:15 - 10:30 a.m. Break with Refreshments
10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. Fundraising for the Organization
Session Leader — Matthew Charlton
The Role of the Board in Fundraising | Annual Fund | Major Gifts
12 - 1 p.m. Lunch
1 - 2:30 p.m. Planning
Session Leader — Bela Barner
Strategic Planning
2:30 - 2:45 p.m. Break with Refreshments
2:45 - 3:15 p.m. Planning (continued)
Session Leader — Bela Barner
Strategic Planning
3:15 - 4:15 p.m. Finance and Accounting
Session Leader — Jim Croft
Long-Term Financial Planning | Capital Budgets | Operating Budgets
4:15 - 4:45 p.m. Applied Learning from the Day's Activities
4:45 - 5 p.m. Wrap-up
Jim Croft
Jim Croft, Ph.D.

Jim Croft is a principal with JW Croft Consulting Group (JWCCG) in Chicago. JWCCG brings leadership and financial management experience to the nonprofit community and is positioned to help organizations meet strategic objectives and achieve their mission.

In addition to his work at JWCCG, Croft is a member of the MBA faculty at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, where he teaches nonprofit management, nonprofit financial management and fundraising. He also teaches nonprofit financial management at the Kellogg School of Management Center for Nonprofit Management at Northwestern University.

From 1984 to 2015, he served as executive vice president and chief financial officer for the Field Museum in Chicago. In addition to leading the institution’s financial operations, he was responsible for facilities management and several other operating units. For several years he served concurrently as the museum’s chief development officer, managing the annual giving, major gifts, planned giving, and corporate and foundation giving programs. He was also responsible for a major capital campaign that successfully concluded in 2008.

Croft also held several positions in The Salvation Army where he served as a community center executive director, finance officer and chief business officer. He has also served on several nonprofit governing boards.

In 2016, he received a four-year appointment to the Financial Accounting Standards Board's (FASB) Nonprofit Advisory Committee (NAC). NAC members serve as advisors to FASB staff as they consider accounting standards that are used by U.S. nonprofit organizations.

He received a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where his doctoral work was in higher education leadership with research focused on nonprofit financial management. He also studied business administration and management at the University of Nebraska at Kearney, Roosevelt University and National Louis University.

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Bela Barner
Bela Barner, MBA

Bela Barner has helped lead executive teams through complex, high stakes decisions for more than 15 years. Much of his work has been in higher education, where he assisted universities in decisions to relocate campus facilities to more favorable markets, create new branding, marketing and enrollment strategies, develop new academic offerings and prioritize budgets.

In addition to his experience in strategic planning in higher education, Barner has held a variety of consulting roles with professional services firms. He developed a broad tool kit of quantitative methods to support collaborative decision-making in data-challenged environments. This expertise includes capital budgeting and project portfolio optimization, business planning and modeling, market research and opportunity assessment, and financial literacy for non-financial executives.

Barner is also the founder and president of a 501(c)(3) organization. He is a member of the Society of Decision Professionals and holds a certification as a financial modeling and valuation expert. Barner earned his MBA from the University of Chicago Booth Graduate School of Business. He also holds a BA in Economics and French from Northwestern University.

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Matthew W. Charlton
Matthew W. Charlton, Ph.D.

Matthew Charlton is an experienced nonprofit leader and fundraiser with an interest in creating and supporting vibrant organizations oriented around trust and excellence.

Charlton teaches at Belmont University in Nashville, and works as a regional philanthropy officer for the American Red Cross. Previously, he served as a major gift officer for a capital campaign, and has consulted with many organizations on administrative issues, strategy and priority setting, and organizational storytelling to reach donors and supporters.

He is an ordained clergyperson in the United Methodist Church, serving both in local churches and as an executive supporting higher education-related programs around the world. This work has resulted in leading the Oxford Institute Foundation, a new global fund supporting the work of emerging scholars.

Charlton holds a Ph.D. in theological studies from Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Ilinois, and master’s degrees in both divinity and arts in religion from Vanderbilt University. Currently completing a master’s degree in strategic communication and leadership at Belmont University, he is a research fellow at Stellenbosch University in South Africa, and was previously appointed as a research associate at Wesley House in Cambridge.

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Ashley Ramchandani
Ashley Ramchandani, MPP

Ashley Ramchandani assists organizations in reimagining their operations by coupling change leadership with comprehensive communication strategies. She also helps organizations understand their cultures, developing strategies to incorporate cultural change alongside implementation of strategic plans, operational effectiveness measures, performance improvement, financial management, and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) action plans.

Her work in the nonprofit and educational sectors includes evaluating the governance structures, operations, financial management and performance of 501(c)(3)s and cultural institutions. With expertise in strategic planning, organizational design and business process redesign, she advises clients on management and governance, DEI initiatives, stakeholder engagement and risk management.

Ramchandani earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Chicago, and a BA in criminal behavior studies from Transylvania University.

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Katy Scrogin
Katy Scrogin, Ph.D.

Katy Scrogin is a nonprofit practitioner and educator dedicated to the importance of financial literacy. Having taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, she also conducts prospect research and works with development teams to craft fundraising appeals and communications.

Before moving into independent consulting, Dr. Scrogin served as the vice president for programming at the Chicago Sunday Evening Club (CSEC). In addition to producing and contributing to daily and weekly podcasts at CSEC, she planned, constructed and monitored the organization’s operating budget, and also prepared financial reports for management and the board of directors.

Dr. Scrogin holds a Ph.D. in religion from Claremont Graduate University, a master of theological studies from Vanderbilt University, and a BA in German and Spanish from the University of Texas at Austin. She also serves as a writer, editor and translator, and holds an editing certificate from the Graham School at the University of Chicago.

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Guest Speakers
Akriti Agrawal

Akriti Agrawal, Co-founder, Girls Code a grassroots nonprofit dedicated to bridging the gender gap in technology by teaching girls how to computer program through fun and creative custom curriculum, Lincoln

Kevin Miles

Jeri Bingham, EdD, Nonprofit Marketing Communications Executive and host of the Podcast HushLoudly: Introverts Redefined, Chicago

Kevin Miles

Kevin Miles, Executive Director, Ronald McDonald House Charities of South Dakota

Vince Pettinelli

Vincent Pettinelli, author of Getting It Done Right: Pragmatic Wisdom for Human Service Managers

Shawn VanDerziel

Shawn VanDerziel, Executive Director, National Association of Colleges and Employers

Program Materials, Accommodations and Fees
  • Materials are included and will be provided at the beginning of the program
  • Registration includes breakfast, lunch, snacks and parking
  • Program fee is $650 per person subject to standard cancellation policy


Center for Executive and Professional Development
HLH 201