Presented by

  • Deb Nicholson

    Deb Nicholson

    Deb Nicholson is the Executive Director at the Python Software Foundation, the non-profit steward of the Python programming language. She is a free software policy expert and a passionate community advocate. After years of local organizing on free speech, marriage equality, government transparency and access to the political process, she joined the free software movement in 2006. She has previously served the open source ecosystem through her work at the Open Source Initiative, Software Freedom Conservancy, and the Open Invention Network. She’s won the O’Reilly Open Source Award and the Award for the Advancement of Free Software for her efforts to broaden the free and open source software movement. She is also a founding organizer of the Seattle GNU/Linux Conference, an annual event dedicated to surfacing new voices and welcoming new people to the free software community. She lives with her husband and her lucky black cat in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


Where do non-profit boards come from? Who serves on them and why? More importantly, if you are on a board or you are setting up a board, how do you make sure you get great people who will serve your mission and keep your organization healthy and growing? While there's no one grand plan that fits every organization, there is a large body of knowledge on this topic. Board members are at their best when they feel supported and have a clear sense of purpose. This talk will go through the different kinds of non-profit boards, long-term strategies for success and some ways to course correct when it feels like things could be better.