Board member (general job description)

Kol HaLev Board Member “General” Job Description, April, 2020

Kol HaLev’s Board of Trustees focuses on the strategy and policymaking that leads to organizational effectiveness. This focus manifests in two major functions – Governance and Management/Oversight. Each board member has their own specific duties that support these overall functions.


  • Consideration and determination of policy issues
  • Discernment of and accountability for community priorities, planning, and resource allocation
  • Oversight of the committees which report directly to the board (Finance, Fundraising, Security, Leadership Development, Nominating, Rabbi Liaison)
  • Approval of the budget and all contracts and leases
  • Acting in the service of the community in emergency situations

Management/ Operational Oversight: (with an eye toward gradually reducing the board’s role in operational issues, as set forth in the new Governance Model proposal approved in 2019):

  • Fulfill the ongoing mandate to document operational roles and processes
  • Develop strategies for minimizing direct board intervention in the work, i.e., by routinizing tasks, helping build self-sufficiency in members doing the work, improving communication, centralizing project management and support)

Financial and legal responsibility:

The board also has legal and ethical responsibility for the community’s financial condition, a role that is part governance, part management/oversight. Not every board member needs to be a financial wiz, but each has the obligation to be a financial “inquisitor” so that the board can work effectively together recognize opportunities and potential concerns, and help make sound financial judgments.

Requirements of board members:

  • Responsive communication with other board members (attendance at monthly board meetings, timely response to communication from others and re completion of their own tasks to support others’ work)
  • Active engagement with the Kol HaLev community: be a part of co-creating the Kol Halev experience; get to know members; understand the zeitgeist of the community as expressed in a variety of contexts
  • Ability to think strategically and collaboratively and ask big-picture questions
  • Ability to form and clearly articulate, in speech and writing, arguments for or against policy and operational actions
  • Participation in the process of documenting operational roles and processes and developing strategies for minimizing board intervention in operations that don’t require direct board oversight
  • Appreciation for communal Reconstructionist process orientation & values-based decision-making
  • Ability to recognize their various roles in the community as distinct (e.g., congregant AND board member, and other, e.g., lay service leader, committee chair, Madrich, etc.) and to act and share knowledge appropriately as determined by the board.
  • Comportment (See Common Ground Rules for Board Members for more detail)
  • Understands (and ideally, embodies) Kol HaLev culture; “walks the talk”
  • Respects confidentiality
  • Able to give others the benefit of the doubt
  • Able to publicly support board decisions and processes, regardless of how you voted
  • “Plays well with others” –can work collaboratively with other board and community members

Term of service & time commitment:

Board members are typically elected for two-year terms, but that can depend on the role and the year. Board meetings are typically held monthly. Overall time commitment varies by role.