Here at the In Trust Center, we talk boards and governance all day, every day. From fielding calls from member schools, to researching and writing articles on boards, board policy, and governance, and even in our work with our own board, we are constantly talking, thinking, reading, and writing about governance and policy.

Over the years, we have developed a library to assist us (and our member schools) in our work. We have many books on boards: board policy, shared governance, the roles of board members, etc. Of all of these, the book that we turn to again and again for questions about these topics is a book from BoardSource: The Nonprofit Board Answer Book. Arranged by topic in a Q and A format, with an index at the back, it is easy to find the answers for which we're looking.

The most recent question that sent us thumbing through the pages involved board minutes. A straightforward topic, right? Well, not always. Here are a few of the questions which our team has fielded over the last year regarding minutes: 

  • Who should keep the minutes? Must it be the board secretary, or might a member of staff do it? 
  • Who approves the minutes? How does that process work? 
  • For how long should we keep the minutes? 
  • What should be included in the minutes? 
  • And just as important, what shouldn’t be included in the minutes?

We all have ideas of the answers to these questions, but it is so helpful to have a printed, trusted resource, with straightforward answers and best practices.

Other topics and sections include Basic Board Functions, Board and Committee Meetings, Board Structure, and Board-Staff Relations.

We recommend this book to anyone who works with or on a board and has questions about anything board-related. Or call the In Trust Center, and we can help find the answer. 302-654-7770 or

You can purchase the book via BoardSource or Amazon.