News & Insights

The Newsletter for Chairs of Theological School Boards
Vol. 1 No. 3

For board chairs and presidents, this is often orientation season as schools head into the autumn board meeting. Orientation can easily be seen as a formality, but I can’t stress how important it is. Our work at the In Trust Center over the decades has shown that good orientation helps build a board and helps push a school closer toward its mission. When your board is in sync and on mission, the school tends to follow.
As you’re doing orientation or thinking about it, it’s worth evaluating what you do and what you can do better. Here are three things that help new board members, along with some free resources to help:

  • Give them the right direction: Board members need to know where they’re headed. This piece, "True North," provides a good overview of what a new board member may need in orientation, including helpful tips like assigning them a buddy to help.
  • Build a strong team: Rebekah Burch Basinger’s overview of how a strong board sets a tone, particularly with orientation, shows how. Drs. Rod Wilson and Byron Klaus, two former longtime presidents, talk about the importance of orientation in Episode 2 of the Good Governance podcast.
  • Give clear expectations: Expectations are often assumed. Clear expectations strengthen your culture, and this piece explains why. As you read this, you might ask how clear your expectations are.

We have many more resources and connections to help you think through your orientation. Just reply to this email, and the In Trust Center team will be happy to connect with you.

Also, would you do me a favor? We’d love to hear what works for you in orientation. Would you let me know?

With gratitude for all you do in theological education,
Amy Kardash

Top Topics

Roles & Responsibilities



Board Essentials

Upcoming Events

The In Trust Center hosts learning community spaces throughout the year. Check out our upcoming events below.

I See That Hand


Board members are typically recruited for their leadership, business acumen, and networks. Dr. Rebekah Basinger, project director of the In Trust Center’s Wise Stewards Initiative, will discuss how strategic questioning and interrogation skills are essential for effective board stewardship.

Strategic Partnerships in Higher Education


In this on-demand webinar, Rick Staisloff, senior partner of rpk GROUP, discusses essential aspects of strategic partnerships. This session delves into current trends, identification of partners, navigating the due diligence process, and common challenges.

Closing the Trust Gap


The current and very troubling condition of trust is a clarion call to action. But despite the dismal data showing pervasive organizational distrust, every organization can assess their current level of trust, learn and adopt a proven trust building framework, and then develop a meaningful and long-lasting plan of action. This webinar details the knowledge and practical next steps to strengthen workplace culture as a result of closing the trust gap.


In Trust Center provides Resource Consulting to our members at no charge. Contact us today and let us guide you to the most helpful resources for your situation.

Contact Us