In Japanese and Chinese traditions, 88 is an important number signifying long life. So in this issue we are celebrating 88 issues of Blue Avocado. Kampai! Cheers!
Blue Avocado started as Board Cafe, a term we still use for our column about nonprofit boards. Board Cafe began at CompassPoint Nonprofit Services as a fax newsletter kept to a strict 2 pages. As subscriptions grew, we were eventually running the computer all night long for a week e-faxing the issue to a few thousand subscribers.
Today we have a website (just being invented when we started Board Cafe!) and more than 64,000 subscribers. Not only that, but not a single one of them receives Blue Avocado by fax. 🙂
We believe that nonprofits are more than providers of human services or arts performances. Nonprofits are instruments of democracy, and brokers of power for disadvantaged communities, and we have more to teach for-profits and government about efficiency and innovation than the other way around. This is a framework out of sync with the management and metrics approach to nonprofits, but it is 100% of what we are about.
In Japan, on one’s 88th birthday a person gives mochi (rice cakes) to friends. To celebrate our 88th issue, we suggest you have rice and avocado in a California sushi roll! And to the right is a Japanese envelope especially made for giving money to people on their 88th birthdays . . . click on the envelope to make a donation to Blue Avocado?
* Also in this issue: a valuable free online course about fundraising from Cornerstone OnDemand Foundation, an overview of the charity raters, the Matrix Map Part II, Ask Rita on performance reviews, and some unexpected tips on getting to 100% board giving. Enjoy! — Jan Masaoka