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The Minnesota Naturalists’ Association (MNA) exists to advance
natural and cultural resource interpretation 
for the purpose
of fostering wise stewardship of all resources.

Join the Board!

The Role of the Board

There are many roles within the board but the overall goal is to oversee the operation and management of the organization. We set and execute strategic visions and goals, manage finances, plan events, handle membership and registrations, communicate with members and represent the interests of the membership.


Ideal board members are driven to make a difference in the field and can bring their skill set to work for the betterment of the organization. Current MNA members with experience in nonprofit management, communications, accounting, marketing, event planning, education, and leadership are all welcome to run for the board.


  • Help shape the future of MNA
  • Use and hone your skill set in a new environment
  • Network with other professionals from around the state
  • Better understand the behind the scenes workings of the organization
  • Gain experience working with a nonprofit board
  • Recognition in the field as a person making a difference


The MNA board consists of 11 members who volunteer their time to oversee the operation of the organization. Board terms are two years though the vice president automatically takes on the role of President in a second two year term making those positions together a four year commitment. 
The board positions for MNA are listed below:

  • President
  • Vice-President
  • Treasurer
  • Secretary
  • Communications Coordinator
  • Professional Development Workshop Coordinator
  • Co-Conference Coordinators A & B
  • At-Large Members 1-3

There are duties specific to each board position though all positions share the following elements:

  •  Engage through board meeting and planning sessions / Board members are expected to not just attend board meetings but to thoughtfully engage with the issues presented and communicate their ideas on decisions to be made. The board meets formally six times a year but more informal discussion and brainstorming sessions may occasionally be called. Official board meetings are usually in the evenings, every two months. Members are encouraged to attend the meetings in person but have the option of teleconferencing if they are located far from the meeting spot. There is a two day board retreat every January.
  •  Support the mission of the organization / To support the mission of the organization and fully participate in the board, members are expected to volunteer their time, attend meetings, respond to online board discussions of current topics being examined, help fundraising by soliciting for the annual silent auction, help fill needed roles at the annual conference, represent MNA at naturalist trainings and recruit new members.
  •  Chair committees / Some board positions are automatically chairs of committees (i.e. the conference coordinator chairs the Conference Committee) while other positions such as member at-large may be assigned ad-hoc committees as they are created. Board members are expected to chair committees and oversee other board members and general MNA members serving on their committee.

How to Run

New board members are either recruited by the nominating committee or decide on their own if they would like to run. No matter which method, all candidates must fill out an application and submit it by the deadline to be included on the ballot.

Timeline of Running For Board Position

September 15- All applications for open board positions must be received

September 30 - Ballots sent out to current MNA members

October 15 - Voting period ends

November 13 or 14 -  Election results approved at annual meeting

January 1 - New board members assume power

Mid-January - Board Retreat and first board meeting of the year

Process / Application and Notice of Intent to Run

Applicants must send the following application information to by September 15 with the subject line:
 MNA Board Application

  1. Name
  2. Address
  3. Email
  4. Phone
  5. Employer/Profession (if applicable)
  6. Board position you are interested in running for
  7. 150 word paragraph describing your professional background, why you are qualified, how you would like to contribute to the board and any personal information you deem relevant. Please include your vision for MNA’s future.  

Board Positions for the 2024 Board

(To be elected in Oct. 2023)

  • Vice President
  • Co -Conference Coordinator A
  • Communications Coordinator
  • Member at Large Position 1

Special Election:

  • Current Vice President (Appointed w/term ending 12.31.23)

Open Positions to be filled mid-Term:

  • Member at Large Position 2 (Term ending 12.31.24)
  • Member at Large Position 3 (Term ending 12.31.24)

General Election Information:Elections shall be staggered to maintain board mission continuity.

  • In odd years, elections shall take place for Vice-President, Treasurer,  Co-Conference Coordinator A, Communications Coordinator, and Member at-large position 1.
  • In even years, elections shall take place for Secretary, Co-Conference Coordinator B, Professional Development Workshop Coordinator, and Member at-large positions 2 and 3.

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