Anne Wallestad

Anne Wallestad

BoardSource President & CEO

Anne Wallestad serves as president and CEO of BoardSource, a globally recognized nonprofit focused on strengthening nonprofit leadership at the highest level — the board of directors. Recognizing the critical partnership between boards and executives, and the impact of that partnership on overall organizational success, BoardSource helps nonprofit leaders invest in their leadership partnership by providing research, thought leadership, and practical supports that help transform board structures, dynamics, and perspectives.

Anne was appointed to her position in 2013, after having served on BoardSource’s leadership team for nearly five years. She has overseen a period of remarkable growth and change, helping BoardSource expand its leadership voice and build a scalable model of program delivery that has resulted in a more than 200 percent growth in the number of leaders served. She has played an instrumental role in the launch of several new leadership initiatives including the Stand for Your Mission campaign, which challenges board leaders to play a stronger role in advocacy and public policy.

With 20 years of executive leadership experience in the nonprofit sector, Anne has worked closely with boards of directors and volunteers in a number of national and local organizations, and has cultivated deep expertise in fundraising strategy and leveraging the board’s fundraising role. She has served on a number of advisory committees and panels, including the Commission on Accountability and Policy for Religious Organizations Panel on the Nonprofit Sector and Independent Sector’s 2014 Ethics & Accountability Advisory Committee. Under her leadership, BoardSource has been recognized as a finalist for the prestigious Drucker Prize for innovation, and named a Best Nonprofit to Work For in 2016 and 2017. Anne herself has been honored as one of The Nonprofit Times’ “Power & Influence Top 50.”

Anne graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Drake University, with degrees in both sociology and English. She is also a graduate of Stanford University Graduate School of Business’ Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders.

In Times of Change, Board Members Must Be Advocates

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Apr 4, 2017 11:21:03 AM

This article first appeared Jan. 19, 2017 on the Chronicle of Philanthropy website, It is reprinted here with their permission.

As the country prepares to inaugurate Donald Trump as our 45th president on Friday and leadership at all levels of government takes shape...


Topics: Advocacy

A Good Question Can be a Game Changer

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Feb 9, 2017 2:48:12 PM

One of my favorite questions to ask boards is “If your organization were founded today, what would it look like?” I love it because it leads to the board asking some other very important questions — questions that get to the heart of the organization’s existence:

  • What’s our organization’s core...

Topics: joint programming, collaboration, strategic partnerships, merger

Why Repealing the Johnson Amendment is a Bad Idea

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Feb 7, 2017 9:05:00 AM

President Trump has vowed to repeal the Johnson Amendment, a move that — if successful — would strike down the rules that prevent nonprofit organizations from electioneering.

In 2013, I had the opportunity to serve as a member of the Panel of Nonprofit Sector Representatives for the Commission...


Topics: Current Events

A New Framework for BoardSource’s Leadership

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Jan 29, 2016 8:00:00 AM

This past December marked my seven-year anniversary as a member of BoardSource’s leadership team. I came on board in December of 2008, just after we had adopted a new strategic plan — one that focused us on thinking big about the future of board leadership and governance. It adopted some very...


Topics: BoardSource, Strategic Initiative, Transparency

Collecting Social Security Numbers from Donors

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Dec 18, 2015 5:00:31 AM

By Anne Wallestad, president & CEO


Topics: Perspectives on Board Service, The Board’s Role in Advocacy

Why It's Critical to Pilot New Nonprofit Board Technology

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Nov 2, 2015 5:12:02 AM

By Adam Roth, CEO, StreamLink Software


Topics: BoardSource Leadership Forum

Are Nonprofit Boards Really Necessary?

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Oct 12, 2015 12:05:09 PM

By Anne Wallestad, president & CEO, BoardSource


Topics: Perspectives on Board Service

Why Board Engagement in Advocacy is Essential

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Jul 16, 2015 1:19:10 PM

By Anne Wallestad, president & CEO, BoardSource


Topics: Board Best Practices, The Board’s Role in Advocacy

Employment Agreements: Five Things Every Nonprofit Board Should Know

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Jun 16, 2015 2:56:44 PM

By Anne Wallestad, president & CEO, BoardSource


Topics: Board Best Practices

Don't Just Sit on a Board: Stand for Your Mission

Posted by Anne Wallestad on Oct 9, 2014 4:45:18 AM

By Anne Wallestad, BoardSource president & CEO


Topics: Perspectives on Board Service, Board Best Practices, The Board’s Role in Advocacy, New Trends & Resources