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Description: Membership Diversity: A Comparison | Diversity & the Strategic Plan | No One Said It Would Be Easy! | Recruiting New Leaders

Volume 9 Issue 4 July 2015 Diversity and Representative Leadership We know that our Association membership is very diverse across the Southern region and we welcome many professionals from diverse backgrounds to our ranks. Here s a look at the SECA members from the states that have the triple membership structure (State SECA & NAEYC). These figures are based on tors Trainers 12.78% are College Educators 1.49% are Government Administrators Regulators 3.95% are Resource and Referral Specialists 7.01% are Students 2.17% are Retired Professionals 14.32% classified themselves as Other 50.22% work with Infants & Toddlers 58.21% work with Preschool Pre-K 27.42% work with Kindergartners 20.34% work with Primary School-age 4.48% work with Middle Secondary 15.76% work with College Students 22.17 work with Families 17.36% work with Other Adults The Leadership Letter self-reporting and represent approximately 50% of members in the states of Alabama Florida Georgia Kentucky Oklahoma Tennessee Texas Virginia and West Virginia. Members could select more than one option so totals will not equal 100%. Race Ethnicity Who We Serve 12.78% are African American 1.14 % are American Indian Alaska Native 1.51% are Asian American Pacific Islander 9.84% are Hispanic 76.07% are Nonhispanic Caucasian 38.43% are Teachers 4.7% are Family Child Care Providers 40.89% are Program Directors School Administrators 17.63% are Education Coordina- SOUTHERN EARLY CHILDHOOD ASSOCIATION Professional Roles As you look at your leadership group does your Board composition reflect your membership These statistics give us a basis for beginning the challenging work of ensuring diversity within our leadership. Leadership Commission Members Inside this issue Membership Diversity A Comparison Diversity & the Strategic Plan No One Said It Would Be Easy Recruiting New Leaders 2 2 3 4 Jeff Leffler MS Anita Dailey GA Marti Nicholson OK Susan Barnes VA Suzi Brodof WV Membership Diversity How Do We Compare You ve seen the statistics on the first page that highlight the diversity within SECA s membership ranks. The South has been challenged to ensure that our organizations are available to everyone and SECA has shown that commitment from its inception. Let s take a look at how our membership percentages compare with the national membership statistics as provided by NAEYC. Race & Ethnicity SECA and national are almost equal in the percentage of Caucasian members. 76.07% to 77.93%. National has more resource and referral specialists. 5.09% to 3.95% SECA has more students. 7.01% to 6.19% National has more retired members. 5.74% to 2.17% Professional Roles SECA has slightly more teachers than national. 38.43% to 35.08% National has more family child care providers than SECA. 5.09% to 4.7% SECA has more program directors school administrators than national. 40.89% to 35.57% National has more education coordinators trainers than SECA. 19.47% to 17.63% National has more college educators than SECA. 19.25% to 12.78% SECA and national are almost equal in regard to government administrators. 1.49% to 1.98% SECA has more African American members than national. 12.78% to 8.52% SECA has more American Indian Alaska Native members than national. 1.14% to 0.79% SECA has more Hispanic members than national. 9.84% to 6.04% National has more Asian American members than SECA. 8.4% to 1.51% Remember these statistics reflect only the members who live in the nine SECA states that are dually affiliated with NAEYC and are taken from the demographic reports available on the NAEYC website. The other four states in the SECA region (Arkansas Louisiana Mississippi and South Carolina) who affiliate only with SECA would add substantially to this diversity profile. What can these statistics tell us about how we can begin to intentionally build diversity within our leadership so that our governing bodies reflect the diversity of our membership Diversity and Your Strategic Plan Is It There Developing diversity within the What focus and priorities do we leadership ranks of your associawish to have during the tion should be an integral part of timeframe outlined in the plan all activities but without intention What resources (financial peral planning and implementation it sonnel etc.) will be available to probably won t happen. implement those priorities All associations should have a stra What type of value will be oftegic plan that outlines their goals fered by the Association for and objectives over a certain perimembership od. These questions should be How will we measure our sucanswered in that plan cess Page 2 Take a hard look at your current leadership and determine if your governance structure reflects differences in race gender age etc. If there s work to be done is there a statement or specific language in your strategic plan that discusses the initiatives that will be implemented to enhance and support diversity in leadership and membership If not it s time to put it there T H E L E A D E R S HI P L E T T E R No One Said This Would Be Easy We have the statistics and we know that in most cases our governance structures are not representative of the diversity in our membership. If we re going to develop a governance structure that reflects that diversity how do we do it As a leader in your organization ask yourself these questions Begin with a discussion of what diversity and inclusion means. Too often diversity is focused solely on racial ethnic diversity. In the field of early childhood it may mean the plan. What deadlines will be set. How you will evaluate the steps you ve taken to determine if they were effective. What is holding us back Do we have a strategy in place to identify and nurture emerging leaders Does our governance structure allow for the mentoring and development of future board members Is the open invitation there or are we sending a message that s not conducive to inclusion and welcome Why do we need to become diverse What benefits can we derive Will we be a stronger organization if we are more inclusive and diverse Representation on the board that reflects different professional roles (teacher director out-of-school time personnel resource and referral staff etc.) Gender or age diversity (men students young professionals etc.) Racial ethnic diversity that is reflective of the make-up of the membership Representation of specific facets of the field (early identification disability services foster care home visiting etc.) A second step is to create a pipeline of candidates. Who within your association could develop the leadership skills to move into those board positions How can you involve them initially... projects committees special events etc. Who will serve as a mentor to ensure that they are successful in their first attempts at leadership Does the pipeline lead from the local to the state Are the initial board responsibilities ones that allow for successful completion and increasing responsibility In this process be sure that you avoid tokenism. Promoting diversity just for diversity is not a good strategy. Diversity and inclusion mean bringing leaders to the table to represent the different facets of your membership who have the requisite skills to contribute to the mission of the organization. MONITOR & MEASURE Track your retention rates for board members. If they are leaving after short periods of service what s the cause Administer board self-assessments to determine how you re doing. Survey your members to see if they perceive your governance structure to be diverse and inclusive. Resource Beyond Political Correctness Building a Diverse Board PAGE 3 Once the board has decided whether to move forward with a diversity strategy the next thing is to do it ACT We re all quite adept at talking but acting is sometimes another matter. We can all agree that something needs to be done but unless a plan is developed and the board agrees to put the time and effort necessary into making it happen it s unlikely that you ll see results. The first step is to create a focus within your strategic plan (or just develop a strategic plan ) that Outlines what you plan to do. Who will be responsible for According to the article Beyond Political Correctness Building a Diverse Board there are three strategies to utilize to begin the process. COMMUNICATE This process should start with a frank and open board discussion. There may be some sensitive topics that surface such as whether the current board environment welcomes diversity. Moving forward will never happen unless the tough issues are faced. VOLUME 9 ISSUE 4 implementing specific items in From the Archives Past issues of The Leadership Letter are archived on the SECA website. These issues may be of special interest as you consider the topic of Board recruitment and service. SOUTHERN EARLY C H I L D H O OD A S S O C I A T I O N The Leadership Letter March 2015 The Legal Side of Board Service The Leadership Letter May 2014 The Top 10 Communication Skills The Leadership Letter November 2013 Three Resources for Organizational Evaluation The Leadership Letter November 2012 Ethical Conduct Responsible Behavior in Early Childhood Education Click here to sign up for notices when a new 1123 S. University Suite 255 Little Rock AR 72204 1-800-305-SECA (7322) Fax 501-227-5297 Email info Promoting Quality Care and Education for Young Children and Their Families SECA is a Voice for Southern Children This newsletter is written and produced by Glenda Bean Executive Director. Leadership Letter is available. Recruiting New Leaders It s hard work but probably one of the most productive and vital tasks you ve undertaken for your organization. Promoting and achieving diversity and inclusion within your governing body will reap a multitude of benefits. As you recruit potential members for your board these are four questions to be asked Can you fulfill our board s fiduciary and legal oversight responsibilities Obviously as a recruiter you have to know what those responsibilities are. Is your organization providing enough board training and resources to make you feel comfortable in articulating what responsibilities are inherent in board service Can you define these for potential members How have you already demonstrated a passion for organizations like ours Do you understand the mission of our organization and how do you feel that you can contribute to that mission Why do you feel a personal commitment to our mission Do you fundamentally have the time to serve on our board We all have busy lives. Be sure that you can give a prospective board member a clearly defined sense of what obligation of time will be required. Are you able to meet the board fundraising requirement (If the board has one) Not all boards require members to do fundraising and this question is applicable only if those are the expectations of your board. Source Recruiting and Vetting Nonprofit Board Members Get to know the candidate and make a decision about suitability to serve on the board. Their responses to the four questions and your assessment of whether that person will fit into the culture of the board will determine whether you move forward with a nomination. Once they are nominated and accepted elected it s all about giving them the tools necessary to serve successfully. Make sure you have a thorough orientation and mentoring program in place.