Does Your Board Include a 12 year old? Maybe It Should!

November 15, 2011; Source: Walton SunIn Florida, the new Friends of the Walton County Animal Shelter counts itself lucky to have the enthusiasm, energy, and ideas of its first (we assume) 12-year-old trustee in Jessica Anth. Jessica is a seventh grader with web design skills, so when she heard that the shelter was struggling with its lack of an online presence she offered her talents through the board’s president, Bill Baird. In September she was invited to join the board in recognition of her commitment and skills. She subsequently arrived at the next board meeting with a power point presentation, laying out how she thought the Friends might be able to contribute more to the shelter.

Jessica has had a long-standing interest in animal shelters and has been visiting them since she was small. The interest in computers developed later in life – at age six.

Here is what NPQ thinks. We have long had argument with all of the bemoaning of a lack of empathy and leadership among the younger set. In fact, we think the trend is moving in the other direction, and the young leaders among us deserve more intensive partnership and nurturing and less studying from a distance. –Ruth McCambridge