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Bridgestar Membership Reaches 5000

Nonprofit Organization Seeks to Strengthen Nonprofit Sector by Enhancing the Flow and Effectiveness of Leaders

Boston, MA Jan. 25, 2005 – Bridgestar, a nonprofit organization building a peer network of senior nonprofit leaders to support and strengthen the sector, announced today that it has reached an important milestone. An initiative of The Bridgespan Group designed to help nonprofit organizations nurture and retain effective senior leadership, Bridgestar was launched in Dec. 2003, and welcomed its 5,000th member in January 2005.

Members include institutions and individuals representing almost 700 organizations spread across 49 states and Washington, DC.; these organizations include: American Red Cross, Southern Poverty Law Center, eBay Foundation, Goodwill Industries of San Francisco, Durango Arts Center, Catalyst, Georgia Center for Nonprofits, Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston, Volunteer Centers of Michigan, and Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council.

Because part of Bridgestar's mission is to bring senior executive talent from the private sector into the nonprofit sector, some members are "bridgers": people who have moved between the for-profit and nonprofit arenas, those interested in switching to the nonprofit sector, and/or individuals interested in serving on boards.

"Bridgestar was founded to help support and strengthen nonprofit organizations by enhancing the flow and effectiveness of passionate and highly skilled leaders into and within the nonprofit sector," said Jeffrey Bradach, Co-founder and Managing Partner, The Bridgespan Group. "Generating a strong membership is a critical milestone, and the reaction from our members to Bridgestar's offerings has been extremely positive. What is also important is the response, insight and advice from our members, which has informed our newsletter, our research and other offerings."


Talent Matching
Members find senior leadership positions and/or recruit senior executives and board members through Bridgestar's job boards and through Bridgestar's menu of recruiting services. Bridgestar's job board has postings from all over the country, from Alabama to Wisconsin; the organization is conducting searches for organizations across the country as well. Additionally, members can apply for board of director openings or identify board candidates through Bridgestar's partnership with boardnetUSA.

Access to content offers management advice, including prevailing and innovative practices, from Bridgestar's original research, its website and monthly newsletter, "Leadership Matters."

Each month "Leadership Matters" picks a different theme designed as a conversation about how to build and sustain effective nonprofit organizations. Previous issues have offered the comprehensive "Guide to Navigating the Hiring Process," and have focused on topics such as the role of the nonprofit COO, improving nonprofit accountability as well as best practices in compensation and performance evaluations. Much of Bridgestar's research, including surveys on board recruitment and corporate governance, is highlighted in "Leadership Matters."

Community Events
Members can also connect to other leaders to learn from others, to share their expertise, and participate in peer groups, roundtables, and all-member gatherings. In its first year, Bridgestar community events included a talk with Diana Aviv, president of Independent Sector, on improving nonprofit accountability, and "Good to Great: Lessons for the Social Sector" a presentation by best-selling author Jim Collins, who discussed how to build great, sustainable nonprofit organizations.

"Because the nonprofit sector is facing significant demand for senior leadership, and particularly for certain new skill sets, it is critical for us to develop a strong community of talented individuals with relevant experience to bring to the table - both from within and from outside the sector," said David Simms, Managing Partner, Bridgestar. "Bridgestar's research, partnerships and other initiatives are designed to help support the nonprofit sector. The terrific growth of our membership is a great validation that others in the sector see the value of our mission."

About Bridgestar
Bridgestar (, an initiative of the Bridgespan Group, is a nonprofit organization building a member-driven community of individuals and organizations working to strengthen their careers, their institutions, and the nonprofit sector. Established in 2003, Bridgestar's goal is to attract, connect and support senior leaders – established and aspiring – for greater effectiveness and social impact.

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