Shared Leadership

"Even if we had the money for 200-300 staff, I would still want our volunteers involved, because this is a movement. It's about involving humans in helping other humans move those numbers where they need to be. The job we have to do is to influence others to do something they may not have thought about doing before."
- Dr. Jose Dolores (JD) Garcia, Former SACNAS President

Taking the Lead

Nurturing the capacity for individuals to take the lead is a core characteristic of SACNAS and the work we do. Leadership development is also a key component of our strategic focus areas and is central to our ability to achieve high mission impact. SACNAS staff, board, committees, and volunteers work together year-round to carry out the programs and services of the organization. The ability to lead at all levels and in all positions is a direct function of our commitment to developing the strengths of individuals.

Team Thinking

As a society of scientists, SACNAS is determined to actively engage our dedicated membership in the leadership of the organization. Our volunteers have long been the lifeblood of SACNAS and have provided support, guidance, and mentorship to our students and staff. With over 20 active and working committees and task forces, SACNAS scientists are able to guide the breadth of the organization’s activities from communications, membership, and chapters to strategic fund development, IT, and Native American initiatives.

Staff Leadership

As discussed in the book Forces for Good, great nonprofits empower leadership staff with authority and accountability for the organization’s success. This is the SACNAS model. In 2009, SACNAS established a department-based operational structure to support its work and growth and directors were appointed in communications, executive, programs, and strategic initiatives departments. Since then, the team has been actively participating in board meetings, contributing to and implementing the organization’s five-year strategic plan (pdf), and providing feedback on mission-critical issues and decisions.