Join our Board


Being a Board Member of Calgary Learns

The board of directors ensures Calgary Learns makes every effort to achieve its purpose and mission. It is the link between the organization, its members and its stakeholders.

The board governs with an emphasis on

  • A proactive future orientation, the organization’s vision and our strategic leadership.
  • A commitment to inclusion and the active encouragement of diverse opinions.
  • Clear distinction between board and executive-director roles.
  • Collective rather than individual decisions.

The board is responsible for producing and monitoring performance on the following policies and procedures.

  • Purpose, vision, mission and strategic goals: organizational outcomes and impacts.
  • Self-governance and process: how the board carries out and monitors its responsibility.
  • Relationship with the Executive Director: How the authority and accountability of the Executive Director is delegated and monitored.
  • Operational framework: guidelines, principles and constraints on operations, including risk management, and financial and program management.

The way we work

  • We acknowledge and appreciate that all board members are volunteers and that their time is at a premium. We agree to make our points in a well thought-out and concise manner.
  • Board members prepare for board meetings by reading the materials circulated in advance.
  • Every member of the board takes responsibility for monitoring the board’s process to ensure we function as a policy board.
  • We believe that it is only when all points of view are expressed that the best decision can be made. We allow adequate time for members to express their points of view and ensure all board members have an opportunity to contribute. The question will then be called, and majority vote rules.
  • Our board speaks with one voice. Once a decision is made all board members will support the decision.
  • Board members are expected to attend all board meetings. If a member is absent for three meetings during the year, the board will review the member’s continued participation on the board.
  • We use standing and ad hoc committees to build our capacity to govern and do the bulk of our work. Board members are expected to serve on at least one committee. The work of each committee is guided by its terms of reference, approved by the board.
  • Board members participate to the best of their ability in the community activities and events of Calgary Learns.
  • Board members will annually review and agree to comply with the Calgary Learns Code of Conduct.
  • Board members develop and follow an annual board calendar that outlines the work of the Board, including the monitoring of board policies and re-examination of the purpose and goals.

What we offer

  • Opportunities to learn about adult learning, foundational skills and granting processes.
  • Opportunities to develop a variety of board governance skills, and to share your own skills and experiences with others.
  • A respected and stable granting organization that has been operating for more than 30 years with a high-performing and diverse board of directors.
  • The chance, through your governance role, to help adult Calgarians with financial barriers to improve foundational skills in the areas of literacy, language-learning and essential skills, and community and family development. Included in our diverse mix of programs are learning opportunities that specifically serve Indigenous, immigrants and refugee learners.
  • Participation in broad-based community events.
  • Established, well-rounded board practices and policies.
  • A highly interactive professional group of board members.
  • A culture of inclusion, collaboration, openness, commitment and improvement.

The time commitment

  • Six to eight board meetings annually, each two hours long—with a warm dinner provided!
  • Participation in at least one committee, usually with three to five meetings annually, each two hours long.
  • Preparation for board and committee meetings, which averages one hour for each meeting.
  • An annual board retreat that usually takes place on a weekend morning.
  • Attendance at events and other organizational activities such as the Life of Learning Awards, networking events or community consultations: approximately four hours per year.

Roles and terms of office

  • Board members are elected for a two-year term. We ask that you intend to stay at least four years or two terms.
  • We are always looking for board members who are willing to progress in their roles and responsibilities with the board. There are several committees to chair, as well as the roles of President, Vice President and Treasurer to fill.


  • The Board must have a minimum of five and a maximum of 11 members.
  • Board members can be elected at an AGM to serve a full term of office, or be appointed by the board and serve until the next AGM.

Basic requirements

  • Strong interpersonal communications skills
  • Experience with Boards, councils or other team decision-making groups
  • No current conflict of interest
  • Willingness to support the purpose and mission of Calgary Learns

How to apply

Additional Resources

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