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Riordan Leadership Institute
Nonprofit Partner Application

Thank you for your interest in applying to participate as a Nonprofit Partner of the Riordan Leadership Institute.
The Riordan Leadership Institute (RLI) is a 8-month board training and matching fellowship that empowers and prepares diverse professionals for lifelong civic leadership as nonprofit board members. Unlike other board training programs, RLI also helps local nonprofit organizations build their capacity and connect with prospective board members who are drawn from the professional ranks of major businesses, have a strong history of community involvement, and are ready to make a commitment to serve on the board of a nonprofit organization.
In addition to classroom training, RLI fellows are paired with a local Nonprofit Partner for a field experience to gain a better understanding of the nonprofit’s mission and the community it serves, as well as the strategic and tactical issues facing nonprofit boards. During that time, the fellows attend board meetings and execute a project designed to leverage their expertise and skills and further the work of the Nonprofit Partner board and organization.
Application instructions: Please allow 20-30 minutes to complete this application. You must complete this application in one sitting.

Once you click “Submit Application,” you will no longer be able to edit your application. SCLN will contact you to discuss next steps once your application is received within two weeks of your submission. Should you have any questions, please contact Kauleen Menard at 213.806.7902 or

Please read the following eligibility and expectation requirements below before continuing to the application.

Nonprofit organizations organized under Section 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(6) are eligible to partner with the Riordan Leadership Institute (RLI) if they meet the following criteria:
  • Is seeking new board members (RLI Fellows are potential board members and the Field Experience is designed to prepare them for a seat on their Nonprofit Partner’s board).
  • Has identified potential projects that are board level and that will help advance the organization’s mission and/or board success.
  • Has designated a staff and/or board member who can commit the time to working closely with the RLI Fellow to ensure the success and value of the RLI Field Experience.
  • Implements programs that serve Los Angeles County and/or Orange County (national or state-wide organizations that serve Los Angeles or Orange County are eligible).
  • Has established by-laws and financial statements.
  • Has regularly scheduled board meetings (with at least two scheduled during the RLI Field Experience time frame).
  • Has a board that is actively engaged in board-related work and that consistently attends board meetings.
  • Demonstrates a commitment to the primary purpose of the RLI Field Experience as outlined in the expectations below.
As partners in the RLI Fellow’s learning experience as potential board members, nonprofit organizations are expected to actively participate in the program in the following ways:
  • Confirm a senior organization executive or board member to work with and help guide the RLI Fellow through their Board Field Experience. This person must be accessible to the fellow, as needed, and able to provide guidance during the Field Experience.
  • Participate in the RLI Nonprofit Partner Orientation Wednesday, September 21 from 9:00 - 10:30a.m. on Zoom and the Board Match Event on Saturday, October 22 on Zoom.
  • Work with the Fellow to scope a project that is board level, is of value to the organization or board and that leverages the expertise of the Fellow.
  • Provide the Fellow with support, guidance, materials and/or introductions needed to complete the project successfully.
  • Provide the Fellow onboarding (orientation) to the organization and to the board:
  • Facilitate the Fellow’s participation in board and relevant committee meetings.
  • Provide the RLI Fellow board materials and notices before the board meetings, and any other materials helpful to the training experience (i.e. organization charts, by-laws, mission statement, strategic plan, etc.).
  • Discuss the norms for participation at board meetings with the Fellow.
  • Formally introduce the Fellow to the board and other key constituents.
  • Provide ongoing coaching to the RLI Fellow, as needed.
If you have questions or need more information about Nonprofit Partner eligibility or expectations outlined above, contact Kauleen Menard, Director, Programs and Evaluation at
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