Governance Training: Cultivate: Organizational Development

The main challenge facing MSCD was one of capacity. MCSD has connections to artists willing to participate in events and programs, and connections to established arts organizations which are ready and willing to include Deaf artists in their training and programming. MCSD needed to build up our core resources so that we could organize, schedule, administer, and fundraise in order take advantage of these opportunities.

The project's focus was Capacity Building in Administrative Development. MCSD was dependent on the capacity of volunteer board members to oversee most of our administrative tasks. MCSD had a large membership reach, which allowed for the recruitment of more individuals from the Deaf community who would participate in the direct management of the organization.

The goal of this project was to establish an administrative infrastructure and a talent pool to allow members of the Deaf community to more effectively run the organization.

MCSD contracted:

  • An interim office manager, to establish systems at the direction of the board of directors and to provide training to suitable candidates from within the Deaf Community.
  • A fundraiser/grant writing professional, to write grants to hire future staff.
  • A web designer from within the Deaf community, to develop an accessible website for MSCD.

The Board of directors were to establish targets for tools development and training goals. They will assign a board member to audit and review the progress of the targets, and report to the board monthly for the duration of the project

MSCD contracted an experienced coordinator. Their role is to develop administrative tools and systems, and to provide training to the MSCD Board and contractors, all in order to enhance the administrative capability of the organization. They focused on program scheduling, record-keeping, basic financial management, marketing, and website management.


  • Gerry Atwell: Management Consultant and professional grant writer artist and arts administrator.
  • Colin Foran: Professional fundraiser, specializing in not-for-profit organizational and governmental development.
  • Priti Shah of Prita Consulting: Strategic planning: Conflict consultant. Gave Board Governance training and consultation on the new MCSD By-laws and Code of Conduct.
  • Cynthia Benoit: Deaf web designer. Trained MCSD to use the SquareSpace web platform, to register MCSD's domain names (, .org and .com), and to launch MCSD website at