Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence

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NICNE Mission:
Promoting innovation and excellence in the nonprofit sector.

Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence (NICNE) has been providing capacity building, training, technical assistance and resource support to nonprofit organizations within our region since August 2004. NICNE is the region’s primary resource for nonprofit management and leadership development. NICNE strengthens nonprofits by providing education, training, technical assistance, and assessments, and encourages collaboration resulting in a strong, vibrant nonprofit sector critical to a healthy community.

*As of January 1, 2015, to reflect NICNE's expansive programming and home within the Rockford University College of Social Sciences, Commerce and Education, NICNE will become the Rockford University Center for Nonprofit Excellence (RUCNE).*

The 2014 United Way/NICNE Salary Survey Report
is now available!

View the complete report.

Looking for a local nonprofit job?

NICNE staff is available for questions about course offerings, resources, and NICNE memberships.

Contact Us!

Pam Clark Reidenbach


Karen Ream

Program and Membership Coordinator


Jennifer Smith
Graduate Assistant


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NICNE October Leadership CafeOpen in a New Window

Leadership Cafe
These monthly discussions on critical and cutting-edge issues in nonprofit leadership and governance are designed to provide a menu of IDEAS, INFORMATION, OPINIONS, and RESOURCES for nonprofit management staff, board members, and community participants. Presented in partnership with the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois.

October Topic:  Ensuring Good Stewardship of Donor Dollars
Presenter: David Allen, Development for Conservation LLC

You don't need to be an expert in accounting to direct a nonprofit or serve on its board, but understanding the numbers is still an important responsibility for everyone. And representing to the donors that their money is being used for the purposed they intended is paramount. How will YOU know? This entertaining and interactive session will start with the nuances of soliciting project gifts and grants, and show you what to look for in the financial reporting. This session is all about strategies for improving the nonprofit's overall literacy in finance.

Date: Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Time: Noon to 1 p.m.
Location:  Room 122 in the 5100 Building (1st building on your right immediately off State Street), Rockford University. 5050 E. State Street, Rockford, IL  61108
Cost: FREE for 2014 NICNE Members, $15 all others

Walk-ins always welcome, but an email RSVP to by October 27 is appreciated.
For more information contact us at or 815-394-4384.

View the Leadership Cafe 2014-2015 series brochure.

Return to NICNE homepage.


NICNE Certificate in Nonprofit Management Program - Course 2: Marketing and CommunicationsOpen in a New Window

Certificate in Nonprofit Management
Course 2 -
Marketing and Communications

This program was designed to support the changing demands on nonprofit leaders to enhance their management skills and operate more effectively. The five courses (two offered in the Fall, three in the Spring) will strengthen participants’ abilities in Leadership and Governance, Marketing, Human Resources, Financial Management, and Fund Development, and would be valuable to a wide range of nonprofit participants: employees, managers, board members, new leaders, as well as those seeking to transfer from the for-profit to nonprofit world.

Course 2
will explore sales, marketing, and communications techniques to strengthen your nonprofit organization's ability to engage employees, donors, clients, media, volunteers, policy-makers, and funders. Specific topic will include: marketing plans tied to strategic plans, market analysis, brand development, key messages, selling, press relations, social media, and internal communications.

Dates: Course 2 - Four consecutive Thursdays, Oct. 30, Nov. 6, 13, and 20

Time: 1:30 to 4 p.m.

Location: Room 122 in the 5100 Building (1st building on your right immediately off State Street), Rockford University, 5050 E. State Street, Rockford, IL 61108

Cost: $250 per course

Please register for Course 2 by October 23 by mailing or faxing in the registration form.
View and download Full Program Brochure.

For more information, please contact Karen Ream at or 815.394.4384.
Return to NICNE homepage.


NICNE Board Training - True Partners in LeadershipOpen in a New Window

It's Time to Step Up.

True Partners in Leadership:
Developing Engaged & Purposeful Boards

What are the most critical challenges facing your organization?
What are your greatest potential opportunities?
How does your board contribute to addressing both?

How engaged is the board in shaping the organization's future, and what more could the organization achieve if the board were more engaged and purposeful?

Nationally recognized governance expert Dr. Susan Whealler Johnston will lead this interactive and practical board development workshop and help board members understand how to move beyond legal and oversight responsibilities to become true partners in leadership with the CEO.

Saturday, November 8, 2014
Time: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Location: Room 124, 5100 Building (1st building on your right immediately off State Street), Rockford University, 5050 E. State St. Rockford, IL 61108
Cost: $60 (includes lunch)

Please register by November 1 by faxing or mailing in registration form.
View and download the program brochure HERE.

For more information, email Karen Ream at
Return to NICNE Homepage.


NICNE 10th Annual Nonprofit DialogueOpen in a New Window

No more games of telephone,
we want to hear from you,
the Experts

 What are the issues and trends that nonprofits are facing in our community?
How can the University work with you to address these issues & support your work?

10th Annual Nonprofit Dialogue

Friday, November 14, 2014
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Regent's Hall (2nd Floor Burpee Center), Rockford University

Hosted by Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence

Facilitated by Dr. Robert Head, Rockford University President.

There is no cost for this event.
Please RSVP by Wednesday, November 12 to 815-394-4384 or

View Nonprofit Dialogue Brochure.

Return to NICNE home page.


NICNE Customer Service WorkshopOpen in a New Window

SUPERIOR Customer Service:
A workshop designed to hone the skills of your front line superheroes!

Why should YOU invest in
Superior Customer Service Training?
The most valuable asset of your organization is your people, and employees who are well-trained in superior customer service techniques can help build your business and increase your profitability.

Workshop Outcomes:
1. First Impressions: Learn the quality judgments made in the first 7 seconds of the first encounter, the 4 key areas on which to focus to make a positive personal first impression, and identify 4 key areas that will improve the first impression.
2. Bad Service: Learn the far-reaching ramifications of bad customer service.
3. Thinking Outside the Box: Learn how to turn a complaint into a win-win situation.
4. "The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn't being said..." (Shannon L. Alder): Improve your customer services by learning the difference between hearing and actually listening to your customers.

Date: Thursday, December 4, 2014
Time: 10 a.m.        Check-in
          10:30 - 12     Workshop Content
          12 - 1            Lunch (Provided)
          1 - 1:30         Role Playing
Location: Regent's Hall, 2nd floor Burpee Center, Rockford University
Cost: $40 (includes lunch)

Please register by November 25 by faxing or mailing in registration form.
View and download the program brochure HERE.

For more information, contact Karen Ream at or 815.394.4384.
Return to NICNE Homepage.
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NICNE October Leadership Cafe

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