Kutak Rock attorney Fred Marienthal authored an article entitled “Parent and Trustee: Reconcilable or Irreconcilable Roles?” in the September/October 2015 edition of The Trustee’s Letter (Vol. XXVII, No. 1, Educational Directions Incorporated).
The article describes the potential conflicts of interest that may occur when a parent is a member of the board of trustees of an independent school where his or her children are students. Marienthal describes six “hotspots” that are often very difficult to handle when wearing the “parent hat” and the “trustee hat” simultaneously.
- Financial Issues
- Time Frames
- Lens and Focus
- Sources of Information
- Staying on Mission and Vision
- Relationship to Head of School
Marienthal concludes that boards of trustees should establish and enforce norms to deal with a board member who is allowing his or her parental role to bias or skew his or her objective and fiduciary perspective.
Fred Marienthal served on the Boulder, Colorado-based Friends’ School Community Board for nine years as Chair, Co-Chair and Treasurer. He has also served as a board member of Kitchen Sisters Productions, Thistle Communities, Public Media Company, the University of Colorado School of Public Affairs Advisory Board and the University of Colorado-Denver’s Chancellor’s Development Committee.
Reproduced by permission of The Trustee’s Letter. All rights reserved.