Chief Operating Officer

This area is dedicated to the role of the Chief Operating Officer (COO) in nonprofit organizations. Learn more about the role, how to become a nonprofit COO, connect with your COO peer, and find a COO for your organization.

Featured Content

Frequently Asked Questions: Becoming a COO

Answers to some common questions from people considering and seeking Chief Operating Officer positions at nonprofit organizations.


I Need a COO: The Translation

Often nonprofit leaders see the COO as the Superman/woman who will bring order to operational chaos and generally make life easier for the ED.  But that’s not always the case. Getting things back on track often requires more than a COO; it requires understanding why the train left the track in the first place.

Creating the COO Position

While there is great variety in how nonprofit organizations structure and use the position of Cheif Operating Officer, there are a few key factors and events that drive nonprofit organizations to consider adding it. In this article, COOs and EDs shared their experiences working in organizations that recognized the need for a COO, faced doubts and concerns about the position, and worked through challenges to successfully bring in a COO. 

Featured Profiles

Sandra Timmons: From COO to Chief Executive

After five years as chief operating officer of Girls Incorporated, Sandra Timmons was enjoying her job, but an unexpected conversation caused her to consider a chief executive position. In 2003, she became president of A Better Chance.