“David is a master of engagement. In a well-designed session, he helped an opinionated group with a wide range of experiences and perspectives coalesce around a plan and priorities that everyone felt proud of and vested in.“  Ken Mayhew | President & CEO William Osler Health System Foundation, Brampton, Ontario 

“Thank you for your expertise and insight, David. We accomplished an amazing amount in a limited time because of the care you took to understand our organization beforehand. Your ability to synthesize information into manageable chunks was delivered with honesty and compassion.” Jane Simpson, Executive Director, Arts & Culture Centre, Sussex, New Brunswick 

“David, I feel totally stoked by today’s experience, thanks so much for putting your time and energy into it and improvising to adapt to what we needed in the time we had. You are a real pro and make the experience fun, memorable and I think transformative in some important ways. We’re a good bunch and getting to do something like today just makes us stronger and better connected. I only wish we could have you for a week.” Peter Powning, Board Chair, Arts & Culture Centre, Sussex, New Brunswick

“David Hartley was hired to assist our Board. It was amazing how he managed to convey the principles of good governance and get us all understanding our roles.  In the training, he exhibited immense knowledge, was direct, straight forward and very entertaining. I would love to have him back next year to do a follow up – he was a genuine pleasure to work with and he seemed to pick up the heartbeat of the group very quickly. Thank you David!”  Sudip Minhas, Executive Director, Windsor Women Working with Immigrant Women, Windsor Ontario

“An incredible experience! David has been a wonderful facilitator, helping to guide our team through a great process to help us achieve what we had set out to do.   He was on point, funny, considerate, an expert who really knows his stuff.  I would not hesitate to bring him back and to recommend him to any others.”  Joe DaSilva, Executive Director, Markham Family Medicine Teaching Unit

“Exhilarating, motivating and a very good team-building experience for the entire board and the staff. ”  Chair-person (also an Ontario Provincial Police Sargeant, so we are keeping her name confidential), New Starts Women’s Shelter, Red Lake, Ontario

“David’s board governance training is an excellent way to leverage a nonprofit’s limited training resources to train an entire board. The workshop content in one day mirrored content I spent 3 days plus travel time at a [costly] Rotman School of Business course. ”  Wes Moore, Board Chair, Algoma Children’s Aid Society, Ontario

“I have served on 2 national boards (the Canadian Red Cross Society and the Girl Guides of Canada) along with other foundations and local boards.  I’ve attended numerous governance training sessions over the past 20 years including 3 full days training with John Carver [the Carver Model].  Still I got so much more out of David Hartley’s session today.  Simply superb! ”   Kay Thomson, Board President, Good Neighbours Seniors Centre, Winnipeg [largest Seniors Centre in Manitoba]

Background: David has had the privilege of assisting hundreds of nonprofit/charity Boards:

  • In over 160 towns across Canada since 2007 (every province and territory except Nunavut)
  • Every type and budget-size of operation (Social Services, Health, Sport, Farming, Education, Environment) > note: a partial list of our clients (train/consult) can be found here
  • Every size, skill and experience level (from small “working” Boards in an organization with no/few staff to large national “governance/policy” Boards in an organization with hundreds of staff)
  • Every type of engagement level & personality mix (from “stars”, “steadies”, “strugglers” to the board members who exhibit “toxic-type behaviours” on occasion).

What we do in 1 day (or 2 half day) session(s): please see page 2 of our current governance training flyer for a list of topics (click here). That is the starting point for a discussion whereby we customize the session to meet that unique Board situation.  

  • Really we would prefer to call it “Board strengthening”.   Every Board is so unique we have to really customize each session to fit.
  • If we have a full 7 hour day (it can be a weekday, it is often a weekend day), about half of the day is spent in best practice training and the other half in working together to develop clarity on one or several issues that need improvement.
  • In advance David speaks with the Executive Director/CEO/lead staff person to understand where the Board is at currently — where they are strong and where they are stuck.   Often a second call is with that staff person and/or the Board Chair/President, and the training material is focused/customized to create a day that really will be engaging and effective.

> See our testimonial section for many quotes from the lead staff and Board Chairs.

> IN-PERSON FEES: See our training section .

> VIRTUAL/PHONE CONSULT FEES:  Hours 1 to 3 ($245/hour); further hours on same consult ($185/hour).  Note: Hours are charged in quarters (e.g. 50 minutes is considered 0.75 hours).

> Email David ( to set up an initial phone call at no charge to see if we would be a good fit for your Board.

Our sessions are uniquely engaging.  Our content is customized to fit your Board where it is right now.  Most importantly we will help your Board clarify exactly where it needs to focus its energies, what specific changes need to be made, in the next 3 to 12 months.  A stronger Team with real clarity.