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Terry McAdam Book Award

Honoring the most inspirational and useful new books contributing to nonprofit management and capacity building!

Each year, the best of the best is chosen. Of books, that is.

Annually, volunteers who love to read join the Alliance Book Award Committee to read and review dozens of books published in the nonprofit sector. The best of best is awarded the Terry McAdam Book Award each fall. 

The Terry McAdam Book Award commemorates the work of inspirational nonprofit colleague Terry W. McAdam, who devoted his professional life to improving the nonprofit management field and urged those in the capacity-building field to write about our experiences to help improve the sector. More about the award, past winners, committee members, and selection criteria can be found here. Read more about Mr. McAdam below.

Read about our 2019 winner here! All past book award winners can be found below.

Through the Terry McAdam Book Award, thousands of technical assistance providers and hundreds of thousands of nonprofit staff and board members benefit from the very best thinking and ideas in nonprofit management and governance. To be eligible for the award, books must meet the following criteria: 

  • Specifically address issues of nonprofit management, capacity building, management consulting, or advancement of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit sector.
    Be a first edition published in the current year or one year prior; if published in the prior year, the book could not have been nominated in that earlier period.
    Be actively marketed to the national nonprofit community or a specific nonprofit community.
    Be published in print, electronic or pdf form.
    Have a price point (i.e., be available for purchase, not a free publication).

Academic textbooks, books authored by Alliance Board members and books authored by McAdam Book Award Committee members are not eligible.

The committee seeks to uplift an inclusive and active author community. The Alliance for Nonprofit Management is a knowledge community whose power lies in its inclusive and active chorus of members This is an Alliance value to which members of our committee who seek, pre-screen, read, nominate, and evaluate books are committed.


Call for Nominations: 2020 Terry McAdam Book Award

Nominations due Friday, May 15, 2020


Each year, the Alliance for Nonprofit Management reviews books published in the nonprofit sector and awards the  Terry McAdam Book Award . The Alliance Book Award Committee is seeking nominations of the most inspirational and useful new books that bridge research and practice and make a substantial contribution to the nonprofit field.

To submit a book nomination, complete this short nomination form  here . Multiple nominations are accepted, please use a different form for each book submission.

Finalists will be notified in August .

Please help us spread the word by sharing this opportunity on your social networks! #McAdamBookAward


Interested in serving on the 2020 Terry McAdam Book Award Committee?


Each year, the Alliance for Nonprofit Management brings together a Committee to review books published in the nonprofit sector and selects the Terry McAdam Book Award. The Alliance Book Award Committee participants help select nominations of the most inspirational and useful new books that bridge research and practice and make a substantial contribution to the nonprofit field.


Committee Members use their sector expertise in capacity building and nonprofit management to assess and analyze the books based on specific criteria and serve a maximum of a three-year term. Committee participants must be a current member of the Alliance for Nonprofit Management.


Activities include:

- Participate in 4-6 committee meetings 
- Read 4-6 books (early summer) and rate them using provided criteria
- Read 2-4 books to select the final winner (late summer) and rate them using provided criteria              
- Other options include: promoting the call for nominations, outreach to publishers, etc.


Interested? Please contact 2020 Committee Chair, Anne Jin Soo Preston, at .

2020 Committee

Thank you to the dedicated volunteers serving on the 2020 committee. Their expertise ensures the highest-quality selection process and award recipient.

Philip Arca, Principal, Arca & Associates
John Brothers, President, T. Rowe Price Foundation
Sylvia de Haas-Phillips, Director and Assistant Professor, Bay Path University
Mary Bear Hughes, Managing Director, Bear Corbett Woodward & Moore
Emmanuelle Jarmon, Principal, Jarmon Consulting
Rebecca Joseph, Development Director, Hesperian Health Guides
Renee Rubin Ross, Principal, Renee Rubin Ross Consulting
Anne Jin Soo Preston, Principal and Founder, Sahng Sahng LLC
Aria Camaione-Lind, Principal + CEO, Aria Strategies LLC
Brea Heidelberg, Principal, ISO Arts Consulting
Jeanne Allen, Consultant, Jeanne Allen Consulting
Anne Eigeman, Principal, Anne Eigerman Consulting
Kaki Rusmore, Principal, Kaki Rusmore Consulting 








A 30-Year Legacy

Terry McAdamThe Terry McAdam Book Award program was established by the Nonprofit Management Association in 1987 to commemorate the work of an inspirational colleague and board member, Terry W. McAdam, who passed away at the age of 44 in 1986. The executive vice president and program director of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation in Los Angeles, Terry was also the author of Careers in the Nonprofit Sector (1986) and (with Judith Scherer) Technical Assistance in New York City: A Preliminary Examination of the Nonprofit Technical Assistance Process in New York City (1977). He devoted his professional life to improving the nonprofit management field and urged those of us in the capacity-building field to write about our experiences, because he considered our voices important in improving the sector.

When the Nonprofit Management Association and the Support Centers of America came together to form the Alliance for Nonprofit Management in 1998, the Alliance took responsibility for continuing this important award. For 30 years, many dedicated volunteers have shepherded the award program, which has evolved to include both print and electronic books that cover the nonprofit sector and aspects of nonprofit management and capacity building.

Complete List of Award Winners Through 2019

The following list outlines the previous winners and honorable mention designations. Many of these books are still in print and are available through Amazon. No awards were given in 1992 and 2006 as the award criteria and process were being refined.


Securing Your Organization's Future: A Complete Guide to Fundraising Strategies by Michael Seltzer


The Third America by Michael O'Neill


Strategic Media by Phil Sparks and Cathy Bonk


Leadership for the Common Good: Tackling Public Problems in a Shared-Power World by John Bryson and Barbara C. Crosby


Strategic Philanthropy in the 1990's by Diane Gingold


Mission-Based Management: Leading Your Not-For-Profit in the 21st Century by Peter C. Brinckerhoff


Reengineering Your Nonprofit Organization: A Guide to Strategic Transformation by Alceste T. Pappas


Financial Empowerment: More Money for More Mission by Peter C. Brinckerhoff


Honorable MentionStrategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations: A Practical Guide and Workbook by Michael Allison and Jude Kaye


Nonprofit Mergers and Alliances: A Strategic Planning Guide by Thomas A. McLaughlin


Financial Management for Nonprofit Organizations: Policies and Practices by Jo Ann Hankin, Alan G. Seidner and John T. Zietlow


Resolving Conflict in Nonprofit Organizations: The Leaders' Guide to Finding Constructive Solutions by Marion Peters Angelica


Private Sector Strategies for Social Sector Success: The Guide to Strategy and Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations by Kevin P. Kearns


Nonprofit Lifecycles: Stage-Based Wisdom for Nonprofit Capacity by Susan Kenny Stevens


Honorable Mention: Opening Doors: Pathways to Diverse Donors by Diana S. Newman


Honorable Mention: Working Across Boundaries: Making Collaboration Work in Government and Nonprofit Organizations  by Russell Matthew Linden


Breakthrough Thinking for Nonprofit Organizations: Creative Strategies for Extraordinary Results by Bernard Ross, Clare Segal


Honorable MentionBookkeeping Basics: What Every Nonprofit Bookkeeper Needs to Know byDebra L. Ruegg


Begging for Change: The Dollars and Sense of Making Nonprofits Responsive, Efficient, and Rewarding for All by Robert Egger


Honorable Mention: Fundraising in Times of Crisis by Kim Klein


Honorable Mention: The Best of the Board Cafe: Hands-on Solutions for Nonprofit Boards by Jan Masaoka


The Light of Conscience: How a Simple Act Can Change Your Life by William H. Shore


Honorable Mention: Governance as Leadership: Reframing the Work of Nonprofit Boards by Richard Chait


Honorable Mention: Play to Win: The Nonprofit Guide to Competitive Strategy by David La Piana


Momentum: Igniting Social Change in the Connected Age by Allison H. Fine


Honorable Mention: Community Leadership Handbook: Framing Ideas, Building Relationships, and Mobilizing Resources  by James F. Krile


Generations: The Challenge of a Lifetime for Your Nonprofit by Peter C. Brinkerhoff


Honorable Mention: Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits by Leslie R. Crutchfield and Heather McLeod Grant


Chief Executive Transitions: How to Hire and Support a Nonprofit CEO by Don Tebbe


Reliable Fundraising in Unreliable Times by Kim Klein


Honorable Mention: The Networked Nonprofit: Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change by Allison Fine and Beth Kantor


Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey Into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now by Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze


Giving Back: A Tribute to Generations of African American Philanthropists by Valaida Fullwood with photography by Charles W. Thomas Jr.


Measuring the Networked Nonprofit: Using Data to Change the World by Beth Kanter and Katie Delahaye Paine


Content Marketing for Nonprofits: A Communications Map for Engaging Your Community,

Becoming a Favorite Cause, and Raising More Money by Kivi Leroux Miller


FinalistThe Last Virtual Volunteering Guidebook: Fully Integrating Online Service into Volunteer Involvement by Jayne Cravens and Susan J. Ellis


FinalistCreating Value in Nonprofit-Business Collaborations: New Thinking and Practice  by James E. Austin and M. May Seitanidi


The Sustainability Mindset: Using the Matrix Map to Make Strategic Decisionsby Steve Zimmerman and Jeanne Bell


Honorable MentionThe Impact Investor: Lessons in Leadership and Strategy for Collaborative and Capitalism by Cathy Clark, Jed Emerson and Ben Thornley


Measuring the Impact of Volunteers: A Balanced and Strategic Approach by Christine Burych, Joanne Fine Schwebel, Michael Fliess, Heather Hardie


FinalistBuilding Your Analytics Shop: A Workbook for Nonprofits by Marianne M. Pelletier


FinalistThe Mission-Driven Venture: Business Solutions to the World’s Most Vexing Social Problemsby Marc J. Lane


FinalistTransformational Governance: How Boards Achieve Extraordinary Change by Beth Gazley and Katha Kissman.


Innovation and Scaling for Impact: How Effective Social Enterprises Do It by Christian Seelos and Johanna Mair


The Goldilocks Challenge: Right-Fit Evidence for the Social Sector by Mary Kay Gugerty and Dean Karlan

  2019 Shared Space and the New Nonprofit Workplace by China Brotsky, Sarah M. Eisinger, and Diane Vinokur-Kaplan. The committee also awarded Honorable Mentions to: Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal Divides and Restore Balance by Edgar Villanueva and Gender Matters: A Guide to Growing Women's Philanthropy by Kathleen E. Loehr.