First a general comment based on my experience with both the nonprofit
(Literacy Volunteers of America) and for-profit worlds. They have much
in common, especially nowadays when not-for-profit oragnizations are
expected to think like a business, especially in the areas of
goal-setting, planning, and performance-against goals. Often,
nonprofit boards have some members from the business world who help to
keep such expectations top-of-mind. Also, nonprofits that are national
or regional in scope now typically set certain uniform standards for
planning and execution, at the local level.
I don't know whether your non-profit will be the local office of an
established national or regional nonprofit, but I am assuming that it
will not be. If it were so affiliated, a lot of the help and support
you seek would be provided by the "head" office.
So let's assume you are on your own in this. My first recommendation
as a resource happens to be in your area: the Forth Worth Business
Center. But its proximity is not the main reason I recommend it to
you. The reason, rather, is that here's a place where you can
definitely get that businesslike approach and expertise in starting a
nonprofit and making it successful. As you see in their website, they
offer workshops, though none currently for nonprofts per se. However,
I believe that workshops on how to write a good business plan (you're
going to need one) would be of great value to you. Also (and I think
you are looking for this) through participating in this organizations
workshops you will be making contacts that will continue to prove
useful once you organization is up and running. Here's their web
One more thought on going to a business center such as this. My
suspicion is that a lot of new nonprofits fails because GOOD
INTENTIONS ARE NOT ENOUGH. You also need to compete effectively, for
volunteers, grants, and public support. A businesslike approach can:
1) Clarify your thinking and plans, and 2)Help you compete effectively
over the long haul.
My other main resource for you is dedicated entirely to non-profit
creation and support. But I suspect here too you will find the same
kind of "hard-nose", businesslike approach to making a nonprofit work.
The Nonprofit Resource Center of Texas is located in San Antonio, but
I am sure operates throughout the state.
They declare on their website: "Clients range from emerging
nonprofits to established organizations and everything in between."
They, like the Business Center, offer classes for a modest fee (I
assume that the Business Center also charges a fee for its workshops.)
While not as convenient for you as the Business Center, the Nonprofit
Resource Center has the advantage of being the definitive Texas expert
and resource in nonprofit formation and success, or so it seems to me.
Their web address:
A third possibilty, and one with local outreach, is the Texas
Nonprofit Management Assistance Network. This appears to be a
membership organization with minimum dues of $100 per year. Their
Their local affiliate in Dallas in the Center for Nonprofit Management:
Finally, The University Center Library has an excellent webpage with a
very complete list of the many resources available to you, at:
I have tried to cull for you those places where I think you can most
profitably should begin your search for solid expertise and support.
(By the way, I used these search terms: Nonprofit Resources Texas).
Here's wishing that you get your nonprofit organization up and running
soon, and that it enjoys a long and useful life into the future.