Institute for Board Chairs and Presidents of Independent Colleges and Universities

June 21-23, 2021
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The most important relationship for effective governance is that between the board chair and the president. To succeed, both individuals must commit their time and talents to work as partners for the institution and the students they serve.

AGB’s Institute for Board Chairs and Presidents of Independent Colleges and Universities allows chair-president teams to develop robust partnerships and create a focused agenda that moves both the board and the institution forward. Since 1985, nearly 900 teams have participated in the institute, and have found it essential to effective governance at their institutions. As a result of this Institute, board chairs and presidents will strengthen their relationship, find answers to emerging challenges, and develop an action agenda for the board.

Facilitated group sessions provide best practices in governance and effective strategies from other institutions, while president-chair team meetings and one-on-one consultations allow participants to focus on shared work at their own institutions.

By participating in this institute, participants will:

  • Enjoy highly engaging small-group sessions with higher education experts to discuss best practices and innovations in governance;
  • Develop an action agenda for improving board practice and advancing their institutions;
  • Participate in one-on-one consultations to focus on shared work at their institutions and assess the strength of their boards; and
  • Engage with a network of peers to learn from and draw upon after the institute concludes.

Event Resources


Day One: Monday, June 21
12:00 – 1:15 pm Lunch
1:15 – 2:30 pm Introductions and Setting the Stage
2:30 pm – 3:10 pm President and Board Chair Responsibilities and Expectations
3:10 pm – 3:20 pm Break
3:20 pm – 3:45 pm President & Board Chair Responsibilities/Expectations (Continued)
3:45 pm – 4:45 pm An Anatomy of Good Board Governance (Board Expectations)
4:45 pm – 5:45 pm Team Task #1 | An Honest Assessment of Your Board: What’s Your Board’s Anatomy
5:45 pm – 6:30 pm Open Time
6:30 pm Reception
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm Dinner 

Day Two: Tuesday, June 22
7:15 am – 8:00 am Breakfast
8:00 am – 8:30 am Setting the Stage: A New Day
8:30 am – 9:30 am Building a High Performing Board: Getting Your Board into Strategy Mode
9:30 am Team Meeting #2| Building a High-Performing Team  
10:30 am – 10:45 am Break
10:45 am – 12:15 pm Getting Your Board Risk-Savvy   
12:15 am – 1:00 pm Lunch   
1:00 pm – 2:00 pm Team Meeting #3 | Identifying Risks and Opportunities with Your Board
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm Assessing and Building Board and Presidential Effectiveness
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm Team Meeting #4 | Assessing President and Board Effectiveness
5:00 pm – 6:00 pm Open Time
6:00 pm Reception
7:00 pm Dinner 

Day Three: Wednesday, June 23
7:30 am – 8:00 am Breakfast
8:00 am – 9:00 am Setting the Stage: The Final Day
9:00 am – 10:00 am Renewing and Restructuring Committees
10:00 am – 11:30 am Team Meeting #5 | The Leadership Team Action Plan
11:30 am – 12:00 pm Closing Session
12:00 pm Lunch and Departure


Tom Flynn, Sr. Fellow at AGB Consulting
Thomas Flynn

Dr. Flynn is an AGB Senior Fellow and president emeritus of Alvernia University (PA), having served from 2005 to 2019. At Alvernia, he oversaw the development of strategic and campus master plans and the achievement of university status. Also completed were a comprehensive fundraising campaign and a successful effort to build a Recreation, Wellness, and Health Sciences Complex (named by the Board of Trustees for the Flynns). The O’Pake Institute for Ethics, Leadership, and Public Service; the Holleran Center for Community and Global Engagement; and the widely acclaimed Reading Collegiate Scholars Program for inner-city underrepresented youth were also established and partially endowed. Previously, Dr. Flynn served as Senior Advisor for the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) and as Provost and President at Millikin University (IL). He spent fourteen years on the faculty of Mount Saint Mary’s College (MD), where he was Professor of English and served as Dean of the College.
An undergraduate at Boston College, he earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in American Culture from the University of Michigan. He has completed professional development programs at Harvard University and received awards for his teaching, academic leadership, and community engagement, besides service on the boards of several higher education associations.

Dr. Eileen B. Wilson-Oyelaran, President Emerita of Kalamazoo College
Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran

Dr. Eileen B. Wilson-Oyelaran, President Emerita of Kalamazoo College, retired in 2016 after serving a President for eleven years. Her previous positions include vice president and dean of the college at Salem College (North Carolina) as well as faculty and administrative positions at Winston-Salem State University, North Carolina Wesleyan College, and Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria. During her tenure at Kalamazoo, she led the most successful fundraising campaign in the college’s history to support scholarships, endowed professorships, capital projects, and the creation of the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership. Under her leadership, the institution heightened trustee and alumni engagement, revised the curriculum, and made considerable strides toward becoming a more diverse and inclusive campus. Dr. Wilson-Oyelaran serves on the Board of Trustees of United States International University Africa (Nairobi, Kenya) and is also a trustee of alma mater, Pomona College, where she chairs the Educational Quality Committee.  She is the recipient of numerous honors and awards for her work in higher education, diversity, and inclusion, including the Gender Equity Architect Award from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, the Star Award from the Posse Foundation, and an American Council of Education Fellowship.

Registration & Refund Policy

Registration Fee – $8900: The registration fee includes program expenses for both the board chair and the president, private lodging for the nights of June 21 and June 22, meals during the Institute, and program materials.

COVID-19 Protocols

AGB places the health and safety its members first and foremost.
With that in mind, we share the COVID protocols that will be in place for the Institute.

-The City of Aspen requires masks be worn both in and around the hotel and in the city of Aspen, CO unless eating or drinking
-Sessions will be socially distant, with the proper 6 feet of spacing between attendees
-Hand sanitizing stations will be located throughout the hotel
-Meals will be served individually (not buffet style)
-Rooms will be sanitized daily and between guests, with a container of sanitizing wipes in each hotel room.

Please note, as the pandemic and its response changes, so will this tab.
To keep up-to-date on the local situation in Aspen, please check out their Health Department’s website.

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Emily Ancinec, assistant direct of programs,

Accommodations And Travel

St. Regis Aspen
315 E Dean St.
Aspen, CO 81611

Cancellation Policy

All cancellations and requests for refunds must be submitted in writing to AGB will issue a full refund if written notification of cancellation is provided to AGB by April 21, 2021 for the summer program. AGB will issue refunds after the meeting. No refunds will be issued for attendees who cancel after this date. AGB is not responsible for cancellations due to airline disruption, inclement weather or schedule changes.

Institute Application

To see a list of member institutions, see the Member List.

Board Chair Information

President's Information

Institute Contact

Please include information for person filling out the form if not the institution's board chair or president.

Payment and Refund Policies

Please select your preferred payment method. Upon review and acceptance of your application, you will be contacted by the AGB Registrar to complete your payment.

Requests for refunds must be submitted in writing to Cancellations received on or before April 21, 2021 are entitled to a full refund. No refunds will be granted for cancellations after these dates.