Belong - We Are Better Together

The Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence (NICNE) has been working to strengthen organizations across northern Illinois, southern Wisconsin and beyond to ensure a strong vibrant nonprofit sector since August 2004. We take pride in being your center for nonprofit excellence. NICNE works to meet our mission to promote, model and grow innovation, excellence and social impact as we:

  • Build a stronger, more connected sector.
  • Uphold the vital work of nonprofits.
  • Promote the economic and social impact of the sector.
  • Provide timely training, consultation and reliable resources and information.
  • Build strong, competent board members.
  • Lead racial equity work and build a culture of belonging in our region.

Nonprofits improve lives and NICNE improves nonprofits by working to bridge gaps between sectors, remove barriers to collaboration and lead social change. We hope that you recognize NICNE as a valuable partner helping you to strengthen your organization and uplift the value, creativity, resilience and impact of the sector. When you become a NICNE member you belong to a community of nonprofit leaders, board members and cross-sector partners who share common interests and goals and who support one another as we work together to meet our missions to make our community a better place every single day.


NICNE membership provides you with access to information and resources you need to build and lead a strong organization. When you join NICNE, your entire board, staff, and volunteers will benefit from:

Program Discounts

  • 10% discount on the five-course Certificate in Nonprofit Management program ($125 total savings)
  • 10-15% discount on other NICNE programs, training and events.
  • 25% discount on space rental at NIU Rockford or Naperville campus for your meetings or events.

Customized Services, Technical Assistance and Resource Support

  • Exclusive access to the 2023 Directory of Community, Corporate and Private Foundations of Northern Illinois.
  • On-demand technical assistance from NICNE staff and resources from our library.
  • Access to capacity-building services from our professional services team, including research and evaluation from Northern Illinois University's Center for Governmental Studies.
  • Exclusive prerelease access to the triennial 2023 State of the Nonprofit Sector Report and Salary and Benefits Survey.
  • Access to GuideStar Pro search features and other funding directories with support from NICNE staff.
  • Learn new ideas to improve organizational impact and foster a culture of sustained innovation, partnership and collaboration.

Promotion Opportunities

  • Exclusive opportunities to promote your news and events in NICNE's monthly newsletter which reaches more than 2,000 area nonprofit professionals.
  • Promotion of news and events on NICNE’s Facebook page.
  • Free unlimited postings on NICNE's nonprofit job board.

Membership Information

Membership extends from January to December, renewable on an annual basis. To ensure that all organizations can belong, our sliding scale membership fees are based on your self-reported annual operating budget. We take pride in being your center for nonprofit excellence and hope we have an opportunity to work with you in 2023. Please contact associate director Billie Callahan at with questions.

Membership Rates 

Annual Operating Budget Member Fees
Under $50,000 $125
$50,000 – $99,000 $175
$100,000 – $199,999 $225
$200,000 – $499,999 $275
$500,000 – $999,999 $325
$1M – $2M $375
$2 M – $3.99M $425
$4 M – $9.9M $475
$10M + $525

Membership Forms

Upon completion of payment above you will be directed to a brief membership enrollment questionnaire. Please email Billie Callahan, associate director, at with any questions or if you would prefer to complete paper enrollment forms. 2023 Membership packets will be mailed at the beginning of January.

Operating Budget Size
Organization Name:
Primary Contact Email:

Contact Us

Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence
8500 East State St
Rockford, IL 61108

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