The Arc Greater Twin Cities (Arc) has chosen UnitedHealth Group and Dorsey & Whitney LLP as its Agency Partners of the Year for the work provided to conduct a pro bono nonprofit review of the organization. UHG and Dorsey will be honored at The Arc’s annual meeting and volunteer celebration on May 5th.
UHG and Dorsey have a seven-year history of partnering on pro bono projects, in particular providing wills clinics for low-income seniors. In 2010, UHG expressed an interest in providing nonprofit pro bono work, as well. A seasoned Dorsey nonprofit review team, led by Michael McCormick, Brett Atwood and Dorsey alum Hattie Bildsten, provided training and support to the UHG team during the nonprofit review. Both Dorsey and UHG had individuals serving on The Arc’s board at the time the review project kicked off.
The Arc is a nonprofit with a mission “[t]o secure for all people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families the opportunity to realize their goals of where and how they live, learn, work and play.” This Arc chapter was founded in 1946 and in 2006 they merged with another local chapter. Arc’s membership is comprised of parents, people with disabilities, professionals and concerned persons, working together to promote opportunities for people with disabilities to lead productive and fulfilling lives. Programs and services span all stages of life, from birth through the senior years, and include advocacy, family education, community inclusion programs, public awareness, networks of family support and multicultural outreach.
The UHG team was led by Eric Brotten and three other UHG lawyers. Many additional attorneys also assisted in the review. At the time the review team was formulated, Arc had just completed a new strategic plan and only a few years had passed since the merger of the two local Arc organizations. Thus, the timing was perfect for Arc to complete a self-assessment. The review ended up covering six core topics: (1) Tax Matters: political activity/lobbying and unrelated activity; (2) Fundraising: multi-state registration, review solicitation materials/disclosures, endowments, investment policies and grant policies; (3) Governance: Articles, Bylaws, Board evaluation and orientation, conflict of interest policy and crisis communication plan; (4) Executive Compensation and Review: reasonableness review, executive review and succession planning; (5) Privacy and Intellectual Property: confidentiality, PCI/HIPAA issues, risk management, website and social networking/domain name policies; and (6) Employee: staff evaluations, policy review and noncompete agreements.
The review was incredibly comprehensive and resulted in the updating of many Arc policies and documents. The review process was an extremely valuable experience for everyone involved and Arc believes it can now deliver quality services to its constituents even more effectively.
Dorsey and UHG are ramping up to start another nonprofit review project this June.