This page is intended as a resource for members of the NTC Session Advisory Committee.

1.General Resources


This committee is being managed and supported by Drew, NTEN’s Senior Program Manager.

If at any time you need support you can reach out to

Working Communications

Slack Team: For quick and short communications we have set up a Slack Team with a channel for each phase. We will use this space to share updates, ask/answer questions, get reminders, share calendar reminders, etc.

You will receive an invite to join this team:

If you are new to this tool and need help getting setup or even a walkthrough on how to use it, please let us know. We’ll happily schedule a quick call or video chat to support you.

Google Docs: We will use these as needed for collaborative work. Document links will be posted here as well as in Slack when appropriate.


You can also download an iCal feed here to add it to your own calendar.

Overall Timeline for Proposals

Public Proposals: July 8 – August 9
Public Community Input: August 19 – August 30
Session Advisory Input: August 19-September 13
Final Review: September 16 – September 29
Notifications: September 30

2.Monthly Calls

Committee members have received calendar invites for these calls. Links to the live call can be found in the event description.

Initial Call – June 13, 2019

You can find a video recording of this event here.

Proposal Call – July 11, 2019

Call recording and materials will be posted after the live meeting.

Voting Call – August 15, 2019

Call recording and materials will be posted after the live meeting.

Final Call – October 10, 2019

Call recording and materials will be posted after the live meeting.

3.Pre-Proposals Phase

We want to present the NTEN community a list of 30 suggested topics for each breakout session category when we open the public proposal process on July 9. Our goal is to provide potential session submitters insight into what type of content this advisory committee feels is important. We’re also looking for your help in developing a bank of content tags that we can use to sort sessions.

Desired Topics & Suggested Tags

Your first task as a committee member is to help us identify these topics and content tags. Please do the following:

  • For the category you have been assigned please generate a list of 25 session topics. Think of it as creating what you perceive as a balanced agenda for your category.
  • Please also generate 20 suggested tags for your content area.
  • Use this Google Spreadsheet to complete the task. Instructions and examples are in the spreadsheet.

Photo & Bio

Please make sure that we have received a professional photo and bio (1 short paragraph) written in the third person. We will use these on the conference website to share what the Session Advisory Committee is and who is serving on it each year.

Deadline for topics & tags: June 28, 2019

4.Public Submissions Phase

During this phase, the committee member’s role is largely one of support for the public proposal process. There are numerous ways this can be achieved.


We are always looking to add new voices and perspectives to our educational lineup at the conference. Committee members are encouraged to reach out to their own networks and communities to encourage others to participate in the proposal process.

Promo Kit (Google Doc) – Will be added when ready
Image Resources (Dropbox) – Will be added when ready

We have also put together a few resources to help with any promotional efforts.

Community Support

As part of our community-driven process, we offer a couple of opportunities for support to those developing session proposals. Committee members are invited to join and participate in any and all of these activities but it is not a requirement.

Community Call

We’ll hold a webinar-style community call to share information around the process and timelines for public submissions of session proposals. A recording and copy of the slides will be posted here after the event.

Date & Time July 9 11AM-12PM Pacific Time (1 hr max)
Event URL:

Open Office Hours

Ash Shepherd, NTEN Education Director, and other veteran NTEN community members will hold drop-in office hours in an open video hangout to be available to offer support and answer questions.

Open Office Hours #1
Date & Time: July 18 12PM-1PM PT (1 hr)
Event URL:

Open Office Hours #2
Date & Time:  August 6 11am-12PM PT (1 hr)
Event URL:

Peer-to-Peer Support

Community members are encouraged to join our online proposal prep group (Link Coming Soon) to request and provide feedback on their proposal drafts during the session submission period.

To request feedback:

  1. Submit your session draft through the NTC site
  2. Join the Online Proposal Prep group (Link Coming Soon)
  3. Create a new discussion post in the session feedback group (if requesting feedback on multiple sessions, be sure to create a separate thread for each one)
  4. Use your session title as the subject line
  5. Paste the link to your session from the NTC site, add any notes, and post
  6. Perhaps give suggestions on other sessions while you wait for feedback on yours

To give feedback:

  1. Join the Online Proposal Prep group (Link Coming Soon)
  2. Look through the subject lines for a session title that matches your interests
  3. Click through to the discussion and reply publicly with your feedback
  4. Keep your comments constructive and actionable
  5. We’d like everyone who requested feedback to receive at least one response, so try to prioritize posts with no replies

General Resources

The following are some general resources you can point folks to (or review yourself) for general information during this phase.

Submitting Proposals

It is perfectly appropriate for members of the Session Advisory Committee to submit session proposals. In addition to being engaged volunteers, members are thought leaders within the NTEN community and are encouraged to share their expertise.

You can learn more and submit proposals here.

5.Voting & Community Input Phase

Overall Voting Process

Each committee member has a total of 30 votes to cast. Think of it as if you were selecting the agenda of 25 sessions for your category. You can always reference the Suggested Topics List but you are not obligated to only vote for items on that list. Vote for what you think will make the best agenda.

  • Login at with your usual account. It has been assigned the Session Advisory Role
  • 25 votes in your assigned category. You can reference this page if you need a reminder of your assigned category
  • 5 wild card votes that you can cast in any category (your assigned one or any of the other ones)

Other Tips

  • Categories: You will need to expand the “More Search Options” to filter down the list to see only your assigned category.
  • Text Search Box: We made significant improvements in the search box this year and will be a valuable way to sift through the pool of proposals.
  • Tags: These can also be helpful in finding specific session types you are looking to find.

Review Lens

The following is the Session Advisory Committee review criteria. These criteria were shared with the public during the proposal stage. Your efforts go a long way to allowing us to create a balanced and inclusive agenda.

  • Is the proposal content of current interest or on an emerging topic?
  • Does this proposal support NTEN’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion?
  • Has the proposal content been implemented?
  • Is the proposal an innovative solution, or does it offer a fresh treatment?
  • Does the proposal address or support solving significant problems in nonprofit technology?
  • Are the learning objectives clearly defined so that the audience knows what they’re leaving with?
  • Do the session designer and speaker(s) have expertise on this topic?

Missing Topics

If after voting you feel there are critical topics missing you can add them to the “Missing Topics” document. This will be considered as we build out the final agenda.

Voting Activity Visibility

All your activity (voting and commenting) is only visible to members of the Session Advisory group. It is in no way visible to the public.

Voting Platform

All voting activity happens on the website and using your regular login account. If you run into any issues with this send us an email and we respond as soon as possible.

Voting Page Elements Explained

  1. Votes remaining out of your total of 30. (“How far do I have to go still”)
  2. Select this button to vote for a particular session. Clicking on it will also remove your vote.
  3. Select this button to indicate a proposal was read so you can see that in list views (more details below)
  4. This is the total votes for this proposal. This does not reflect public voting, only votes from members of the Session Advisory Committee.

SAC Voting Defined

Randomized List View

The list views (all proposals tab and search results) have been randomized but your personal randomization is cached via a cookie. This allows you to see the same view each time you return as well as not give preference to proposals based on time submitted, alpha sorting, etc.

Viewing/Voting Activity History

There are three ways to see your overall history of your activity during this process:

My Votes Tab: Click on this tab to see a list of all the session you have voted on

20NTC My Votes

Icons: In list views, you will see a thumbs up icon for proposals you have voted for and a checkmark on proposals you have marked as read.

20NTC Voting Icons

Voting FAQs

What am I required to complete?
You are to cast twenty-five votes for sessions within your assigned category and five additional “wild card” votes wherever you like.

Can I vote for my own session?
Yes, while your vote certainly carries a bit more weight as a member of the Session Advisory Committee than if you were just in the public voting there is still enough volume to balance out any unfair advantage.

Can I vote on sessions outside my assigned group?
Yes, you have been allotted five “wild card” votes that you can cast outside your assigned category.


Deadline Sept 13: We would like all Session Advisory voting to be complete by Sept 13. Sooner is always fine but at that point, we will be building out the aggregate scores and agenda working towards the Sept 30 deadline for public notifications.

Session Advisory Voting Results
In order to keep the results private for the Session Advisory group, you have been given a different user role within the system. This means that while you are logged in you will be able to vote and see aggregate votes for the Session Advisory voting but will not see the overall results of the public community input activities. We want your voting to be independent of public results.

Possible Merge Sessions
In the instance where there are similar sessions that both receive a high level of support, there is a possibility of merging the sessions. In order to avoid confusion, this process is done in a way that manages roles and expectations.

  • The session with the highest votes will be offered a spot on the agenda
  • We reach out to the initial session to see if they are in need of and/or open to adding additional presenters
  • This is confirmed with the lead presenter first to avoid awkward interactions between community members
  • Then an introduction is made making it clear who will be the session leader and who will be an additional speaker
  • This helps manage expectations for who sets the vision for the overall session, is responsible for making this happen and who is in a supporting role

Final Ranking
Each session receives a final score/rank. This is accomplished by aggregating the score across all voting groups (Community 60%, Session Advisory Committee 40%). Each group is given a different weight to reflect our values of making this process as community-driven as possible.

Walkthrough Call

Please see the Monthly Calls section for a recording of the call where we walked through the process.

6.Final Selection Review

A critical part of the final selection process is to review the overall lineup of sessions to ensure the following:

  • There is a balance of topics within each category
  • There is a balance across the overall lineup
  • If there are any critical topics we need to hold a session spot for

For this step, NTEN staff will share the final list of possible selected sessions for this committee to offer an additional round of review and feedback with these filters.

Feedback Document
A document with instructions to help facilitate this process will be shared here at the appropriate time.

7.Program Development

Wrap-Up & Next Steps Call

Thank You
Yes, we are going to say thank you again for sharing your time, expertise and insights as we work to create an amazing educational program for the 19NTC event. Your efforts help us stay true-to-course in making the community the primary focus of our work.

Official Commitment
At this point in the process, your official commitment as a committee member has been fulfilled. Moving towards the event we will continue to periodic updates as a matter respect for the effort you put in to get us to this point and information for regarding registration.

Additional Opportunities

The following are a number of opportunities we will update you about as a matter of interest with no action required as part of your membership on this committee.

Slack Team
We will continue to share periodic updates as a VIP back channel as valued members of our community and contributors to the development of this event.

Open Sessions
Once we identify any critical topics not covered by public submission or encounter dropped sessions we will share updates in case you know of a good resource we should invite to present.

Additional Speakers
Each year we have a number of sessions that for a wide variety of reasons are looking for a secondary speaker. We will share a link here (Coming Soon) when the public-facing resource is opened up in case you want to point others to it or engage yourself.

8.At The NTC

At the conference, we create a few opportunities for you to be recognized and connect as a group.

You will be able to find a Session Advisory Committee Member button in the speaker lounge.

Birds of A Feather Table
Each day there will be a Birds of a Feather table created for current and past Session Advisory Committee members. This is a chance to connect with other folks in person in a casual setting.

Suggest Edit