for Consultants and Services Providers

Oregon’s nonprofits are in the business of helping our communities grow and thrive.

YOU are in the business of helping Oregon’s nonprofits be the best they can be.

NAO is here to CONNECT you with Oregon’s nonprofits to help them achieve even greater positive impact in the lives of Oregonians.

Through NAO you can expand your reach, grow your business and help NAO build a strong and thriving nonprofit sector – become an NAO Business Verified Affiliate Member today! Through NAO’s Referral Service you can connect your business with nonprofits that seek NAO’s advice, support, and programs daily. All NAO Business Verified Affiliate Members are eligible for direct curated matchmaking and referrals through NAO’s Referral Service.

Vetting Criteria & Benefits

NAO Referral Service Vetting Criteria

Those wishing to qualify as an NAO Business Verified Affiliate Member must meet the following standards and complete a verification process that includes:

  • Agreement with NAO’s mission, Theory of Change and Equity Statement.
  • Agreement with NAO’s referral service process and terms.
  • Maintain a current NAO Business Verified Affiliate Membership.
  • Business license to work in the locations you serve and/or where you are located.
  • Proof of providing expert technical services to nonprofits (i.e. client list).
  • Three nonprofit client references that can be verified.
  • NAO strongly recommends you carry general or professional liability insurance.  Some referral opportunities may be limited to those with the necessary coverage(s).
  • Ongoing participation in NAO’s programs to connect, improve and advance the pool of verified consultants and service providers serving Oregon.

Enhanced Benefits for NAO Business Verified Affiliates

  • Greater visibility as a nonprofit service provider with a “Verified” listing in the Directory.
  • Eligibility for referral opportunities when nonprofits request capacity-building services.
  • Eligibility for presentation opportunities through NAO's networks, workshops, and webinars.
  • Sole proprietors and individual LLC consultants can opt into a community of practice.
  • Opportunity to share subject-matter expert and thought leadership resources in NAO communications/website based on NAO need and invitation.
  • NAO reserves member benefit program, sponsorship, and enhanced marketing opportunities for Business Verified Affiliates.
  • Includes all basic benefits for NAO Business Affiliate Members listed below.

Basic Benefits of NAO Business Affiliate Membership

  • Basic listing in NAO’s Directory.
  • Subscription to NAO e-news, public policy alerts, and other significant sector reports.
  • Invitation to networking events for nonprofit capacity builders.
  • Discounted rates to attend NAO's professional development and learning programs.
  • Discounted rates through some of NAO’s partner programs such as; Mac's List, VaVa Virtual, Office Depot, Donorsearch, Bloomerang, GrantStation, GNSA, etc.

Join NAO Today!

Referral Service Process & Terms

Referral Process

A direct referral takes place when a nonprofit contacts NAO to connect with the right consultant or service provider for a specific piece of work. As the state association, any of the over 20,000 nonprofits in Oregon have access to NAO’s Referral Service and to receive NAO’s assistance.  

When NAO receives a referral request from a nonprofit, we assess the nonprofit’s needs and evaluate the pool of available NAO Business Verified Affiliate Members who are qualified to provide the requested services. Matches are made based on a number of factors including: areas of expertise, qualifications, project location, availability, fit, and how those factors align with the nonprofit’s articulated needs and preferences.

Referral Terms

  • For successful matches, a 10% referral fee is due to NAO from the service provider on contracts equal to or greater than $1,000 (based on the total amount of the contract).
  • Referral fees are due to NAO within 30 days of the first client payment to the service provider.
  • For contracts over $20,000, and/or contracts with variable terms such as interim executive placements and executive searches, NAO will work with service providers to determine a fair and mutually agreed upon payment schedule.
  • There is no remittance due to NAO for indirect or passive referrals that take place through NAO’s many programs and during the course of regular customer service activities.
  • There is no remittance due to NAO in cases where NAO’s Business Verified Affiliate Member has a separate membership benefit agreement in place with NAO or is legally restricted from providing a referral remittance of this nature.
  • NAO provides any nonprofit matched with services with a post-project evaluation.
  • With respect to each other, NAO and the NAO Business Verified Affiliate Member are considered Independent Contractors. NAO’s Referral Service is not intended to create a partnership, joint venture or employment relationship between NAO and the NAO Business Verified Affiliate Member.

Communities of Practice & Networking Events


A Community of Practice is a focused community of nonprofit consulting practitioners who provide similar types of consulting services to nonprofit organizations. A Community of Practice provides opportunities for experienced practitioners to meet face-to-face and connect with their peers to discuss topics relevant to their areas of service, develop relationships with other practitioners, and broaden their support network as they learn from each other. NAO has opportunities for NAO Business Verified Affiliate Members to opt into the following Communities of Practice:

  1. Leadership and Succession (Portland)
  2. Fund Development (Portland)
  3. Regional Organizational Development (Bend)
  4. Latina Associates for Collaborative Endeavors (LACE) (Statewide)

Community of Practice meetings are planned for September 2018. Watch this space for more details!

Who can sign up to join an NAO Community of Practice?

All current NAO Business Verified Affiliate Members are eligible to join a Community of Practice based on their key areas of service.

Commitment and Expectations

Communities of Practice thrive with ongoing and sustained commitment and active participation from its members. NAO seeks to create communities that are inclusive, where deep relationships and trust can be built while welcoming new voices to the conversation. NAO expects to develop additional Communities of Practice based on demand and need. If you are interested in joining an NAO Community of Practice or want more information, contact Susan Parsons at


NAO will host two to four affordable networking events per year for consultants or service providers who are interested in connecting with their peers as well as interested in becoming NAO Business Verified Affiliate Members. More details to come for these events starting September 2018. 


NAO's Referral Service contact:

Need additional information? E-mail and Susan Parsons, Resources and Referral would be happy to assist you!

Susan Parsons
Resources and Referral Manager