Starting a Museum
Alliance for Justice; Bolder Advocacy
Alliance for Justice and Bolder Advocacy share sample nonprofit governing documents, including forms, bylaws, grant agreements and governance policies.
Association of Science-Technology Centers
Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) offers resources and tips for planning a science center. The materials provide guidance in building a relationship with the community, preparing a case statement, developing a business plan, planning the facility, and understanding learning in informal settings.
BoardSource shares a guide on starting a nonprofit organization that explains board roles and responsibilities and steps for getting started. The resource also shares some helpful resources, such as sample job descriptions for board officers and a helpful bibliography (PDF, 38 pages).
Citizen Media Law Project
Citizen Media Law Project provides an article on the steps to take to start a nonprofit corporation.
Internal Revenue Service
The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) Form 1023 Package consolidates all the forms necessary to apply for exemption and includes a handy checklist to help reduce common errors (PDF).
Internal Revenue Service
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers a companion Instruction booklet that explains Form 1023 (PDF).
Law for Change
Law for Change shares a list of issues to consider before starting a social sector organization.
Museums Alberta shares Thinking About Starting a Museum? A Discussion Guide and Workbook on Museums and Heritage Projects (PDF). The 37-page workbook is divided into 3 sections. The first discussed the functions of a museum and the resources needed to operate one. The second section has a series of questions to evaluate goals and objectives, the community's needs, and available resources. The third section offers over 50 alternative ideas for heritage projects that may achieve the goals without starting a museum.
Nolo Press makes Chapter 1 of How to Form a Nonprofit Corporation available online. This chapter provides a general overview of nonprofit corporations and their advantages and disadvantages, with a special emphasis on nonprofit corporations exempt from federal corporate income taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It also discusses basic corporate concepts and classifications that help explain where nonprofits fit into the larger legal and corporate world.
Texas Commission on the Arts
The Texas Commission on the Arts shares a Tools for Results toolkit that can help a new museum get started. The toolkit covers 7 areas: nonprofit basics, fundraising and development, programs and exhibitions, cultural tourism, marketing, advocacy, and leadership transition. Each section covers basic concepts, best practices, things to consider, ideas for implementing change, common mistakes to avoid, and ways to get started. Each section also includes sample forms, checklists, and templates.