Governance & Leadership

A strong leadership team is essential to the success and sustainability of a club. Building a successful leadership team requires thought and planning around the following areas:

Required Officer Roles 


  • Leads the club in its engagement, programming, and services for alumni in the region or affinity
  • Maintains responsibility for the overall operation, organization, and supervision of the club, including fiscal responsibility, the appointment/management of other officers, and succession planning
  • Usually acts as the primary contact with the staff liaison and the Wharton School


  • Maintains and supervises club bank account, pays all club bills, and records sources of income
  • Prepares and submits financial statements to the officers and members
  • Files all required tax documents
  • For U.S. Clubs: If the annual income of the club is more than $50,000, the club must file U.S. IRS Form 990. Clubs with an annual income of less than $50,000 may still be required to file U.S. IRS Form 990N

Recommended Officer Roles

Vice President

  • Maintains responsibility for the arrangement, coordination, and supervision of programs and services
  • Collaborates with officers to generate ideas and program strategy
  • Functions as presiding officer when the president is unavailable.
  • Depending on the size of the club, there may be more than one vice president with oversight for a specific function or committee within the club

Secretary/VP of Communications

  • Attends all formal meetings and records and distributes minutes
  • Assists the club officers, particularly the president, in administrative matters
  • Informs the staff liaison of club elections, results, and meeting minutes
    • If a club does not elect to have a secretary as an officer, either the President or the Treasurer must agree to inform the staff liaison of club elections and results

VP of Membership

  • Creates a strategy for membership including a plan to recruit and retain new members
  • Welcomes and recognizes new members during events
  • Gathers feedback from existing and new members to improve programming


  • Serves as the official point of contact for all matters related to the club website
  • Updates and maintains (or manages an administrator to update and maintain) all website content
  • Manages email communications and online event registration, including initial troubleshooting
  • RECOMMENDED: Two individuals should serve as webmasters, dividing the responsibilities listed above based on your club’s leadership structure and individual needs

VP of GOLD (Graduates of the Last Decade) Alumni Programming

  • Plans and executes programming and events that appeal to recent graduates (0-10 years out)
  • Represents the interests of young alumni on the club board
  • Collaborates with VP of Communications or Webmaster to develop a communications strategy to target young alumni
  • Helps coordinate POP (Pub Outside of Penn) events over the summer months 
  • Recruits additional recent graduates to volunteer with the goal of forming a GOLD alumni committee

President Emeritus

  • Serves as a mentor for the current President during his/her term
  • Provides historical knowledge and context of the club when appropriate
  • Helps maintain club succession plan
  • Participates in leadership meetings