Governance & Planning

Whether as a NEAR Committee participant or a Board member, volunteers shape our direction, care for good governance, and develop investment in the Near East community development.

NEAR maintains a resident-driven Board of Directors. More than half live, work, or worship in the Near East area. Our Board is a hands-on group of volunteer leaders who support and guide NEAR leadership and raise funds and awareness for our organization and community.

We look for leaders who want to take an active role in the future of this community. Volunteering with NEAR is a great way to develop relationships with other leaders and neighbors, and learn about development and real estate opportunities in the Near East community.

You can contact John Franklin Hay for more information about volunteering with NEAR.

Committee Involvement
NEAR Committees provide an opportunity for people to get involved without the level of responsibility expected of Board membership. Below is a list of committees open to volunteers and their role within our organization.

  • Housing & Project Development Committee
    Identifying opportunities to develop and renew housing and real estate in Near East neighborhoods, and finding ways to fund, manage, and complete projects.
  • Finance Committee
    Providing financial management and guidance for NEAR.
  • Marketing & Fund Development Committee
    Planning for and sharing the mission of NEAR throughout the Near East and greater Indianapolis community, with the goal of raising funds and attracting more residents and partners to engage in bettering our community.
  • Economic Development Committee
    Identifying opportunities to support existing businesses, draw in new commercial development on the Near Eastside, and strategically support the 10-year economic goals of the IndyEast Promise Zone (learn more about the IndyEast Promise Zone at

Board Membership
Board membership requires a significant commitment and responsibility to NEAR and the Near East community. Nominations to the Board often come from direct Committee engagement. Board members are expected to:

  • Attend and participate in six board meetings a year.
  • Participate and contribute on a committee or task group.
  • Contribute annually financially to the organization.
  • Encourage financial contributions and volunteer engagement from other individuals and organizations.
  • Act as an ambassador to the Near East community, including participating in as many NEAR-hosted events as possible.