Building Financial Leadership Within Your Nonprofit (Jessica McClain)

November 2023

As a nonprofit leader, how do you assess and ensure your organization has the financial tools, talents and resources to best advance your mission? Jessica McClain, a nonprofit leader and CPA recently named one of the Most Powerful Women in Accounting in 2023, advocates in episode #234 of Your Path to Nonprofit Leadership how building a culture of open communication between your accounting department and other organizational leaders can better integrate your organization's financial picture, especially when engaging new prospects and stewarding existing donors. Learn how business acumen is playing an integral part of financial leadership within nonprofits as she shares her advice for attracting, retaining, and advancing women in finance leadership positions.

"Nonprofits are businesses exposed to external challenges and should have leadership focused on the financial reputation and stability of the organization." 




Jessica E. McClain serves as the Chief Financial Officer for Girl Scouts Nation's Capital. In this role, she has strategic responsibility for finance and accounting, property, product program, retail merchandise, and business operations. Prior to transitioning to the not-for-profit industry, she spent 11 years in public accounting. Jessica represents Maryland as an AICPA Council At-Large Member. Locally, she is a Board member of the Maryland Association of CPAs Foundation, the Greater Washington Society of CPAs, and the Towson University Accounting Advisory Board. Jessica gives back to the community as the National Treasurer for Omicron Delta Kappa Honor Society. She previously served on the AICPA Women's Initiatives Executive Committee, the AICPA Foundation Board of Trustees, and the AICPA Student Recruitment Committee. Jessica's accomplishments include being named a 2023 CPA Practice Advisor Most Powerful Women in Accounting, a 2022 Washington Business Journal 40 Under 40 honoree, the 2022 NABA DC Chapter Outstanding Accounting Leader of the Year, a Maryland Association of CPAs 2021 Women to Watch- Emerging Leader, a Black CPA Centennial's 40 Under 40 Black CPA Award honoree, a 2021 AICPA Outstanding Young CPA Award recipient, and a 3x CPA Practice Advisor 40 Under 40 Professional. Jessica is a graduate of the highly competitive AICPA Leadership Academy and earned her bachelor's degree in business administration from Towson University and her master's degree in accounting from George Washington University. Jessica is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in Virginia.