Creating an effective host committee for a non-profit organization’s annual gala involves strategic selection, clear expectations, and leveraging the influence and networks of committee members. Here are some best practices to guide this process:

  1. Define the Purpose and Role of the Host Committee

– Purpose: Clarify that the host committee’s main role is to support the event’s success by leveraging their networks, raising funds, and increasing attendance.

– Responsibilities: These can include ticket sales, securing sponsorships, promoting the event, and possibly assisting with planning and logistics.

  1. Select the Right Members

– Influential Individuals: Choose individuals who have significant social or professional networks, including community leaders, business executives, and philanthropists.

– Diverse Representation: Ensure the committee reflects diversity in terms of age, profession, and background to broaden your reach.

– Commitment: Select individuals who are passionate about the organization’s mission and are willing to invest time and resources.

  1. Establish Clear Expectations

– “Give or Get” Policy: Communicate the expectation that committee members either donate a specific amount or secure equivalent contributions from others. This could involve purchasing tickets, securing sponsorships, or direct donations.

– Attendance: Encourage members to attend meetings and the gala itself, emphasizing their visible support is crucial.

– Promotion: Ask members to promote the event through their social media, email lists, and personal networks.

  1. Provide Support and Resources

– Training and Materials: Equip committee members with talking points, promotional materials, and training on how to solicit donations and sell tickets.

– Regular Updates: Keep the committee informed with regular updates on the event’s progress, fundraising goals, and any changes.

– Support Team: Assign a staff member to support the committee, answering questions and assisting with their efforts.

  1. Engage and Motivate

– Kick-Off Meeting: Host an initial meeting to introduce members, outline goals, and energize the team.

– Regular Check-Ins: Schedule regular meetings or calls to track progress, address concerns, and keep members engaged.

– Recognition: Publicly acknowledge committee members’ contributions in event materials, social media, and during the gala.

  1. Leverage Networks Effectively

– Personalized Outreach: Encourage committee members to make personalized asks, leveraging their personal connections to secure donations and ticket sales.

– Host Pre-Events: Consider organizing smaller pre-event gatherings or networking opportunities hosted by committee members to build momentum and excitement for the gala.

  1. Track and Evaluate

– Monitor Progress: Keep track of ticket sales, donations, and sponsorships secured by each committee member.

– Feedback Loop: After the event, solicit feedback from committee members on what worked well and what could be improved for next time.

Example Approach for “Give or Get”

– Set a Minimum Goal: Each committee member is expected to raise or donate a minimum amount, such as $5,000.

– Provide Options: They can achieve this through various combinations, like:

– Personally donating $1,000 and selling $4,000 worth of tickets.

– Securing a $5,000 sponsorship.

– Hosting a small event where all proceeds go towards the gala.


Creating a successful host committee requires clear communication, strategic selection, and ongoing support. By implementing these best practices, non-profit organizations can maximize the potential of their host committees, ultimately leading to a more successful and impactful annual gala.

** At Glow Global Event, our GlowGetters are ready to help you assemble your host committee.