Stories Matter Foundation’s Associate Board

Welcome! We’re glad you’re here. If you’re looking for a way to get involved with our organization, you’re in the right place!

The Stories Matter Foundation (SMF) Associate Board is a group of Chicagoland professionals dedicated to supporting SMF’s mission to build communities of storytellers to question, explore, and celebrate their worlds using the power of the written word.

Assistance often includes but is not limited to event set up and staffing, sending out fundraising emails, and more. Members of the Associate Board have the opportunity to get involved with the following events:

What does the Associate Board do?

The Associate Board supports SMF by volunteering at the organization’s yearly events, fundraisers, and supporting SMF in its scholarship selection processes. The board serves as an integral part of the SMF community and bolsters a wide range of events and activities including:

  • Building and strengthening partnerships with other Chicagoland organizations for our fundraising efforts.
  • Other support as needed.

What are the benefits of joining the Associate Board?

The Associate Board is a ton of fun! It connects like-minded Chicagoland writers, readers, and professionals who are committed to our writing community. In addition to networking opportunities, members get to meet and collaborate with the governing Board, staff, and faculty. 

Some members of the Associate Board would be invited to join SMF’s governing board. Currently two former Associate Board members serve on the governing board and help guide the organization.

  • Networking – This role works shoulder to shoulder with Chicago writers, reviewers, and community members.
  • Social events – We have so much fun hosting parties, write-ins, and working together.
  • Professional skills – Get a first hand look at all the details behind event planning, fundraising, and the publishing world. 
  • Your writing career – Being surrounded by writers only helps keep you inspired and focused.
  • Make your mark – Be a part of Chicago’s vibrant writing community. 

SMF Ambassadors

Associate Board members are our best ambassadors for Stories Matter Foundation! They welcome new students, share the SMF story, connect people during social events, and more. There are specific events, fundraisers, and scholarship programs throughout the year that rely on the Associate Board to help support.

What are the requirements to join the Associate Board?

  • Share SMF’s mission and values!
  • Attend at least two quarterly meetings per year.
  • Join the Associate Board for at least 12 months. 
  • Volunteer for events as available.
  • Have fun!

Is there a fundraising requirement for members?

No. We only ask that Associate Board members donate their time to volunteering and planning. We do have a fundraising committee that assists specifically with partnership outreach efforts which we encourage interested members to join. 

What is the time commitment?

This is up to you! We ask that Associate Board Members volunteer when they can and attend at least two of the four quarterly meetings each year. Majority of our meetings are held virtually, with at least one in-person gathering a year. As a general guide, many of our members spend a total of 10-20 hours per year, but it varies depending on schedules, availability, and more.

How can I join the Associate Board or learn more?

If you would like to join the Associate Board, please send a short interest statement to Angie at as well as send any questions you have. 

Feel free to include some of the following in your interest statement:

  • How you found us.
  • If you have taken a StoryStudio Chicago class or attended an event.
  • Your experience as a writer and/or reader.