Nonprofit Accounting Basics

Definition of an Officer

Note: Articles published before January 1, 2017 may be out of date. We are in the process of updating this content.

An officer is a person elected or appointed to manage an organization’s daily operations, such as a president, vice president, secretary, or treasurer. State law may dictate who will be considered an officer, but reference should also be made to the organization’s organizing document, bylaws, and resolutions of the governing body.

An individual who has served at any time during the organization’s tax year will be considered a current officer.

For purposes of reporting in Part VII, Section A and Schedule J of the Form 990, the top management official and the top financial official will be treated as officers, regardless of their actual titles.

The chief management official is the person who has ultimate responsibility for implementing the decisions of the governing body or for supervising the management, administration, or operation of the organization.

The top financial official is the person who ultimately has responsibility for the management of the organization’s finances.