Who should have the right to set the objectives of nonprofit organizations, hire their managers, set compensation standards, and in general control these organizations? Current law and public policy do not provide answers to these questions. Often, nonprofit organizations are controlled by managers and members of the boards of directors or trustees (many of whom are appointed by management). The goals of these individuals may not best serve the interests of those who support the operation of nonprofit organizations. This article proposes a legal and policy framework for empowering consumers, donors, and sponsors—those who have an economic demand for the nonprofit form of organization. The framework establishes a formal status of membership, accords standing in the court of law to members, enhances direct information dissemination by nonprofit organizations, and empowers state‐sponsored agencies to support and oversee nonprofit organizations.