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Case Study: Endowment Growth And Spending

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Example Client Profile

A college foundation had an active endowment which its leadership felt needed a performance review. They wanted to revisit their fiscal strategy, focusing on endowment growth and control mechanisms. They sought resources to help them enhance their financial health through action plans to raise capital through endowment growth as well as setting parameters around spending.

Action Steps Taken

Our Nonprofit Consulting Team engaged the foundation’s leadership, facilitating a series of discussions focused on their endowment and fundraising. We identified a strong development plan and ongoing best practice implementation as solutions to meet their goals. We:

  • Presented to the board on endowment best practices and growth.
  • Reviewed and audited the current endowment and worked with the staff on refining reporting.
  • Attended the annual board retreat and conducted workshops focusing on endowment spending best practices and strategic endowment growth.
  • Crafted a draft endowment development plan, including timelines and metrics to help ensure the organization and the board stayed on track.
  • Collaborated with the organization to review and make recommendations to their gift acceptance policy and established best practice recommendations for endowment pledges.
  • Organized quarterly conference calls with the Chief Financial Officer to monitor progress towards the goals.
  • Followed up at the next board meeting to check in on their ongoing endowment activities and make any necessary adjustments.

Impact

  • Established new gift acceptance and endowment spending policies compliant with UPMIFA/UPMIA (also updated bylaws).
  • Gained full board approval and steps forward for the new endowment development plan.
  • Cultivated the board members’ understanding of their roles and responsibilities in building and governing endowment growth.

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