Skip to main content
Horizontal Rule

Back to basics: An endowment refresher course


More often than not, boards of directors of nonprofit organizations are made up of business and community leaders who are not typically embedded in the day-to-day operations of charitable organizations. That's why it's important to focus on continuous learning opportunities for your board members, including (and especially) board members' roles in maintaining your organization's financial stability. 

A woman stands next to a dry erase board on which is drawn workflow charts.

An endowment is a key component of achieving that financial stability, and, if your organization has established its endowment or reserve fund at the community foundation, you're likely in close touch with the team at the community foundation about keeping your board members informed about endowment-building strategies and successes. We are happy to help! 

At your next board meeting, consider reminding your directors about the reasons your donors make gifts to your organization's endowment fund at the community foundation. Here's a list of talking points to help get you started:

  • The donor wants to leave a legacy to the community after the donor's death so that the donor's commitment to your mission continues beyond the donor's lifetime.
  • The donor wants to ensure that family members can experience the joy of giving for years to come by setting up long-term support for your organization, such as a gift to your endowment fund, or even a designated fund at the community foundation, which include guidance for connection points for family members to stay involved.
  • The donor wants to make the most of tax benefits associated with setting up a future gift to your organization, including avoiding capital gains tax, securing an income tax deduction up front, and even retaining a life income stream.
  • The donor owns certain assets that are not suitable to leave to family members but would make ideal gifts to charity, especially by making a gift to your endowment fund at the community foundation.

Not only will a list like this help remind your board of directors that you have an endowment in the first place, but it also may trigger directors' ideas for prospective endowment donors, and perhaps even inspire a board member to make a current gift or structure a planned gift to your endowment. 

We look forward to continuing to work together to grow your endowment and support your mission! 

For more information on agency endowment funds, contact Brian Reitz, Agency Endowment & Engagement Officer, at

This content is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal, accounting, or financial planning advice.

Horizontal Rule

Stay Connected

Sign up for our e-newsletter