Letter from the Chair, December 2010

December 1, 2010 · by Foundation Staff · Letter from the Chair

During our 2009-2010 fiscal year, which ended May 31st, the Foundation paid out $2,824,070 in grants compared to $3,190,720 in fiscal year 2008-2009 and $3,809,051 the year before. The ’09-’10 reduction was more of a reflection of our newly-implemented trailing average approach to setting our grants budget compared to the ’08-’09 reduction, which was entirely economy-driven. As a family foundation established to operate in perpetuity, we adopted a trailing average methodology to smooth out precipitous declines in grantmaking capability due to economic downturns as well to ensure payout equity between generations.

The proportions of our allocations for General Grants are generally consistent with past years’ allocations:

FY06 FY07 FY08 FY09 FY10

19

19

20

19

22 

  percent to Human Services

17

19

13

14

14 

  percent to Arts and Culture

16

15

17

13

14 

  percent to Education

12

12

14

14

10 

  percent to Environment

8

7

6

5

  percent to Public Affairs/Society Benefit

7

9

8

8

  percent to Health

4

3

4

5

  percent to International Affairs, Development

2

1

1

1

  percent to Religion

Accounting for the remaining 21 percent of our fiscal year 2009-2010 allocations are our special initiatives in Community Development, Environment and Youth Violence Prevention, each at 7 percent.

The average market value of the Foundation’s assets for the 2009-2010 fiscal year was about $66.7 million compared to $64.8 million the year before. At $432,738, our administrative expenses were at a ten-year low, reflecting continued efforts to hold down discretionary items such as travel, conferences and computer upgrades. Excluding investment expenses and excise taxes, administrative costs accounted for .66 percent of the net value of our assets. Our payout for the year was at 5 percent.

With the implementation of a three-year trailing average to calculate our grants budget, we think we are on the right road to eliminating any future gut-wrenching allocation declines. But the current fiscal year has brought other challenges. Our Executive Director, Bea Carter, announced her desire to punctuate her 65th birthday by retiring in March of 2011. By then she will have been with us for eleven very productive years, the first five as our Program Officer. Bea created the infrastructure that has allowed us to become a strong family-run foundation. She has been a quiet stabilizing force behind a large family of individualists. She respected the diversity within our family and helped each of us direct our energies to our collective advantage as a foundation. She understood family dynamics and what it means to staff a family foundation. We will surely miss her.

I am pleased to announce that after nearly a six-month search process, we have found an able successor, Tony Macklin. Tony spent twelve years at the Central Indiana Community Foundation, most recently as its Associate Vice President. He opened a philanthropy consulting practice in 2008 when he moved to Pittsburgh with his wife, Alexis, who is director of the library and archives at the Heinz History Center. We are excited about the wealth of experience Tony brings to the Foundation as we continue our family-based philanthropy, and particularly as we bring on more members of our fourth generation of Trustees. Tony will be on board as of January 15, 2011. I hope you will help us welcome him in your future exchanges with the Foundation office.

Torrence M. Hunt, Jr.
Chairman, Executive Committee 

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