Over the past 10 years, prudent management of Advent’s endowment fund has enabled it to grow from $1.6 million in 2009 to $2.4 today. The management of our church’s endowment is guided by policies that specify how the endowment fund is governed. The rules cover investment policy, withdraws, spending of endowment proceeds and oversight. These policies secure the gifts that generous parishioners have given to Advent’s endowment so that the endowment fund is able to support the work of our church now and in the future.
The investment goals for the endowment are to safeguard the principal while growing the funds and generating income. These goals are detailed in the investment policy statement which ensures that the endowment fund committee members and the professional investment managers at Merrill Lynch share a clear understanding of these investment goals.
For the General Endowment, the Peterson Leadership Endowment, the Memorial Garden Endowment, the Rector’s Discretionary Fund and the Music Concert Fund, a three year running average of the fund value as of September 30th is calculated. The vestry can elect to take up to 5% of that average value on all funds except the Music Concert Fund which can be up to 10%. The annual draw from the Sanford Fund is calculated by the investment manager at Merrill Lynch and can only come from accumulated interest and dividends.
Proceeds from the endowment may only be spent on budgetary items that align with the particular fund. For example, proceeds from the Sanford Fund are only spent on formation for children and youth. Proceeds from the Memorial Garden Endowment are only spent on memorial garden expenses. Proceeds from the General Endowment are not restricted and can be spent as the vestry sees fit. Advent’s treasurer and finance warden ensure that endowment proceeds are properly spent. Audits confirm correct expenditures of endowment proceeds.
Management and Oversight:
The endowment fund committee, established in 1996, has responsibility for the proper management of the endowment. The vestry has oversight of the endowment fund committee through approval of the chair and members of the committee. The rector and the development warden are also committee members. The endowment fund committee works with the professional investment advisors at Merrill Lynch to review investments, requests withdraws subject to the policies outlined above, reviews audits to ensure that endowment proceeds are spent according to guidelines, and works to develop and grow the endowment.
In Advent’s annual report, the chair of the endowment fund committee reports to the parish the fund value, withdraws, gifts, committee members and any other relevant endowment information.
The governance structure of the endowment has successfully managed the endowment for the past 23 years. Over these years, the endowment funds have grown through wise investment strategy and additional gifts while annual proceeds have contributed to Advent’s mission. The strong governance structure will ensure continued careful management of the endowment now and into the future.
Kim Hoeschel for the Endowment Fund Committee: Pete Peterson, Ann Dome, Larry Bosley, Penn Yeatman and Stuart Davies; and Collis Townsend, Development Warden
January 26, 2019