ECCF manages over 100 Charitable Funds and more than 135 scholarships. This $18+ million family of funds includes Donor Advised Funds for family philanthropy (the best alternative to family foundations), Agency Funds (the endowment and reserves of nonprofits), and ECCF's program funds.
With a Community Foundation's special ability to pool many smaller funds, ECCF can diversify holdings, increase safety, employ expert managers, provide greater oversight, and achieve economies of scale for Fund Holders. Every three years, ECCF issues a Request for Proposal for investment managers and selects a diverse group to guard and grow these assets.
ECCF's Investment Policy Statement requires a carefully balanced portfolio aimed at preserving capital and growing assets for the long run as is appropriate for charitable funds. In recent years it has ranged from 55% equities to 70% equities as the Committee has adjusted to changes in capital markets.
The results are worthy of the good causes these funds support. ECCF measures its investment performance against two benchmarks. One is the national average for over 800 college and university endowments, which ECCF has significantly exceeded three years in a row. In 2010, these college and university endowments on average gained 11.9% while ECCF gained 14.6%.
The second benchmark is the balanced model for ECCF's main portfolio. The Foundation's chief custodian, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, submitted its 2010 summary report at the January meeting of the Trustee Committee on Investments. Here are the latest results:
60% S&P 500
35% BARCLAY'S INTERMEDIATE BOND
5% 90 DAY TREASURIES
70% S&P 500
30% BARCLAY'S INTERMEDIATE BOND
OF 865 COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES