5 Foundations and Endowments Questions, Answered


Finding the right answers begins with asking the right questions, and that’s how many of our relationships with clients begin. We’ve consolidated our most frequently asked questions to introduce you to our services, explain what those services can do for your nonprofit organization, and why fiduciary management of your foundation and endowment should achieve your full attention.

Why Twelve Points Foundations and Endowments?

One of the most important tenets of Twelve Points Wealth Management is a philosophy of “Philanthropy First”. Long before we launched our Foundation and Endowment services, our firm pledged to give at least 5% of our profits and hundreds of hours of our personal and professional time to meaningful charities. We have seen firsthand what it takes for foundations and endowments to make an impact on their causes.

Additionally, our advisors have earned the distinctive AIF designation, which means we are well trained in prudent investment practices that protect clients exposed to practical and legal scrutiny. Our involvement in nonprofit fiduciary management eases the burden on the board to focus its efforts on other pressing matters, while using us as an additional resource for committee member training, audits, and industry best practices.

What services does Twelve Points Foundations & Endowments offer?

We work directly with nonprofit organizations to address common management and growth issues. Our services include fiscal responsibility, fiduciary protection, and board governance. These, of course, are wide categories; much of what we do is tailored to the specific needs of the endowments and foundations we support. We work with your board not only as an advisor, but as a partner in the process, reviewing your investments against appropriate benchmarks, managing complex gifts, and auditing your fiduciary responsibility, documents, and  training–all while supporting your membership and funding goals.

From our Committee Member Training process and our Successful Donor Engagement Program, our advisors are trained to grow your principal along with donor trust and confidence.

Why would my endowment need a financial advisor?

Endowments and foundations need a third-party financial advisor for the same reasons individuals do: to make prudent decisions for the money they are managing and investing. In fact, given the constant exposure to legal, public, and donor scrutiny, it is even more important for nonprofits to align themselves with fiduciary support. Twelve Points Foundations and Endowments is uniquely qualified and positioned to give your organization the financial systems, professional advice, and strategic operational tools to run your organization to the expectations of its donors and the benefit of your causes.

When is a good time to use TPFE services?

The best time to use fiduciary advisory services for your nonprofit is whenever you are trying to grow your principal, establish or re-establish trust with your donor base, introduce a new board member, or launch a new foundation. In other words, you should always have a third-party financial advisor working in partnership with your organization. While there may not initially be much money to manage, our interest in expanding the relationship beyond money management by establishing good governance makes us an ideal partner from the start; best practices are valuable from the start. This not only protects your organization, but it also makes the most of its precious resources, ensuring you can devote them appropriately.

How could my foundation handle its fiduciary management better?

Most of the foundations and endowments come to us wondering how they could improve their fiduciary processes. The answer to this question is highly specific; we can’t help you effectively without knowing exactly where your current gaps are.

This is precisely why we developed our Foundation & Endowment Report CardThis 12-point tally helps us readily identify where you are secure and where you may be open to legal and financial concerns, both now and in the future. This is the first and most important step to assessing the health of your organization, which is why we offer it as a free download–every foundation and endowment should take ownership of its fiduciary responsibility, whether they end up using our services or not.

Foundations and endowments are built on generous donations and goodwill. Our job at TPFE is to grow and protect both.

Concerned with your score on your Foundation & Endowment Report Card? Schedule your complimentary on-site analysis to help improve your grade.

Recommended Posts