Board members, trustees and others that have oversight of endowed portfolios have well-documented fiduciary duties that govern how they carry out those responsibilities. In times of relative calm, discharging those duties is (hopefully) straightforward. Today, many nonprofits face the prospect of transformational change, both in their operations and more broadly in the fulfillment of their missions. In response, many have questioned the role of the endowment in responding to crises or other existential threats. This has led to comprehensive reviews of investment objectives, risk tolerances, levels of illiquidity, spending policies, ESG and impact investing and approaches to diversity, equity and inclusion. In this session, our panel of experts share a framework for approaching these all-important issues and share their experiences engaging their organizations in revisiting the role of their endowment.
Panelists: Annette Parker, Vice President for Finance and Administration, Ursinus College; Cyndi Roberts, Chief Financial Officer, American Heart Association; Jerry Wise, Chief Financial Officer, Newfields
Moderator: Timothy T. Yates, Jr., President and CEO, Commonfund Asset Management