The Winston-Salem Foundation is a unique financial steward. It’s critical that the charitable dollars entrusted to us be available in perpetuity, which requires sound, long-term investment strategies.
At the same time, we work to maximize dollars available today so that these resources can be distributed right back into the community.
Our close collaboration with investment partners helps make both of these goals possible.
The Foundation applies a total return spending policy for its endowments. Endowed funds are invested for maximum total return (within acceptable risk parameters), without distinction between income and capital gains.
The market value of the fund is measured over the past 12 quarters, and in 2019, 4.0% of the average of those values is being made available for grants. If a fund is too new to have been invested for 12 quarters, calculations are made based on the history of the fund.
This method puts the focus on the long-term growth of the endowment principal. This in turn encourages the appropriate use of equities in the fund, helping the fund grow faster than inflation. It also has a "smoothing effect" by creating a more predictable grant stream than an income-only approach.
The Foundation's Finance and Investment Committee is responsible for all aspects of investment activities, including investment policy, asset allocation, and performance review. This committee holds our approved investment managers to the highest standards of ethical behavior and professional performance, and they also must conform to the Foundation's Investment Manager Policy.