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Council of Michigan Foundations 2021 Annual Report: Together on the Journey

March 31, 2022

CMF's 2021 Annual Report: Together on the Journey illustrates the innovative leadership of our members in the areas of Equity, People, Practice and Policy and how CMF is championing the work of Michigan philanthropy as we continue to live into our Equity at the Center strategic framework.As you will see in this edition, 2021 was a year of reimagination and deepened commitment for CMF and our community of philanthropy. Together, we:Created spaces to advance personal and organizational equity journeys.Supported the next generation of philanthropy leaders and emerging leaders through youth philanthropy programming and resources, a revamped mentoring program and member-sponsored fellowships.Convened ad hoc working groups, bringing together deep expertise, research and new partners to address our most pressing issues.Piloted new efforts to inform long-term strategies to move the needle on systemic change.Deepened connections with local and state policymakers to partner in navigating incoming federal COVID relief dollars to shape equitable investments.Commissioned research to provide data to the field to inform data-driven conversations.We are deeply grateful for all in our community of philanthropy who engage and support these efforts, in service to the communities we serve, our state and our field.

Analysis of Donor Advised Funds from a Community Foundation Perspective

June 21, 2021

The Council of Michigan Foundations (CMF) commissioned four studies between 2000 and 2016 to evaluate the required private foundation payout rate as well as hypothetical model portfolios and actual investment returns.In December 2020, the Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy (Johnson Center) at Grand Valley State University, in collaboration with Plante Moran Financial Advisors (PMFA), updated and expanded this research by using a comprehensive database of IRS Form 990-PF (private foundation) returns, adding international investments to the model portfolios, presenting actual payout rates of all private foundations in the dataset, and showing projections of how changes to the payout rate may affect future foundation assets. In March 2021, staff from the Johnson Center turned their focus to community foundations and completed a similar analysis — the first of its kind in the CMF foundation study series.Similar to its earlier private and community foundation report counterparts, this report provides new information to the field. To study donor advised funds (DAFs), the project team leveraged the Johnson Center's comprehensive database of IRS Form 990 filings for summary statistics. The team supplemented that dataset by partnering with CMF to obtain account-level information about the more than 2,600 DAFs housed at Michigan's community foundations. That account-level detail was used to calculate individual DAF investment returns, contribution and distribution flows, and payout rates for the years 2017–2020.

An Evaluation of Private Foundation Model Portfolios, Investment Returns, & Payout Rates

March 1, 2021

The Council of Michigan Foundations (CMF) commissioned four prior studies between 2000 and 2016 to evaluate the required private foundation payout rate as well as hypothetical model portfolios and actual investment returns.In 2020, the Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy (Johnson Center), in collaboration with Plante Moran Financial Advisors (PMFA), updated and expanded this research by using a comprehensive database of IRS Form 990-PF (private foundation) returns, adding international investments to the model portfolios, presenting actual payout rates of all private foundations in the data set, and showing projections of how changes to the payout rate may affect future foundation assets.

Michigan Community Foundations' Youth Project (MCFYP) 20th Anniversary Report

March 1, 2013

The 1991 launch of the Michigan Community Foundations' Youth Project (MCFYP) marked a groundbreaking effort to spread youth philanthropy throughout Michigan's community foundations and all 83 counties. In honor of the 20th anniversary, the Council of Michigan Foundations (CMF) commissioned the Johnson Center for Philanthropy at Grand Valley State University to assess the impact of MCFYP. Drawing on surveys, focus groups, archival documents, and interviews with youth participants and adult advisors and leaders, this report documents the impacts on youth, the participating community foundations, and on the Michigan communities.

Assisting Community Foundations with Branding, Standards, and Marketing: Lessons Learned

December 1, 2005

Michigan has been intentional about growing community foundations since the late 1980s. Local efforts have been supported by the Council of Michigan Foundations with funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. FERA (Formative Evaluation Research Associates), an independent evaluation group, and Williams Group, a strategic communications firm, have documented growth, identified supports and obstacles, and developed lessons learned. This document is part of a larger set of lessons learned across multiple state-wide initiatives about community foundation growth.

Better Together: Regional Alliances and Small Community Foundation Sustainability

July 1, 2005

Examines the role regional alliances play in helping community foundations achieve financial sustainability, focusing on those with less than $20 million in assets. Includes five case studies that represent a distinct alliance model.

Conflicts of Interest at Foundations: Avoiding the Bad and Managing the Good

July 1, 2005

Conflicts of interest should either be avoided or managed in such a way that the foundation and its board and managers are protected from liability or unwelcome publicity. By answering the following five questions and by following the processes recommended in this paper, foundations can minimize legal risks; protect themselves and their board members and foundation managers against bad publicity; and most of all, ensure the integrity of their decision-making process. The five questions are: Is this transaction a conflict of interest or could it be perceived as such by others?Is it prohibited by the self-dealing rules under the Internal Revenue Code?Even if the transaction is not prohibited by the self-dealing rules, is it unfair to the foundation?i.e., does it improperly benefit another person or organization?Does the transaction create an appearance problem? How would it look on the front page of tomorrow's newspaper or to the foundation's founders?Has the foundation followed its conflict-of-interest policy and documented that fact?This paper outlines the law and the factors that should be considered when answering these questions. It also includes examples of situations that foundation regulalry encounter to offer the reader an opportunity to test his or her understanding.

Standards for Community Foundations: Challenges and Lessons Learned

January 1, 2002

The purpose of this document is to share challenges and lessons learned related to developing and implementing a set of minimum operating standards for Michigan community foundations and their affiliates. Information presented in this article is based on two years of evaluation research conducted by Formative Evaluation Research Associates (FERA) an independent evaluation firm that consults for the Council of Michigan Foundations (CMF) in Michigan.

Women and Philanthropy: Understanding and Engaging a High Potential Audience

December 1, 1999

This paper draws upon a wide array of research publications to summarize information available on women and their giving habits, and to make suggestions for bringing them into the fold of philanthropy through the field of community foundations.

Community Foundations Serving Rural Areas

December 1, 1998

An eight-page booklet authored by Karen Tice of Formative Evaluation Research (FERA) that provides insight into the formation of community foundations in rural areas.

Community Foundation Primer: An Outline for Discussion and an Initial Organization Start-up Kit

December 1, 1998

This is the eighth in a series of publications that are tangible products of many related efforts to build the capacity of community foundations in service to Michigan communities. The Council of Michigan Foundations provides this publication as a part of the Michigan community foundation project jointly supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation along with the community foundation programs of the Indiana Donors Alliance through the GIFT Program of the Lilly Endowment, Inc.

Businesses Partnering with Community Foundations: Options for Planning

December 1, 1997

The purpose of this paper is to highlight several existing partnerships between community foundations and businesses which demonstrate the remarkable flexibility community foundations have in responding to the needs of the business community.