A Plan To Invest In Your Faith

The Foothills Unitarian Church Endowment Fund is a financial resource established by the congregation and designed to accept donations to be held in trust and used to fulfill the vision, mission, and goals of the Foothills Unitarian Church (FUC) in perpetuity.

What Is The Purpose Of Our Endowment Fund?

The purpose of the FUC Endowment Fund is to further the mission of Foothills Unitarian Church. Its use in support of the Church is to be interpreted compassionately and may include, but is not limited to:

–Capital improvements and renovations

–Augmenting or enhancing such core Church activities such as the educational programs, the youth program, worship activities, the music program, Unitarian camps, conferences, schools.

Sustaining the Mission of Foothills Unitarian Church

You can carry our values and mission forward through investments to the Endowment Fund! By providing investment income, the Endowment Fund becomes the vehicle through which long term financial stability is assured. Investing in your faith will enable a robust, sustainable, and community-involved Foothills Unitarian Church legacy.

What is An Endowment Fund?

An endowment fund is an investment vehicle generally established by a nonprofit organization, such as a university, church or hospital, which is utilized to further the organization’s philosophical and operating goals.

Endowment funds are typically supported through donations that may be deductible for the donors. Donations may take many forms and can be made at any time but are often a component of an individual’s estate plan, either as part of a divestment plan (selling an asset) while still living or as a testamentary donation after their passing.

Usually, the principal amount granted to an endowment is to remain intact and not spent in the near-term, except under highly unusual circumstances such as the destruction of the Church’s building. Rather, only some or all of the donated principal amount’s total return, e.g., the combination of capital appreciation and interest, is to be spent. This allows the donor to truly leave a long-term legacy.

Most endowment funds are characterized by three basic components: an investment policy, a withdrawal policy, and a usage policy. A donor is thereby assured as to the means and purpose for which their legacy will be put to use.

The Foothills Endowment Fund

There are several ways in which donations to an endowment fund may be utilized. The Foothills Endowment consists of two types: an unrestricted endowment vehicle and a restricted funds variety.

  • The unrestricted funds vehicle enables Foothills to use the derived income in a wide range of activities supportive of our stated goals and philosophy.
  • The restricted funds variety may have limitations put in place designed to channel the use of the funds in support of a specific purpose. Note that within the Foothills Endowment, restricted funds are established only under a defined set of threshold standards.

The Committee believes in faithfully observing the wishes of the donor and strives to follow those wishes whenever practicable, regardless of whether the funds are unrestricted or restricted in their use. However, while use of the Endowment Fund in support of Foothills is wide-ranging, the Fund may not be used to support the day-to-day operations of the Church.

The Senior Minister and Finance Chair may serve as non-voting advisers to provide additional guidance and perspective. Additionally, the Committee answers directly to the Board of Trustees.

All assets of the Fund will be held in the name of Foothills Unitarian Church but will be accounted for separately from the Church operating funds and other properties belonging to the Church.

Disclaimer: No aspect of this website’s discussion of the Foothills Unitarian Church Endowment Fund, or discussions with any member or members of the Foothills Endowment Committee, should be construed in any manner as financial or legal advice. Please refer to fully qualified and appropriately sanctioned professionals for any legal and/or financial guidance.

Socially Responsible Investing

The Foothills Unitarian Church Endowment Fund is invested through the Unitarian Universalist Common Endowment Fund (UUCEF), a Socially Responsible investment vehicle offered by the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations (UUA).

Foothills pools our assets in the UUCEF with those of over 300 other UU congregations and related organizations. This is a Socially Responsible Investment fund seeking both current income and long-term investment returns through diversification among asset classes, geography, and investment managers.

“Socially Responsible Investing” ensures that our investments are aligned with our church values. The UUA has a long history of socially responsible investing. Teaming with the UUA offers us simplification of challenging endowment responsibilities and a well-managed, efficient investment strategy.

How To Contribute

Donations to the Endowment can take a variety of forms; below is a partial list of possible types and means. The list below is not exhaustive and other techniques exist which your financial advisory team can make known to you. NOTE: Many of the activities listed below can entail the use of complex financial and legal vehicles. It is important that you seek the active involvement of your legal, financial and tax advisors to execute such techniques.

  • Cash Gift
  • Charitable Lead or Remainder Trusts
  • Estate Gift (Wills & Trusts)
  • Life Insurance
  • Planned Giving
  • Real Estate
  • Retirement Plan Assets
  • Stock & Bonds

To give or learn more about giving to the Endowment Fund, please contact Katie Watkins, Director of Finance and Operations, at katie@fothillsuu.org or 970-493-5906, ext. 101.

Memorial Gifts

The assets of the Foothills Unitarian Church Endowment Fund include donations directed to a “Memorial Fund,” or given to the Fund “in memory of” a loved one or friend. These donations, as well those given outside of a “Memorial” or “memory” gift, may be designated for the Fund’s general use or for a specific objective. Gifts may be given by an individual, a family, or a number of families through any of the means discussed above.

The Foothills Endowment Committee and Members

Since 1995, the Endowment Fund Committee has been elected by the Congregation and operates in accordance with our Church Bylaws. The Senior Minister and Finance Chair may serve as non-voting advisers, providing additional guidance and perspective. In its activities, the Committee follows sound accounting procedures, complies with applicable federal and state laws and regulations regarding endowment plans and fiduciary requirements, and acts in accordance with a set of written Church-approved Committee policies and procedures.

Current Members of the Foothills Endowment Committee 

Jennifer Crane
John Busby
Steve Tenbrink

The members of the Endowment Committee are here to serve you, our congregational community and friends, as well as anyone wishing to support the mission of Foothills Unitarian Church. 

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