Your 100% tax-deductible gift to the Chautauqua Foundation’s endowment will help to provide, in perpetuity, a predictable and growing stream of support to the Institution and its programs. Gifts to endowment may be designated to an area of your choosing, or go to unrestricted endowment in support of the totality of the Chautauqua experience.
The key attributes of unspecified and other forms of endowment are permanence, in the form of resources secured and stewarded for the perpetual benefit of Chautauqua; predictability, that is, the one financial resource in the annual budgeting exercise that can be known in advance of the conduct of the program; and either flexibility or certainty. Flexibility is gained to the degree that resources are not dedicated to a specific, narrowly defined application and, thus, they recognize and enable essential creativity. Certainty is attained in the case of intentionally specific applications of endowments (for facilities or scholarships, for example) to an area deemed a permanent commitment.
There could be no clearer or more affirming signal of your commitment to this special place than with a gift of unspecified endowment. For most Chautauquans, the totality of the experience means soaking in all that Chautauqua has to offer—a wide breadth of programs, a beautiful setting, and a community of people that collectively create Chautauqua. Affirming this totality and recognizing that indeed as a whole is worth more than the sum of its parts, is the message of unspecified endowment.
Supporting unspecified endowment recognizes that every aspect of Chautauqua must be tended to, that the Chautauqua we leave behind for the generations who follow must be one that celebrates all the ways we affirm the living of lives that contribute to society’s well-being. It is hard to imagine how the country and the world will change in the next fifty or one-hundred years. Chautauqua will need to adapt to those changes if it is to continue explore the best of human values. The one resource that will best allow us to do so is unspecified endowment.
Chautauqua provides recognition opportunities for restricted gifts that create endowments or term funds. Recognition is associated with endowed funds as long as the endowments exist, and with term funds until they are completely expended. Named gifts may be used to recognize the donor, memorialize a loved one, or honor a friend, while supporting a worthy purpose of your choice – whether for scholarships to outstanding students, for the lecture platform, in support of the religion department, for Chautauqua’s Schools of Performing and Visual Arts, in support of the grounds including buildings and gardens or other programs.
The Foundation’s Investment Committee oversees the policies, strategies and performance of invested assets. For funds held in perpetuity, our belief is that good long term investment performance, in terms of both risk and return, is dependent on prudent asset allocation among appropriate classes of assets and diversification within individual classes. The overall objective of the Foundation investment program is to maintain and grow the real, inflation-adjusted, value of endowment assets while providing a predictable and growing stream of support to the Institution.
As long-term investors, the Foundation allocates 80% of its invested assets to equity or equity surrogates; the balance is held in fixed income investments. The equity allocation contains allocations to both hedge funds and private equity.
The Foundation retains Hirtle, Callaghan & Co., Inc. of West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, as Chief Investment Officer to direct this process. Hirtle, Callaghan is responsible for the selection of individual money managers except the allocations to Blackstone Alternative Asset Management’s Park Fund and to Pointer Management, two distinct hedge funds.