Investment & Financial Information

We honor the trust placed in us through the practice of sound financial principles, careful stewardship, and transparency.

Investment Overview

Investment Objectives

For endowed funds, our investment strategy is to preserve the original value of gifts in terms of inflation and grow our assets as much as market conditions allow, so charitable needs can be supported now and in the future. For non-endowed funds, both the principal and net earnings are available for charitable distributions.

Investment Options

You can choose from several investment funds, depending on the duration of the fund and your risk tolerance. Endowed funds can be invested in either the long-term portfolio or the socially responsible long-term portfolio. Both are invested for long-term growth in equities and fixed income holdings, with the distinction being that the socially responsible portfolio includes companies that are screened.

Non-endowed funds may be invested in one of the long-term portfolios, as well as a short-term fixed income and a highly liquid cash management portfolio.

We manage liquidity so that your Donor-Advised Fund is available for making grants at anytime, regardless of the investment pool you choose.

Investment Performance

The investment performance summaries are prepared by Graystone Consulting, a unit of Morgan Stanley, on market values of funds held at Community Foundation Santa Cruz County at the time of the report. Contact Sue Farrar to receive older summaries.

Investment Performance - November 2020
Investment Performance - October 2020
Investment Performance - September 2020
Investment Performance - Dec. 31, 2018
Investment Performance - Dec. 31, 2017
Investment Performance - 1995-2018

Financial Oversight

The Finance Committee reviews quarterly investment performance and financial statements, sets investment policy, monitors and approves investment allocations, selects financial advisors, advises the board on budgetary issues, spending policies, fees, impact investments and makes recommendations to the board on finance and gift acceptance policies and procedures.

The committee meets every other month and regularly consults with our financial advisor Brian Sharpes, CIMA, - Institutional Consultant, Managing Director, Graystone Consulting, to review our investment program and performance.

Financial oversight is provided by our board and the Finance Committee. The Finance Committee is composed of professionals from our community with significant experience and knowledge in finance and investing and is comprised of:

  • Jim Weisenstein, Chair
  • Emily Buchbinder
  • Marilyn Calciano
  • David Doolin
  • Janet Heien
  • Pat Kelly*
  • Kirk Schmidt
  • Trevor Strudley
  • Jim Thompson*
  • Lance Wexler*

* Non-Board Member

Foundation Services Fees

The Foundation Services Fees help to cover management services that the Foundation provides directly to the Fund. The Foundation Services Fees also support services which benefit our community. These include, but are not limited to, programs that assist our donors and professional advisors, programs that educate and strengthen local nonprofits, and programs that build regional partnerships to address critical local issues, and making grants to nonprofits. We assess annual services fees on our funds as detailed below.

Donor-Advised & Agency Flex Funds

Fund Minimum: $25,000

Foundation Services Fee:

  • 1.5% on funds up to $1 million
  • 1.25% on funds between $1 million and $2 million
  • 1% on funds between $2 million and $5 million, and
  • 0.75% on funds over $5 million.

Endowed Funds

Fund Minimum: $25,000

Foundation Services Fee: 1.5% (or minimum of $250 / year)

Other Fees

  • Our investment consultant fees are approximately 16 basis points annually, and are charged against investment returns, before these returns are posted to fund balances.
  • Occasionally other fees may apply, when special circumstances require unusual outside expertise or assistance.
  • Bequests are assessed a one-time 2% services fee at the time of receipt of gifted assets and may be negotiated based on the size and simplicity of the gift.
  • All fees are annually reviewed by our board of directors.

Our full fund policy is available on request by contacting Susan Farrar, our Chief Operating and Financial Officer.

Contact Susan

Our full fund policy is available on request by contacting Sue Farrar, our Chief Operating and Financial Officer, at 831.662.2020 or