In 1997, the first endowment gift was received by the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. The primary function of the endowment is to build a pool of charitable assets that will benefit the Parkway through the Foundation’s projects and programs. The objective is to create long-term discretionary income, the disposition of the funds to be determined annually by the Board of Trustees.
When you establish an endowment fund, you create a permanent legacy of support for the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Foundation.
These funds are placed with various community foundations or held by the Foundation as part of an invested portfolio. Community foundations build and strengthen communities by creating opportunities for donors locally to meet critical needs. The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation believes in investing in communities because this is where there is the catalyst for improvement in urban and rural life.
In handling the endowment funds, the community foundations and the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation assume responsibility for:
- legal administration of the fund
- receiving, acknowledging and processing additional assets at any time
- managing the investment of the fund’s assets
- re-investing the income from fund’s assets
- preparing and filing all tax returns
- scheduling an annual audit — responding to federal regulations and audits
- providing periodic statements on the endowment’s principal balance, and available income
- distributing earnings
- cooperating with the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation in endowment outreach
- coordinating with the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation in marketing
Each year, a portion of the value of the fund is paid out to support the fund's purpose, and any earnings in excess of this distribution are used to build the fund's market value. In this way, an endowment fund can grow and provide support for its designated purpose in perpetuity.
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