Processing Charitable Donations
Gift Processing may temporarily house funds in a special holding account until a new account is established. This is done to ensure that no money is held from deposit or acknowledgment activities simply for lack of an account number. Monies deposited into the Advancement Services holding account may not be spent, nor will they earn interest until transferred to a valid account. Holding accounts are readily identified as allocations beginning with “H”.
When a donor makes a charitable donation to the University and specifies that the gift will be used for a named endowment fund, the following procedure is applied.
The original letter of intent is forwarded to the Gifts Processing unit in Advancement Services.
The donor is identified in the Advance system. If the donor does not exist in the database, a biographical record is added for the donor.
If the donation will establish a new endowment fund, then an endowment holding account is established before processing the donation.
Establishing New Endowment Funds
An endowment fund is established in both the general ledger and the Gifts system upon receipt of a pledge with a payment or an outright gift. Holding accounts will not be set up for pledges only. Visit our Endowment Minimums page for more information.
Steps for establishing endowments are:
The Development Officer responsible for raising the new endowment gift fills out the Holding Account Request Form that includes (a) the name of the endowment fund (b) the school/program to which the endowment fund income will be distributed, (c) the person responsible for completing the resolution. Information concerning income distribution, the purpose of the endowment fund, and related data is needed to complete the form. The Controllers Office sets up a holding account when they receive the request form.
When the holding account is established, the donation is input into the Gifts system. When the gifts processing program is run overnight, the University’s Financial Management system and ledger can be updated with the amount of the gift to be deposited into the new holding account.
The nightly gifts processing run also produces the University official tax receipt that is mailed to the donor within 24 hours of receipt of the donation. The Office of Advancement Services adheres to the Acknowledgment policy included in this manual.
The Development Officer responsible for the new endowment donation and the Donor Relations unit in Advancement Services monitor holding accounts so that when the fund minimum is reached, a Request for Resolution Form can be prepared. The Request Form is filled out by the Development Officer and is sent to both the Donor Relations unit and to the Assistant Director of Gifts Processing in Advancement Services along with the relevant backup for the fund (i.e. Letter of Intent, correspondence from donor, payment or gift backup). Advancement Services Donor Services staff will prepare the Resolution draft and will work with the University's Office of General Counsel for approval before presentation to the Board of Trustees. Resolutions to establish endowment funds are submitted to the Board of Trustees at their monthly meetings.
When the endowment fund is established by Board Resolution, a copy of the Resolution is forwarded to Gifts Processing and Endowment Accounting. Gifts Processing will add the newly established permanent endowment fund account to the Advance system. The Stewardship Module of Advance is also updated with the new endowment account. A copy of the Resolution is scanned and entered into the Stewardship module.
The new endowment fund is coded into the Stewardship module so that the Donor Relations office can efficiently steward the donor of the fund (see below for stewardship processes).
Endowment Resolutions, Names of Stewardees and Beneficiaries, and Notes about each endowment fund can be found in Advance on the Inactive Stewardship Allocation record for the particular endowment. Stewardship Allocations always begin with the letter S. Development Officers from each school should work with the Donor Services and Gifts Processing staff in Advancement Services to keep them informed of changes and additions to the Stewardee and Beneficiary data. Advancement Services Staff will edit and maintain in Advance the names of current stewardees and beneficiaries for endowment funds.
Questions regarding the stewardship process? Contact the Office of Donor Relations at 216.368.6086 or email@example.com. Users should contact the Planned Giving office, 216.368.1447, when seeking out lists of board-approved endowments.
- as of 5/11/20