Size of Organization Eligible for Membership
Membership in FFOG is open to the staff of organizations defined below if the organization has at least $300 million in investable assets.
Financial and investment professionals of large private foundations are eligible for membership. FFOG members are typically employees of independent or family private foundations or private operating foundations that have investment funds allocated among multiple asset classes and engage external investment managers to manage those assets.
“Private foundations” are tax-exempt charitable entities that do not qualify as public charities under the federal tax code. Private foundations file a federal tax form 990-PF, while public charities file form 990.
Other Non-Profit Organizations
FFOG will also consider for membership financial and investment professionals of large public charities or social welfare organizations that are funded primarily by investment returns from an endowment which has investment funds allocated among multiple asset classes and engages external investment managers to manage those assets. Organizations with a high percentage of revenue from investment returns and a low percentage of income from contributions, grants or earned income will be considered for membership.
Public charities and social welfare organizations are 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) entities that file a federal tax form 990.
Private Foundations Served by Family Offices
Some private foundations are “staffed” by professionals employed by the family office of the donor or by a management company, rather than directly by the foundation. If the family office or management company provides services only to the donor and donor’s family and the affiliated private foundation, employees of the family office or management company are eligible to become FFOG members. If the family office or management company provides financial or investment services to any other entities, the staff is not eligible for FFOG membership.
Categories of Membership
If you would like to ask questions about eligibility for FFOG membership before completing an application, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To be a Regular Member, you must:
Both the chief financial officer and the chief investment officer of the same foundation may be Regular Members if the roles are filled by more than one person.
For very large foundations, those with more than $1.5 billion in assets, senior members of the investment or financial staffs (those who have the experience and skills to move into a CIO or CFO position) are also eligible to be Regular Members.
Regular Members enjoy all of the benefits of FFOG membership, including an invitation to attend the semi-annual FFOG meetings.
Regular Members can sponsor Affiliate Members from their foundation.
Affiliate Members can only be added once a foundation has a Regular member. They are typically the finance and investment professional staff members who report to Regular Members.
To be an Affiliate Member, you must:
An Affiliate Member may attend the semi-annual FFOG meetings if a foundation's Regular Member is unable to attend. Affiliate Members have full access to the FFOG website.
Annual dues are collected to cover the costs of maintaining the website, distributing survey results, and other administrative costs.
FFOG's membership structure takes into account the size of the foundation, based on its investable assets.
Registration fees for the semi-annual meetings are set at a level to cover the meal and facility costs associated with those meetings. Members cover their own transportation and hotel costs to attend meetings.
Participate in Surveys The usefulness of the periodic surveys conducted by FFOG depends on full member participation. The surveys are designed and conducted, and the results are compiled by members who volunteer a great deal of their time. Participation in the three major surveys - investments, admin costs and compensation - is an expected part of FFOG membership.
Maintain Confidentiality To maintain FFOG as a "safe" forum where members feel free to share expertise and experiences, members are expected to keep all FFOG information and communications confidential. While FFOG members can use generic information from FFOG surveys, discussions, meetings, etc. within their own foundations, FFOG members never distribute FFOG material to non-members or betray the confidence of their fellow members. All members are expected to sign a confidentiality agreement and renew this commitment annually.
Volunteer Time FFOG is a volunteer-driven organization which relies heavily upon the willingness of its members to serve as directors, officers and committee members.