Nathan Cummings Foundation commits 100% of endowment to mission-aligned investing


Alliance magazine


The Nathan Cummings Foundation (NCF) have announced that they will align 100 per cent of their nearly half-billion dollar endowment with their mission to reduce social inequality and mitigate climate change, making it the largest foundation to try to use its entire investment portfolio to generate social change.

“Our decision reflects our values and our aspirations, our assessment of the market, and the opportunity for NCF to both join and leverage a chorus of philanthropic and private sector investors changing the landscape for investing and the business model of philanthropy,” said NCF President Sharon Alpert. “The problems we are working on – like the climate crisis and growing inequality – will not be solved by grantmaking alone. Capital markets have to change to drive sustainable and inclusive growth that will create long-term value for people, the planet, and the economy.  How we invest our assets and leverage our influence as an investor are powerful tools to make that change to happen.”

Nathan Cummings Foundation Board Chair Ruth Cummings said: “Our Board agreed according to our values, that the social and economic issues at stake within our democracy demand bold responses from our philanthropy. We have committed to align all of our assets for impact in order to receive more social return on investments. We also want to help make the path easier for those who, like us, want to do more.”

NCF Trustee and Assets Aligned for Impact Committee Chair James Cummings echoed this sentiment, saying, “So many of us have been advocating for more holistic resource integration for many years. I am  excited about the Foundation’s commitment to strategically invest additional resources with our implementation allies.”

The Foundation has already started looking at all of its investments to assess their alignment and develop a pipeline of aligned investment strategies across all asset classes, and will provide an update at the end of 2018 to support other foundations that plan to leverage their endowments to increase impact.

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