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  3. Gift Acceptance Policy and Guidelines

Gift Acceptance Policy and Guidelines

Policy Author:
Institutional Advancement

Responsible Office – Department:
Institutional Advancement

Effective Date of Policy:
March 25, 2021


Daemen University, a not-for-profit educational institution organized under the laws of the State of New York exempt from Federal income tax under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code, encourages the solicitation and acceptance of gifts to the University for the purposes that will further and fulfill its mission. It is the purpose of these policies and guidelines to provide guidance to the University, and to prospective donors and their advisors when making and accepting gifts to the University.

It is the policy of the Board of Trustees of Daemen University: (1) to offer diverse opportunities to all the constituencies of Daemen University to give support to the organization; (2) to communicate such opportunities to constituents on a regular basis; and (3) to provide resources for a full and effective development program for the benefit of both donors and Daemen University.

The Office of Institutional Advancement is the clearinghouse for the fund-raising activities of Daemen University. It shall be the responsibility of the Development Staff to:

  1. Maintain and increase financial support for Daemen University
  2. Develop and propose to the President and Board of Trustees, plans for a comprehensive development program, including annual, capital, and planned giving efforts
  3. Advise the President, the Board of Trustees, and volunteers on matters relating to the cultivating, solicitation, and acceptance of gifts and grants in support of Daemen University
  4. Inform, serve, guide, and assist Daemen University’s constituents in fulfilling their family, financial, and philanthropic objectives
  5. Coordinate all such fundraising efforts of Daemen University by matching donor interests with specific funding opportunities so that prospects and donors are not solicited by multiple entities within Daemen University.
  6. Undertake research on prospects and donors so as to identify interests and to maintain confidentiality with regards to research findings and donor records
  7. Oversee and monitor such solicitations as authorized by the Board of Trustees and/or the administration (e.g. the annual fund and any capital campaign)
  8. Report regularly to the President and the Board of Trustees regarding gifts, grants, and pledges. and planned gift commitments received by Daemen University.

General Policies and Guidelines

  1. Daemen University welcomes expressions of interest and financial support regardless of size or form, from any alumae/us, parent, corporation, foundation or other private or public sector source. Daemen University’s development staff and volunteers are available and would be pleased to meet with any prospective donor, without obligation, to discuss areas of interest, the plans of Daemen University, types of commitments, options for payment, estate planning, and the tax consequences of a possible gift commitment so as to provide assistance to a prospective donor. (Please refer to #9 in this section)
  2. Gifts to the University should be made in the name of Daemen University. All gifts to Daemen should be directed to the Office of Institutional Advancement where they will be accepted, acknowledged and administered in accordance with the policies of the Board of Trustees.
  3. All gift solicitations and fund-raising events on behalf of Daemen must be reviewed and approved by the President, the Vice President for Institutional Advancement or their designee.
  4. No gift or grant shall be received by Daemen with restrictions that exclude beneficiaries of the gift or grant on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or disability except in those extraordinary circumstances where the Board of Trustees may authorize restrictions so as to provide opportunities for historically disadvantaged individuals.
  5. Commitments to Daemen University and/or payment of same may take the form of one, or a combination, of the following: cash; appreciated securities or other personal assets; deferred or planned gifts including trusts, annuities, retirement funds, insurance policies; gifts of residence with or without a retained life interest; other real property; and/or will commitments.
  6. The Board of Trustees and appropriate officers of Daemen University reserve the right to accept or, in case where absolutely necessary, to decline any commitment which is offered to them. The Board also reserves the right to determine how any commitment will be credited and recognized.
  7. Commitments will be recognized publicly and/or commemorated consistent with the guidelines adopted by the Board of Trustees and publicized by Daemen University. Once a gift has been recognized and/or commemorated, the name of the donor or designee will not be removed from the named facility, programs, or endowment without express written request, or permission, of the donor or the donor’s heirs and the authorization of the Board of Trustees.
  8. Requests by donors for anonymity will be honored.
  9. Although representatives of Daemen University will provide appropriate assistance, the ultimate responsibility regarding evaluations, tax-deductibility and/or similar federal, state or local legal compliance rests with the donor and with such counsel as the donor may wish to secure.
  10. Daemen University will seek the advice of legal counsel as needed and will issue no legal documents without the advice of legal counsel.
  11. Daemen University, through its Board of Trustees, other volunteers, or paid employees, will not knowingly seek nor accept any commitment regardless of size, designation or other condition which they believe is not in the potential donor’s best interest to commit.
  12. All persons employed by Daemen University authorized to contact prospective donors and promote the fund-raising programs of the University shall be paid a salary or fixed wage and shall not receive commissions or any other form of remuneration which could give such an employee a direct interest in any current or future gift to be received by Daemen University.

Types of Commitments

  1. Gifts of negotiable securities will be receipted at the mean value at which the security is traded on the date of the gift. Such securities will be conveyed to Daemen University’s broker for sale or to Daemen University’s investment manager for investment, consistent with the established policies of the University.
  2. Gifts of closely-held stock will be receipted at the donor’s appraisal value and will be held as quasi-endowed funds until liquidated, at which time the funds will be used consistent with the gift intentions of the donor and the established policies of Daemen University.
  3. Fully paid-up, or otherwise vested, insurance policies which irrevocably designate the name of Daemen University will be credited at the full face value of the policy.
  4. Commitments of insurance where ownership is assigned to Daemen University but where the policy is not paid-up will be credited at the current cash value of the policy or the value of the paid-up premiums, whichever is greater. Subsequent payments of appropriate premiums will be added to the value assigned to this commitment. Such commitments will qualify for commemorative opportunities at a level consistent with the value of the policy as it was credited (i.e. cash value plus ongoing premium payments).
  5. Commitments of term insurance naming Daemen University as a beneficiary will not be counted in the University’s attainment figures.
  6. Will commitment, commitments of unpaid insurance policies, and other revocable deferred gifts will be recorded as “future” commitments to Daemen University at the value established in writing by the donor through a Will commitment form, a letter, a copy of appropriate sections of the will or an insurance document, trust document or the like a) such revocable gift commitments will be recognized, subject to the donor’s specific request and intent, only when the funds are irrevocably committed to Daemen University or when the gift matures b) Will commitments for which the donor does not indicate a specific gift value and/or does not provide an estimate of a residuary bequest will be credited to the “futures” account at a minimum value level of $1,000 c) Will commitments for which the donor does indicate a specific amount, or estimated, the value will be recognized at full value of $1,000 in case of donors under 65 years of age
  7. Bequests will be credited to outright organizational attainment figures as received. Such bequests will be credited, recognized and/or commemorated at the value on the date of the gift.
  8. Gifts of wholly-owned real estate will be credited, recognized and/or commemorated at the appraisal value of the property at the time it is transferred to Daemen University, less any encumbrances. Prior to acceptance of real estate, the University shall require an initial environment review of the property to ensure that the property is not contaminated with environmental damage. In the event that the initial inspection reveals a potential problem, the University shall retain a qualified inspection firm to conduct an environmental audit. The cost of the environmental audit shall generally be an expense of the donor. Criteria for acceptance of real estate include a) Is the property useful for the purposes of the University? b) Is the property marketable? c) Are there any restrictions, reservations, easements or other limitations associated with the property? d) Are there any carrying costs, which may include insurance, property taxes, mortgages or notes, associated with the property? e) Does the environmental audit reflect that the property is not damaged?
  9. Gifts of other personal property with an appraised value of at least $1,000 will be credited, recognized and/or commemorated at the appraised value of the property at the time it is transferred to Daemen University, less encumbrances. Under normal circumstances, Daemen University will seek to liquidate such assets as soon as possible in order to secure the cash needed to fund its construction and operational programs and/or to invest such assets in ways consistent with the currently authorized investment strategies of Daemen University. The following are general guidelines or considerations in connection with gifts of personal property: a) Generally, Daemen University’s acceptance of such gifts can not involve significant additional expense for their present of the future display, maintenance or administration. b) Generally, no burdensome financial or other obligation can be incurred, directly or indirectly, by Daemen University as a result of its acceptance of such gifts. c) Generally, no member of the Board of Trustees or University employee can furnish valuations or appraisals to donors in connection with gifts of personal property to Daemen University; d) Except in those cases where the Board of Trustees determines that it is in the best interest of the institution to do so, Daemen University will not accept gifts of personal property, such as paintings, if the gifts are to be made on the condition, understanding or expectation that the gifted items are to be loaned to the donor or to the persons designated by the donor for life or for an extended period of time as determined by the donor.
  10. The Univerity will accept a remainder interest in a personal residence, farm or vacation home subject to the provisions of number 8 above. The donor or other occupants may continue to occupy the real estate for the duration of the stated life. At the death of the donor, the University may use the property or liquidate it to cash. Where the University receives a gift of a remainder interest, expenses for maintenance, real estate taxes, and any property indebtedness are to be paid by the donor.
  11. Annuity, irrevocable trust and similar life income agreement commitments will be credited, recognized and/or commemorated as follows: a) At the fair market value of the asset, on the date of transfer, being used to “fund” the life income trusts, annuity trusts and charitable gift annuities b) At the total pay-out level in the case of a charitable lead trust
  12. Any in-kind gift may be liquidated, and the donor will be credited on an item for item basis.

Named Endowment Fund

  1. Endowment gifts may be used to establish a special endowment fund as described below, or may be added to an existing endowment fund.
  2. Only the most frequent uses of endowment funds and their funding requirements are described below. There are many other possible uses for endowment funds, which offer a variety of opportunities to the donor.
  3. Persons interested in establishing a named endowment fund are encouraged to consult with a member of the development staff, prior to making the gift so that the donor’s intentions are appropriately established in writing. In designating an endowment gift for a specific purpose, the donor is encouraged to (1) describe that purpose as broadly as possible; (2) avoid detailed limitations; and (3) proved an “escape” clause granting Daemen University freedom to make use of designated funds in a manner most consistent with the intent of the donor with the interests of Daemen University.
  4. Gifts to establish named endowment funds for specific purposes must meet the minimum dollar requirements as established by the Board of Trustees. The principal amount of the original gift need not meet the minimum dollar requirement if the donor agrees to fully fund the endowment at the minimum dollar requirement within a specified and reasonable period of time. Daemen University reserved the right to review the minimum amounts required for named endowments periodically to amend the minimum amount required so as to ensure that endowment proceeds are sufficient to fund the intended purpose(s) of the endowment. If and when Daemen University acts to increase the minimum amount required to establish a particular named endowment fund, such action shall not be retroactive to funds already established and named.
  5. An endowment gift in an amount less than that required to establish a named endowment fund will be managed as part of the general organizational endowment fund. If the donor subsequently makes further additions to the fund, named endowment fund, the total principal amount (and subsequent earnings on that principal) will be utilized.
  6. Named endowment opportunities to include, but are not limited to the following: (Items 1-6 following serve as examples and can be customized by Daemen University)
    1. Named Endowed Academic Departments: Academic units are organized by the University as departments. The endowment of an academic department provides a guaranteed source of funding for faculty salaries and other ongoing expenses associated with the operation of the department.
    2. Named Endowed Chair: Vital to the University’s continued academic and scholarly accomplishments is the ability to attract and sustain a distinguished scholar in a particular field. An endowed chair may be established for this purpose, with the endowment being in an amount sufficient to provide income to fully fund an annual salary and fringe benefits.
    3. Named Endowed Scholarship: A named endowed scholarship may be established to provide financial support to a student for the pursuit of educational opportunities offered by the University. Endowment income primarily covers tuition and fees and, in some cases, may provide additional financial support to the recipient. Recipients of named scholarships shall be selected through the regular financial aid administrative procedures of the University. The following restrictions on endowed scholarship funds are unacceptable: a) Except in extraordinary circumstances approved by the Board of Trustees in order to provide opportunities for historically disadvantaged individuals, no scholarship funds may be restricted on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or disability b) No scholarship may be designated for a specific recipient nor for relatives or descendants of the donor c) No scholarship may specify the future employment of the recipient d) No scholarship may specify that monies be loaned to the recipient at a specific interest rate or with specific repayment terms
    4. Named Endowed Library or Book Fund: A named endowed library or book fund may be established to purchase books and/or other library materials in a particular academic field or to add to the general collection, consistent with the acquisition policies of the library.
    5. Named Endowed Prize Fund: A named endowed prize fund may be established to recognize a member of the University community for outstanding accomplishment. Recipients of endowed prizes shall be selected by the Board of Trustees.
    6. Named Endowed Award Fund: A named endowed award fund may be established to recognize a student for outstanding academic, leadership, and/or community achievement. Recipients of endowed awards are selected by an appropriate committee of faculty, administrators, and/or others. Awards are presented at Honor Convocations or another public occasion.

Daemen University reserves the right to limit the number of named endowed prizes and award funds.

Approval and Changes

These policies and guidelines are to be reviewed by the Development Committee of the Board of Trustees and recommended to the full Board for approval. Any changes or deviations from the policies and guidelines are to follow this same procedure.

Updated on April 3, 2023

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