Thoughtful stewardship of your philanthropic dollars

Investment Options

At the Community Foundation, we know that you are entrusting us with your philanthropic funds. We take pride in managing your dollars according to best practices. To that end, we hold ourselves to rigorous standards in order to mitigate risk and identify opportunities. Our internal experts collaborate with Colonial Consulting, LLC, and are guided by a volunteer investment committee that bring a wealth of knowledge to our investment strategies and process.

As a philanthropist, you may request that your fund be invested according to one of four diverse investment options to meet your grantmaking and time objectives:

The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta’s management of the Investment Pool (“Pool”) relies on a long-term investment strategy—one that’s diversified across a wide range of asset classes, including alternative assets such as private equity, hedge funds and absolute return strategies. After all, diversification is vital to managing risk and achieving the best possible returns.

The Pool consists of a wide array of institutional money managers, each selected for specific portfolio characteristic deemed important to building a well-diversified total portfolio with a likelihood of delivering long term returns that preserve the purchasing power of dollars invested in the Pool. The investment committee of the Community Foundation Board selects managers with the assistance of a neutral investment consultant.

For our pooled assets, we rely on the advice of an independent consultant, Colonial Consulting, LLC, to craft a long-term investment strategy and recommend expert asset managers that invest each component of the Foundation Pool’s asset allocation.

This option provides a diversified portfolio of American Funds mutual funds selected by the investment committee of the Community Foundation Board and purchased without commissions.
The conservative option is invested primarily in a money market fund and is considered appropriate for those wishing to protect principal and avoid market risk while earning money market rates of return.
The Community Foundation permits donors to recommend the investment advisor of their choice to manage the assets in their funds.

For questions regarding investments, please contact:

Contact our donor gift planning director

Belinda Brady
Director, Investments

Asset Allocation and Investment Performance

The Community Foundation’s investment philosophy for the Investment Pool and American Funds program focuses on long-term investments using diversified portfolios with a bias toward equities. We seek to:

  • Achieve investment returns that provide reasonable funding for donors’
    charitable distributions
  • Augment the value of the corpus at a rate greater than inflation, net of grant distributions and associated expenses

Results – September 30, 2018

Market Overview – Both the US and non-US broad market indices experienced gains in the third quarter of 2018, with the US market gains stronger than the non-US results. Fixed income index returns were mixed for the quarter. The Barclays Capital Aggregate index had a 0% return for the quarter whilst high yield and shorter term fixed income indices posted positive results in the rising interest rate environment.

Investment Pool – The Investment Pool returned 3.8% for the quarter, which is above its Target Benchmark return of 3.0% for the same period. Calendar year to date comparisons are also favorable, 4.3% for the Investment Pool and 3.4% for the Target Benchmark. The Investment Pool’s Opportunistic/Special Situations category, which focuses on strategies expected to provide higher absolute and risk adjusted returns, and US equity allocations (Large/Mid Cap Equity and Small Cap Equity) have been the drivers of the recent absolute performance. For the calendar year to date, the Opportunistic/Special Situations and US Small Cap Equity positions both had double digit returns, 12.4% and 11.0% respectively.

Longer term, the relative performance Investment Pool results are also good with the Total Fund beating the Target Benchmark for the following annualized time periods ending 9/30/2018: 1 year, 2 year, 5 year, 7 year and 10 year.

American Funds – The American Funds underperformed its Benchmark by 60 bps for the calendar year to date (3.5% versus 4.1%) and quarter (2.7% versus 3.7%). The American Funds program beat its Benchmark for the 2, 3, 5 and 10 years ending 9/30/18.

Conservative Fund – The Conservative Fund’s results continue to provide a reasonable return while preserving principal and maintaining a high degree of liquidity. This fund returned .5% for the quarter and 1.1% on a calendar year to date basis.

Summary – The Foundation’s investment options offer distinct choices across the risk/return spectrum and continue to produce results in line with their respective objective.

IMPORTANT MESSAGE: The performance information presented is being provided to donor advisors with an interest in the Foundation’s investment options. It is not intended to constitute an offering of any kind. The performance information is shown net of investment management fees and has not been audited.

Investment Returns Report – September 2018
Investment Returns Report – June 2018
Investment Returns Report – March 2018
Benchmark Information


The investment committee of the Community Foundation Board closely monitors the investment of our assets, as well as the managers who implement our investment strategies. As stewards of our assets, the Foundation’s investment committee holds the selected investment managers to the highest standards of ethical behavior and professional performance.

Committee members:

• Samuel Allen, Chairman, Globalt, Inc. (Retired)
• Thomas J. Asher, President, The Rich Foundation
• Edward S. Croft, III, Managing Director, Croft & Bender, LP
• William A. “Billy” Mitchell, Carter and Associates (Retired)
• Michael A. Nadal, VP, Portfolio Manager, Montag & Caldwell
• Galen Oelkers, President, The Zeist Company, LLC
• Bryan Rand, Partner, Belstone Capital
• Wendell Reilly, Chairman, Berman Capital Advisors
• Anne Sterchi, Executive Director, J. B. Fuqua Foundation