From Tue Nov 30 13:22:56 1999
Subject: followup to FAC and Senate Budget meeting
Date: Tue, 30 Nov 1999 13:24:27 -0800

Dear David and Peter:

At Monday's meeting of the FAC with members of the University Senate budget committee, both of you asked for a "fact sheet" of sorts on university fundraising.

It's difficult to envision the kind of document that will provide a satisfactory look at this increasingly important university operation, but let me begin with some facts that will begin to give a picture of our work.

  1. University development is a function separate from the work of the UO Foundation, which is a 501 (c) 3 organization. The university, through its constituency development officers, central development officers and deans and directors do the direct work of fundraising and stewardship of donors, while the Foundation serves as the university's repository of funds for distribution as directed by gift agreements. The Foundation is also charged with investment management of all gift funds.
  2. University fundraising currently targets annual fundraising goal of $45-50 million. To provide some perspective, fundraising accounted for $13 million in 1988-89 and for $49 million in 1998-99. Clearly, private giving from a large and diverse base of donors is on the rise.
  3. Looking over the decade of the 90s, the distribution of private dollars is as follows:
  4. That percentage is more skewed to academics in an analysis of the university's "Top Ten" gifts, totaling $75.5 million:
  5. University fundraising is highly efficient: The average cost of raising $1 in private gifts is about 9 cents -- below generally accepted fundraising cost averages cited by professional fundraising groups. It is expected that the more mature a fundraising unit, the more efficient it will be as it will be working with a greater base of prospects.
  6. Our donor base is quite broad. In the 6-year Oregon Campaign that concluded in Dec. 1998 with a gift and pledge total of $255 million, more than 233,000 individual gifts were recorded, ranging from 98 cents to $25 million. Gifts of $100 or less totaled 144,705.
  7. Not surprisingly, most gifts have specific designations and uses -- whether a scholarship, a faculty travel fund, an account for chemistry supplies, support of KWAX programming, refurbishing of seating in Beall Hall, etc. In the Oregon campaign, only 6% of all gifts were listed as "unrestricted." Most of those went to such accounts as Dean's discretionary funds (which in some cases turned around to support faculty travel and research or new equipment purchases) and to departmental support. In any case, these funds have historically been quite limited, as donors (mostly alums) prefer to link a gift to a specific program or, in the case of a professorship, to honor an individual who made a difference in the donor's life.
I hope this wasn't too lengthy an opening look. As always, I am happy to answer questions or to find the answers to them. With best wishes, Duncan McDonald, Vice President Public Affairs and Development, University of Oregon 346-5558
Web page spun on 30 November 1999 by Peter B Gilkey 202 Deady Hall, Department of Mathematics at the University of Oregon, Eugene OR 97403-1222, U.S.A. Phone 1-541-346-4717 of Deady Spider Enterprises