Trustees of the Funds
The Trustees of the Funds is a group of individuals charged with oversight of a professionally managed investment portfolio (the Fund) benefiting the churches and organizations of the Diocese of Virginia. Chartered in 1892 The Trustees of the Funds it is one of the oldest organizations in the diocese. The goal of the Trustees is to preserve and enhance the real (inflation-adjusted) purchasing power of the portfolio while providing a steady and consistent spending stream for the support of Fund participants. Based on this management goal, the investment objective for the Fund is to attain a real total return of at least five percent per annum over the long term.
The Trustees and their Role
Trustees are elected from nominees approved by the Annual Council of the diocese. Each Trustee serves a three-year term and may serve two consecutive terms. Trustees are parishioners of diocesan churches and are nominated by their church. The current roster of Trustees for the 2012-2013 period can be found here. The Trustees meet on a regular basis in person and by conference call to determine strategy and make any decisions on actions foreseen during the coming months. They also meet on an as-needed basis, as well as communicate regularly by telephone and email while addressing specific decisions or projects. It is the job of the Trustees to nurture the investments, but this is not to say that there is no risk. Without risk, there is no way to exceed inflation. In outperforming inflation as a baseline, the value of principal increases enough so that the buying power of that income will be the same or better in the future.
The key to prudent investing is finding a diverse selection of assets that can withstand fluctuations and cycles in the economy. The Trustees seek high quality companies with proven records of earnings and return on investment. This investment selection reduces volatility and helps to produce a steady stream of income, thereby helping the diocese and its individual congregations plan wisely.