International fiduciary standards organization Investment Fiduciary Leadership Council announced today the launch of a new accreditation program for foundation executives – the Certified Foundation Fiduciary.
With the recent enactment of the Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act, or a close version of it, by all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, the foundation community is now governed by a set of new and more stringent regulations. In 2009, a task force was developed by IFLC to create a common standard of conduct for foundation leaders that would provide guidelines for adhering to UPMIFA and fiduciary best practices. The task force published Stewardship Guidelines for Endowments and Foundations (the “Fiduciary Standard”) in 2011.
Providing a Fiduciary Standard for foundation executives – including foundation board members, risk management professionals, C-suite leadership, and investment committees – was the first step toward aligning foundations with a consistent standard of stewardship practices. The foundation community still needed, however, to be equipped with the proper skills and knowledge to effectively enact those practices. Under its new program, IFLC offers the Certified Foundation Fiduciary Specialist (CFFS) designation in order to address this real market need.
The CFFS designation is the only credential that exceeds the demands of UPMIFA. Obtaining a CFFS designation not only increases individual leadership credentials, but it also elevates an organization’s stewardship practices, proves trustworthiness to donors, and minimizes risk by providing step-by-step instructions for safeguarding against Attorney General regulatory enforcement. The self-paced, interactive online course allows foundation executives to complete the five-hour accreditation on their own customized schedule. Consultants and advisors may enroll in the CFFS program if endorsed by a foundation client.
“The CFFS designation is the clearest pathway to effective fiduciary duty, stewardship practices, and peace of mind for the foundation community,” said Michelle Sly Laughlin, executive director of IFLC’s foundation community. “Finally, foundation executives are empowered by an accreditation that gives them confidence in