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What’s So Important About Assets?

Building blocks being hoisted by cranes that are constructing a one hundred dollar bill

By Chris Askin CSPG, CFRE
President & CEO

The measure of a Community Foundation is often expressed by the size of its assets. It's a simple number that can quickly cut through the clutter and noise of today’s world. And as such, it’s an easy and accurate way to gauge and benchmark the health and impact of a community foundation, wherever it may be located. Let me tell you why, but first, some exciting news on this topic.

I am very pleased and proud to share that thanks to the incredible generosity of our community, the assets at the Community Foundation of Northern Nevada now exceed $150 million. Further, more than a dozen families, in addition to the more than 100 already in our Legacy Society, have set up significant bequest arrangements.  

We are thrilled that this milestone has been reached, yet you may ask, what does a community foundation’s asset size really mean?

Having more assets means more philanthropy, more money for charity, and, ultimately, greater impact on the lives of people. Increasing assets means more people are giving, and more people are making larger gifts. It means that the community is more engaged through giving. It means that more professional advisors are talking with clients about giving. It means that more professional advisors and donors are increasing their knowledge about how to effectively gift assets like stock, property, and others. It means more people are preparing bequest arrangements.

Increased assets also means there is more money being granted, equaling better funded services and increased support for area charities. Beyond the daily needs of the community, growing assets also means that more money is available for strategic granting and giving during extraordinary times of crisis and need. It means people have an increased awareness of community needs.

As assets increase, it allows our Community Foundation to afford a larger budget with more staff, which results in more community leadership work and better services to fundholders. It means more and better initiatives and community engagement. Assets translate into increased measurable improvements in the lives of people, including programs to help charities in ways besides money.

Simply put, the size of the Community Foundation’s assets reflects increased giving and impact on our community, and that measurement can be conveyed in a simple and straightforward way.

I am hopeful that this message helps explain why growing is critical. Our growth in assets to attain this $150 million milestone isn’t really about the Community Foundation. We are stewards of the resources entrusted to use. All of our success – our growing assets and our increasing community impact that results from this growth – it is all due to the generosity of donors which has led to the establishment and growth of the Community Foundation of Northern Nevada. This generosity by so many people is the reason we are here and able to do so much. I can’t imagine how much good will come from future growth, but I look forward to seeing that unfold.

Thank you to all who are part of the Community Foundation's daily impact in our region. If you’d like to explore ways to help advance our work while pursuing your financial and tax goals, or want to find out more, give our team a call at 775-333-5499 or email us at

The Community Foundation of Northern Nevada is strengthening our community through philanthropy and leadership by connecting people who care with causes that matter.

December 18, 2021