Non-profit

Marin Community Foundation

Website:

www.marincf.org

Location:

NOVATO, CA

Tax ID:

94-3007979

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2016):

Revenue: $62,227,078
Expenses: $48,901,352
Assets: $324,413,622

Formation:

1986

Leadership:

Thomas Peters

The Marin Community Foundation is a left-of-center donor-advised fund provider based in California. Several organizations are part of the Marin Community Foundation, which as of August 2021 oversaw more than $3.5 billion in assets, distributed over $190 million in grants, and manages more than 800 different funds. [1]

The foundation receives most of its income from contributions and grants from individuals and other left-of-center organizations including the Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF), which also conducts most of its grantmaking through donor-advised fund accounts. [2]

Background

The Marin Community Foundation (MCF) is a left-of-center nonprofit grantmaking organization that operates as a donor-advised fund, a kind of charitable “savings account” in which donors gift funds to grow in MCF’s investment accounts before advising the organization to pay out the funds in grants to other nonprofits. [3]

MCF launched the Marin Community Foundation Loan Fund, now called CommunityFirst, in 1989, established its Legacy Giving Program in 1999, offered international grantmaking to its donors in 2007, and created its own alternative to a private foundation, Virtuoso, in 2016. [4]

Several nonprofit organizations are part of the Marin Community Foundation. These organizations include the Buck Family Fund; Margaret E. Haas Fund; Peter E. Haas Jr Family Fund; Kurland Family Foundation; Lynx Foundation; Dagmar Dolby Fund; MCF Gift Fund; Bingham, Osborn, & Scarborough Foundation; and the Kelly Ann Brown Foundation. [5] [6]

As of August 2021, MCF oversaw more than $3.5 billion in assets, distributed over $190 million in grants, and has granted over $2.1 billion since its inception. MCF manages more than 800 different funds including 482 donor-advised funds, 86 funds for organizations, 14 scholarship funds, 9 committee-advised funds, and 41 unrestricted funds. [7] [8]

Funding

The Marin Community Foundation receives most of its income from contributions and grants from individuals and other left-of-center organizations.

MCF had a total revenue amount of $62 million in 2016 with $49 million coming from contributions and grants, $9.7 million from program services, and $3.3 million from investment income. The foundation’s total expenditure amounted to $48.9 million, of which $35.6 million was paid in grants, and $5.1 million was spent on salaries and wages. MCF’s total assets were worth $324 million that year. [9]

MCF received a large boost in income in 2017 with a total revenue amount of $137 million. The foundation’s income climbed further each year with a total revenue amount of $143 million in 2018, and $168 million in 2019. Approximately 90% of the foundation’s revenue came in the form of contributions and grants for these years and around 7% came from program services. [10]

MCF’s total expenses amounted to $49.5 million in 2017, $64.2 million in 2018, and $113 million in 2019. MCF granted a total of $35.7 million in 2017, $49 million in 2018, and $97.1 million in 2019. The foundation’s spending on salaries and wages amounted to $8.3 million in 2017, just under $8.4 million in 2018, and $9 million in 2019. [11] [12] [13]

The Marin Community Foundation received a large increase in income in 2020 with a total revenue amount of $235.3 million, of which $225 million came in the form of contributions and grants. It also received $10.7 million from its program services but unlike other years it lost $557,547 on investments. MCF’s total expenses amounted to $132.9 million, with $114 million being spent on grants and $9.8 million on salaries and wages. [14]

The Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) granted just under $400,000 to the Marin Community Foundation in 2015. SVCF is a left-of-center grantmaking organization with over $11 billion in assets. Like MCF, it conducts most of its grantmaking through donor-advised fund accounts. SCVF has drawn criticism in recent years as a “Black Hole” for charitable donations because IRS rules and SVCF practice have allowed money to be held in DAF accounts for years with no required minimum payouts to charitable organizations as are required of private foundations. [15] [16]

Criticism

The Marin Community Foundation was accused of ignoring its mission of aiding “disadvantaged residents” in 2001 by Latino residents of Marin County, California. Activists interrupted a National Philanthropy Day luncheon to hand out flyers that read: “Message from 11 million Latinos: The Marin Community Foundation Ignores Latinos and National Philanthropic Goals.” The activists were eventually removed by security and some people who received the flyers “tossed them aside.” [17]

Multiple activist groups, including the San Francisco-based Greenlining Institute, claimed their request of $150 million for a 10-year plan for affordable housing was rejected by MCF. Officials for the Greenlining Institute noted that MCF spent six times more on grants that focus on environmental issues than affordable housing for Latinos whom the Institute claimed, “endure Third World conditions, inadequate health care and infringements on their immigrant rights.” [18]

MCF responded to the request for money in a letter stating, “we are not persuaded that a group from San Francisco or elsewhere is needed to intermediate our community’s discussions.” MCF’s president and chief executive officer Thomas Peters also stated that organizations sending a “demand letter” to MCF is “amazing,” and that it is “not how we work.” [19]

References

  1. “About Mcf,” Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/about. ^
  2. “Marin Community Foundation,” Silicon Valley Community Foundation, March 3, 2017, https://www.siliconvalleycf.org/marin-community-foundation. ^
  3. “Donor-Advised Funds: MARIN Community Foundation,” Donor-Advised Funds | Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/individuals-families/donor-advised-funds. ^
  4. “Home: Marin Community Foundation,” Home | Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/. ^
  5. “About Mcf,” Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/about. ^
  6. “Who We Are,” Kelly Ann Brown Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, http://www.kellyannbrownfoundation.org/who-we-are.html. ^
  7. “About Mcf,” Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/about. ^
  8. “Home: Marin Community Foundation,” Home | Marin Community Foundation, accessed August 16, 2021, https://www.marincf.org/. ^
  9. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “Marin Community Foundation, Full Filing – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/943007979/201740639349300614/full. ^
  10. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “Marin Community Foundation – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/943007979. ^
  11. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “MARIN Community Foundation – Form Form 990 for Period Ending Jun 2017 – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/943007979/10_2018_prefixes_91-94%2F943007979_201706_990_2018100115748034. ^
  12. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “MARIN Community Foundation – Form Form 990 for Period Ending Jun 2018 – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/943007979/06_2019_prefixes_88-95%2F943007979_201806_990_2019061716418002. ^
  13. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “MARIN Community Foundation – Form Form 990 for Period Ending Jun 2019 – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/943007979/01_2021_prefixes_91-95%2F943007979_201906_990_2021012817669792. ^
  14. Mike Tigas Ken Schwencke, “MARIN Community Foundation – Form Form 990 for Period Ending Jun 2020 – Nonprofit Explorer,” ProPublica, May 9, 2013, https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/943007979/05_2021_prefixes_94-95%2F943007979_202006_990_2021052518188544?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=pmd_fc4139cccc9dc55e7e0241764c2be7a91d47dce4-1629135685-0-gqNtZGzNAo2jcnBszQ5O. ^
  15. “Marin Community Foundation,” Silicon Valley Community Foundation, March 3, 2017, https://www.siliconvalleycf.org/marin-community-foundation. ^
  16. Alana Semuels, “The ‘Black Hole’ That Sucks up Silicon Valley’s Money,” The Atlantic (Atlantic Media Company, May 18, 2018), https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2018/05/silicon-valley-community-foundation-philanthropy/560216/. ^
  17. John M Glionna, “Activists Battle Marin Charity,” Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles Times, November 16, 2001), https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2001-nov-16-me-4853-story.html. ^
  18. John M Glionna, “Activists Battle Marin Charity,” Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles Times, November 16, 2001), https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2001-nov-16-me-4853-story.html. ^
  19. John M Glionna, “Activists Battle Marin Charity,” Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles Times, November 16, 2001), https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2001-nov-16-me-4853-story.html. ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: June - May
  • Tax Exemption Received: January 1, 1986

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2016 Jun Form 990 $62,227,078 $48,901,352 $324,413,622 $51,728,776 N $49,015,807 $9,750,702 $3,331,356 $587,808 PDF
    2015 Jun Form 990 $56,887,505 $38,684,083 $308,092,452 $41,752,215 N $44,049,636 $9,410,945 $3,145,018 $812,943 PDF
    2014 Jun Form 990 $79,270,897 $94,689,929 $414,153,079 $138,113,709 N $60,640,707 $14,805,500 $2,508,644 $2,203,855 PDF
    2013 Jun Form 990 $93,636,665 $90,960,458 $388,548,743 $122,683,870 N $77,971,497 $12,277,755 $2,026,072 $766,185 PDF
    2012 Jun Form 990 $114,640,935 $77,261,359 $372,238,981 $123,047,934 N $101,710,644 $11,188,455 $1,574,010 $742,209 PDF
    2011 Jun Form 990 $97,593,235 $70,449,786 $333,013,779 $119,408,296 Y $86,224,015 $9,875,017 $1,298,124 $2,208,436 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Marin Community Foundation

    5 HAMILTON LANDING STE 200
    NOVATO, CA 94949-8263