July 2018 Newsletter

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In this issue of our bi-monthly newsletter, we highlight The University of New Hampshire and their history of sustainability and sustainable investing, an exclusive Q&A with three leaders in the gender lens investing space on the risks and opportunities associated with gender lens investing, and several exciting updates from the Network, including the introduction of two new team members.

We are also pleased to announce that we will again be partnering with Second Nature to host the 2019 Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit from February 10-12 in Tempe, AZ. Please save the date and see below for more information.

As always, please be in touch with any questions, news or ideas for IEN.

Warm regards,

Georges & The IEN Team


Feature School: The University of New Hampshire

The University of New Hampshire (UNH) is a public research university located in Durham, New Hampshire with an institution-wide commitment to sustainability. In 2017, UNH earned a STARS Platinum rating — the highest possible rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), which measures sustainability leadership in operations, academics, and investments. UNH is also a fixture on Sierra Magazine’s list of “Cool Schools,” and UNH has received a perfect score on The Princeton Review’s Green College Honor Roll. For several years, UNH has been working to align not only their operations and academic programs with their institutional mission and sustainability goals, but also their investment portfolio. UNH has a $363 million in endowment funds, of which $225 million is managed by The UNH Foundation. 

Building on UNH’s longstanding commitment to sustainability through multiple campus initiatives, in 2015 the UNH Foundation created a $1 million dollar environmental, social and governance (ESG) endowment pool, which grew to $3 million in August 2017, and is now at $17M in July 2018.  It will grow to $40 million by early 2019 as the process to transfer four ESG-aligned endowed funds from the main pool is completed. In 2017, the Foundation also invested $3 million into the NH Community Loan Fund as a component of the fixed income segment of the main pool. A Committee on Investor Responsibility was formed in 2017 to advise the Foundation’s Investment & Finance Committee on sustainable investing topics. To learn more about the UNH Foundation's commitment to sustainable investing, click here.

To hear more about UNH's history of sustainability and sustainable investing, watch this video of a panel discussion on what community investing can look like at a college endowment, recorded at IEN's Community Investing Roundtable in early June. To read a summary of the Roundtable, check out speaker bios, and watch videos of the other panel discussions, click here.

 

Feature Resource: Gender Lens Investing Landscape - Barriers & Opportunities

Q&A Article Featuring: Suzanne Biegel, Founder, Catalyst At Large, Natasha Lamb, Managing Partner at Arjuna Capital, & Lawler Kang, CEO and Founder, League of Allies

Nearly four decades before they were even allowed to vote, women in the U.S. were placing their bets within the financial markets. In 1880 Mary Gage opened the first stock exchange in Manhattan for women – prior to this, women depended on men to invest in public equities on their behalf. Fast forward to the 21 st century, and the financial markets and companies more broadly have only recently started to realize the value of female representation. The gender lens discussion was further fueled by the United Nations in late 2015, when it listed gender equality among its 17 Sustainable Development GoalsNevertheless, some market practitioners have long understood the importance of gender lens investing, and in particular, its impact to the bottom line.

In this Q&A article, The Intentional Endowments Network (IEN) approached thought leaders within the Gender Lens Investing space to get their outlook on the associated risks and opportunities, real-life examples of such risks and opportunities, and perspective on how gender lens investing relates to environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors, including the gender-climate nexus. Read this full Q&A here.

If you are interested in joining IEN's new working group focused on gender lens investing, please reach out to Nicole at nicole@intentionalendowments.org.

 

Feature Event: Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit

The 2019 Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit will be held in partnership with Second Nature on February 10-12, 2019 at the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel in Tempe, Arizona.

The Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit is the largest national gathering of higher education presidents, chancellors, trustees, and other senior leaders working to accelerate climate solutions through all aspects of institutional activities -- education, research, campus operations, community engagement, and endowment investing. 

Please save the dates, and check this page for the latest details on the 2019 Summit.


Updates from the Network 

New IEN Members

We are pleased to welcome the following organizations to the Network as contributing members: US Trust (Leadership Level), Gettysburg College, The University of Toronto Asset Management Corporation (UTAM), New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, and Karner Blue CapitalTo see a full list of contributing members, click here. To learn more about the leadership opportunities and benefits of IEN membership, click here.

 

IEN Welcomes Two New Team Members

We are pleased to announce the addition of two new IEN team members this Spring -- Alice DonnaSelva and Kaede Kawauchi. Alice joins the IEN Team as a Principal after serving on the IEN Steering Committee and Executive Committee for 3 years, bringing with her 15 years of experience in the investment industry, most recently as an investment consultant at Prime Bucholz. Kaede joins the team as a Program Manager as a recent graduate from The Tufts Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, where among other things, she served as CEO of the Fletcher Social Investment Group. Previously, Kaede worked at the Japan Center for International Exchange, a policy institute in New York. Read Alice and Kaede's full bios on the IEN Team page, and join us in giving them a warm welcome!

 

The Crane Institute of Sustainability - Home of the Intentional Endowments Network - Expands Board with Two Key Additions

IEN broadened its executive team with the addition of two new members to the Board of Directors of The Crane Institute of Sustainability (“Crane”), IEN’s organizational home. Both Sandra Urie, chairman emeritus of investment advisory firm, Cambridge Associates, LLC and Anthony Rust, chairman of the investment committee at the Warren Wilson College joined Crane’s Board in June. Collectively they bring nearly six decades of investment management experience and deep experience working with endowments on sustainability, impact, and mission-related investing. Read the full press release here.

 

Webinars

In May, IEN hosted two webinars: The Importance of ESG Data & Corporate Engagement, and An Overview of The Impact Management ProjectFollow the links to view recordings of each presentation. This month, we are happy to be hosting the following two webinars. Be sure to click each link for more information and to register:

 

Videos From IEN's Community Impact Investing Roundtable Now Available

Community impact investing can be a powerful tool to redirect capital into our own backyard. Reinvesting in our communities can generate many benefits especially for anchor institutions such as foundations and endowments, including the creation of prosperous and thriving neighborhoods in which they work and the development of relationships with local communities.

IEN’s half-day roundtable on Community Impact Investing on June 11, 2018 at the Boston Foundation convened more than 70 endowment and foundation decision-makers and other stakeholders interested in working more closely with their local communities. The interactive structure of the roundtable allowed participants to learn not only from distinguished panelists but also from others in the room with years of experience in this field. Be sure to check out videos from the event as well as relevant resources on the IEN website, and read a full summary of the event here.  

 

Working Groups

IEN Working Groups meet regularly to advance key strategies in support of the network's goals. Below is a brief update of what current Working Groups have accomplished.

  • New Racial Justice, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Working Group: For the past few months, IEN has been forming a new Working Group to explore issues of Racial Justice, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) in the investment process. This process was started in February when a pre-meeting was held at the 2018 Higher Education Climate Leadership Summit with leaders from the historically black college and university (HBCU) community. Moving forward, the group will develop ways to support endowments in considering issues related to racial justice and DEI from a variety of perspectives, and will plan an IEN event for the Spring of 2019 hosted by an HBCU. If you are interested in participating in this group, please reach out to Kaede Kawauchi at kaede@intentionalendowments.org.

  • New Gender Lens Investing Working Group: This month, in partnership with Suzanne Biegel, Founder of Catalyst at Large, IEN is launching a new working group focused on gender lens investing (intentionally integrating gender as a factor into financial analysis to get to a better outcome). If you are passionate about increasing higher education endowments investing with a gender lens, please reach out to Nicole at nicole@intentionalendowments.org for more information.

  • Fiduciary Duty & Policy:  In the past few months, this working group welcomed two new members: Valentina Glaviano of TIAA CREF and Jonathan Klavens of Klavens Law Group, P.C. Two new papers have been written by the members of the working group: “Fiduciary Duty Yellow Flags for Proxy Voting Season” - and “Best Interests in the Long Term: Fiduciary Duties and ESG Integration” which can be found here.  In addition, a collaborative effort has resulted in a paper that guides endowment decision makers in finding an investment consultant to assist in incorporating ESG into their portfolio investment process.  That paper will be published in the next few weeks. Finally, the group has been learning more about behavioral governance. If you are interested in participating in this group, please reach out to Alice at alice@intentionalendowments.org.
  • Student Managed Funds: This working group connects student-managed fund advisors, academics focused on sustainable investing, and students involved in student-managed funds to share best practices and resources to advance sustainable investing curriculum and strategies in each fund. This group is on a break for the summer and will reconvene in September. If you are interested in connecting with stakeholders involved with student-managed funds on campuses across the country to share best practices, resources, events, curricula and undertake other activities to support sustainable investing funds and education, please reach out to Nicole at nicole@intentionalendowments.org to access the database.

  • Shareholder Engagement:  This group has been connecting with additional endowments interested in becoming more active on shareholder engagement and proxy voting. Members have presented to investment committees and advisory committees on responsible investment.  The group has been promoting resources, such as the annual Proxy Preview report, ICCR's proxy guide, Ceres's shareholder resolution database, as well as events and webinars associated with these resources. The group plans to continue to explore ways to support resource-constrained endowments in being more active, particularly when many use outsourced CIOs and external managers and therefore don't always own shares directly. Stay tuned to the next newsletter for more detailed information on these activities. If you are interested in participating in this group, please reach out to Alice at alice@intentionalendowments.org.

  • Trustee Peer Group: The Trustee Peer Group is currently focused on bringing new members into the group to create more opportunities for peer-to-peer learning among college and university fiduciaries on sustainable investing. The group hosted a very successful AGB’s 2018 Foundation Leadership Forum. If you are interested in participating in this group, please reach out to Tony at tony@intentionalendowments.org

 

Opportunity to Highlight Fossil Fuel Divestment Commitments at the Global Climate Action Summit in September 2018

The Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) will take place in San Francisco on September 12-14, 2018, organized by California Governor Jerry Brown. At the GCAS, the Divest Invest Network will celebrate recent commitments to divest + invest across a range of sectors – insurers, pension funds, universities, faith groups, philanthropy and more. They will release the latest tally of assets under management committed to divestment via a new “state of the movement” report by Arabella Advisors. As in previous years, the report will be grounded in historical trends, looking at the growth of the movement and its contribution to the larger global climate dialogue. In the context of sub-national leadership, Divest Invest is looking to highlight new divestment commitments and announcements by colleges and universities. This is a meaningful opportunity for any school that is planning on – or close to a decision on – divesting from fossil fuels. The coordinated publicity push and press event organized by Divest Invest Network, in conjunction with the attention the GCAS is expected to attract will help schools that announce as part of this larger effort earn more press coverage and positive impact from their divestment commitment. For more information on this opportunity, please reach out to Kaede at kaede@intentionalendowments.org.

 

 

Upcoming Events

IEN Events:

 

Other Events:

  • PRI In Person l Principles for Responsible Investment, September 12-14, 2018, San Francisco, CA


To view more upcoming events, click here


Featured Resources

Below are some recent resources from the Intentional Endowments Network and other organizations. To see more reports, articles, videos and other resources by topic, visit the resource page on our website.

Resources from IEN:


Other Resources:

 

In the News

Below is a sampling of recent news articles we've posted on our Newsfeed, ranging in topics from Sustainable Investing, Climate Risk, Science & Regulation, Sustainability in Higher Education, Divestment, Clean Energy, and more. To recieve news updates directly in your inbox, manage your mailing preferences here.


IEN in the News:

Other News:


If you have an original piece you would like to submit for an upcoming newsletter, or for more information about the Intentional Endowments Network and how you can support this work, please contact Nicole Harman at nicole@intentionalendowments.org.