EFA has been proud to be a leader in the impact investing movement. The Foundation began by applying Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) screens to our endowment in the early 1990s to ensure that the endowment aligned with the grantmaking mission of the Foundation. The Foundation has also been an active shareholder, an original member of the Divest-Invest movement, and has sparked a new movement to bring the tools of impact investing to support increased access to reproductive healthcare through the Reproductive Healthcare Investors Alliance.
EFA believes that a key aspect of impact investing is shareholder engagement.
By owning shares in public companies, EFA is able to raise environmental, social and corporate governance issues with management. We do this by filing or co-filing shareholder resolutions which are voted on annually by a company’s shareholders. The filing of a resolution can be the trigger for productive dialogue with the company, ultimately leading to positive change while not impacting the bottom line.
The rules for shareholder engagement are set by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Recent attempts to change those rules put shareholder rights at grave risk and EFA is proud to support the nonprofit organizations fighting to preserve those rights.
Organizations we are supporting:
SCREENING OUR INVESTMENTS SINCE THE EARLY 1990s
EFA is proud to be one of the first private foundations to begin screening our investments using Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria. ESG criteria are standards for a company’s operations that EFA uses to ensure that our investments align with our grantmaking mission and our core values. Building on our commitment to ensure that our portfolio supports - rather than dilutes - our grantmaking goals, in 2015 we became 100% fossil fuel free and one of the original signatories to the Divest-Invest movement.
DIVESTING and INVESTING
Divesting from fossil fuels is just half of the equation. We also seek to invest in climate solutions that will accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy. EFA invests its portfolio in forward thinking companies that are leading the clean energy revolution, such as Tesla—and our assets have grown as a result.
To learn more about EFA’s investments, we invite you to look at these select resources:
Gender Equality in the U.S (Equileap)