Shareholder Engagement

NUDGING COMPANIES TOWARD GOOD

Remember when McDonalds sold coffee in Styrofoam cups and Home Depot was cutting down virgin forest to make 2x4s?  EFA’s long history of shareholder engagement — along with the hard work of our grantee partners, forward-thinking asset managers, and other foundations — have helped to make these unsustainable practices memories.  Using the equities in our endowment the Foundation furthers its grantmaking goals and values by voting our shares, communicating with corporate leaders, and working with other funders to catalyze change.   

To learn more about shareholder engagement, please visit:

Portfolio Screening

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 one of the original signators to the Divest-Invest movement. 

ASSET ALLOCATION

EFA’s asset allocation is designed to meet the Foundation’s goals, including

  1. Exsiting into perpetuity;
  2. Paying out 5-6% in grants funding per year, while achieving long term growth; and
  3. Ensuring our portfolio is actively screened for ESG factors.

Given the risk and return objectives of the portfolio, EFA choses managers with expertise in the different equity asset classes: large cap US, small/mid cap US, international developed markets, emerging markets, and alternatives (private Equity and hedge funds) who incorporate both value and growth styles to increase diversity and decrease correlation.  

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.  We actively seek investment managers who think long term, care about the planet, and really “get” sustainable investing.  To learn more about the Divest-Investment movement, click here.