Excitement, cheers and applause. These sounds are not the norm at a typical Jewish nonprofit’s annual meeting. But then again, the Dallas Jewish Community Foundation (DJCF) is no ordinary Jewish nonprofit. The most significant distinction is that the DJCF does not fundraise nor solicit. Can another nonprofit in town say that? The Foundation administers numerous scholarships, endowments and donor-advised funds on behalf of fundholders. Additionally, the Foundation concentrates on managing other nonprofits’ funds so those nonprofits can concentrate on the important services they provide.
Beyond the typical “gavel” items of an annual meeting, the DJCF adheres to the philosophy that the real success lies in the people who donate time and resources because, for them, the whole is better than its parts. This year’s Nov. 4 Virtual Annual Meeting will serve as a reminder that #ThereIsGoodHappening in our community. The awarding of the Sylvan T. Baer Foundation grants is always full of excitement as the agencies that night will only know they are recipients; only there, surrounded by their supporters, will they find out the amount. As many as 14 agencies who work directly with Jewish individuals will have the potential to share $175,000 in grant awards that night. The agency names that will receive grants will be announced in a later edition of the Texas Jewish Post.
The Sylvan T. Baer Foundation was established in 1965 by Mr. Baer in honor of his parents, Jacob and Helen Baer, to assist needy and deserving Jews in the Dallas community. Bank of America, N.A., serves as trustee of this charitable foundation and the DJCF has been the hired consultant for the bank since inception. The Foundation is currently valued at $3.5 million and distributes annually 5% of the market value. No one could have anticipated the wonderful legacy Mr. Baer created, and now each year the entire community comes together in suspense as the grants are announced. It’s a wonderful example of the value of endowment funds, one that the DJCF is proud to share.
The DJCF Annual Meeting also honors the many fundholders who give purpose to the Foundation’s mission. These fundholders allow the Foundation and its partners to fulfill their purposes. And speaking of partners, 20 of the nonprofits who call on DJCF to manage their investment assets will have their Unsung Heroes honored. Now we all know a lot about heroes lately, and these are staff and volunteers that work behind the scenes ensuring their nonprofits are successful. Lastly, the leadership of the foundation, both new and outgoing, will also be feted for their achievements. They are truly the backbone of so many agency success stories for the behind-the-scenes work they do that only each agency’s investment committee realizes.
Being a virtual meeting has its advantages. All those that that sign up for this free community event will be mailed “celebration kits” that include ways to celebrate, thank and honor those in the spotlight. Given how unique the last few months have been, this year’s Annual Meeting promises to be even more extraordinary, as it will showcase not only the great work the DJCF has accomplished but the great work done behind the scenes by staff and volunteers of so many different nonprofits. The media sponsor for this milestone event is the Texas Jewish Post. For more information, visit www.DJCF.org or call 214-615-9351.