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Patrick D. Hundley letter: Picture of MSUM alumni incomplete

In The Forum last weekend, an article appeared on the front page that mistakenly cast a negative picture of the work that we do here at the Minnesota State University Moorhead Alumni Foundation. "'Tis the Season for Charity," written by Andrea Do...

In The Forum last weekend, an article appeared on the front page that mistakenly cast a negative picture of the work that we do here at the Minnesota State University Moorhead Alumni Foundation. "'Tis the Season for Charity," written by Andrea Domaskin, is an informative article that offers suggestions about how one might evaluate the various charities for which we receive appeals for money. Indeed, the article encourages all people to support the charities of their choice, as do we.

The article also contained information from the 2005 report that we are required to send into the Minnesota attorney general. This was simply our tax return statement with certain items highlighted for this article.

Under "Percent Spent on Programming," we show 47.1 percent while all of the other Minnesota charities featured show at least 82 percent. The article went on to point out that the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance, one of the evaluative watchdog groups for charities, recommends at least 65 percent of a charity's total expenses go toward programming, with the MSUM Alumni Foundation being the only Moorhead charity not meeting the standard.

The MSUM Alumni Foundation raises money not only for the present needs of the university but also for the needs of the future. It does this by establishing endowments, trusts, annuities and other gifts that will mature in the future. By their very nature, these gifts are not spent and, therefore, are not reported within the amount called "Program Services." But they are very important for the future stability of the university and its foundation. In 2005, if the dollars raised for endowments and other such gifts had been added to the program services, the foundation would have provided more than 70 percent in support of MSUM.

I assure everyone that the MSUM Alumni Foundation directs all funds for the projects and programs as requested by our donors. Furthermore, we work daily to keep our administrative costs as low as possible.

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Patrick D. Hundley

Executive vice president

MSUM Alumni Foundation Moorhead

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