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Private versus Community Foundations

Looking for a highly personal way of giving without having to assume the responsibilities and costs that come along with establishing and maintaining a private foundation? An Amador Community Foundation Donor-Advised Fund could be the right charitable vehicle for you.

Benefits of a Community Foundation Donor-Advised Fund include:

  • Maximizing your tax savings and simplifying charitable giving
  • Providing access to professionals who can advise and inform on local nonprofit organizations and community needs
  • Creating a fund without having to dedicate your gift to a single charitable organization or local cause
  • Exposing your children or grandchildren to the joys and responsibilities of philanthropy
  • Ensuring your philanthropic interests will continue in perpetuity
  • Allowing you to establish a named fund or remain anonymous in your giving


Comparison - Private Foundation vs Community Foundation Donor-Advised Fund

Items to ConsiderPrivate FoundationCommunity Foundation Donor-Advised Fund
Setup procedureMust incorporate and apply for IRS tax-exempt approvalSimple agreement. Can be set up in as little as one day
Initial costsLiability insurance, direct administrative costsPooled administation, low cost, no fees
Tax Benefits
  • Cash
  • Appreciated stock
  • Closely held stock
  • Up to 30% of adjusted gross income
  • Up to 20 % of adjusted gross income
  • Deduction limited to basis
  • Up to 50% of adjusted gross income
  • Up to 30% of adjusted gross income
  • Deduction at fair market value
Excise TaxUsually 2% of investment incomeNone
Reporting requirementsAnnual 990-PF Must be filed by foundation or hired staffNone required of the donor. Community foundation handles all reporting.
GrantmakingMust research and identify agencies/programs to fundCommunity foundation program staff educates donors regarding worthy agencies and programs; provides information on qualified opportunities.
Grant managementMust ensure all recipients are qualified 501 (c) (3) organizationsCommunity foundation verifies organization's status, plus donors can access the community foundation's strategic grant-making services.
Distribution requirements5% annual distribution required self-dealing restrictionsNone. Donors can make grant recommendations a their discretion
PrivacyTax return is public recordDonor may choose to remain anonymous