Green Bay, Wis.— The Friends of Toft Point, Inc., a philanthropic society of individuals dedicated to educational endeavors and the preservation of the Toft Point Natural Area in Door County, is combining forces with the UW-Green Bay Foundation to create efficiencies and eliminate duplication of fiduciary duties. The two groups determined that a merger enables volunteers to invest more time in their important roles of serving as docents and property caretaking, the meaningful activities that inspired them to become involved in the first place.
“The missions of the two entities overlap and it makes sense to work collaboratively with the University’s affiliated Foundation for fiduciary purposes,” says Jim Cauley, board chair of The Friends of Toft Point. “The UW-Green Bay Foundation did not exist in 2007, so we incorporated our own tax-exempt entity so donors could support Toft Point and secure a tax deduction. Since the beginning of our involvement with the property, we’ve worked hand-in-glove with Dr. Bob Howe of the University’s Center for Biodiversity on operational matters so it makes sense to work side-by-side with their affiliated Foundation that was created in 2011 to manage all of the gifts to the University. The University of Wisconsin System owns the property and UW-Green Bay stewards it, so a closer relationship with the University and the Foundation helps crystalize our collective objectives to maintain the property appropriately.”
Donors to the Friends of Toft Point group will see no change in how their support benefits the Toft Point Natural Area.
“Donors to the Friends group can still support the Toft Point property through their generosity, the only difference is that the gifts will flow through the UW-Green Bay Foundation,” according to University Chancellor Michael Alexander. “Gifts will be restricted for use at Toft Point to maintain the historical nature and natural state of the property. UW-Green Bay students conduct research on the property and it is an important component of our collection of natural areas throughout Northeast Wisconsin.”
Members of the Friends group will continue to receive regular communications through a newsletter and an annual meeting will also continue once large gatherings are again permitted. Members and supporters should look for Toft Point materials sporting the University’s Phoenix green color scheme and logos going forward. Current board members of the Toft Point entity will serve as advisors to the University in the caretaking of the property.
Gifts to benefit Toft Point can be made payable to the UW-Green Bay Foundation Toft Point Stewardship Fund. Life memberships and gifts to the permanent endowment will be honored under the new arrangement.