Chairman’s Message at the 2014 Fall Meeting

The following is a transcript of ULI Foundation Chairman Jeff Stack’s remarks at the 2014 Fall Meeting in New York City.

Good afternoon! For the past five years, I had the pleasure of chairing the ULI Foundation Annual Fund, working with Foundation Chairs Jim Curtis and Jim Klingbeil to expand the Foundation’s support of ULI. Now, I’ve moved into the role of Foundation Chairman, and I am very pleased that Mike Hayde has come on board as our Annual Fund chairman. We are very excited about keeping the momentum going.

As Foundation Chairman, one of my top priorities is to strengthen the connection between donor giving and ULI’s impact. Every day — 365 days a year — ULI is making a difference in people’s lives around the world. For instance, in just the past twelve months:

  • The work of ULI’s Rose Center reframed a local transit debate in Austin, Texas, leading to a ballot measure on light rail next month.
  • ULI Singapore partnered with the Center for Liveable Cities to publish a report on walking and biking in Singapore. It will inform the city’s efforts to improve the quality of life for residents.
  • Three Colorado communities have started implementing recommendations by ULI advisory panels on how to become healthy, active places.
  • A graduate student on the winning team of the 2014 Hines Competition was hired by one of the jury members and now is making presentations to the firm’s board of directors.
  •  A Terwilliger Center report on developing affordable housing led to an initiative by ULI Minnesota to promote best practices for affordable housing development in that region.

Each of these actions were made possible through donations to the ULI Foundation. They reflect the connection between giving and impact. The more deeply we establish that connection, the more we can increase philanthropic support for the three main areas of giving to ULI – 1) annual giving, 2) program giving, and 3) mission giving.

First, annual giving. Mike will talk more about this very shortly. But, I want to express my thanks for the extraordinary level of support we’ve received for the Annual Fund — especially from ULI’s council members. About 80 percent of our council members gave to the Annual Fund in 2013, and I have great faith that we can raise that level of participation substantially over the next year.

Second, program giving. Our main objective in this area is to deliver more support for ULI’s content and initiatives. Last year, we received six gifts ranging from $15,000 to $40,000 from individuals to fund content for specific programs, such as the Building Healthy Places Initiative. This year, we are aiming to raise this number to 15 gifts, and with your help, we can reach our goal. We need more gifts to support original research and education materials that ultimately lead to outcomes. It’s this type of information that can make the difference between a bad land use decision and a good one.

Third, mission giving. Our primary objective for this is to attract legacy and major gifts that expand ULI’s capacity to deliver on its mission. Curtis really carried the mantle for planned giving over the past two years — his efforts changed the way many donors view gift support at ULI. We will continue this effort by emphasizing that a planned gift to ULI is a gift for better communities for our kids and grandkids. It’s a gift toward building communities that will thrive for generations to come. I’m very pleased that we are making strong progress toward reaching our goal of five planned giving pledges this year.

I want to thank all of you for supporting ULI and the Foundation. You are helping ULI stretch its reach, and extend its work into more and more places, touching the lives of more people each year.

The day you joined ULI, you became vested in its future. Today, I’m asking each of you to take that commitment to the next level, and get involved with the Foundation.

I’m very proud that already this year, 18 ULI members have committed to becoming ULI Governors.

Our Governors program is the key to so many of ULI’s accomplishments, and we are pursuing more ways for Governors to participate in ULI programs and activities. This past year, ULI sponsored Governor Advisory Panels in Vancouver, British Columbia, and in Nashville, Tenn., on transit and open space issues. Through our Governor Panels, some of ULI’s most involved and engaged members lend their expertise to address some of the trickiest, and sometimes controversial, urban development issues. These panels epitomize what it means to give back, ULI style. They provide the types of experiences that connect giving and volunteerism to outcomes.

Now, before I turn the podium over to Mike, we’d like to take a couple of minutes to show you a video about our Annual Fund. It really drives home the point that your gifts to ULI – your time and your monetary support – are an investment with an enormous payback. After the video, Mike will share some thoughts about the Fund, and how we can build on its success.

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