Graduate School of Business


Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


John R Kuhn


Board Designation, Endowment, Management Control, Nonprofit, Restricted Net Assets, Unrestricted Net Assets


The financial management and reporting of endowment funds is a major undertaking of many nonprofit organizations. Research is scant on the subject of systems for documenting, managing, and controlling endowment funds. The general problem explored was whether the nonprofits studied have properly implemented a system to track and maintain documentation of their endowment funds to avoid being at risk of noncompliance. The research design employed in this qualitative research was the case study methodology. Specifically, a multiple-case study approach explored how three affiliated Midwestern nonprofits had a managed and controlled their endowment documentation. This applied doctoral research project examined how three affiliated Midwestern nonprofits document and control endowment funds, and to what extent a system exists and such documents have been maintained, to determine whether the nonprofits studied were at risk of noncompliance with donor-imposed restrictions or applicable accounting and legal requirements over restrictions and designations. The two primary biblical concepts explored in this study were accountability and stewardship. The research focused on how these concepts related to the management and control of endowment funds to ensure good stewardship of a major source of funding and accountability to donors and other stakeholders. One primary goal of this study was the completion of a set of best practices for use by the nonprofit sector and those advising nonprofits in the management and control of endowment funds.