Dear Colleague:

National Philanthropic Trust is proud to publish our ninth annual Donor-Advised Fund Report.

The 2015 Donor-Advised Fund Report uses 2014 fiscal year data from 1,016 charities. For the fifth consecutive year, there was growth in all of the key metrics—number of individual donor-advised fund accounts, total grant dollars from them, total contributions to them and total assets in them.

The most significant one-year growth is reflected in grants. Grantmaking from donor-advised fund accounts to other charities jumped nearly 30 percent between 2013 and 2014 from $9.83 billion to a record $12.49 billion. This tremendous increase, which we predicted in last year’s report, signals donors’ active commitment to support the causes that mean most to them.

In addition to a record grant total, contributions to donor-advised fund accounts also hit an all-time high of $19.66 billion in 2014, representing 7.6 percent of total individual giving in the US. The increase in contributions also drove donor-advised fund assets above $70 billion for the first time.

The rate of growth in the number of new donor-advised fund accounts was highest at national charities in 2014, while the largest donor-advised fund accounts exist at community foundations. The highest payout rate—grants relative to assets—occurs at single-issue charities. The charities that manage donor-advised fund accounts vary in size and scope, but they share a common goal of promoting charitable giving and making grants to a wide range of charitable organizations.

National Philanthropic Trust has been tracking donor-advised fund data for nearly a decade. In that time, this type of giving vehicle has experienced major growth and increased attention.  This year’s record numbers are a new benchmark by which we will measure the impact donor-advised funds are having on philanthropy at home and around the world.

National Philanthropic Trust is pleased to make this report available to our partners in giving and the public.

Eileen R. Heisman
President & CEO

This report was prepared by National Philanthropic Trust under the guidance of Eileen R. Heisman, President and CEO; Andrew W. Hastings, Chief Development Officer; Erin H. Hoyes, Associate Director of Communications and NPT’s Communications Department. Melissa S. Brown of Melissa S. Brown Associates, LLC provided analysis and additional writing services. Danielle Curtis, Adam Magill-Goodskey and members of NPT’s staff provided research assistance.

NPT gratefully acknowledges all of the organizations that shared their donor-advised fund related statistics and information. For permission to cite or reproduce this report, please contact Brian Case, NPT’s Vice President of Communications, at or 215.277.3010.