Last month, the New York Times ran an op-ed by academic Ray Madoff on donor-advised funds (DAFs). In her piece, Ms. Madoff painted a picture of DAFs as a kind of “warehouse” for charitable contributions. As the President and CEO of a national DAF program, I find this characterization misleading and a disservice to donors and the charitable sector.
While many DAF programs are not legally required to meet a minimum annual payout, the majority have guidelines to ensure that DAFs actively make grants. In fact, the overall payout rate for DAFs is nearly four times that of private foundations.