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Trustee Endowment Match FAQ

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Trustee Endowment Match is a special limited-time opportunity for donors who wish to advance sustainable support for Library services, operations and innovation. By making your gift to establish a Named Endowed Fund, contributing a gift to an existing Endowed Fund or adding a gift to the General Endowment, you can leverage up to a total of $25,000 per couple in additional support through this exciting match.

1. What is the Endowment?

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Endowment is a restricted fund established with contributions from donors just like you. The Endowment includes both donor-restricted funds invested in perpetuity and unrestricted funds designated by the Board of Trustees to function as endowment. As of April 30, 2020, the Library’s Endowment is valued at $16.7 million.

The Library’s Endowment is invested and a portion of the Endowment earnings is distributed annually to support operations, services and programs according to the restrictions of each Named Endowed Fund. Any earnings in excess of this distribution build the Endowment’s market value and the value of each fund within it. Each year, the Board approves the annual percentage to be designated for spending. In 2020, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Endowment Spending Policy (distribution of income) is 3.0% of the average of the three-year rolling market value of the Library’s Endowment.

2. Didn’t Andrew Carnegie Endow the Library?

Andrew Carnegie, with great thought and foresight, generously built Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh as a gift to the people of the City of Pittsburgh. However, he intentionally resisted the notion of endowing the Library’s ongoing operations. He believed strongly that financial support from the community was the most effective way to maintain a strong relationship between the community and its public library.

3. What is a Named Endowed Fund?

When you create a Named Endowed Fund within the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Endowment, you are establishing a permanent fund in your name or in the name of someone you wish to honor or remember. Each year, distributed income associated with your Named Endowed Fund will be used for the purpose you designated.*

*Distributed income for the purpose of your fund is an amount that adheres to the Library Endowment Spending Policy. Donors may shape an endowment tailored to his or her interests as long as it is consistent with the Named Endowed Fund type and gift level, and it is consistent with Library policy.

4. What is the Trustee Endowment Match?

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Board of Trustees has generously committed a pool of funds to match gifts to the Endowment. The Trustee Endowment Match provides a limited-time opportunity to establish or add to an existing Named Endowed Fund at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. A special feature of the Trustee Endowment Match is this one-time window to create a Named Endowed Fund with a gift of $12,500, which will be matched to meet the minimum $25,000 endowed fund level. Our goal is to give you the opportunity to establish a Named Endowed Fund and to participate in growing the Endowment for the future of our community.

Gifts at all levels to existing Endowed Funds or the Library’s General Endowment also are eligible for the Trustee Endowment Match.

5. How Does the Trustee Endowment Match Work?

A donor’s gift/pledge to establish (or add to) a Named Endowed Fund or gifts to the Library’s General Endowment will be matched 1:1 up to a maximum of $25,000 per couple. The match will be made on a first come, first-served basis until the matching funds have been fully committed to donors.

To encourage investment in endowment, members of the Library’s Board of Trustees have contributed $570,000 as a matching gift opportunity.

All eligible contributions to CLP’s Endowment qualify for a dollar for dollar match, up to a maximum match of $25,000 per couple. Commitments may be paid over time.

Donors have several choices for allocating their gift to the Library’s Endowment. Their gift may be added to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh General Endowment or to an existing named fund. Donors contributing at least $12,500 can leverage matching dollars to create their own named fund – at the Endowed Legacy Fund level. Matching dollars will be transferred to the specific endowed fund within the campaign period.

chart of various endowment match levels

Additional gift levels above $50,000 for various types of Named Endowed Funds are available for donors who wish to designate additional criteria. See listing here.

6. Who is Eligible to Participate in the Match?

Individuals, foundations, businesses and organizations are eligible to participate.

7. What Type and Size of Gifts Qualify for the Match?

Gifts at all levels are welcome; there is no minimum gift required to participate. The maximum amount that may be matched per couple is $25,000. The match will be awarded on a first come, first served basis as long as funds are available.

Gifts of cash, stocks or appreciated securities can be contributed*.

Bequests, beneficiary designations, or other estate plan commitments are not eligible for the Trustee Endowment Match.

*Other types of assets that can be given and liquidated within one year may be accepted in adherence with Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Gift Acceptance Policy and in consultation with CLP’s External & Government Relations staff.

8. Are There Different Types of Endowed Funds to Consider?

Yes, there are a number of naming opportunities that will provide permanent recognition for you, your family or other individuals whom you would like to honor. We are happy to work with you to create a Named Endowed Fund that reflects your goals and is in keeping with the Library’s mission and policies.

9. May I Make a Pledge and Pay Over Time to Establish a New Named Endowed Fund?

Yes, your gift to establish your Named Endowed Fund may be paid over a period of time. We ask donors to consider fulfilling their pledges over a period of three years; up to five years will be accepted.

10. May More than One Donor Join Together to Create a Fund?

Yes, contributions from two or more donors, for example members of a family or friends, may be combined in order to establish an Endowed Fund that qualifies for the Trustee Endowment Match. The Library will work with you to develop a gift agreement.

11. Will a Matching Gift from my Employer Qualify for the Trustee Endowment Match?

Yes, the amount of your gift and your employer’s matching gift combined will be matched by the Trustee Endowment Match up to a total of $25,000.

(Please first refer to your employer’s requirements for a matching gift.)

12. When Will My New Named Endowed Fund Start Being Used?

Once the Named Endowed Fund is established, income from the Named Endowed Fund will be distributed in accordance with the Library’s Endowment Spending Policy. Income from the Endowment is distributed for use twice per calendar year. It will take approximately one year after your Named Endowed Fund is fully funded for the Library to receive the full, intended benefit of your generosity.

13. How Will I Know my Gift is Having an Impact? 

Donors have access to Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s annual financial reports at all times. These reports elaborate a complete picture of the organization, its operations, and the outcomes that endowment income (in addition to other funds) make possible.

14. How Do I Get Started?

To get started or to discuss your interests and the Trustee Endowment Match possibilities, please contact Anne Lee at 412-622-6276 or

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