(Aug. 1, 2022) The 2021 partial sale of Monogram Foods, a manufacturer and marketer of packaged foods, created a handsome return for Monogram’s investors—and created a way for them to be even more charitable in their communities. Even before the transaction, Monogram had a long association with the Community Foundation, which manages the Monogram Foods Loves Kids Foundation Fund. Based on the history of exceptional philanthropic support, the company’s leadership was confident in continuing its partnership with the Community Foundation for the work that would follow the partial sale.
Company co-founder Karl Schledwitz said that soon after the transaction was initially considered, “we asked our investors if they would donate a small portion of their holdings or their proceeds to Monogram Foods Loves Kids through the Community Foundation.” More than 200 investors donated. “We were able to raise $10.2 million and we now have an endowment to support the annual gifts we make through the Monogram Foods Loves Kids Foundation Fund.” The fund supports children’s charities in the markets across the country where Monogram has operations, including Greater Memphis, which is home to its Memphis Support Center.
The Finance and Donor Services & Development teams also helped Monogram investors benefit from the tax advantage, convenience, and customized strategy that characterize a charitable fund. Thanks to the partial sale, investors who were already existing Community Foundation fund holders contributed an additional $500,000 to their funds, and eight new donors opened funds totaling more than $3.6 million.
That included a charitable family fund for Karl and his wife, Gail. “It’s given us an organized way to do our own giving, and the people at the Community Foundation are a joy to work with,” he said.
It also prompted real estate developer and investor Terry Lynch and his wife, Cathy, to open a charitable fund. The Lynches support Memphis organizations from the Overton Park Shell to the Hospitality Hub to Memphis River Parks Partnership.
If you ask Terry Lynch what drives his decisions about where and how he should donate his philanthropic dollars, he refers to the TLF. “I call it the Time Left Factor,” he said. “We know we’re not going to be around forever, and we want our kids and grandkids to be able to make a difference in their communities. Our fund at the Community Foundation has allowed us to be part of our community.”
Excerpted from the 2022 Community Foundation Annual Report