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Donor Advised Fund

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Investing in Yale's Endowment, Meeting your Philanthropic Goals

A Yale donor advised fund is a powerful way to make the future of the University part of your own tradition of philanthropy. If you have significant philanthropic goals, a donor advised fund offers a simple, cost-effective way to manage your charitable giving.

How It Works

  • You make an irrevocable gift to Yale of cash, securities, or other property. The minimum initial gift is $5 million.
  • Your donor advised fund is commingled with the Yale Endowment, one of the nation's top-performing institutional funds, managed by the Yale Investments Office.
  • You may propose that distributions from the fund be made on your own giving timetable, to areas of Yale or other charitable organizations, in amounts of $50,000 or more.
  • At least 50 percent of the gifts donated to the fund and any appreciation or income attributed to those amounts must be designated for purposes at Yale.


  • You or family members you designate have advisory privileges over the fund and may recommend distributions to support specific areas of Yale and other qualified charitable organizations.
  • You may take a federal charitable income tax deduction for the value of your gifts in the year they are made. There is no capital gains tax due on appreciated assets, and the gifts may reduce your gross taxable estate.
  • Gifts to a donor advised fund at Yale receive more favorable tax treatment than gifts to a private foundation.
  • Unlike gifts made through private foundations, charitable distributions from a donor advised fund can be made anonymously.
  • The University manages all record keeping, considers and approves distributions to other qualified charities, and provides you with detailed annual statements.

If a donor advised fund at Yale seems to match your philanthropic goals, we invite you to contact the Office of Planned Giving to learn more.