Donor FAQs

Any questions? We’re here to help.

How do I give to a fund at GNOF?

Gifts to funds of the Greater New Orleans Foundation can be made in various forms – cash, checks, stocks and bonds, public and privately held securities, and other forms of assets. All checks should be made payable to the Greater New Orleans Foundation and write the name of the fund you wish to support on the memo line of your check. Contributions will be acknowledged to those persons or companies that appear on the check. If you would like to make a wire transfer or gift of stock, real estate, art collections, bequests, etc., please get in touch below.

Can I make a contribution online?

Yes. Please visit our Donate page section to give online to any fund held by the Greater New Orleans Foundation.

How can I check the status of my fund?

The easiest way is to look in Donor Central, your personal tool for managing your fund online. You can access your current fund balance, make grant recommendations, and review your grant and gift history. If you have any questions, please email our Development department at or call 504.598.4663, who will be happy to assist you.

Whom should I contact if I have problems using Donor Central?

Please email our Development department at or call 504.598.4663, who will be happy to assist you.

May I make changes to the Fund Agreement?

Depending on the type of fund, changes may be made to most fund agreements. Please contact us for assistance.

May I give anything besides cash and publicly traded securities? How?

Yes. You may give real estate, closely held stock, an interest in a family business, and many other assets. All such gifts are reviewed individually. We will talk with you about the details of your proposed gift and the appropriate procedure for transferring the asset. We generally do not accept vehicles or timeshares.

What information will be on my gift receipt?

In all cases the receipt will show the date the gift was received. If the contribution was a check, the dollar amount will also be shown. If the gift was in the form of securities, the receipt will list the securities transferred and the number of shares. We also provide the value of the stock at the time it was received into our account (or the date the physical stock was delivered to the Foundation). The value is based on the high and low average for the day of the stock multiplied by the number of shares, with appropriate disclaimers. Charities are not permitted to value non-cash gifts, such as art work and real estate. It is the responsibility of the donor to obtain an independent, professional valuation. Receipts for real estate and other non-cash gifts identify the property transferred. The IRS may require you to obtain an appraisal and to file a Form 8283 with your income tax return. We can provide you with a Form 8283 on request.

How long does it take to process a gift?

Most gifts are processed within 7-10 business days of receipt. Publicly traded securities are typically sold upon receipt unless special circumstances dictate that the Foundation hold the stock for a period of time. Mutual funds can take up to 5 weeks to be sent to the Foundation, but are processed quickly once received.

Once sold, the proceeds are reinvested in the Foundation’s investment pools in accordance with the donor’s wishes. Of course, the processing time for real estate, non-publicly traded securities, and other unique gifts will take longer, depending on the nature of the gift and the liquidation plan.

Can I get a refund of a gift made to the Foundation?

All contributions to the Greater New Orleans Foundation are irrevocable and are therefore not refundable.

How do I recommend a grant from a donor-advised fund?

You may recommend a grant online using Donor Central, or you may download a grant recommendation form and fax it to us at 504.598.4676. Alternatively, you can call or email using the contact information below.

To whom may I recommend a grant?

Grants may be made to organizations that are recognized by the IRS as tax-exempt, charitable organizations and that meet the Foundation’s due diligence requirements.

May I make a grant to a specific individual?

No, the IRS strictly prohibits any grant made from a donor-advised fund to benefit a specific individual.

May I make a pledge through my fund?

The IRS has in recent years prohibited fulfilling a personal pledge through grants made from donor-advised funds. You may, however, recommend that the Foundation make a multi-year grant from your fund to a nonprofit organization. Please contact us if you are interested in making this type of grant.

May I make a grant through my fund for memberships in organizations such as booster clubs, the opera, or the Sierra Club?

In most cases, no. Since these kinds of memberships result in personal benefit to the donor (such as reduced fees for events), memberships cannot be funded by grants from donor-advised funds.

May I make a grant in memory or in honor of someone?

Yes. Just give us the contact information for the person you would like us to notify.

May I recommend grants outside of the Greater New Orleans region?

Yes. You may recommend grants anywhere in the U.S. Special due diligence is conducted for international grants and additional fees may apply.

May I recommend grants to private foundations?

To comply with IRS regulations, the Foundation cannot distribute grants to non-operating private foundations. Under some circumstances, grants may be made to private operating foundations (private foundations that use the bulk of their income to provide charitable services or to run charitable programs of their own). Grants of this type require additional due diligence, and additional restrictions apply. Please contact us below for more information.

What is the Foundation’s due diligence process?

Our due diligence process requires that the grantee organization is a 501(c)(3) public charity in good standing with the IRS. Grants to non-501(c)(3) public charities, private foundations, or international organizations are reviewed on a case-by-case basis by Foundation staff.

How long does it take to process a grant recommendation?

Barring any delays in our due diligence, grants received by close of business on a Monday will usually be mailed on Friday of the same week.

What is the minimum grant amount?

The minimum grant amount is $100.

Does the Foundation have a spending policy, and if so, how does that apply to the grants I recommend?

Endowed funds are subject to the Foundation’s spending policy, which is intended to preserve the principle of the fund in perpetuity. Spending calculations are done annually based on fund balances as of September 30th of that year. The current spending policy allocates 4% of the market value of the fund averaged over the previous 12 quarters for grantmaking. If the fund balance is below its historic gift value as of September 30th, grantmaking is suspended for that year. Funds that are allocated and not spent are carried over from year to year.

What if I don’t know to whom to make grants to or want to know who is doing the best job in my area of interest?

Our team of respected grantmaking experts is here to help you. If you need assistance, please reach out below.


If you have other questions or are interested in more resources from the Greater New Orleans Foundation, contact the Development team at or call 504.598.4663.