The permanence perspective

by Marirose Steigerwald

I’ve been thinking about “permanence” lately. In my career, mainly focused in the human resources field, we were always cautioned about calling anything “permanent.” Fun fact, North Carolina is an at-will state, so employees can leave their employers for any reason at any time, and employers can ask their employees to leave at any time for any reason (except discrimination – that’s bad). So, the idea of anything being “permanent” elicits an almost visceral reaction in my body – not proud of it, but I can’t help it. I’ve always subscribed to the idea that things change – people change, organizations change and nothing can be counted on as permanent.

Then I joined the NCCF. And the feeling about the word permanent changed. Not so much about people or organizations – we all must continue changing to continue growing. But here I learned about the permanence of our endowments. Permanent. Forever. A person/family/organization can set up an endowed fund that can last forever – and make an impact on issues and people they care about – forever. Because endowments are managed as investments, and granting comes from a portion of that endowment, the ability to give will continue – forever.

I’m an eternal optimist – it’s kind of ridiculous – a true Pollyanna (perfect definition – an excessively cheerful or optimistic person). And the idea of permanence in endowments fuels that optimism. Just imagine what could/would happen in North Carolina if those who are able set up permanent endowments to help others? And they would last forever? Wow. Now that’s a goal.

We can help.  😊