Austin Area Foundation has first donor for Acorn Fund; Fund allows families to create a lasting family legacy

Published 10:26 am Thursday, March 2, 2017

Austin Area Foundation reported this week that a local family is the first to start an “Acorn Fund” to build over five years a family legacy in support of the community.

AAF’s goal with this fund is to have more families invest in supporting the Austin community and that great things may come from small beginnings.

The fund was established in 2017 with the commitment of $1,000 in year one and an additional $4,000 (minimum) payable over the next four years. The fund will be named in perpetuity as a lasting family legacy. Rod and Mary Nordeng of Austin started their “Acorn Fund” with the initial $1,000 donation in honor of their family and in support of the community they have lived in since 1997.

Email newsletter signup

Rod states “Mary and I decided it was time to take the steps to start our ‘Acorn Fund.’  At the end of five years or sooner pending our contributions it will then transition to a donor advised fund. We like to think that we have started our own “foundation” and our plans are to make annual contributions for the rest of our lives. It will continue to grow and benefit the non-profits we cherish long after we are gone. Mary and I are like others with multiple small donations made throughout the year and with a simple redirection of some of those donations it made it very easy to start our ‘Acorn Fund.’”

Rod Nordeng became chair of the Austin Area Foundation board of directors in January, taking over the position held by AAF founder Mike Ruzek.  In the spirit of showing the way, Nordeng states AAF is important for the community because it:

Provides a pathway for philanthropic giving for average-income families; allows non-profits to establish permanent trusts for the acceptance and growth of charitable donations with annual payments without a decrease in the principle; and, allows grants to organizations for projects that may not get funded otherwise.