Financial Report 2023

Piper Trust Annual Financial Report and Grants Compendium: Fiscal Year Ending March 2023



Message from the CFO

January 2024

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust is pleased to provide its financials and grant award recap for fiscal year ending March 2023. Piper Trust’s asset allocation remains diversified, providing resilience in recent difficult economic environments and is on track to provide adequate returns in more favorable conditions. As always, and particularly considering the volatile stock market this past year, we are grateful for the expertise and assistance provided by the Trust’s investment consultants, Cambridge Associates, and our dedicated Investment Committee members: Trustees Jim Bruner (Investment Committee Chair), Paul Critchfield, and Judy Mohraz, along with outside members Dr. Jeffrey Coles, Jacque Millard, Kent Misener, and Mary Jane Rynd. The Investment Committee diligently evaluated Cambridge’s recommendations and reports ensuring that investment managers continue to perform in accordance with their mandates, and operate effectively and in accordance with the law.

We are appreciative of the proficient audit services we receive from Crowe LLP. Piper Trust’s audit resulted in a clean opinion and no audit adjustments.

It is also important that we commend the dedication and expertise provided by our Audit Committee members: Trustees Paul Critchfield (Audit Committee Chair), Jim Bruner, and Paul Mulligan, along with outside member Mary Jane Rynd. This year, we especially recognize the service of long-time Audit Committee member, Frank Brady, who passed away in August 2023. Frank was a revered career executive with Ernst & Young and further served the community with his leadership in many capacities. He is greatly missed.

Carey Chambers
Chief Financial Officer, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust


Financial Results

Results of operations as reported in our audited financial statements are summarized in the following table. The data is presented on a GAAP, therefore accrual, basis. On a cash basis during the fiscal year ending March 31, 2023, grants and direct charitable activities were more than $46 million, and totaled $210 million over the two-year period. These outsized grantmaking payouts reflect the Trust’s deep commitment to supporting the community with “extra” during the pandemic and post-pandemic environments. In the coming years, grantmaking plans are to return to a more normal budget of $20 to $22 million annually while continuing the generous wishes and legacy of Virginia Piper. Each year operating and grantmaking expenses were in line with the budget approved by the board.

(Accrual Basis) 3/31/2023 3/31/2022
Investment Activity, Net  (14,293,252) 56,043,461
Grant Awards and Direct Charitable Activities  (29,850,396) (156,581,201)
Grantmaking and Administrative Expenses (5,138,399)   (5,314,074)
Federal Excise Tax Benefit (Expense) on Net Investment Income (165,805)  (797,350)
Contributions Received  –
Total Change -$49,447,852 -$106,649,164

Asset Allocation

Under the guidance of the investment committee, the Trust’s endowment was invested in a diversified portfolio expected, in the long term, to generate returns to adequately support its mission. Actual and target allocations are reflected on the following charts.


Actual Asset Allocation 2023Long Term Target Asset 2023

Fair Market Value of Investments and Charitable Expenditures

The dark blue bars illustrate the fair market value of Piper Trust’s investments and the light blue circles show the level of charitable expenditures (on a cash basis) each fiscal year.

Fair Market Value 2023



Grants Compendium


Application Based Grants

  • Total: $8,215,000

  • Total: $7,648,000

  • Total: $325,000

  • Total: $7,927,200

  • Total: $1,959,400

  • Total: $1,140,000

  • Total: $325,000

Trust Initiated Grants

Contingent Grants &
Other Adjustments:

TOTAL: $29,850,396

Direct Charitable Activities

Total: $1,698,001

A Direct Charitable Activity (DCA) is a program or project that Piper Trust initiates itself to address a complex social challenge. DCAs often involve long-term investments, collaborations, or targeted efforts to fortify organizations focused on solving the specific challenge.

Program / Project Description
Capacity Building ATLAS/AGILE ATLAS, symbolic of strength and endurance in Greek mythology, is a Piper Trust project designed to strengthen the organizational and operational structure of a select group of nonprofits. ATLAS nonprofits assess lifecycle stages and develop comprehensive plans for building organizational capacity.

AGILE supports building the operational capacity and organizational resilience of a Trust-selected set of mid-sized grantee arts organizations. By employing “a capacity + capitalization” approach to organizational resilience, AGILE aims to build an organization’s capacity and capital to weather the unexpected while effectively carrying out their mission.

Early Literacy / Read On Arizona Read On Arizona is a statewide, public/private collaboration of organizations committed to building an early literacy system that improves language and literacy outcomes for Arizona’s children, birth through age eight—delivering the right program at the right time for every child. Piper Trust is a founding partner of the collaborative. The Trust established and supports the Arizona Literacy Director who works in partnership with the Arizona Department of Education, Head Start State Collaboration Office, First Things First, and other local philanthropic partners on statewide efforts to improve early childhood literacy.
Children’s Vision Health/Eyes On Learning Eyes On Learning is a collaborative effort that strengthens, expands, and advances children’s vision health. The effort works to help ensure all children have effective vision screening and the appropriate follow-up services that are essential to good health and learning success. The Trust established and supports the Arizona Children’s Screening Director who works in partnership with Read On Arizona and other state, local, and national organizations dedicated to vision health and learning success for all Arizona children.
Maricopa Family Support Alliance Maricopa Family Support Alliance grew out of Piper Trust’s commitment to explore the strength of coalition building among organizations serving the complex social needs of families. The Alliance is now an established and growing network of more than 70 nonprofits and public agencies, ranging from healthcare to housing. By working collectively, agencies can better serve families in need and families can access the social services they need through a coordinated approach.
Piper Academies Piper Academies are designed specifically for nonprofit leaders and provide a range of personal and organizational development opportunities. Led by nationally renowned experts and thought leaders, Academies are developed around a significant theme each year (e.g., from strengthening operating principles to understanding “employees as purpose-drivers”), and are presented in various formats for individuals or teams. Many Piper Academies result in follow-on training for staff and volunteer leaders or funding opportunities.
Piper Fellows The Piper Fellows Program provides individual Maricopa County social profit leaders with the financial resources to participate in a comprehensive professional development plan that allows them to reach, retool, and revitalize. Fellows are also eligible to apply for an Organizational Enhancement Award to support a project that addresses an opportunity or challenge facing the organization. Up to six Piper Fellows are selected annually via a competitive application process.

Historical / Trust Initiated Grants

Total: $3,487,219

In addition to application-based grantmaking, Piper Trust supports myriad initiatives, programs, and projects that address unique community needs, support the nonprofit sector, and expand efforts beyond the confines of your guidelines to provide statewide impact. These investments are typically defined by the Trust or by philanthropic partners.

Grant Type Description Awarded FY23
Affiliations Through membership in professional associations and organizations that support philanthropy, Piper Trust’s Board and staff have opportunities to collaborate and learn from colleagues of grantmaking organizations across the country.

Affiliation Organizations Include:

  • Arizona Grantmakers Forum
  • Council on Foundations
  • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
  • Grantmakers in Aging
  • Grantmakers in the Arts
  • PEAK Grantmaking
  • Philanthropy Southwest
  • The Communications Network
  • Foundation Financial Officers Group, Inc
Back-to-School Grants Program Piper Trust believes that essential clothing provides children with confident beginnings for a successful school year. In preparation for the 2021-2022 school year, 305 Title I public elementary schools within 45 districts in Maricopa County received back-to-school grants to support their students with necessary school clothes and uniforms. $1,593,600
Historical Grants Mrs. Piper supported a variety of organizations and projects in which the Trust continues to invest. $575,000
Trust Initiated Grants Trust initiated grants include Trustee advised, employee matching, and other special grants awarded. $1,227,737