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May 24, 2023

How Alumni Dollars are Spent at the Association of Former Students of Texas A & M (Aggie Network)

by Anne Paddock

The alumni association at Texas A & M is formally known as the Association of Former Students of Texas A & M and informally known as the Aggie Network.  A tax-exempt, non-profit 501 (c), the Aggie Network’s mission is to strengthen the Aggie Network.  How do they do this?  The short answer is they raise revenue (about $30 million in 2020) and spend about 40% on programs (i.e. receptions, events, and other activities), 10% on general and administrative expenses and 10% on fundraising while the remaining funds (40%) are allocated to the general fund allowing the organization to accumulate $144 million in net assets.

The long answer is infinitely more interesting because of the detail.  To set the stage, note the Form 990 (2020) reported the following details:

  • The organization has 166 employees.
  • There are 17 independent voting members (directors) of the governing body, 13 (76%) of whom are male while 4 (24%) are female.
  • Total revenue was $30 million, most of which came from contributions, gifts, and grants ($22 million of which $4 million were non-cash contributions – publicly traded securities), investment income and royalties ($5 million), and ring commissions ($2 million).
  • Expenses totaled $18 million with the specific expenses reported to be:  compensation ($7 million), grants – to Texas A & M ($5 million), administrative and office expenses ($4 million), fees to outside vendors – primarily fundraisers and investment management ($1 million), and other expenses ($1 million).
  • $12 million remained unspent and was allocated to the general fund along with $9 million in unrealized gains on investments allowing net assets to increase from $123 million at the beginning of the year to $144 million at year-end.
  • The President/CEO, Porter S Garner III received $1,009,032 in compensation.

So, if you donated $100 to the Aggie Network, your donation was used as follows:

$100:  Revenue

-$ 24:  Compensation

-$ 17:  Grants to Texas A & M

-$ 13:  Administrative and Office Expenses

-$  3:  Fees to Outside Vendors – primarily fundraisers and investment management

-$  3:  Other Expenses (i.e. travel and conferences, membership recognition, etc)

-$ 60:  Total Expenses

  $ 40:  Remaining Revenue:  To General Fund

As illustrated above, $24 out of every $100 was spent on staff compensation while $19 out of every $100 was spent on administrative and office expenses, outside vendors and other expenses.  $17 out of every $100 was given to Texas A & M.  $40 out of every $100 was allocated to the general fund.

The big questions are:   What does the Aggie Network need $144 million for? And, why does a small non-profit that raises $30 million annually give $1 million in compensation annually to it’s President/CEO?

To read the IRS Form 990 (2020), click here.

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