The AAPG Foundation’s Trustee Associates are looking for some new members – and for a limited time, joining this terrific and important group is easier than ever.
The Trustee Associates is the group the Foundation looks to as its backbone of financial support. In Fiscal Year 2015, Trustee Associates members contributed 57 percent of the almost $1 million received as new contributions to the Foundation.
The group has a proud and glorious history that started in 1976, 10 years after the AAPG Foundation’s founding, when Dean McGee, then-chairman of the Trustees, suggested creating a support organization.
The members would meet annually, he said, provide input into Foundation affairs, sponsor projects and enjoy social activities.
The Trustee Associates program was designed to raise money to permit the Foundation to pursue its goals and objectives, provide recognition to donors and, through its leadership, give advice and counsel to the members of the Board of Trustees.
The group’s first meeting was held May 20, 1978, at Shangri-La, Okla., following the dedication of the Weeks Energy Resources Tower in Tulsa. Thirty-one Trustee Associates attended. Total membership then was 67 and the required contribution was $2,500. Each year since, Trustee Associates have met together in resort locations for several days of discussions, recreation and social activities.
Trustee Associates Today
Through the years, generous gifts from the Trustee Associates, as well as from many other members and friends of the AAPG, have added to the Foundation’s permanently endowed corpus, and today the Foundation’s total assets are almost $50 million.
Revenue from its managed investment portfolio, augmented by annual contributions, allows the Foundation to support many worthy programs, activities and services.
As assets of the Foundation have increased, so have the needs of its distributions. The Foundation joins with AAPG in support of “joint programs” deemed to serve both the Members of AAPG and the interests of the general public. These include Grants-in Aid, Imperial Barrel Award and the Distinguished Lecture and Visiting Geoscientists programs.
The Foundation also provides supports to other AAPG programs that meet the public benefit test, like the AAPG Bulletin through the Pratt Bulletin Fund, as well as operating its own programs, including the Military Veterans Scholarship and L. Austin Weeks Memorial Undergraduate Grants programs and others.
Additionally, the Foundation awards discretionary grants each year to a limited number of organizations and programs, with funds made possible by the L. Austin Weeks Memorial, and General and Education funds. These include Geoscientists Without Borders, a joint program with the SEG and others, the U.S. National Academies, National Research Council and support of several museum projects.
As recently as 2012 the number of Trustee Associates was almost 300. However, during the last few years, membership has declined about 10 percent, due primarily to members’ age and infirmities. We’d like to see membership numbers increase again to about 300.
For the last few years the required contribution for membership has been set at $15,000, payable over a five-year period. However, to encourage new applicants to join – and only until memberships reach 300 – the required contribution has been reduced to $10,000, also payable over five years.
If you’d like more information about the Foundation or the Trustee Associates program, contact longtime Foundation administrative coordinator Tamra Campbell (at [email protected], or 918-560-2644) for a brochure and application form. She or anyone else on the administrative team will be happy to answer any questions.