SAH Newsletter

2013 SAH Annual Conference - Treasurer's Report

by Jan Grayson, SAH Treasurer | May 15, 2013
As the new Treasurer for the SAH I am happy to report that the sound financial position that SAH has enjoyed in the past continues.

SAH finished its 2012 fiscal year ending September 30, 2012 with a modest surplus of $18,000 that was on budget. Thus continues a record of eleven of the past twelve years that SAH has produced an operating surplus.  The Charnley-Persky House, which is a separate legal entity that owns the national landmark facility that SAH occupies, had a modest deficit primarily due to timing differences.  SAH's auditor provided an unqualified opinion with regard to the year's financial results for both legal entities.

SAH had good success in reaching revenue targets. The major drivers of the revenue are membership, library subscriptions to JSAH, 
grants, study tours, the annual meeting and the Buildings of the United States (BUS)/SAH Archipedia grants and fund raising efforts such as the annual SAH Awards Gala.   Membership revenue for fiscal 2012 held steady.  The grant income continued to be dominated by the Mellon funding of SAHARA.  The work and funding by Mellon is being completed but we were awarded with an extension of our grant approximately $150,000 for this year's activity which ends July 31, 2013. The Detroit annual conference was a smashing success.  There were 622 paid participants which resulted in approximately $100,000 net additional revenue to support other SAH activities. Tours last fiscal year were a disappointment with our major tour to Germany canceled.  Finally, the BUS effort has been quite successful.  Sufficient funds were raised to breakeven on the two volumes published last year.

The current fiscal year is off to a good start.  We are performing better than budget with several positive events.  The Chicago November fundraiser was quite well attended and netted the SAH approximately $80,000.  The Cuban tour in December was sold out and netted SAH $12,000.  A second trip is scheduled in May and that has sold out as well.  This Buffalo conference has almost the attendance of the Detroit meeting that will produce above budget income.  In the areas of grants, we have received an additional Mellon grant of $50,000 for emerging authors, and a $50,000 grant from a very generous benefactor.

The SAH's endowment funds now total $4.5 million up from $4.3 at the end of 2011.  Each year SAH draws approximately 3.5% for funding its activities which represents approximately 7% of the Association's annual operating budget.  Last year the endowment had a return of 9.7% that is considerably higher than the prior three years that averaged 7.1%.   The Investment Committee in past years has had the direct responsibility of making investments.  Fortunately, the committee has taken a very conservative approach during a very volatile time.  The Committee has decided to employ an active investment manager starting January 1, 2013.  After a very extensive outreach and review they selected Mid-Continent Capital, a Chicago based firm.

Jan Grayson, SAH Treasurer