A brief history of the National Association for Charitable Gift Planners
Born with our profession
In 1969, Congress passed the Tax Reform Act, changing the way Americans could make charitable contributions. This was the major impetus for the creation of the field of planned giving. During the 1970s, the planned giving profession was in its infancy, but by the end of the decade many organizations were beginning to see the field's potential.
In 1978, one of those organizations, Lilly Endowment, Inc., offered a program to 19 independent colleges in Indiana to help them launch or expand their planned giving efforts. The program was a success, and in 1979, a similar program was offered to 15 schools of theology across the country. Again, the results were impressive. At the same time, the Endowment became aware of two planned giving programs funded by the Northwest Area Foundation. Their results were comparable to the Lilly Endowment's experience in Indiana.
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, groups of professionals involved in gift planning began to have think tank meetings to discuss the feasibility of a national organization to act as a coordinator and facilitator for networking the various professionals and organizations involved in planned giving.
A meeting to study the needs and possibilities of a national organization for planned giving was held on October 29-30, 1985, in Chicago. Those in attendance agreed that there was a need for a significant number of services for planned giving officers that might be provided by some type of national organization. Its mission would be twofold: to provide quality educational opportunities for gift planning professionals and to unite the growing number of local planned giving groups already forming in larger metropolitan areas.
In late January of 1988, the National Committee on Planned Giving opened its office in Indianapolis, Indiana. NCPG was formed as a 501(c)(3) public charity whose mission was to facilitate, coordinate, and encourage the education and training of the planned giving community, and to facilitate effective communication among the many different professionals in this community. The organization functioned for the first 10 years as a federation of planned giving councils, and then added a membership category for individuals in 2001.
A new direction
In 2006, NCPG formed the Strategic Directions Task Force, charged with assessing the state of planned giving and how NCPG might best help charities, fundraising and financial professionals, and donors make more and better charitable gifts. The work of the task force resulted in a new mission, strategic plan, and brand for the organization. The rebranding included a name change to the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning and a new mission: Charitable giving made most meaningful.
2016 and beyond
A changing landscape
The economic downturn that began in 2007 proved to be a turning point for charitable planning. During this period, we championed the importance of a planned gift pipeline to sustain organizations through tough times, and "blended giving" strategies that combine current and future gifts. As the economy improved, we also looked forward to meeting members' needs for developing new skills and reaching a broader community.
In October 2016, to keep pace with the changes in our field, and in response to member feedback, the organization became the National Association for Charitable Gift Planners and unveiled a new platform. Community, education, advocacy, standards and support of councils are at the center of the platform, which gives members easier access to resources, new opportunities for online learning and greater connectivity with each other.
As it has been in the past, CGP remains dedicated to its essential core value: To support the professionals who practice the art and science of charitable gift planning.