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Foundation Celebrates $61 Million in Awarded Grants in 61 Years

The FM Area Foundation is celebrating 61 years of philanthropy in Fargo-Moorhead.  Since 1960, families, individuals and organizations have built the community foundation through their generosity. Donations of all sizes have made an impact in communities in Cass and Clay counties, across the state, and beyond. Because of these generous gifts throughout the last 61 years, the FM Area Foundation ha…

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“501(c) what?”: Sorting through jargon to determine deductibility

When tax season rolls around each spring, a new crop of questions may arise concerning clients’ gifts to various organizations and whether those donations qualify as tax-deductible charitable contributions. Keep in mind that Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code lays out the requirements for organizations to be considered tax-exempt--a status for which an organization must seek IRS approval…

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IRAs, Field-of-Interest Funds, and Designated Funds: Don't Overlook These Powerful Tools

Designated funds and field-of-interest funds may not always be top of mind when you are developing philanthropy plans for your clients and their families, but they are extremely valuable tools in certain circumstances and it’s important to be aware of what the terms mean. A field-of-interest fund at the FM Area Foundation is established by your client for a charitable purpose described by your cl…

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“If not 501(c), then what?”: Cautioning Clients About Crowdfunding

What if your clients make donations to entities that don’t fall under a specific section of the Internal Revenue Code, but feel “charitable” nonetheless because the dollars are helping people in need? Perhaps a client has helped set up a dedicated account at a bank to provide scholarships to the children of an accident victim, or even participated in a GoFundMe fundraiser to help a specific family…

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Sher Thomsen Joins Board of Directors

The FM Area Foundation is pleased to announce Sher Thomsen has joined its Board of Directors. Thomsen is the co-owner and executive advisor for Black Arbor Capital. She served as president for the United Way of Cass-Clay from 2011 to 2016, where she led a strategic shift in the organization’s investment strategy and evolved their business model. Thomsen has spent the last 20 years in leadership r…

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Statement on Vandalism at Moorhead Fargo Islamic Center

We are saddened by the appalling acts against the Moorhead Fargo Islamic Center that took place over the weekend. Senseless hate crimes, such as these, do not belong in our community. At the FM Area Foundation, we believe in creating a more welcoming and equitable community for everyone. Because of these reasons, we have chosen to provide a grant to the Moorhead Fargo Islamic Center in support of…

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Back to Basics: Retirement Plans and Life Insurance Can Fuel Meaningful Bequests

Your client’s fund at the FM Area Foundation can be an ideal recipient of estate gifts through a will or trust, or through a beneficiary designation on a qualified retirement plan or life insurance policy.  Bequests of qualified retirement plans can be extremely tax-efficient. This is because charitable organizations, such as the FM Area Foundation are tax-exempt. This means, the funds flowing di…

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Keeping Our Community Strong: Your Role is Critical

COVID-19 has significantly impacted nonprofit operations across the country and hampered nonprofits’ ability to help their communities during a crisis in which millions of people are in need. The National Council of Nonprofits reports widespread damage to nonprofits’ programs, services, supplies, staffs, and budgets due to the pandemic and current economic challenges. This means, nonprofits need p…

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Beyond the Tax Deductions: Selecting a Vehicle to Celebrate and Support a Family's Culture of Philanthropy

For many donors, the importance of a multi-generational family philanthropy plan is high on the radar, especially in the wake of 2020’s eye-opening events highlighting the importance of rallying around important social and community priorities. How do you know when a client’s family is a strong candidate for more formal philanthropic planning, beyond simply budgeting for annual gifts to charity? …

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Eric Wilkie Featured in Fargo INC! Magazine

Executive Director, Eric Wilkie, is featured in the February issue of Fargo INC! magazine. He shares about his experiences in the nonprofit sector and his new role with the FM Area Foundation.  An excerpt from Fargo INC! magazine:  Wilkie has been working in nonprofit for 20 years. Half of those years have been spent in the trenches of the nonprofit world, helping to directly impact the lives of…

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