Investments - Learn About BTCF - Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation

As stewards of the charitable funds entrusted to us, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation is committed to seeking the best possible returns while minimizing risk so that donors can grant more to the communities and causes they care about—now and for years to come. 

BTCF's investment program is guided by our nationally recognized Investment Committee – a group of board and community members with deep institutional investment experience. The Committee employs top Investment Managers in each class.

Investment Strategy

BTCF’s investment strategy is to maximize return while preserving capital and liquidity, producing consistent and stable growth with low to moderate risk. Learn more about our investment program by watching our 2019 Investing for Good webinar.


POOL  Q4 2020
  Primary Managed Pool 11.8 14.1 14.1 9.5 10.6 8.4 8.2 $165.8M
Managed Pool Benchmark* 11.4 15.7 15.7 9.2 9.8 7.6 7.7 N/A
  Traditional 65% Equities /
  35% Bond Index
10.7 14.4 8.6 8.6 9.8 7.0 7.1 N/A
  Socially Responsible Pool 9.5 14.7 14.7 9.4 9.7 8.5 8.2 $14M
  Income Pool 2.2 6.7 6.7 4.7 4.6 3.5 3.5 $1.5M
  Minimum Risk Pool 0.0 0.4 0.4 1.3 0.9 0.6 0.4 $5.1M

Primary Managed Pool Performance as of December 31, 2020

Following a challenging market environment during the first quarter of 2020, the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation portfolio continued its recovery in the fourth quarter, adding 11.8% and bringing total assets to $165.8 million. In addition to the strong absolute performance, the portfolio outperformed both the policy and actual indices in the quarter. Portfolio performance also remains ahead of both the policy and actual indices on a trailing three-, five-, seven- and 10-year basis, largely due to strong absolute and relative performance within the global equity and flexible capital segments.

In absolute terms, all segments of the portfolio posted positive results during the quarter. It was a risk-on market environment, and global equities were best performing asset category. International equities outperformed their domestic counterparts, as the portfolio’s non-U.S. developed equity sleeve returned 21.9% as compared to 14.6% for non-U.S. equities. The flexible capital lineup also captured a portion of the equity market’s gains, returning 5.6% during the period. The portfolio’s fixed income holdings posted a 2.5% return, far exceeding the Barclays U.S. Aggregate index return as credit spreads tightened during the period. Liquid capital held flat during the quarter.

SRI Portfolio Performance as of December 31, 2020

The SRI portfolio increased by 9.5% during the quarter, lagging the policy benchmark by 1.0%. The portfolio has $14 million in assets. 

This portfolio is competitive with our managed pool and includes two portfolio screens:

  • 100% exclusion of: Nuclear power, fracking, tar sands, carbon reserves, coal, and oil, gas and consumable fuels.
  • Less than 5% of revenue: Gambling, civilian firearms, tobacco, alcohol, for-profit prisons, adult entertainment.

Prime Buchholz, our independent consultant, has recertified our portfolio as being in compliance with our social impact screens.

Income Pool Performance as of December 31, 2020

The income pool portfolio increased by 2.2% during the quarter, exceeding the policy benchmark by 1.6%. One-year returns were 6.7% versus 7.2% for the benchmark. Total assets at the end of the quarter were $1.5 million.

For more information on the foundation’s investment program, please contact Vice President of Finance and Administration Joe Baker by email or at 413.229.0370 x112.

*The foundation’s investment benchmarks are calculated as a weighted average of standard financial industry indices in each asset class and appropriate to individual managers based on objectives.


View Managed Pool Current Performance

8.2% 10-year average annual return** / 10.6% 5-year annual return**

Created for the bulk of our funds’ assets and structured on the premise that a bias toward quality equity investments will ensure the best total return over time, although it may be more volatile over the short-term. Average annual investment manager fees total 1%. View a description of the asset mix.



View SRI Pool Current Performance

8.2% 10-year average annual return** / 9.7% 5-year annual return**

Created in March 2009 for those individuals or organizations that want fund assets invested with an environmental, social and governance screen, that is better aligned with their values and the foundation’s mission and vision. The average annual investment management fee is 0.45% and the allocation is 60% equities and 40% fixed income and cash equivalents.


View Income Pool Current Performance

3.5% 10-year average annual return** / 4.6% 5-year annual return**

Appropriate for funds where minimizing risk and not being subject to short-term equity volatility is important. This pool does not take advantage of potential long-term equity growth. The average annual investment management fee is 0.46% and the allocation is 100% fixed income and cash equivalents.


View Minimum Risk Pool Current Performance

0.4% 10-year average annual return** / 0.9% 5-year annual return** 

Accommodates funds that are generally short term in nature and are focused on investment of capital with minimal risk. The return fluctuates with daily money market rates. The investment management fee is 0.0% for this Pool.

**Net of investment manager fees