The Colorado Press Association "Foundation" is a mixture of the CPA Philanthropic Action Committee and the Denver Foundation (see background below for more details).
It raises money for two main reasons: continuing journalism and scholarships.
Continuing journalism includes providing funds for such groups as the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition to go around the state to provide trainings or to pay for site-specific trainings.
And the PAC/Foundation gives out four to nine scholarships a year to students entering the journalism field.
The money you donate literally is investing into the future of journalism.
In 1995, The Colorado Press Association Foundation was established as the charitable arm of the Colorado Press Association. Its goals: to further the industry by supporting high school and college journalists as well as high school and college journalism advisers and faculty through internship training opportunities.
The Foundation never completed official action, such as establishing bylaws or operating guidelines.
In 2005, The Colorado Press Association turned the foundation's assets over to The Denver Foundation for the purpose of better oversight and guidance for use of the funds, better management and growth of assets and the potential for endowment status in the future.
In 2007, the Pension Protection Act increased governance of charitable funds and changed the rules for many funds, CPA included. At that time, “unrestricted funds” were required to change to either “donor advised” or “restricted.”
At the time, CPA chose “restricted,” which limited all uses of the funds to the four scholarship programs already in place. The agreement between CPA and The Denver Foundation explicitly restricted the use of the funds for anything other than the original scholarship programs. The agreement prohibits future change of the restriction, meaning the money in the fund only can be used for the programs stated until the funds are depleted.
CPA "Foundation" vs. Denver Foundation
A foundation or charitable foundation is a legal categorization for non-profit organizations that donate funds and support to other organizations or provide the source of funding for its own charitable organizations.
A foundation is typically a 501(c)3, following strict IRS and government guidelines for distribution of grant funds
Because a foundation is a legal categorization of non-profit organizations, the word “foundation” should be associated with a legal entity following proper IRS guidelines.
Therefore, the CPA Foundation is alive in name only; CPA does not manage a true foundation and does not own assets related to a foundation. CPA cannot operate a foundation without 501(c)3 status, which it does not have.
Because no formal action ever has taken place, the CPA "Foundation" is not an entity recognized anywhere other than within the organization. Rather, the PAC makes recommendations to the Denver Foundation.