AJB Perpetual Access Offer

What is the "in perpetuity" gift subscription concept?

This innovative concept creates a vehicle designed to build on our plans for growing the Botanical Society of America endowment. It allows us to focus attention on growing the endowment in a manner that takes responsiblity for the long-term operational sustainability of the Society.

We will combine three core concepts: 1) growth of the endowment to provide long-term sustainability for the BSA; 2) the Society moving away from a dependence on journal subscriptions to finance BSA activities and; 3) ensuring members are able to provide gifts to the Society in a manner that clearly targets and delivers on our mission and objectives.

It will enhance and add benefits for members of the BSA Legacy Society.

Why the gift of an "in perpetuity" subscription to the AJB?

Several reasons come to mind:

  • We are absolutely serious about growing the BSA endowment and ensuring our ability to deliver on our mission into the future.
  • We feel that in any campaign, our efforts should reflect the values of the Society and provide benefit to those who give, where possible the institutions they serve (and who have supported us), and provide direct impact on our mission.
  • The journal represents our primary source of income. Replacing our current need for subscription income allows us freedom in the decision-making process as we face the environmental changes that are on the horizon for scientific societies.
  • Protect the American Journal of Botany and our ability to determine its future. The journal has long been our primary means of disseminating botanical research throughout the world. This is an important service we provide the scientific community.
  • We ensure the botanical sciences continue to be published in the evolving publishing market that appears to be moving towards a "publisher pays" model, and that publishing botanical research does not become an elitist privilege that is out of reach for most scientists around the world.
  • The journal has long been one of the focal points for becoming a BSA member. It also serves as a tangible rallying point for the campaign.

How would giving the gift of an "in perpetuity" subscription work?

We've calculated the net present value of an institutional subscription, based on the 2009 online subscription value ($600) and our growth projections out over a thirty-year period. This puts the gift value at $35,000.

For each gift of $35,000, we will put in place an institutional subscription for any organization you choose.  It will be delivered under your name (or the name of your choosing); in the manner the organization chooses (print or electronic), for as long as the journal is being published. Please note, each gift will also provide membership in the BSA Legacy Society.

To make giving the gift simple and accessible to all, we will use the following means.

  1. A simple cash or asset (stocks/bonds) transfer.
    As this is a clear gift to the endowment, we will immediately replace any current institutional subscriptions with new perpetual agreements.
    If your choice of institution creates a new subscription for the journal, we will put in place the appropriate perpetual agreement and begin immediate delivery of the journal.
  2. A deferred-payment plan.
    This is a gift to the endowment that will take time to be completed. We will ensure your name is added to the subscription of the institutions to which you choose to extend your gift and that their current subscription costs are reduced in proportion to your contributions to date. New perpetual agreements will be put in place upon completion of your gift.
    If your choice of institution creates a new subscription for the journal, upon your first contribution, we will immediately provide online access to the journal for that organization. We will put in place the appropriate perpetual agreements upon completion of your gift.
  3. A codicil document outlining intentions in your will.
    As this gift to the endowment is a future promise, and does not currently replace needed income, we will need to treat it differently for existing institutional subscriptions. We will ensure your name is added to the subscription of the institutions you choose and that perpetual agreements are put in place upon receipt of your gift.
    If your choice of institution creates a new subscription for the journal, in honor of your commitment, and in conjunction with the intent of this program in supporting our mission, we will immediately provide online access to the journal for that organization. We will put in place the appropriate perpetual agreements upon receipt of your gift.

How will this enhance the general endowment if it is in part designed to replace subscription income?

Most endowments project a return on investment for use of at least five percent per year. The funds provided to the BSA general fund under this program will be tracked. The Society will place the appropriate amount of funding needed to cover the subscription costs of all current and new print institutional subscriptions that are enrolled into the program, up to, but not exceeding two and one half percent of the investment returns over the preceding five year period. Remember, our goal in the first instance is to replace existing subscriptions and income. Beyond that we are clearly seeking to enhance our financial independence and ability to be free to make the appropriate decisions over time.

What if more than one person provides a qualifying gift and wants to see the subscription go to an institution that has already been noted?

We will add more than one name to an institutional gift if the need arises. In the spirit of delivering on our mission, we will also ensure that a new, non-subscribing institution receives an in perpetuity subscription to the journal.

Thank you for considering our request! How can we assist you in becoming involved? Please call Bill Dahl on 314-577-9566 or email me at wdahl@botany.org.

Thanks for getting involved!

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