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Proxy Power Program

Proxy Stewardship Project to Address Pervasive Problems Surrounding Co-Mingled Accounts and Proxy Voting

The Proxy Power Program provides educational programming and coordination around shareholder engagement as an essential mission related investment tool. The program offers bi monthly webinars on shareholder engagement and organizes an Annual Shareholders Townhall Meeting in conjunction with Confluence Philanthropy’s Annual Practitioners’ Meeting. The Proxy Power Program also provides opportunities for member exchange regarding shareholder campaigns, and makes resources available on shareholder engagement.  
The Proxy Stewardship Initiative is a special initiative of the Proxy Power Program. Many philanthropic and educational endowments have increasingly become more active stewards of their investment assets by thoughtfully voting their shares by proxy on a wide range of matters brought before corporate annual meetings – from corporate governance issues to social and environmental issues. Unfortunately, Endowments regularly find themselves unable to express their voice and votes as responsible shareowners because many institutions today do not hold stock directly. Rather they are invested with fund managers who pool their clients’ assets together in "commingled funds” and cast proxy votes according to their own guidelines rather than in line with their clients’ concerns.  
Confluence Philanthropy's Proxy Stewardship Initiative convenes representatives from leading philanthropic and educational endowments to explore the social and institutional obstacles that endowments face when they set out to practice conscientious proxy voting, and to identify what might be done to address these challenges. 
If your co-mingled account is preventing your institution from voting proxies as you would like, learn more about this project by contacting our Member Program Manager, Sarah