Looking Back…Looking Ahead

Charitable Solutions, LLC and Dechomai Foundations:  A Decade in Review

I was planning to post our 2019 accomplishments and then realized DECADE successes would be more appropriate… especially given the fact that we celebrated 17 years in business on January 15th!




The Low Points

In October of 2010, I lost my very good friend and founding partner, Mack Johnston, to a heart attack.  He was only 51.  He left behind his wife and six children and I was the only person running the business at that time.   I made my first hire in 2014 (after my unpaid wife was at her breaking point) and finally felt the fog from my partner’s loss lifting.

I had a series of fantastic ideas that no one else thought were so great.  The National Collection of Visual Art (virtual art museum for tangible personal property) and the National Pooled Income Fund were launched with zero fanfare and the interest didn’t come later either.  Both are now buried in my back yard with many other “great ideas.”

The High Points

We have been growing all service areas about 20-25% each year which has necessitated building a team. Today, we are a virtual firm of 15, dedicated to one vision – helping gifts happen that otherwise wouldn’t. I am extremely thankful for the talent I work with every day!

Some of our crazy ideas aren’t buried in the yard.  We launched the National Gift Annuity Foundation which is now the largest independent CGA platform in the country with nearly 600 contracts.  It grew over 25% in 2019!  I founded the Emergency Assistance Foundation in 2011 and it now has 50+ employees, 165 partner organizations and serves over 5 million employees globally through employee hardship and disaster relief funds.  Our cryptocurrency (didn’t really exist in 2010) and life insurance appraisal services also continue to grow.

Our noncash asset platform, Dechomai Foundation and Dechomai Asset Trust, have seen exponential growth:

  • In 2009 and 2010, we completed a total of 14 donations representing $24 million and ended 2010 with a total of $22 million in assets. 
  • In 2018 and 2019, we completed a total of 166 donations representing $664 million and ended 2019 with a total of $550 million in assets. 

That is A LOT of growth!  Since inception, we have completed over $1.5 billion in noncash donations, 100% of which, were initially declined.

Looking Forward

This year, we are focusing on building out services for the top 30 university endowments, direct impact investing/loan DAFs, noncash assets and CGAs (especially IRA to Stretch Testamentary CGAs). I hope to write a similar letter in 2030 with new services, more growth and billions of more gifts we can help capture for charities in an efficient and risk managed way!