The Steve Pinkston Endowment - Frequently Asked Questions
Mr. Pinkston is retiring? When?
After 40 years of service to the Bellarmine College Preparatory community, Mr. Pinkston has announced his intent to retire in June 2020.
What is Bellarmine’s Endowment Fund? How does the Steve Pinkston Endowment fit into it? And what is the Pinkston Fellowship?
An endowment is a permanent investment account built by the gifts of donors. Because the endowment gives Bellarmine financial strength and flexibility in perpetuity, it is the best guarantee of our ability to support students, faculty, and staff across generations. The Bellarmine Endowment supports either tuition assistance, academic programs, or professional development for faculty and staff.
The Steve Pinkston Endowment is a specific endowment fund within the larger Bellarmine Endowment that will support the salary of the Pinkston Fellowship, which will be offered to a faculty or staff member who is of African American descent, preferably a graduate of an HBCU (Historically Black College or University), and who wishes to serve at Bellarmine.
How did this initiative get started?
The conversation around how to honor Mr. Pinkston’s legacy at Bellarmine has been happening for many years among the families and alumni that know Mr. Pinkston so well. In this case, a community member came forward in 2017 to re-ignite the conversation around an endowment fund that will honor his legacy. In Summer of 2018, with Mr. Pinkston’s involvement, the conversations turned into a charter agreement. Fundraising efforts began in earnest in January 2019.
Why is this Endowment and Fellowship structured in this way?
The charter agreement was drafted from a desire to honor Mr. Pinkston and his work at Bellarmine. We believe this is a fitting tribute for several reasons: Mr. Pinkston served as a teacher, coach, administrator, mentor, and spiritual leader to generations of students, families and faculty and staff from all backgrounds in his 40 years at the school. And yet, Mr. Pinkston played a special role in supporting African American youth and families here at Bellarmine. In addition, he was the first African American faculty member hired at Bellarmine and he made a specific effort to mentor and support younger faculty of color. As such, the philosophy of the Steve Pinkston Endowment and Pinkston Fellowship is to
- Promote faculty diversity at Bellarmine
- Attract African American youth and families to Bellarmine and support them in their time at the school
- Inspire young people to enter the teaching profession.
Why is it important for Bellarmine to have African American teachers or staff members?
In order for Bellarmine to truly prepare students for the real world, our school must cultivate a diverse community of students, faculty, and staff. Bellarmine as a whole benefits when many different perspectives are represented. In addition, while students can certainly learn from people of genders, ethnicities, and faith backgrounds different from them, faculty with similar backgrounds provide stronger role models and often promote stronger learning outcomes for students. Nationally, less than 2 percent of teachers are African American men, and Bellarmine wants to help promote a diverse teacher pipeline, as well as promote a more diverse workforce overall.
How much are we trying to raise and by when? What happens if we do not raise it all?
In order to fully fund the Steve Pinkston Endowment in perpetuity, we need to raise $2,000,000 by the end of calendar year 2025. The school is accepting donations of cash or pledges; pledges must be paid over a period of not more than five (5) years.
In the event the Pinkston Endowment is not fully funded by the end of the calendar year 2025, the Fellowship will be supported per the guidelines set forth in the charter agreement (less than $1M, partially endowed for 5 years; between $1M but less than $1.5M, partially endowed for 7 years; between $1.5M but less than $2M, partially endowed for 10 years). After that time period ends, the proceeds will be used to support an endowed Direct Financial Aid fund to support tuition assistance for current Bellarmine students of African American descent.
What happens if we raise more than $2,000,000?
Any monies donated to Bellarmine College Preparatory directed towards the Steve Pinkston Endowment will first be used to build the endowment corpus in support of the Pinkston Fellowship. Any funds raised in excess of $2,000,000 will create a separate Direct Financial Aid endowment to support tuition assistance for current Bellarmine students of African American descent.
What if future leadership at Bellarmine wants to change the purpose of the Steve Pinkston Endowment?
In the Steve Pinkston Endowment charter agreement, the proceeds of the endowment can only be used for the purposes of supporting the salary of the Pinkston Fellowship, unless the purpose is formally amended by the Steve Pinkston Endowment Advisory Board.
Do we have other named endowments for Bellarmine faculty members?
Bellarmine has over 250 named endowment funds, with approximately 20 funds named for Jesuits and approximately eight funds named for current or former lay faculty members.
Who should I contact if I have a question about the Steve Pinkston Endowment?
For information about the Steve Pinkston Endowment, or to make a gift, please contact Sonya Arriola, Strategic Advisor to the President, at email@example.com or (408) 537-9202.