Letter to the Editor: CUNY Donor Scandal Not Applicable to NYU

Debra Lamorte

Contrary to the assertions in your Sept. 6 editorial titled “Tracking Donor Money Is Too Hard,” NYU makes information donations available in multiple ways. NYU’s Annual Fund donors can find information on the impact of their gifts right on our website (a chart on the top of that site shows a breakdown of the money raised and where it was spent). NYU publicly issues a fact sheet on fundraising that is sent directly to the WSN (most recently to the editors on Dec 1, 2015). The head of NYU’s fundraising makes an annual presentation to the University Senate and its 137 voting members. And all NYU schools report to major scholarship donors on the use of their gifts through annual written reports, and many of those donors are invited to events across the university where they can meet their student recipients.

The fact is, not all situations are analogous; the CUNY situation cited in the editorial is not analogous to NYU. That situation involved a CUNY donor-created and -designated fund that the university had failed to spend according to the donor’s wishes. At NYU, we have safeguards in place to prevent this from occurring – donor-designated funds are regularly monitored by University Development and Alumni Relations in partnership with the Office of Budget and Financial Planning and individual school fiscal officers to ensure that the money is spent according to the donor wishes and is available to the appropriate departments or units.

Debra Lamorte is the Senior Vice President of University Development and Alumni Relations at NYU.

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