UGa Foundation Pledges Adademic Support; Board Names Nine Trustees and Vows to Give More for Scholarships, Fellowships and Faculty Supplements

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Byline: JENNIFER MOORE

ATLANTA -- The University of Georgia Foundation met Friday in Atlanta and renewed its focus on supporting the academic mission of UGa. The foundation also appointed nine new trustees, filling slots left open by resignations or by those who completed their five-year terms.

Four slots remain on the foundation, which manages the university's $475 million endowment.

The foundation, which will officially be separated from the university on July 19 by order of the University System Board of Regents, has received more than 5,700 donations since March 28, said trustee Wyck Knox, for a total of $24.6 million.

"The relationship between the university and the foundation is better than it has been in years," Vice Chairman Read Morton said.

The foundation "is receiving and will continue to actively receive donations," Morton said.

The university and the foundation are separating after a public outcry over the ouster of former athletic director Vince Dooley. Many critics called for the resignation of UGa President Michael Adams.

As the foundation moves forward, trustees will try to spend a larger percentage of money on scholarships, fellowships and faculty supplements, Morton said.

Of the $31.1 million the foundation used to support the university from July 1, 2003, to June 30, 2004, 27 percent was for scholarships, fellowships and faculty supplements, and 29 percent was spent on general or athletic support, according to data Knox presented in the foundation's financial report.

Between July 1 and March 31, about 30 percent of the $22.3 million the foundation used to support the university was for scholarships, fellowships and faculty supplements. About 32 percent was for general and athletic support.

"We would like to see that begin to change," Knox said, with less money going to general and athletic support and more going to scholarships, fellowships and faculty supplements.

But the foundation also must increase its unrestricted endowment, Knox said, which will equal about $5 million by June 30. Trustees approved a plan to add $1 million more to the unrestricted endowment at the end of the next fiscal year, which ends June 30, 2006.

Some UGa Foundation budget items may still change, Knox said, as the foundation works with the university and the new Arch Foundation to determine who will pay for discretionary support for senior vice presidents and UGa President Adams. …