Recognizing that a permanent financial base was important to “support continuing work and presence in the Knoxville community,” the congregation of TVUUC established the Endowment Fund in 1994. The Fund received its initial anonymous donation of $30,000 in 1996, and by 2015, has grown to nearly $400,000. Most of the donations to the Fund come from bequests in the wills of deceased members, memorial gifts honoring members, and lifetime gifts.

Unlike the funds collected during the Church’s annual stewardship campaign, the contributions to the Endowment Fund are not spent on operating expenses. Instead, they are invested permanently and only the income from the Fund is spent. The Endowment Fund began with four sub-funds to be used for specific types of expenses: Building and Maintenance, Religious Education, Social Concerns, and General expenses. An additional sub-fund has been included to support the Memorial Garden. Currently, the Fund is invested in the Common Endowment Fund managed by the Unitarian Universalist Association in Boston.

The Fund is managed by a Committee of seven members elected by the congregation to serve for three-year terms. In addition to overseeing the investments of the Endowment Fund and soliciting new contributions, the Committee periodically invites proposals to use income from the sub-funds for special projects to further the Church’s mission.

The Annual Endowment Project:
Each year a portion of the earnings of our Endowment Fund is used for a chosen special project. The first, our 2016 20th Anniversary Project, brought new sound and light systems to the sanctuary, while the 2017 project provided new wireless and video around the building. We have just announced that the 2018 Project will grace us with a Fellowship Patio, permeable pavers, accessible tables, and a grill area in the space between the Fellowship Hall and the retaining wall. Getting a jump on next spring, the 2019 Project has already been chosen — look for development of a native wild garden, paths, and benches near the front of the property. The solicitation for the 2020 Project will be announced in October 2019.

Current Endowment Fund Committee Members:

  • Sherry Kasper
  • Bill Cherry
  • Betty Coleman (Secretary)
  • Don Dougall
  • Lillian Mashburn
  • Maureen McBride (Treasurer)
  • Ken Stephenson (Chair)
  • Robert McMurry (Board liaison)
  • Terry Uselton (Board liaison)

How to Contribute

Time Critical: Click here to go to Wake Now our Vision and see how a future donate in your estate can result in an instant donation to our Endowment Fund now!

Tax deductible contributions to TVUUC’s Endowment Fund May be made at any time by a check in the plate or mailed to TVUUC. Make the check to “TVUUC” and indicate “endowment”. If given in honor of an individual or for a particular sub-fund, be sure to attach a note. The family (or honoree) will be notified of your gift, unless you request anonymity. If you would like more information, please contact a member of the Endowment Fund Committee directly or write to Endowment(at)


Wake Now Our Vision
Endowment Fund Brochure
Charter of the Endowment Fund

Trust and Estate Info Sites:
The American Bar Association (Real Property Trust & Estate Law Section)

The American College of Trust & Estate Counsel