Investment Fund

Investment Fund

Our Mission

Following the guidance of Jesus Christ, the Investment Fund Committee supports the mission, core values and vision of The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California and its congregations. The Investment Fund Committee helps provide continuity and growth for congregations in the Diocese by stewarding the funds of the Diocese entrusted to its care, serving as a custodian, prudently investing the funds for income and growth and providing loans to congregations and other diocesan entities to support their missions in the service of God. 

The Investment Fund Committee strives to effectively and prudently manage the diocesan and congregational funds entrusted to its care, achieving an appropriate balance between risk and gains, such that all congregations will seek to invest their funds in the Investment Fund and through that provide a unique source of funding for advancing the work of God in the Diocese. 

The Corporate Social Responsibility Committee, a subcommittee of the National Concerns Committee of the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church of the United States of America, establishes the directives for socially responsible investments. These directives are largely guided by recommendations from the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) with respect to shareholder activism and other socially responsible investment issues. These are portfolio restrictions that have been put into place, all based on policies passed by the Executive Council and reviewed for compliance on an annual basis by the Investment Fund Committee. 

No investments are made among the top U.S. defense contractors, measured in dollar volume of sales; in companies that operate for-profit prisons; or companies that manufacture or sell tobacco products.  

The Investment Fund of The Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Northern California is a collective investment fund available to congregations, the Diocese itself and diocesan organizations. The purpose of the Fund is to allow those organizations to take advantage of economies of scale and diversification in an effort to promote greater investment return and efficiency, and to further their charitable objectives. 

Among the investments are loans to congregations and diocesan organizations for new construction and major renovations, and to clergy for housing. So not only does the Fund bring professional management to many institutions in the diocese, but also it advances its mission by allowing congregations to grow. 

The Fund was established by the Diocese through the actions of the Bishop, the Board of Trustees and the Convention in 2013. It succeeded the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Northern California Endowment Trust (sometimes known as the Endowment & Memorial Trust) founded in 1975. 

The Board of Trustees of the Diocese appoints the Investment Fund Committee, which is responsible for day-to-day operations. 

Although this was an important change in structure, those who administer the Fund – the Investment Fund Committee, the investment advisor and the custodian — have not changed. 

The Investment Fund Committee does not offer advice regarding planned giving. Those seeking such advice should contact the Episcopal Foundation of Northern California. It works with congregations to enhance their planned giving results. The Investment Fund Committee encourages you to go to the Foundation’s website to obtain more information on planned giving. 

The Investment Fund operates as a program of the Diocese under the 501(c)(3) non-profit status of the Diocese. It is governed by the Investment Fund Committee, composed of at least five and no more than eleven members including the Bishop, who are appointed by the Board of Trustees upon the recommendation of the Bishop on an annual basis, with no limitation on the number of annual terms that can be served. View a list of current members. 

The Investment Fund Committee receives funds from the Diocese, diocesan organizations and congregations, and invests the money in one or more of three funds according to the wishes of the depositor of the funds. View investment transaction guidelines.  

U.S. Bank is the fund custodian and provides investors with monthly statements of activity. The current manager of the funds on behalf of the Investment Fund is HighMark Capital Management. U.S. Bank assesses custodian and advisor fees to follow Section 2.8 of the Investment Policy, which provides that fees and expenses from outside vendors are to be charged pro rata to each investor. 

Three funds are invested according to the Investment Policy adopted by the members of the Investment Fund Committee and approved by the Board of Trustees. 

The A fund, known as the Balanced Fund has as its primary goal growth of principal and production of income with a moderate risk tolerance. 

The B fund, known as the Income Fund is invested predominantly in bond funds and is designed to produce a reasonably reliable flow of income with minimal risk of loss of capital. The time horizon on the bonds is 2-5 years. To provide a hedge against inflation up to 25% may be invested in a low risk equity or balanced fund or low risk alternative investments. 

The C fund, known as the Money Market Fund, is invested in money market and short-term bond funds with a time horizon of less than one year. It is designed to provide liquidity with very modest returns. 

For more details, view the Investment Policy (Below)   

The Investment Fund includes a portfolio of loans to congregations, diocesan organizations and clergy. Loans are predominantly for capital projects pursued by congregations. These loans are made by application of a congregation or other entity and require the approval of the diocesan Project Review Committee, the Investment Fund Committee, and the Standing Committee and are executed upon recommendation of the Bishop.  

Here are the Loan Application guidelines. The interest rate is variable and is determined by the Investment Fund Committee on an annual basis. The current interest rate is below. The interest rate is kept as low and as stable as market conditions permit but since the loans represent investments by other congregations in the Diocese the return must be sufficiently high that the Investment Fund Committee can attract investments from congregations in the Diocese. Loans are generally secured by deeds of trust on the property of the borrowing congregations. Find the loan policy below. While the Investment Fund Committee maintains a loan loss reserve, it has never written off a loan. 

Click here to read our Investment Policy.

The diocesan accounting staff at the Office of the Bishop works together with the Investment Fund Committee and U.S. Bank to process all Investment Fund transactions. 

All accounts must maintain a minimum balance of $500 in each fund open within the account. If a fund falls below this minimum, you must either deposit sufficient funds to bring it over $500, transfer the balance to another fund or account that meets the requirement, or close the fund and withdraw the balance. 

Download the Account Under $500 Withdrawal/Transfer Form here

The diocesan accounting staff at the Office of the Bishop will facilitate the set-up of new accounts. Please contact Kati Braak, Director of Operations, at 916-442-6918, ext. 228, to start this process. In order to open a new account, minutes of a resolution authorizing the action must be provided. 

Download a suggested form of the resolution here

Please review all instructions below before completing the Loan Application Package: 

A portion of the funds held by the Investment Fund are available to lend to congregations and diocesan institutions. These loans are part of the investment portfolio providing earnings to the investors in the Investment Fund. To preserve the integrity of these earnings those who wish to borrow funds from the Investment Fund are required to complete an application that will be subject to a multi-step review process. 

The interest rate on these loans is variable. The rates are reviewed each year at the Investment Fund Committee’s October meeting and maybe reset effective January 1 of any given year. 

The amortization period is somewhat negotiable and prospective borrowers are encouraged to propose terms that meet their specific needs. 

Before a loan may be granted the congregation or institution must be in compliance with Title I, Canon 7, Section 4 of the Canons of the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. This canon states that, “All real and personal property held by or for the benefit of any Parish, Mission or Congregation is held in trust for this Church and the Diocese thereof in which such Parish, Mission or Congregation is located.” This canon was affirmed by our Diocesan Convention in 2007. Compliance requires a review of the congregation’s title documents and possible revision.  

Download the Loan Application Package 

The completed Loan Application Package should be submitted to Kati Braak, Director of Operations, via email at 

We members of the Investment Fund Committee serve two constituencies in the Diocese: 1) The Diocese, congregations and diocesan entities that invest their funds in the Investment Fund, and 2) Congregations and diocesan entities which want to borrow from the Investment Fund to make capital improvements. We have also made three loans to clergy. 

Our obligation to the first group is to make sure the investment portfolio is diversified so that risk is not concentrated in a few investments. Funding loans for capital improvements supports our Diocesan Vision, which says in part, “Healthy congregations will be well-organized, well-administered, adequately resourced, and appropriately housed.” 

We on the Investment Fund Committee are concerned that because loans are becoming an increasing portion of the total portfolio, a policy is needed. Therefore in June 2012 we agreed to the following guidelines: 

  • Loans may be as much as $1 million provided they finance construction for new congregations. For example, such a large loan would be possible for a mission currently in rented space desiring to build a new facility. Loans of this magnitude would be secured by a first deed of trust.
  • Smaller loans are available for additions and renovations to existing plant. We prefer first deeds, but we may accept second mortgages in this category.
  • We may approve new loans to existing borrowers, those who have a current loan and an excellent payment record, and wish to take on a new project.
  • We will not consider loans to congregations and diocesan entities which have an existing loan elsewhere, and want to borrow from the Investment Fund instead, in order to get a lower rate.
  • We will now require that a potential borrower invest its reserve funds with the Investment Fund, provided of course that it has reserve funds.
  • Of course all the past criteria still apply. We will lend to financially healthy congregations and those with a history of paying their debts on time. We will only consider projects funded by not only the loan but also existing reserves and pledges.


U.S. Bank 

Investment Advisors 

U.S. Bank as contracted to Union Bank and its wholly-owned subsidiary, HighMark Capital Management 

Custodian and Investment Fees: 

  • Master Trust and Custody Fees
  • Investment Fees

Interest Rates for Loans  

– For loans made prior to January 1, 2014: 4.80%  

– For loans made after January 1, 2017: 4.80% (base rate) up to 6.80%, depending on the ratio of the loan amount to value/cost, the financial strength of the borrower, and nature of the property to be constructed or improved. Here are the Interest Rate Policy details.  

(No loans were made in 2014, 2015 or 2016) 

Reserve for Bad Debt  

5 years at 1.00% per year beginning 2011 

Investment Fund Committee Members  

Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California

Learn more about the bishop here. 

Member and Chair


phone: 916-599-6875 

Occupation: Wealth Advisor  

Past and Present Church Service:  

  • Faith Episcopal Church, Cameron Park—Vestry member, Drama Team Director, Small Group Leader, Search Committee, Diocesan Convention Delegate, Education for Ministry (EfM) Mentor. 

Investment and Other Backgrounds:  

  • Wealth Partner, TruNorth Wealth Partners, LLC, advising foundations, endowments, multi-generational families and high net worth individuals 
  • Seattle Pacific University, Speech Communications 
  • Certified Financial Planner 
  • Accredited Investment Fiduciary 
  • Theology Certificate, University of the South at Sewanee 
  • Former trust officer and operations manager of regional bank

Member and Vice-Chair


Occupation: Certified Public Accountant  

Past and Present Church Service:  

  • St. John’s, Roseville: Senior Warden, vestry, member of finance committee 
  • Investment Fund Committee member since 2012 

Investment and Other Background:  

  • California State University Sacramento, BS Accounting 
  • Certified Public Accountant 
  • Retired Partner, Crowe LLP, a national public accounting firm 
  • University Foundation Sacramento State, board chair
  • CSUS Sacramento Alumni Association: past president, life member, director

Member and Secretary


Occupation: Retired business executive 

 Past and Present Church Service:   

  • All Saints’ Church, Sacramento: senior warden, junior warden, Sunday school chair and teacher, stewardship chair 
  • Church Divinity School of the Pacific: chair of the board of trustees, chair of audit committee 
  • Diocese of Northern California Investment Fund Committee: member since 2006 

Investment and Other Background:   

  • Claremont Graduate University: Master’s Degree, Economics 
  • Blue Diamond Growers: chair, investment committee for pension plan, assets of $44 million 
  • Church Divinity School of the Pacific: member, investment committee for endowment, assets of $15 million



Occupation: Nonprofit Executive, retired  

Past and Present Church Service:  

  • Trinity Cathedral, Sacramento: vestry, treasurer 
  • Diocese of Northern California: Board of Directors, Standing Committee, Diocesan Council 
  • Diocese of Northern California Investment Fund Committee: member since 2008 

Investment and Other Background:  

  • California State University Sacramento: BA mathematics 
  • President & CEO of Safety Center Incorporated 
  • Former bank director & chair loan committee, vice president of bank trust department



Occupation: Retired  

Past and Present Church Service:   

  • St. Mary’s, Napa: Sunday school teacher, Foundation committee, vestry, finance committee, Profile Committee.   
  • Episcopal Foundation of Northern California: Director and Chair of Board 

Investment and Other Background:   

  • The University of Texas, Austin BBA Accounting 
  • Golden Gate University, MS Taxation 
  • Chevron Corporation 34 years in accounting, finance, comptroller and operations 
  • Advisory Board member of non-profit providing services and work training programs to those dealing with homelessness, food insecurity, addiction and emergency services during times of disaster.