Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

On October 18, 2018, Blue Meridian Partners and the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation shared two announcements: "Blue Meridian Partners — Our Next Chapter" and "An Update on EMCF's Limited-Life."

This page has been updated (on June 7, 2019) to answer questions about Blue Meridian Partners' independence and plans to embark on new growth, as well as about how EMCF will complete its work and leave a lasting impact on economically disadvantaged children and youth.

What is the timeline for completing the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation's work and winding down?

The work of the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation will continue for several years — supporting Youth Development Fund grantees through the terms of our final investments, documenting and sharing lessons learned from our fifty years of grantmaking, and overseeing the transition of PropelNext so its work carries on beyond the life of the Foundation.

To complete these priorities in a timely and efficient manner, EMCF is contracting with Blue Meridian Partners to deliver services on behalf of the Foundation.

This enables EMCF to pursue our limited-life objectives fully and responsibly while avoiding the necessity of maintaining a separate staff and duplicative infrastructure.

Which of EMCF's operations have transitioned to Blue Meridian Partners, and how will this affect EMCF's grantees?

The transition of appropriate staff and operations from EMCF to Blue Meridian Partners was completed in summer 2019. In addition to helping EMCF's fulfill its final commitments to its grantees, the Blue Meridian team is assisting EMCF in documenting and sharing the most important insights it has gained from developing and implementing its investing approach.

EMCF continues to exist as a private foundation with a small board, while Blue Meridian Partners performs necessary staff functions. The primary responsibility of EMCF's board is to oversee the management and distribution of the Foundation's remaining assets as it pays out its final grant commitments and finishes its work.

Meanwhile Blue Meridian Partners continues to build out its operations and staff as an independent organization with its own governance and related structures, separate from EMCF.

Will Blue Meridian Partners operate with an endowment?

Blue Meridian Partners will not be an endowed private foundation. It aspires to become an "evergreen" (501)(c)(3) that continually raises major sums of capital to support social sector leaders seeking to scale their interventions nationally and solve problems trapping youth and families in poverty.

Blue Meridian's investments are structured and paid out in phases over several years. Its overall investment in an intervention may total $200 million or more, based on the investee's progress toward performance milestones. To fund each phase of investment, Blue Meridian calls capital from Partners as needed (much the way private equity firms operate), aggregates the funding, and quickly delivers it to the investee. The Edna McConnell Clark Foundation will fulfill its commitment to Blue Meridian by participating alongside other Partners in these capital calls.

Blue Meridian Partners' future is predicated on performance. Current and new Partners must find value in its work and continue to invest new capital, based on the results they and their investees achieve.