Donor Documentation

Policy number: 5.4

Policy section: Development and External Affairs

Revised Date: January 2, 2019


1.  Definitions

Definitions of capitalized terms are set forth in Appendix A.

2.  Policy Statement

At the direction of the Vice President for Development and External Affairs (“the Vice President”) or his/her designee, the Division of Development and External Affairs (“DEA”) shall have sole authority for documenting for donors the information related their gifts, pledges, and other charitable financial information. Donor documentation may take a number of forms, including receipts, letters, invoices, summaries, etc.

Such information may be provided externally only to the Donor or the Donor’s Representative. Such information may be shared with University staff members internally upon submission of a confidentiality agreement by the University staff member. No School or Unit may distribute such information internally or externally without prior approval of the Vice President or his/her designee.

3.  Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that Donor gift information remains confidential, and that all communications with Donors regarding their Gifts and Pledges are appropriate, timely, and accurate.

4.  Applicability

All faculty, students, staff, volunteers, and contractors are expected to comply with this policy.

5.  Questions

Questions regarding this policy are to be directed to the Office of the Vice President.

6.  Department Administrative Rules, Procedures, and Guidelines

Development and External Affairs will create and maintain guidelines and procedures related to this policy.

Appendix A: Definitions

“Donor” refers to a private entity providing financial or other valuable support, given outright or pledged to be given in the future.

“Donor’s Representative” refers to an individual identified by the Donor as the primary contact for one or more of the Donor’s gift or pledge transactions.

“Gift” refers to any item of value given outright to the University. Gifts include cash, securities, real estate, equipment, artwork, trusts, bequests, and all other forms of asset transfers. Gifts need not be 100% tax deductible under IRS guidelines to fall within this definition.

“Pledge” refers to any Gift or portion thereof promised to be provided at a future date.

“School” refers to SMU’s six schools and one college, and departments and programs within.

“Unit” refers to established entities other than Schools, such as the Office of the Provost, Central University Libraries, Department of Athletics, Division of Students Affairs, etc., and departments and programs within.


Revised: January 2, 2019

Adopted: January 2, 2019