Our mission is to improve the economic education and financial literacy of Bay Area youth and to promote professional certification in the financial services industry.
We achieve our mission by providing expert volunteers and financial support to proven, successful programs in finance, investment and entrepreneurship in Bay Area K-12 education; and, by providing financial support for individuals pursuing related professional certifications.
The Bay Area Financial Education Foundation's objective is to introduce students to the saving and investment tools that will enable them to achieve their goals in life, and to advance qualified, certified professionals to help them along the way.
In 2000, the Security Analysts of San Francisco (SASF), the largest Bay Area membership association of investment professionals, held its first charitable event – a wine tasting reception featuring Ravenswood - a publicly held winery. The event was spearheaded by SASF Past President John T. Hyland, CFA. The event combined a traditional investor presentation with a social reception. The event's proceeds were donated to the United Way, and the SASF Board was so inspired by the success of the event that they decided to continue its development and focus on a more specific charitable cause: financial literacy.
Subsequent annual events continued to feature publicly held wineries: Franciscan, Chalone, Beringer and drew hundreds of attendees. The event also saw consistent support from corporate sponsors such as Franklin Investments, Thomas Weisel Partners, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo. A relationship was cultivated with the Wall Street Journal Classroom Edition, and proceeds from the wine tasting reception began to fund subscriptions to the publication for Bay Area High Schools. Since SASF was not itself a charitable organization, the charitable contributions and donation receipts were handled through Philanthropic Ventures Foundation, an independent conduit for charitable fundraising. SASF also established a Financial Literacy Committee, to pursue additional programs and volunteer opportunities for Bay Area Schools. After several years' success and steady growth of the fundraiser, subscription sponsorships and school outreach, SASF (now called CFA Society San Francisco or CFASF) created a task force comprised of several board members to investigate the possibility of creating a stand alone foundation to support financial literacy.
On February 28, 2007 a CFA Society of San Francisco Board Member Task Force recommended the establishment of the Foundation, introduced its Mission Statement and made the following statement:
"We believe that a Society sponsored independent 501(c)3 provides identity and clarity to the tax-exempt status of the CFA Society of San Francisco's charitable intentions that a conduit did not. We believe that an independent entity will enable the Society to draw on the resources and broaden the CFA Society of San Francisco's outreach to the senior and distinguished members of the Bay Area financial services industry. Further, a Society public benefit corporation offers the larger opportunity for the fulfillment of a basic belief: that greater financial literacy is a benefit to society, and that professional certification is a deeply important benchmark for individual competency, including public confidence in financial market integrity."
The CFA Society of San Francisco board voted to ratify the bylaws and articles of incorporation as presented by the task force; and The Bay Area Financial Education Foundation was founded as a 501(c)3 charity, receiving its nonprofit exemption status and incorporating in September, 2007.
Since that time, the Bay Area Financial Education Foundation (BAFEF) has grown to support and develop proven, successful financial literacy programs throughout the Bay Area. We provide direct training and resources for Bay Area high school economics teachers at workshops held throughout the year. We match teachers and students with volunteers from the investment management industry who assist with economic and entrepreneurship curriculum. BAFEF also provides CFA Level I Merit Awards to university students with a career interest in finance, and supports the local Financial Planning Association and Financial Women's Association Scholarship programs - supporting higher education and promoting certification and best practices in the industry.
BAFEF continues to hold an annual Wine Tasting Reception each fall, and through its sponsorships and individual contributors raises $100k annually to support its programs. Today, BAFEF's reach extends beyond the Bay Area throughout greater California, and thousands of students and teachers benefit from its efforts. BAFEF has also inspired other CFA Societies and similar organizations to launch their own programs in support of financial literacy. BAFEF's Program Partners have been carefully vetted by the BAFEF Board to ensure maximum effectiveness of BAFEF's financial support and volunteer force. Working directly with teachers as well as partnering with Junior Achievement, SIFMA Foundation's Stock Market Game and InvestWrite Essay Contest, California Council on Economic Education and the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship, BAFEF continues to support and enhance opportunities for students and for the community.