Who Are the Beneficiaries of Fisk University's Stieglitz Collection?
26 Pages Posted: 1 May 2011 Last revised: 2 Jul 2011
Date Written: April 29, 2011
Most fiduciary relationships determine with specificity the beneficiaries of the fiduciary's activities. Not-for-profit entities, however, serve a class of unspecified beneficiaries and can exercise discretion in determining who to serve and how to serve them. This paper explores the limits of discretion that recent litigation established for Fisk University in balancing its educational mission and its administration of a valuable art collection donated decades earlier. The paper analyzes the case as it addresses respect for donor conditions, changes in circumstance, standing issues, the doctrine of cy pres and the designation of the appropriate class of public beneficiaries. Race and geography also play contributing roles.
Keywords: Art, Not-for-profit, Donor conditions, Cy pres, Trust, Estates, Fiduciary, University, Fish, Museum, nonprofit, philanthropy
JEL Classification: K11, K19, K39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation