Friday, May 19, 2017

JLW by the Numbers: A Budget Snapshot

The Junior League of Washington supports over 2,300 members and over 20 community partners on nearly $1 million. How do we make the most effective and efficient use of our funds to support the League’s members, mission, and our community? Let’s run the numbers!

Above: JLW revenues come in mainly through membership dues and our fundraisers. The League also generates income by renting apartments located on the top floors of our Headquarters, as well as our investment accounts (House Fund, Emergency Fund, and Impact Fund). The revenue numbers shown here are net any expenses associated with that line item. For example, Dues and Fees includes both the New Member course fees and membership dues, minus the New Member Committee expenses for the programming. Building – Apartments revenue is net maintenance expenses, and Fundraisers are net their expenses.

Above: Our expenses are broken out here according to a tenet of JLW’s Mission, “developing the potential of women”, and our 3 strategic priorities: building community impact, building an internal sense of community, and building JLW’s brand. Committee budgets are categorized into one of these four buckets:

  • Because we believe in developing the potential of women, we are spending over $100,000 in training, which includes Leadership Institute and Development & Training programs, as well as AJLI-sponsored training, in 2017-2018.
  • Because we believe in building community impact, we are spending $55,000 in programming support for our members who volunteer in the community and are giving over $100,000 in grants and scholarships.
  • Because we believe in building an internal sense of community, we support the Membership Development Council, as well as our Sustainers. 
  • And because we believe in building JLW’s brand, we allocate over $20,000 toward the Communications and Public Relations Council.

A fifth bucket – supporting the work of JLW – reflects additional Headquarters-related, personnel, and administrative (phone system, cloud, internet) expenses.

The League has budgeted for a net surplus of just over $6,000 for 2017-2018.

Above: This chart is another way that the League has compared its expenses over time.  In this 2014-2018 analysis, Headquarters, personnel, and administrative expenses were allocated to the committees based on membership placement in those committees. Tracking this information over time will continue to help us understand where we are investing more and less each year. Please note that this includes expenses only – no revenue.

Above: In 2016-2017, the Board of Directors discussed beginning the budget process later in the year. Such a shift is only possible if the budget is no longer a part of the Annual Ballot approval process. As a result, a question was placed on the ballot to remove budget approval from the ballot moving forward; the measure passed with a majority of votes in April 2017. Effective 2017-2018, committee leaders will have more time and information, as well as the right people, with which to develop more meaningful budgets or plans for the coming year. It will also leave budget decisions in the hands of the Board members, the slate of leaders elected by the general membership to make these informed budget decisions and on whom fiscal responsibility rests. The budget will remain accessible to the entire membership via

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