Changes to Endowment Distribution Policy

Princeton University's Endowment Distribution Policy ensures a consistent flow of resources from the endowment to the operating budget in support of the University's mission (figure 1, pie chart). Each year, departments that are beneficiaries of endowed funds receive an endowment distribution to support program activities as specified by donors or other designations.

pie chart
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The Trustees have approved the following policy changes to take effect as of July 1, 2011:

Endowment distribution in year earned:

  • An estimated spending distribution for the upcoming year will be reported in July.
  • The actual distributions will be posted quarterly: October, January, April, and June.
  • The investment year will now align with fiscal year: July 1 to June 30.

For project grants that receive endowment distributions and other forms of investment income, actual distributions will be posted quarterly. The new quarterly distribution may cause some project grants to show a negative balance if most spending occurs early in the fiscal year. To help you budget for the year, we will revise the project grant statement (PGS001) to display the estimated distribution for the entire year, as well as some additional information.

The spending distribution earned by new gifts will be distributed in the month following the end of the quarter in which the gift was received. Donors will be pleased to know their gift is providing immediate benefit to the program.

A net increase of 3.5 percent in endowment spending distribution:

For the fiscal year 2012, the University will distribute a 5 percent total spending distribution increase on a quarterly basis, and in two parts. First, 3.5 percent of the spending distribution increase will be distributed to endowed programs. Second, 1.5 percent of the increase will be distributed to a central pool as an Infrastructure and Administrative Charge (IAC) to help offset system and administrative costs. This creates a base that is expected to grow yearly at the same rate as the spending distribution (figure 2, time line). The IAC will be applied to all invested funds, as described in the IAC Policy.

For More Information

Please see the Spending Distribution Policy and IAC Policy for details. You can learn about the distribution schedule and reporting field changes at information sessions at the end of June and the beginning of July. Please sign up for the Changes to Endowment Distribution Policies session on June 30, July 11, or July 12, offered through the Employee Learning Center. If you have questions, please call Steven Semenuk, associate budget director, at semenuk@princeton.edu or 258-5523.

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Peter Krivcov

Peter Krivcov

Associate Director of Gift and Planned Giving Administration

Krivcov oversees the process by which gifts and bequests to the University are invested in the endowment and other funds. He came to the University 19 years ago from the mutual fund accounting group at Merrill Lynch, which he says was his “accounting boot camp—manually recording all of the financial activity within select mutual funds.” In his role at the University he has worked in gift accounting and planned giving administration, and has managed the asset and equities system that accounts for endowment investment managers and unitizes Princeton's primary and secondary pools.


Working on campus and being part of this institution inspire Krivcov in his daily work. “The endowment and the general financial operations are the financial engine that drives the University—supporting the faculty and students as they advance and share knowledge over the long term. I'm proud to be a part of that.” He continues, “I've been very fortunate over the years to have had the opportunity to work closely with some wonderful and talented people.”


Krivcov loves spending time outdoors with his wife, Kathleen, and their 12-year-old son, Liam. Surfing, skiing, playing ice hockey, and coaching his son's ice hockey team are among his favorite pastimes. Krivcov adds, “My son would always rather be outside. It's one of the things I love about him.”


“primary pool”

/prahy-mer-ee pul/ - noun

The primary pool (081-prefix) is that portion of the University's investment portfolio that is comparable to a mutual fund and operates on a market-value basis. All gifts, reinvested income, and other funds added to the primary pool are converted to equity units ("unitized") at the time the monies are transferred to the pool.


Points of Information

Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance

PCI Compliance is a set of rules created by the payment card industry for secure handling of credit and debit card data. Approximately 30 University departments accept credit card payments and process more than $12 million in credit card receipts annually.  Noncompliance by the University could result in serious financial penalties.


Some key principles are:

  • Any department that accepts payment by credit card is required to be PCI-DSS compliant.
  • Only processing methods approved by the University Information Technology Security Officer and the Office of Finance and Treasury may be used to accept card payments.
  • University employees who handle credit card information must affirm their intent to comply with the University policy by signing the Credit and Debit Card Security and Ethics Agreement.

For more information, please contact Hanna Bigelow, cash manager, at hbigelow@princeton.edu or 258-5056; or Anthony Scaturro, information security officer, at scaturro@princeton.edu or 258-4611.

Chart of Accounts

The project to update the University's 50-year-old chart of accounts has begun. The chart of accounts is the coding structure that defines the University's operations in financial terms and serves as the basis for our financial reporting. Mark Dingfield, who led the website project, will direct the chart of accounts project. We are in the process of engaging a consultant to work with us in designing the new chart. Stay tuned for more news on this vital, multi-year initiative.

Independent Contractors

Departments seeking to hire an individual in the U.S. for a specific service or project should be mindful of when it's appropriate to hire an employee - short-term professional, casual hourly, or temporary - or an independent contractor.

Following a few basic criteria will help determine whether someone should be hired as an independent contractor or as an employee: An independent contractor will generally possess a unique expertise not available at the University; will work independently, free from direct departmental supervision or control; and will normally be engaged in an established business, which earns income from a variety of different sources external to the University.

Before hiring an independent contractor, please contact your senior human resources representative. For additional information on how to hire an independent contractor, please follow this guidance.

Departmental Credit Card Update

Thank you for your collaboration during the recently completed transition to the Bank of America (BOA) credit cards.  Here are a couple of useful tips for the new BOA Works system: (1) Please edit the item description to include the business purpose of the transaction. The item will not leave your approval queue unless a description has been entered.  (2) The BOA Works system displays the 1 percent international transaction fee differently than the previous PNC system.  The fee now appears as a separate line item from the charge itself; verifiers and approvers should apply the same account codes as the actual transaction.  You may contact Joe Lane at joela@princeton.edu or 258-6847 with questions or to schedule an individual training session.


In response to your feedback, we are making regular updates to our Finance and Treasury forms. Recent revisions include adding lines to the charge/credit section and expanding fields to allow more space for text. Please continue to check the Form Library regularly for updated versions. Your continued feedback is appreciated.

Organizational Updates

We are thrilled to welcome the following new employees to the Office of Finance and Treasury:

  • Suzanne Bellan, customer service manager
  • Matthew Kotsovolos, manager of compliance and systems in Sponsored Research Accounting
  • Diane Lefebvre, director of financial systems planning and management
  • Scott Mironov, director of disbursement services
  • Allison Petito, training coordinator

In addition, some of our colleagues have new roles:

Susan Johansen, formerly of the University Financial Systems group, has accepted a new position as financial services associate within the Office of Finance and Treasury customer service group.

Mark Dingfield, formerly special projects manager, has been named business and project manager in the Office of the Vice President for Finance and Treasurer.

With chart of account objectives in mind, Sponsored Research Accounting has been aligned to report to Controller Kenneth Molinaro. At the same time, all disbursement services (accounts payable, payroll, and purchasing) will move to the oversight of Jason Knoch, executive director of financial services and strategic initiatives. You can find updated organizational charts here.



Prepare for the end of the fiscal year!

June 10
Academic departments with operating budget issues or shortfalls should develop funding plans and ccontact Kate Braunstein, in the budget office, at kbraunst@princeton.edu or 258-2650.
June 15-22
Cutoff for e-vendors to ship orders. Please see memorandum for vendor details.
June 28
Cutoff to send FY2011 Travel Invoices to Accounts Payable
June 30
Cutoff for Manual Interdepartmental Invoices(II)
June 30
Cutoff for for Electronic Interdepartmental Invoices (ell)
July 6th
End of First Close
July 12
Cutoff for FY2011 fully approved Labor Accounting changes to automatically post to June 2011. Any subsequent approved changes in Labor Accounting will post on July statements
July 14
End of Second Close

The fiscal year 2011 closing schedule and memorandum has been posted under “Budget Cycle” section of the Office of Finance and Treasury budgeting and financial planning page.

On July 22, departmental reports on Information Warehouse are recorded as final.

Need details or help? Please contact Ilene Brody at ibrody@princeton.edu or 258-3079, or our customer service department at finance@princeton.edu or 258-3080.


BEST practices for May

Year-end closing

Review and cleanup project grant summaries in preparation for year-end closing dates. Click here for more Best Practices.

In Memoriam

Linda Wolfe

Our colleague Linda Wolfe, assistant director of investment administration, passed away on April 16. She managed transactions between the endowment, PRINCO, and banking partners. Linda worked with us in finance and treasury for 39 years.

Elisabeth Dahlen

We also remember Elisabeth Dahlen, who died on March 29. Elisabeth served in a number of senior administrative roles at the University. She retired last year from the Office of Finance and Treasury, having worked with us as assistant to the treasurer for special projects. A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday, June 3, at the University Chapel.

Both Linda and Elisabeth will be missed by their many friends and colleagues in the Office of Finance and Treasury.


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