Investment

Naropa has been leading the way in sustainable endowment investment practices for years. It is Naropa University's policy to invest its endowment assets in a way that is consistent with the Buddhist precept "not causing harm". As an investor, Naropa University believes that it has the responsibility to influence corporate policy through:

  1. Selecting investments that do not knowingly conflict with this mission
  2. Constructive dialogue with corporate management as a shareholder
  3. Proxy voting on shareholder resolutions

In keeping with this overall philosophy, the Naropa University Endowment will on a best efforts basis avoid investment in the following:

  1. Primary manufacturers of weapons systems (both conventional and nuclear), firearms, or ammunition
  2. Companies with egregious records of environmental damage – through toxic emissions, mismanagement of hazardous waste, irresponsible use of natural resources, and/or regulatory violations and fines – particularly compared with other companies in similar industries
  3. Manufacturers of tobacco, alcohol, or gambling products
  4. Owners or designers of nuclear power facilities
  5. Companies with pervasive and/or longstanding patterns of discriminatory behavior
  6. Companies with weak employee relations records, major safety controversies, and/or inadequate benefits
  7. Companies where their primary business is involved in natural resource extraction unless the company has a superior environmental record compared to companies in the same industry and has been exemplary of "best sustainable practices in their industry".

In addition, Naropa University strongly encourages investment in corporations that are providing solutions to social and environmental problems, specifically companies that:

  1. Promote consistently fair employment practices and promote diversity through innovative employee benefits and programs, equitable pay structures, safe working conditions, and training and advancement programs for women and minorities
  2. Show industry leadership in promoting environmental well-being through waste reduction and recycling programs, source reduction of toxic emissions, use of alternative energy sources, sustainable use of natural resources, environmentally-friendly products and services
  3. Manufacture products and/or services that have a direct positive environmental impact *
  4. Work to eradicate child labor and sweatshop conditions within all factories (both company-owned and those owned by suppliers) where goods are produced
  5. Participate as concerned, involved citizens in their communities
  6. Uphold global human rights and international justice in their operations around the world.

Naropa use an Investment Management company called Veris. Veris Wealth Partners is a national sustainable wealth management firm dedicated to aligning families' and foundations' financial objectives with their mission and values" (Ceres.org)

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