Nonprofits' Insurance Alliance of California Gets $5 Million Boost from Bill and Melinda Gates
Funding to support the organization's national expansion to bring reasonably priced liability insurance to nonprofits across the country
Pamela E. Davis
SANTA CRUZ, Calif. -- Nonprofits' Insurance Alliance of California (NIAC), a Santa Cruz-based nonprofit organization that provides liability insurance to nearly one in every 10 501(c)(3) nonprofit charities in California recently received a $5 million donation from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This generous contribution will assist NIAC in taking its products and services to nonprofits nationwide.
"When times are tough and our most fragile citizens need help, it is often our nation's nonprofit organizations that answer the call," said Pamela Davis, president and CEO of NIAC. "However, 12 years ago, nonprofit organizations in California found themselves in need of help. They were out of favor with the insurance industry and facing high prices for insurance, if they could even find insurance at all. NIAC was established in response to this insurance crisis as a model company to jointly pool the risks of nonprofit organizations. Our goal is to achieve a national presence to assist nonprofits in other states."
NIAC is committed to providing liability insurance and risk management for nonprofit groups allowing the organizations to concentrate on serving the needs of their communities without fear that a claim against them will result in closing their doors. Since its inception 10 years ago, NIAC has increased its membership to 2,000 and is growing by one new nonprofit member each day.
"The Gates Foundation is pleased to support the work of NIAC which will provide opportunities for nonprofits nationwide to be able to purchase smart liability coverage at a stable, reasonable price," said Bill Gates, Sr., co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
As a nonprofit insurance pool, NIAC shares the goals of its members, who are also its owners, and works with them to address their unique risk management needs. In addition, NIAC provides a wide array of free management and training services to its nonprofit members to help them maintain safer environments for their clients, volunteers and staff.
In California, NIAC serves 2,000 charitable nonprofit organizations. Their membership composition is 26 percent community service; 23 percent arts and education; 16 percent mental health, health related and disabilities;11 percent shelter, nutrition and employment; 5 percent animal and environmental; and 18 percent other.
To serve nonprofits outside of California, NIAC has created a new company, the Alliance of Nonprofits for Insurance, which will be owned and governed by the nonprofits it insures in other states. Prior to launching the expansion, NIAC plans to develop strategic partnerships with nonprofit associations and selected insurance brokers around the country. NIAC will offer the same coverages in other states that it offers in California, including general liability, professional liability, directors and officers liability, improper sexual conduct, commercial auto, liquor liability and more.
NIAC anticipates expansion into other states in mid-2000. To complete the capital requirements for expansion to other states, NIAC intends to raise another $5 million. To be considered for membership in the insurance pool, an organization must be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. NIAC's web site can be found at (www.niac.org).