- Strong donor communication
- Award and recognition
- Financial transparency
In 2015, the total support and revenue reported by The Nature Conservancy was $947,555, down from $1,114,279 in 2014. The organization reported $1,114,279 in 2013.
Of The Nature Conservancy's revenue in 2015, 17.3 percent went to administrative costs. The highest-paid executive in the organization, as reported on IRS Form 990 (2014) was Regional Director, Charles Bedford, with a salary of $437,239. Sixteen individuals had salaries of over $100,000 as reported on the same form.
The Nature Conservancy has an extremely robust communication with its members. Those who have donated as well as those electing to follow the organization on social media or opted into receiving the company's regular newsletters. An area of which the organization is criticized is its use of paper mailers soliciting donations, being that these efforts are not considered "green."
Those electing to become a member of The Nature Conservancy receive six issues of the organization's magazine, Nature Conservancy, a monthly e-newsletter and regular updates on conservation in the member's home state and invitations to special events.
The Nature Conservancy's investment unit, NatureVest recently was recognized for efforts in restructuring the Republic of Seychelles' sovereign debt with the 2016 FT/IFC Transformational Business Award for Achievement in Transformational Finance. This award was sponsored by JPMorgan Chase & Co. The restructuring of the republic's debt has been seen as a way to use innovative funding to help developing countries preserve their natural resources and restructure their governmental indebtedness.
The mission of The Nature Conservancy is to protect the natural environment. The organization focuses its efforts into protecting their global priorities of land, water, climate, oceans and cities. There are conservation projects which have been accomplished as well as being in progress in each of the 50 states, in over 60 countries, and on six of the seven continents.
The Nature Conservancy has a long history in its work and is often called upon by The United States Congress as an expert during congressional hearings involving the environment. Many have dubbed the organization "nature's real estate agent," or something similar.
Ways to Support The Nature Conservancy
There are several ways to support The Nature Conservancy. One can become a member with a minimum gift of $25. The Nature Conservancy accepts honor or tribute giving as well as gifts from one's estate.
Perhaps due to the IRS audit and congressional investigation into the management of funds and conservation, The Nature Conservancy is very transparent with its records online. If one should desire, the organization's annual reports and IRS forms are published online. By going through these records, potential and current supporters of The Nature Conservancy are able to see data about how revenue was spent. There is not an itemized list of all projects in their reports, however. Breakdowns of executive salaries can be found in the organization's IRS Form 990.
Independent Charity Monitoring Organizations
The Nature Conservancy has been recognized by Give.org as an accredited charity. The organization has received three of four stars from Charity Navigator, which indicates their transparency and practices are demonstrative of best practices by nonprofit agencies. Additionally, the organization is named as a "Top Rated Charity" by the American Institute of Philanthropy. The Nature Conservancy states that it has a current A- with the institute, but that is not accurate; the current rating (August, 2016) for The Nature Conservancy from the American Institute of Philanthropy is B+, which is the lowest grade a "Top Rated Charity" Status can be awarded.