Conflict of Interest Policy

The proper governance of the A. C. Ratshesky Foundation depends upon the active participation of its Trustees. ACRF Trustees have an obligation to conduct business within guidelines that prohibit actual or potential conflicts of interest. This policy establishes the framework within which ACRF wishes its business to operate. It is important for the Foundation Trustees to be aware that the appearance of conflict can be troublesome even though there is in fact no conflict whatsoever. Therefore, the Foundation President must be fully informed at all times as to events or circumstances which might create the appearance of conflict.

An actual or potential conflict of interest occurs when a Trustee is in a position to influence a decision that may result in personal or professional benefit for that Trustee and/or a relative as a result of any transaction involving ACRF. For the purpose of this policy, a relative is any person who is related by blood or marriage, or whose relationship with the Trustee is similar to that of persons who are related by blood or marriage.

Trustees of the A. C. Ratshesky Foundation are guided by this Conflict of Interest Policy whenever they are carrying out the business of or representing the Foundation. In this role, each Trustee has a duty of loyalty to the Foundation. The duty of loyalty always requires a Trustee to prefer the interests of the Foundation over any Trustee’s interest or the interests of others. In addition, Trustees of the Foundation shall avoid acts of self-dealing which may adversely affect the tax-exempt status of the Foundation or cause there to arise any sanction or penalty by a governmental authority.

Because Trustees may be involved in other organizations that may have business dealings or affiliations with or seek grants from the Foundation, the following general principles have been established:

•  Each Trustee shall maintain the highest level of ethical conduct and shall exercise the highest standard of care, diligence, and prudence when serving the Foundation.
•  In the event any Trustee, or a member of her/his immediate family has a personal or business interest in, or is involved in any way with an organization with whom the Foundation is considering a grant request or business contract, such interest or involvement shall be disclosed to the Foundation President. In such event, any Trustee may be asked to answer pertinent questions of other Trustees when knowledge regarding the matter will assist the Foundation.
•  The minutes of the meeting shall indicate that the interested Trustee disclosed the interest or involvement in the matter being considered by the Board, excused herself/himself from the discussion, and abstained from voting on the matter.
•  Any violation of this policy may result in termination of the Board membership of the Trustee involved.