History of the NAFA Foundation
The NAFA Foundation was incorporated in 1976 as a not-for-profit entity conforming to all provisions under IRS 501(c)(3) and 509(a). The Foundation continues to maintain this status and its mission is the same as the originally conceived purpose.
In the early years, the Foundation Board worked closely with institutions of higher learning to conduct case studies relating to vehicular fleet management. These studies were intended to assist and guide the fleet manager with their functions and responsibilities. As the Foundation matured its focus grew so as to benefit the entire fleet industry. In 1989 the Foundation conducted a qualitative analysis for company provided vehicles. It compared the cost of ownership or lease by an organization to that of individual allowance. That study was updated in 2003. An Excel-based Lease versus Buy versus Reimbursement program was developed in 1998 as a working tool to help fleet professionals make a thorough analysis of the various options. Over two thousand copies of the program have been distributed. The third version, LBR 1.2, was just released.
The Foundation conducted four annual benchmarking studies of the services provided to the fleet manager by the three major U.S. nameplate vehicle manufacturers. A similar study was conducted for several of the vehicle management companies. The findings from these studies allowed the OEMs and management companies to improve their services based on the importance to the customer.
In 2018 and Beyond
The NAFA Foundation recently implemented bylaws changes in late 2017 that created a new Board structure and stronger ties to its sister organization, NAFA Fleet Management Association (NAFA).
The new NAFA Foundation bylaws allow for an unlimited number of seats on the Foundation Board of Directors. However, the leadership, authority, and accountability for the Foundation’s activities rest squarely on the shoulders of a new 10-person “Executive Committee.” The Foundation’s Executive Committee is comprised of five individuals selected by the Foundation’s Board of Directors, and five individuals selected by the NAFA Board of Directors.
“NAFA has further strengthened its relationship with the NAFA Foundation, to jointly further the goals of the fleet and mobility industry,” said NAFA President Bryan Flansburg, CAFM. “For many years, NAFA and the NAFA Foundation were running on parallel tracks. Now, not only are we both on the same track, we are both parts of the same train, moving in the same direction. That combination of forces will serve the fleet and mobility industry very well.”
The Foundation Executive Committee officially took office December 19, 2017. Each member of the Executive Committee will serve two-year terms and may not serve more than two consecutive, full, two-year terms.
The new Foundation bylaws do not affect the organization’s charitable tax status, which allows individuals, corporations, and other entities to make tax-deductible contributions to the Foundation.
“The Foundation’s tax status is critically important to our mission, which is to further the fleet profession by delving deep into the critical issues with research and case studies,” said NAFA Foundation President Claude Masters, CAFM (retired from Florida Power & Light). “Being a charitable organization allows us to raise money for fleet industry projects while giving donors the benefit of having their contributions be tax-deductible. It’s a win for everyone!”