Category Archives: non-profit

Economic Justice: What Can We Do for OUR Communities?

Loaded question right? Many of you may have read my first blog on this issue in August when my legislative office and my non-profit hosted an event on “Economic Justice: How To Use Our Dollars to Make Sense”. The issue was the almost $2 Trillion, with a “T”, in spending power in the black community and how to leverage that power to accelerate social justice. It’s my theory that leveraging the universal language of money can speed up social justice reform towards minorities in this country—all we have to do is come up with a plan and stick together to make it happen!

We had a lively discussion with panelists about the issues facing the black community with respect to economic parity and what preliminary steps we can take individually and as a community to address those issues. Over 60 individuals came to hear from the panel and there was a united conclusion to continue the conversation. We had a diversity of opinions, backgrounds, professional careers and visions for how to accomplish this enormous task. My non-profit, Minority Access to Capital, Inc., is committed to answering that call on the business side and I am committed as a policy maker to address those issues from a community and policy standpoint. Together we CAN and we WILL insight and inspire change but we need your help. Can we count on it?

If your answer is “Yes”, that time has arrived! I am pleased to announce that my office and non-profit are answering the call for ACTION ITEMS and a PLAN for how we can tackle the issue of economic justice in our communities. See below and join me at either or both events! *I will not be at the event on Nov. 17th as I have a conflicting event related to my legislative duties that will take me out of town.

AND……

On behalf of the Board of Directors of Minority Access to Capital, Inc., I hope to see some of you soon!

**************************************************************************I am Dar’shun Kendrick, Private Securities Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practicehelping businesses raise capital the LEGAL way. We work with “for profit” companies seeking to raise $250,000 or more through private capital (including crowdfunding) that have a line item budgeted for legal services. We do NOT find investors or introduce companies to investors; that is the job of “broker-dealers” and we are prohibited under federal securities law from doing so.  I have 2 B.A.s from Oglethorpe University, a law degree from the University of Georgia and an M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University. View past and upcoming speaking engagements and request me to speak to your organization. I have been elected to the Georgia House of Representatives (East DeKalb/South Gwinnett) since 2011 and I serve on the committees of Juvenile Justice, Interstate Cooperation, Judiciary Non-Civil and as the ranking Democrat on the Small Business and Job Creation Committee.

You may be interested in my non-profit organization as well to EDUCATE and EMPOWER minorities called Minority Access to Capital, Inc. Please visit our website to learn about events and sign up for our enewsletter.

We are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and therefore any legal advice in this blog only pertains to Georgia based businesses. Please visit us online to sign up for a time to discuss services or for our 1 hour consultation.

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Filed under non-profit, policy, private debt, private equity

If you have a gift to offer the world, it doesn’t need to be nicely wrapped. Just do it!

Many of you have seen or heard my rants on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,YouTube or anywhere else that I think I have an audience. And the rant is typically the same—-WHERE ARE ALL THE MINORITIES (WOMEN AND RACIAL MINORITIES) WHEN INVESTORS AND OTHERS ARE DISCUSSING PRIVATE CAPITAL? Many times, I look to my left—and my right—-and I am the only woman or person of color in the room or at the table (and if I am having a really depressing week—I’m the only one of for both). And this doesn’t make sense given the Business FAQs about Georgia (Georgia is #1 in the growth of women owned businesses and metro Atlanta is #1 in the US for black owned businesses) and the amount of private capital being infused into Georgia (see below).

So I decided to develop a personal and professional pledge—the DK Pledge I call it—-as a constant reminder to myself why I must continue to break down the walls of access, education and communication between minority businesses and the world of private capital.

But the pledge was not enough. You see, I am a woman of action—I’ve been raised that if I don’t like something, I don’t complain, I do something about it (which is probably why I was elected to the GA House of Representatives at age 27 but I digress). So I decided to start a non-profit with the FOCUS on “Educating and empowering minorities, especially women and racial minorities, on how to access private capital to grow their companies and create generational wealth.”I started with a small interest group in January and now we have a 8 member Board of Directors, approved by-laws, registration with the Secretary of State, and as of April 1, 2016 we are now a 501(c)(3) under the IRS Code with tax exempt status!—Just in time for our April 28th meeting which I hope you will join us in attending!

Now I wish that I could say that I did this alone but I didn’t. I had help as we all need rather we want to admit it or not. Say hello to my fabulous Board Members who believe in my vision and have supported this effort:

 

Carleton Moten

Board Member

VP of Finance

Maurice Jackson

Vice Chair of Board

VP of Programs

 

 

Rod Echols

Board Member

VP of Technology

 

Shannon Weaver

Board Member

VP of Sponsorships

 

Sylvester Ford

Board Member

VP of Membership

 

Dar’shun Kendrick

Founder/Board Chair

 

 

And a SPECIAL shout out to the tax attorney that helped us to get it all done—Mr. Keith Miles.

You can contact any of the above mentioned Executive Board Members by downloading this CONTACT LIST and letting us know if you’d like to be involved with our organization. Here are other ways to connect with us as well:

So…if you are a finance professional out there, minority or not, are you ready to help us in our mission to empower and educate minority entrepreneurs on how to obtain a piece of the almost $2 Trillion in private capital that has been invested over the last 10 years? If so, contact me and let me know.

***************************************************************************

I am Dar’shun Kendrick, Private Securities Attorney and Owner of Kendrick Law Practicehelping businesses raise capital the LEGAL way. We work with “for profit” companies seeking to raise $250,000 or more through private securities (equity and/or debt) that have a line item budgeted for legal services. We do NOT find investors or introduce companies to investors; that is the job of “broker-dealers” and we are prohibited under federal securities law from doing so.  I have 2 B.A.s from Oglethorpe University, a law degree from the University of Georgia and an M.B.A. from Kennesaw State University. View past and upcoming speaking engagements and request me to speak to your organization.

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We are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and therefore any legal advice in this blog only pertains to Georgia based businesses. Please visit us online to sign up for a time to discuss services or for our 1 hour consultation.

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Filed under capital raising, non-profit, private debt, private equity, securities

So You Need 501(c)(3) status? You May Not Need It After Reading This.

“I want to start a non-profit.” It is a phrase that I hear over and over again—and it’s noble cause. “For profit” businesses want to give back to society and, in their mind, the way to do this is through forming a non-profit organization complete with tax exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Well…not so fast! There are requirements that come with starting a non-profit (accounting, legal, fiduciary) that many would be non-profits are not aware need to be followed or your status could be revoked or worse. Now—-let me tell you about the concept of “fiscal sponsorship” that serves as an alternative to starting a non-profit from scratch and having to consistently fulfill the compliance requirements of a non-profit organization.

Fiscal sponsorship is a contractual relationship that allows a person or organization that is NOT tax-exempt to advance charitable or otherwise exempt activities with the benefit of the tax-exempt status of a sponsor organization that IS tax exemption from federal incomes tax under the IRS. In essence, it’s a strategic partnership between a non-exempt organization and an exempt organization to carry out a charitable objective. This can save time, money and headache, especially for persons or organizations who already have a “for profit” organization to run.

A few definitions…

  • “Sponsored Project”/”Charitable Project”- The particular initiative that has a charitable cause that an organization or person would like to see;
  • “Fiscal Sponsor”- The entity that has the IRS 501(c)(3) tax exempt status;
  • “Grantee”- Person who receives benefits of sponsored project who is often the non-exempt status organization;

There are 3 forms of fiscal sponsorship (the mechanics of which should be discussed with your legal counsel):

  1. Comprehensive Fiscal Sponsorship (most common form)- The sponsored project becomes an internal program of the fiscal sponsor. In other words, if you want to conduct a fundraiser for “Back to School” supplies, you would find a fiscal sponsor and contract with them to make your charitable project one of their charitable projects. The fiscal sponsor may charge a percentage of funds raised for a particular project as an administrative fee. But it’s important to select the RIGHT fiscal sponsor however, not just the one with the lowest fees, because they are essentially spearheading and branding your charitable initiative. The importance of securing a WRITTEN contract cannot be overstated since this is essentially a partnership and all parties need to know their rights and responsibilities before the sponsored project is underway.
  2. Pre-Approved Grant Relationship Fiscal Sponsorship– The fiscal sponsor pre-approves another individual or entity as a grantee, agrees to establish a restricted fund to receive contributions for the purpose of supporting the grantee’s charitable project, and makes grants to the grantee from the restricted fund. In this form of sponsorship, three things are key: due diligence, a written agreement and follow up reporting; your legal counsel should be able to handle this for you. This is attractive if you want legal control over the sponsored project and ownership of the results of sponsored activities. It must be done correctly so there is not the appearance that your organization is trying to bypass the tax exemption process.
  3. Single Member LLC Fiscal Sponsorship (newest development)- An LLC is formed under state law with an existing Section 501(c)(3) exempt organization as its sole member and sponsor so that the LLC is fully owned by the tax exempt organization (much like the comprehensive fiscal sponsorship). A single member LLC with an exempt 501(c)(3) organization as its sole member will be treated as exempt itself and donors may deduct contributions made to the LLC directly according to applicable rules.There are still reporting and compliance requirements and rules with maintaining the LLC but they are far less than would be required to retain tax exempt status.

NOTE: In 2014, the IRS realized Form 1023-EZ which streamlined the application process for recognition of tax exempt organizations. It’s a 3 page electronic application and has reduced processing time significantly.

So as you see, if done CORRECTLY, fiscal sponsorship can be a great way for organizations to fulfill a charitable goal without requiring the formation a new non-profit entity and the ongoing compliance requirements. If done INCORRECTLY, the IRS could see view the relationship merely as a way for a non-exempt entity to get around the requirements for being a tax exempt entity. Therefore, as always, make sure you have great legal counsel that can show you the right way and the wrong way to set up one of these sponsorship models. Then go and do a lot of good in the world!

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