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Sunday, Jan 29, 2023

OC’s Largest Nonprofits Report 1.3% Revenue Drop

Wall Street Declines Hurt Local Portfolios

Stock market declines have taken a toll on many nonprofits in Orange County.

The 96 firms on the Business Journal’s annual list of nonprofits reported their combined revenue fell 1.3% to $2.2 billion for the year ended June 30. Last year, the combined revenue of the largest nonprofits rose 16%.

For example, Newport Beach’s Orange County Community Foundation fell from No. 1 last year to No. 4 as its revenue dropped in half to $99.8 million. A year ago, the OCCF had jumped to No. 1 by reporting a 64% increase.

“The decline in revenue between 2021 and 2022 reflects stock market performance during this period,” OCCF Chief Executive Shelley Hoss told the Business Journal.

“New contributions increased by 16% year-over-year ($116 million in 2022 compared to $100 million in 2021). While we are as subject to fluctuations in financial markets as [are] all investors, we’re proud that our investment approach has stood the test of time, with an annualized seven-year return of 8.2% as of June 30, 2022.”

Several nonprofits reported large declines a year after reporting huge increases.

The biggest drop percentage-wise was Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts, which fell 75% to $26.8 million, dropping its ranking from No. 3 last year to No. 23 on this year’s list. A year ago, the center reported a 115% increase to $109.1 million.

“The investment portfolio did very well in fiscal 2021, up $58.5 million. In fiscal 2022, we had a total investment loss of $44.8 million,” a Segerstrom spokeswoman told the Business Journal.

The center also received large estate gifts in fiscal 2021, officials said.

Several nonprofits have had yo-yo years where they soared one year only to fall the next. Anaheim’s Meals on Wheels Orange County, No. 31, was off 63% to $21.4 million; a year ago, it jumped 208%. Lake Forest’s Age Well Senior Services Inc. was off 73% to $6.9 million compared to a 150% jump a year ago; its ranking fell from No. 23 to No. 69.

96 Nonprofits

The Business Journal list ranks 96 nonprofits with headquarters or major operations in Orange County and revenue higher than $3 million. They are ranked by annual revenue.

This year’s list reflects cash contributions and in-kind goods and services such as volunteering.

About 63 nonprofits reported an increase in revenue while 27 had a drop. Another six didn’t make their latest revenue figures available.

While revenue dipped, they kept their expenses growing, up 7.3% to $1.8 billion, which is a faster pace than the 4.8% increase a year ago. The Segerstrom Center for the Arts reported the biggest increase in expenses, which soared 116% to $61.3 million.

The coronavirus had put a damper on volunteering, which had fallen in the two prior years. However, this year, the volunteer spirit rebounded 13.6% to 97,876. The number of people served jumped 15% to 13.7 million.

The number of paid staff accelerated 9.6% to 13,332, up from last year’s 1.4% growth.

The biggest increase was 114% to 62 at the Orange County Museum of Art, which opened the doors to its brand new $94 million museum in October.

The Orange County Rescue Mission also boosted employee count by 91% to 195.

The biggest leap in fundraising was the Irvine office of the Chicago-based Alzheimer’s Association, which rose 736% to $60 million; it climbed from No. 62 to No. 9.

Another significant increase was Providence St. Joseph Hospital Foundation, which reported a 332% boost in revenue to $62.9 million. It climbed from No. 36 a year ago to No. 8. The foundation in May received an anonymous $53 million gift, its second largest ever, from a donor who when alive had recovered from being in a coma.

“In addition to receiving an anonymous estate gift, we have seen steady growth in individual philanthropic support and special events,” Chief Philanthropy Officer Amy Daugherty told the Business Journal. Providence St. Joseph Hospital Foundation “has experienced a historic year.”

Other big climbers include South Coast Repertory, up 103% to $10.1 million, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Orange County and the Inland Empire, up 90% to $12.8 million.


The three largest nonprofits reported double-digit gains.

Climbing into the top spot was Goodwill of Orange County, where revenue increased 15% to $166.4 million.

No. 2 National Christian Foundation jumped 26% to $130.7 million. No. 3 Think Together rose 23% to $119.7 million.

Irvine’s Orange County United Way climbed 45% to $68.1 million, rising from No. 11 to No. 7 on the list. A year ago, revenue had doubled, up 146%.

The local operations of Planned Parenthood saw its employment grow 48% to 539 employees. Its revenue also climbed 9.5% to $96.5 million.

The Richard Nixon Foundation reported revenue climbed 21% to $9.7 million for the year ended Dec. 31 (see story, page 1).

“We can attribute the additional revenue to very favorable market conditions, a resumption of economic activity after the worst of COVID-19, and the generosity of our growing donor base considering the foundation’s operational strategy of producing marquee educational programs with wide, national appeal that commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Nixon presidency, such as the Nixon National Cancer Conference,” CEO Jim Byron told the Business Journal.

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Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan
Peter J. Brennan has been a journalist for 40 years. He spent a decade in Latin America covering wars, narcotic traffickers, earthquakes, and business. His resume includes 15 years at Bloomberg News where his headlines and articles sometimes moved the market caps of companies he covered by hundreds of millions of dollars. His articles have been published worldwide, including the New York Times and the Washington Post; he's appeared on CNN, CBC, BBC, and Bloomberg TV. He was awarded a Kiplinger Fellowship at The Ohio State University.

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