Founded in 1885 by Leland and Jane Lathrop Stanford, the University was established to train and educate individuals for “personal success and direct usefulness in life." To that end, the purpose of the endowment is to support the University’s educational and research mission now and in the future.
As endowment fiduciaries, Stanford Trustees, are charged with overseeing the health and growth of the endowment to meet that educational mission.
The Trustees’ primary endowment-related responsibility is to ensure that the investment and management of endowment securities maximizes the financial return on those resources while taking into account the amount of risk appropriate for University investment policy.
However, when the Trustees determine that the corporate policies or practices of a company Stanford may invest in could cause substantial social injury they, as responsible and ethical investors, shall give independent weight to this factor in determining Investment Responsibility Policies and Proxy Voting Guidelines for corporate securities.
Investment Responsibility addresses allegations of substantial social injury by companies in which the University may invest.