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Yosemite Conservancy

CharityWatch report issued
November 2021

Top-Rated Charity
CharityWatch Grade
Our independent grade based
on a number of factors.
Program Percentage
Amount spent on programs
relative to overhead.
Cost to Raise $100
Amount spent to raise
$100 of contributions.

Contact Information

Yosemite Conservancy
101 Montgomery Street
Suite 1700
San Francisco, CA 94104

Other Names

The Yosemite Fund
Yosemite Association
Yosemite Foundation

Tax Status


Stated Mission

Inspires people to support projects and programs that preserve Yosemite National Park and enrich the visitor experience.

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Data based on Fiscal Year Ended 12/31/2020

Program Percentage: 72%

The percentage of Yosemite Conservancy's cash budget it spends on programs relative to overhead (fundraising, management, and general expenses).


Calculated Total Expenses



Cost to Raise $100: $22

How many dollars Yosemite Conservancy spends on fundraising to raise each $100 of contributions.


Calculated Total Contributions


Joint Costs

Yosemite Conservancy's rating was adjusted for Joint Costs. If you are a donor who considers direct mail, telemarketing, and other Joint Cost solicitations to be true charitable programs, the below efficiency ratios, which were not adjusted for joint costs, may better reflect your goals.

Program % Cost to Raise $100
78% $15
Accounting rules allow charities to report some telemarketing, direct mail, and other solicitation costs as Program expenses. CharityWatch believes that most donors do not consider a charity's solicitation activities to be the Programs they are intending to support with their donations. We therefore adjust such expenses out of a charity's reported Program expense and add it to Fundraising expense prior to calculating its rating.

Government Funding

0% to 24%

Percentage of cash revenue
coming from government sources


Financial Documents

Entity Document Type Tax ID
Yosemite Foundation dba Yosemite Conservancy IRS Form 990 94-3058041
Yosemite Foundation dba Yosemite Conservancy Audited Consolidated Financial Statements multiple
Entity: Yosemite Foundation dba Yosemite Conservancy
Document Type: IRS Form 990
Tax ID: 94-3058041
Entity: Yosemite Foundation dba Yosemite Conservancy
Document Type: Audited Consolidated Financial Statements
Tax ID: multiple

Governance & Transparency

CharityWatch evaluates certain criteria related to a charity's Governance and Transparency. Donors may want to consider a charity's willingness to be open and transparent with CharityWatch to be a good litmus test for determining its commitment to public accountability.
This charity is Top-Rated
What does it mean to be Top-Rated?
Yosemite Conservancy
meets governance benchmarks.
Yosemite Conservancy
meets transparency benchmarks.
Provides Financial Information
Audit Accessibility
Governance: Policies
Reports regularly & consistently monitoring & enforcing compliance with a written Conflict of Interest Policy
Reports required, annual disclosure by officers, directors, and key staff of interests that could give rise to conflicts
Reports having a written Whistleblower Policy
Reports having a written Document Retention and Destruction Policy
Governance: Financials
Reports providing copy of tax form to all board members prior to filing it with IRS
Reports that financial statements were audited by an independent accountant
Governance: Board of Directors
Reports at least 5 voting board members
51% or more of voting board members reported as independent
Reports documenting minutes of board and board committee meetings
Privacy Policy
Privacy Policy

  Name Title Compensation
1 Frank Dean President/CEO $410,008
2 Gerald Edelbrock VP/COO $228,172
3 Kevin Gay CFO $197,142
Name: Frank Dean
Title: President/CEO
Compensation: $410,008
Name: Gerald Edelbrock
Title: VP/COO
Compensation: $228,172
Name: Kevin Gay
Title: CFO
Compensation: $197,142

CharityWatch Analysts perform an in-depth analysis of charities' audited financial statements and IRS tax filings, and often review other documents such as state filings, annual reports, and fundraising contracts during their evaluations. Below are select notes that CharityWatch believes may be of interest to donors.

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 2 re: Donated materials, supplies and services), the Conservancy received in-kind donated services in 2020 on which it placed a value of $383,939.

[Note: CharityWatch generally excludes the value of in-kind (non-cash) donations of goods and services from its calculations of Program % and Cost to Raise $100. More information on how grades are calculated and the treatment of in-kind donations can be found on the Our Process page.]

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 16, Concentrations of Credit Risk): "During the year ended December 31, 2020, one donor comprised 18% of total contributions..."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 18, Paycheck Protection Program):

"On April 23, 2020, the Conservancy received loan proceeds of $759,300 from a promissory note issued by City National Bank under the Paycheck Protection Program ('PPP'), which was established under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security ('CARES') Act and is administered by the U.S. Small Business Administration ('SBA'). Under the terms of the CARES Act, PPP loan recipients can apply for and be granted forgiveness for all or a portion of the loans granted under PPP. Such forgiveness is determined based on the use of the loan proceeds for payroll costs, rent and utility expenses, and the maintenance of workforce and compensation levels with certain limitations. The Conservancy believes it has met the PPP's eligibility criteria and has concluded that the PPP loan represents, in substance, a grant that is expected to be forgiven, and accordingly has accounted for the PPP loan as a conditional contribution. Proceeds received under the PPP loan are recognized as revenue when the Conservancy has incurred expenditures in compliance with the promissory note provisions and when the conditions have been substantially met. The Conservancy recognized conditional grant revenue totaling $759,300 during the year ended December 31, 2020 based on qualifying expenditures made under the PPP that are expected to be forgiven. On February 11, 2021, the Conservancy received notification that the full amount of the loan had been forgiven by the SBA (Note 22) [cited in a separate Analysts' Note, below]."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 20, Risks and Uncertainties):

"On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization characterized a novel strain of coronavirus ('COVID-19') as a pandemic. In addition, several states in the U.S., including California, where the Conservancy is headquartered, have declared a state of emergency. In response, the U.S. Government enacted the CARES Act, which includes significant provisions to provide relief and assistance to affected organizations (Note 18) [cited in a separate Analysts' Note, above].

"Potential impacts to the Conservancy's operations include disruptions or restrictions on the employees' ability to work and the fluctuation in investment balances due to the negative effect of this pandemic on financial markets. COVID-19 also affects the public's ability to visit Yosemite, thereby affecting retail store sales and related program service fees at the park. The Conservancy's donor base may also be affected in a variety of ways, potentially limiting the amount of contributions that might be received during this time. Any of the foregoing could harm the Conservancy's operations and the ways in which COVID-19 and similar public health crises could adversely impact the business cannot be anticipated. Although the Conservancy is continuing to monitor and assess the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on its operations, the ultimate impact of the COVID-19 outbreak or a similar epidemic is highly uncertain and subject to change."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 10, Grant Commitment and Aid to National Park Service):

"Every year, the Conservancy makes grants to the National Park Service to fund projects and programs within Yosemite which would not otherwise be completed without private funding. ... For the years ending December 31, 2020 and 2019, the total grants made were $8,791,890 and $7,613,831, respectively. These project commitments funded over 38 and 55 individual projects and programs in 2020 and 2019, respectively."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 6, Land Held by YF Real Estate Holdings LLC):

"During 2014, the Conservancy purchased a house in the amount of $243,752 in El Portal, California to be rented as housing to Conservancy employees. In 2020, an additional house was purchased in El Portal, California in the amount of $300,859, for the same purpose. The houses are rented at market value. ... The houses sit on National Park Service land that has been officially assigned to the Conservancy through the current cooperating agreement.

"During 2018, the Conservancy purchased land amounting to $1,751,256 in Yosemite West with the purpose of constructing housing for Yosemite employees in the future. In 2019, additional land was purchased, and improvements were made, amounting to $559,944. In 2020, additional improvements were made in the amount of $284,917."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note 22, Subsequent Events):

"Management has evaluated material subsequent events through May 11, 2021, the date the [audited] consolidated financial statements were available to be issued.

"On January 4, 2021, the Conservancy's Executive Committee approved $4,243,846 in new grants payable for 2021 park projects.

"On February 11, 2021, the Conservancy received notification that the full amount of borrowings under the PPP loan of $759,300 had been forgiven by the SBA (Note 18) [cited in a separate Analysts' Note, above]."

According to the Yosemite Conservancy 2020 tax filing, the Conservancy reports re: Compensation, Supplemental Information (IRS Form 990, Schedule J, Part III):

Regarding nonfixed payments to officers, directors, trustees, key employees and highest compensated employees (Schedule J, Part I, Line 7):

"The president received a non-fixed bonus of $25,000 which was included in his taxable wages."

[The reported total compensation in 2020 for Frank Dean, President & CEO, is $410,008 (IRS Form 990, Schedule J, Part II).]