Naming Opportunity Guidelines
The following guidelines for SUNY Cortland and the Cortland College Foundation are in accordance with SUNY’s Naming Opportunities on State University Campuses Policy.
This policy and procedure establish general guidelines for the permanent “naming of things” (i.e. assets, spaces, programs) in recognition of philanthropy for the benefit of the State University of New York College at Cortland (SUNY Cortland). This policy and procedure apply to the state-operated campus in Cortland, N.Y., as well as satellite venues at the William H. Parks Family Center for Environmental and Outdoor Education. This policy shall be applied to naming gifts received after April 1, 2020.
- The naming of a physical or non-physical asset is appropriate when a gift is received for the benefit of SUNY Cortland, directly or through the Cortland College Foundation (“the foundation”), and to honor the character, service or other positive merits of the donor or the donor’s honoree.
- A physical or non-physical asset may be named on behalf of an individual, group or legal entity.
- The naming of a physical or non-physical asset in recognition of a donor or a donor's honoree implies a promise to that donor that the asset will be maintained for the useful life of the asset or, if change of the asset prior to the end of its useful life is unavoidable, an alternative means of recognizing the donor or honoree will be found.
- All combinations of gifts, pledges and irrevocable deferred gift arrangements are acceptable forms of philanthropy to support naming commitments. With respect to deferred gifts, while the naming commitment may be immediate, the required amount may be set higher because of the delay in the foundation receiving the gift.
- All namings must be associated with a monetary gift. Minimum gift amounts for naming designated SUNY Cortland spaces are maintained and recorded by the Division of Institutional Advancement. Minimum gift amounts are displayed on the SUNY Cortland Naming Opportunities webpage and are subject to change.
- Buildings, campus grounds or other physical facilities will not be named for individuals currently employed by SUNY Cortland or the State of New York, unless a donor other than the honoree provides a sufficient gift as per the campus’s approved naming guidelines in honor of that individual.
- To endow the naming of a non-physical asset (e.g. scholarship, center, institute, program, academic unit), the amount of the gift should be sufficient to generate annual earnings that would be necessary to support the non-physical asset on a permanent basis.
- At least every five years, SUNY Cortland shall submit guidelines for campus naming opportunities to the SUNY chancellor for approval.
- All permanently named buildings, grounds and physical assets must be approved by the SUNY Cortland president and College Council. Non-physical assets must be approved by the executive director of the Cortland College Foundation.
- All naming opportunities that involve a gift of $1 million or more shall be approved by the SUNY chancellor and the State University of New York Board of Trustees, after initial approval by the SUNY Cortland president and College Council.
- All physical asset namings that involve a gift of less than $1 million shall be approved by the SUNY Cortland president and College Council and/or the foundation.
- Proposed naming opportunities that are inconsistent with SUNY Cortland’s naming opportunity guidelines shall be approved as follows:
- If the value of the related gift is $1 million or more, by the SUNY chancellor and the State University of New York Board of Trustees;
- If the value of the related gift is between $100,000 and $999,999, by the SUNY chancellor or designee;
- And if the value of the related gift is less than $100,000, by the SUNY Cortland president.
- Each naming opportunity should be reviewed carefully for compliance with applicable law, including law related to prohibited gifts and ethical principles, especially where there is some direct or indirect business or other continuing relationship between the donor and the State University of New York, its officers or employees. Questions concerning applicable law should be referred to the SUNY Office of General Counsel.
- All proposed names should be held in confidence during the review and approval process.
- SUNY Cortland shall maintain a record of all named physical assets and provide a copy of the record to the SUNY Office of General Counsel annually.
- Should a naming opportunity have been promised by SUNY Cortland sometime in the past for a future or planned gift, such a gift and naming opportunity might be considered “grandfathered” from these policies if the campus can prove the gift and naming opportunity was accepted and documented in good faith and that compliance with the donor’s intent does not otherwise breach SUNY policy.
- Once a naming commitment is confirmed for program space at the Lynne Parks ’68 SUNY Cortland Alumni House (“the house”), the funds shall be used exclusively by the house. A naming commitment is considered confirmed upon receipt of a fully executed gift agreement, signed by the donor and the Cortland College Foundation. Approval by the College Council is not required for namings at the house.
- Once a naming commitment in an academic program space, an athletic program space or at the William H. Parks Family Center for Environmental and Outdoor Education (the Parks Family Outdoor Center), is confirmed with a gift agreement, fully executed by the donor and the Cortland College Foundation and approved by the College Council, the funds shall be shared by the foundation, the academic or athletic or Parks Family Outdoor Center program that is utilizing the space at the time of the naming, and The Cortland Fund. Funds shall be distributed at the time of receipt as follows:
- 50% to the academic, athletic or Parks Family Outdoor Center program
- 40% to the Cortland College Foundation to support the board-designated strategic priorities of the institution
- 10% to The Cortland Fund
This sharing policy will not be applied to naming gifts for new facilities for athletic, academic or Parks Family Outdoor Center spaces, but 10% of gifts for new facility namings will be distributed to The Cortland Fund.