The Foreign Service Journal, April 2022

AFSA NEWS AFSA Treasurer’s 2021 Report THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | APRIL 2022 57 Despite the volatility we all experienced in 2021, largely due to the COVID-19 pan- demic, the American Foreign Service Association is in excellent financial health at year-end. AFSA’s financial reserves remain strong. The operating reserve fund stood at $4.4 million at year-end, compared to $4.2 million at the end of 2020, providing a cushion of approximately nine months’ operating expenses—three months longer than the stan- dard for nonprofits. That level represents approximately 79 percent of AFSA’s operating budget for 2022 and is a solid indicator of the association’s sustain- ability. Salaries were below projections, and we had lower expenditures from curtailed operations due to the pan- demic. Investment gains were robust. The ongoing financial support of our membership base and other contributors allowed us to advocate and to reach out to Congress and foreign affairs agencies on behalf of members and their interests. As we move out of the pandemic, there are signifi- cant opportunities to press for reforms long overdue. The AFSA team pledges to capi- talize on those on your behalf. Budget Operations AFSA’s $5.8 million planned operating budget for calendar year 2022 is funded primarily frommembership dues. AFSA’s membership base stood at approximately 16,750 as of year-end 2021. That number represents more than 80 percent of active-duty employees across the foreign affairs agencies, plus approximately 25 per- cent of Foreign Service retir- ees. Dues increased by 5.49 percent for 2022 to match the consumer price index levels, as per our bylaws. AFSA operations contin- ued throughout the pan- demic, but with significant workarounds and modifica- tions. Reaching new Foreign Service members was a particular challenge, but sus- tained and extensive efforts to establish new member- ships ultimately paid off. AFSA has greatly strength- ened its public advocacy and outreach over the past several years to highlight the contributions the career Foreign Service makes to U.S. national security, an impor- tant element in garnering support for your work. In spite of the pandemic, FSJ and web advertising revenue climbed significantly during the past year to more than $550,000 and is the second-highest funding source for AFSA’s operating budget after membership dues. AFSA’s Political Action Committee continued to advocate with Congress on a bipartisan basis for a sus- tained professional Foreign Service, as well as on issues of importance to members during the upcoming election cycle. The Legal Defense Fund received $143,000 in dona- tions by year-end 2020 fol- lowing 2019’s approximately $600,000 in contributions. Unexpended funds of $342,000 remain in reserve. Fund Operations In 2021, AFSAmain- tained long-term investment discipline and kept suf- ficient liquidity to meet any unexpected cash flow needs related to the pandemic. AFSA’s investment portfolios performed very well, appre- ciating 8.5 percent net of all investment-related expenses. In the fourth quarter this year, we shifted a substantial amount of these funds from equity to bonds on the rec- ommendation of our invest- ment advisers. For 2021, the combined portfolio ended the year at $18 million in comparison to 2020’s $17 million. Investment The 2021-2022 Governing Board at AFSA headquarters on Dec. 8, 2021. Front row (from left): Jay Carreiro, John O’Keefe, Eric Rubin, TomYazdgerdi, Kimberly Harrington, Camille Dockery and Christy Machak. Back row (from left): Steven Herman, Philip Shull, John Naland, Joshua Archibald, Jason Singer and Daniel Crocker. Not pictured: Lisa Ahramjian, Maria Hart, Tina Wong and Mary Daly. JOAQUINSOSA Continued on page 58