If you’ve read STEM’s history, you already know that accountability and integrity were two of the deeply-imbedded organizational values built into the very founding core of STEM. So how does an organization like STEM not merely give lip service to accountability, but actually be accountable? We do so by:
- Reporting regularly to, and submitting to, an active governing Board of Directors
- Voluntarily and publicly disclosing our financial statements above and beyond what the Government requires
- Voluntarily joining and abiding by the rules and guidelines of 4 public “watchdog” agencies
Board of Directors
STEM practices on-going accountability by allowing ourselves to to governed by a Board of Directors, the majority of whom are external outside Members, and not internal inside STEM Staff Members. On a quarterly basis, the STEM Board reviews and approves organizational finances, annually sets and approves our CEO’s salary, and sets the major organizational policies that govern what STEM does as well as what STEM cannot do.
Voluntary Financial Disclosures
The two public disclosures of STEM finances are the annual STEM I.R.S. Form 990 Return we file with the Federal Government by May 15 each year (go to GuideStar.org to view or download a PDF copy of our most recent STEM I.R.S. Form 990), and the Minnesota Attorney General’s Charitable Organization Annual Report (available by writing or emailing STEM’s accounting department) we file by July 15 each year.
Voluntary “Watchdog” Memberships
STEM recognizes the value that “watchdog” agencies provide to the public. STEM has voluntarily secured memberships-in-good-standing with 4 nationally-recognized groups. We comply with all the requirements, limits, and guidelines these organizations impose on us, for the benefit of the Christian public at-large. These “watchdog” groups either specialize in Christian ministry finances (ECFA, EFMA), or aspects of worldwide Christian mission (EFMA, SOE), or aspects of Christian media and publications (EPA).
ECFA (Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability)
fund raising, financial reporting, auditing, and other financially-related aspects
MISSIO NEXUS (formerly the "EFMA” — Evangelical Fellowship of Mission Agencies, and formerly “The Mission Exchange”)
financial reporting, auditing, mission reporting, networking with other mission groups
EPA (Evangelical Press Association)
Commissioned (1993); Mission Maker Magazine (2004) ethics/truthfulness/fairness/independence in: reporting, writing, design, photography, paid advertising
SOE (U.S. Standards of Excellence in Short-Term Mission)
7 nationwide standards for U.S.-sent short-term missionaries