This morning I transferred my remaining 675 shares of ExxonMobil stock into a “Donor Advised Fund” (DAF)at RSF Social Finance. A DAF is basically like a mini-family foundation that is held within a larger foundation. Contributing to this fund, which I have named “The Seahorse Fund” after my Dad, allows me a tax-deduction for the initial gift. They will sell the XOM shares immediately and I have the monies to give away to non-profits of my choice, as I please over time. I feel really good about this way of divestment and am delighted to be honoring my Dad in this way.
The story behind the seahorse goes something like this: I was on a vision fast out on Santa Cruz Island off the coast of Ventura and woke up on the last morning to see a perfect seahorse-shaped cloud right above my head. I knew it had significance, so I sketched it quickly in my journal and went back to base camp to break the fast. The park ranger was there waiting for me with news that my father was dying. He died later that day. When I returned home to look up the meaning of the seahorse, I found that ancient mariners said it was the seahorse who escorted souls to the afterlife! (my Dad did spend lots of time on a ship during WW2) So it is a symbol of my Dad who I honor and give thanks for providing me with so much (including the XOM stock. yuck!).
The Seahorse Fund