Guardianship and Trusts Corporation
95 White Bridge Road
Suite 330
Nashville TN 37205-1484

Mission Statement
Guardianship & Trusts Corporation of Tennessee (GTC) serves clients who, by reason of developmental disability, mental illness or other impairment of intellect, are unable to make informed and rational decisions about financial, medical and/or other matters. GTC empowers our clients to live in the least restrictive environment possible by providing financial management and other personal services as authorized by the courts and fiduciary documents for persons who may be facing declining physical and mental health and limitations such as poor living conditions, dwindling finances and social isolation.
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Dora Mitchell
Board Chair Ms. Carrie Hobbs Guiden
Board Chair Company Affiliation The Arc of Tennessee
History & Background
Year of Incorporation 1983
Organization's type of tax exempt status 501-C3
Financial Summary
 
 
Projected Expenses $340,250.00
Projected Annual Revenue $345,000.00 (2017)
Statements
Mission Guardianship & Trusts Corporation of Tennessee (GTC) serves clients who, by reason of developmental disability, mental illness or other impairment of intellect, are unable to make informed and rational decisions about financial, medical and/or other matters. GTC empowers our clients to live in the least restrictive environment possible by providing financial management and other personal services as authorized by the courts and fiduciary documents for persons who may be facing declining physical and mental health and limitations such as poor living conditions, dwindling finances and social isolation.
Background

Guardianship and Trusts Corp. provides court-ordered conservator services for individuals with disabilities in Davidson County or in one of eight nearby counties in middle Tennessee. After a hearing in which the court finds that a person lacks the capacity for decision-making and self-care due to disabilities of age or other vulnerabilities, the court appoints GTC to serve as guardian of the person, conservator of the person’s property, or both. GTC’s role is to assess and coordinate living arrangements, health care, insurance, finances, and legal representation if necessary. The goal is to assist the client in managing his or her affairs in the way that he or she would if able, maintaining the person in the least restrictive setting while maximizing the person’s financial resources.

Begun as a project of The Arc Tennessee in 1979, GTC was separately incorporated in 1980. GTC holds a Certificate of Banking Authority granted in 1983 by the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions, which conducts regular audits of clients' accounts. We are the only non-profit trust company in the state and the only non-profit conservator in middle Tennessee serving indigent clients at no cost. Over the past three decades GTC has served as conservator for many abused, neglected and exploited individuals whose conditions were brought to the court’s attention by Tennessee Adult Protective Services. The court approves payment of fees for our services. Self-paying clients make up the bulk of our revenue stream, and GTC solicits charitable donations to pay for the services rendered to indigent clients. At the beginning of fiscal year 2016-2017, just over one-fourth of our conservatorships are for indigent clients.
 
Impact

Accomplishments for 2015-2016 fiscal year:

GTC became the court-appointed conservator for six individuals in 2015. Adult Protective Services (APS) had identified three of them as requiring an emergency conservator appointment due to abuse, exploitation or neglect. These individuals all required immediate and intensive intervention, and all three have improved significantly since coming under our care:

Stabilized B.C., a 78 year-old man with diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and dementia, had been hospitalized for falls several times when APS stepped in to learn that two of B.C.’s siblings made him sign a quitclaim deed giving them his home. They moved in, sold his furnishings and placed him in a travel trailer.  With GTC as conservator, the warranty deed was voided and the house sold. Now B.C. is stabilized in a nursing home where his blood sugar is monitored and he does not have problems falling.

A.S. is a 99 year-old woman with dementia whose finances were being handled by a longtime friend. When APS got a tip that the friend was misusing the funds, an investigation revealed thousands of dollars’ worth of questionable expenditures in addition to a generous salary the friend paid herself. With A.S. under GTC conservatorship, we identified the improper expenditures and are pursuing recovery of the funds. The “friend” is now in the process of selling her house in order to repay the misappropriated funds, and meanwhile A.S. has improved her nutritional intake.

APS called for an emergency hearing and asked us to serve 54 year-old M.M., who was about to be released from psychiatric hospitalization.  Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, M.M. had been living in an isolated, rustic cabin in rural Stewart County, with her finances managed by a family friend in Nashville who never saw her. Concerned neighbors reported that M.M. could be found walking naked around the area, looking for scraps in unattended dog food bowls. Now M.M. lives in a group residence for women where she receives her medications regularly, eats consistently, and has opportunities for social interaction. When the sale of her property is final, M.M. will move to an adult residential facility with multiple levels of care located closer to her home county so that her neighbors can continue to visit with her.

Administrative accomplishments in 2015 include launching a website (www.gtctn.org). This site is important for our planned promotion of a relatively new service, the pooled trust account, intended to boost the revenue stream needed to allow us to serve indigent clients who do not have the funds to pay for our services.

Goals for 2016-2017 FY:

1) Continue to accept Adult Protective Services emergency requests for conservator services

2) Raise all staff to the level of Certified National Guardian

3) Update the accounting software used to track client accounts

4) Increase participation in our new Pooled Trust 

Needs
GTC's most pressing needs are:
  1. Restricted funds to pay court-ordered fees for indigent clients - $3,000 for the first year of conservatorship for an indigent ward, and $2,000 annually thereafter. We raise funds to meet the budget of $25,000-30,000 per year for indigent wards.
  2. Staff training/certification and continuing education - $1,000 per staff member up to $5,000 total.
  3. Computer server replacement $3,500 with installation support.
  4. Website development (in-kind request).
Other ways to donate, support, or volunteer Donations also accepted by check. Volunteer opportunities are limited due to the sensitive nature of the organization's services. Please contact GTC and we will be happy to work with you to find the best way for you to become involved in the important work of protecting and nurturing one of our community's most vulnerable populations.
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Mental Health & Crisis Intervention / Support NEC
Secondary Organization Category Human Services / Senior Centers/Services
Tertiary Organization Category Public & Societal Benefit /
Areas of Service
Areas Served
TN - Davidson
TN - Dickson
TN - Montgomery
TN - Robertson
TN - Rutherford
TN - Sumner
TN - Williamson
TN - Wilson
For guardianships and conservatorships, GTC serves Davidson County and contiguous counties. As trustee, GTC serves beneficiaries throughout the state.
Board Chair Statement

The Executive, Clinical Issues, Trusts, Personnel, & Development Committees work to give our staff resources and tools that enable them to provide the critical services our clients need, while helping raise the funds necessary to continue serving the community. GTC has grown each year due to the staff’s increasing productivity, aggressive solicitation of new sources of funding, and growing caseloads. Our revenue stream includes trust management fees and court-approved conservatorship fees collected from self-paying clients. GTC supports services to indigent client by soliciting funds from multiple sources including private gifts, corporate donations, foundation grants, the United Way, and other giving campaigns. GTC revenues have consistently increased over the years. The talents of our diverse staff and the contributions of our volunteer board yield a competitive advantage for continued financial stability in the future. GTC’s guardian/conservator program provides a safety net for those in our community who may have very limited resources but require significant service and care. GTC manages individual and pooled trusts to benefit individuals with special needs. The Supplemental Needs Trusts program protects investments while also retaining benefits. GTC has excelled in providing these services through active participation of the volunteer board and the ever-increasing skills and expertise of our staff. With continued education, cross-training, and on-the-job experience, GTC staff members provide top-notch service for the financial, medical, social, and legal needs of our clients.

CEO Statement GTC is a unique organization. For more than 35 years, the agency has operated as the only non-profit trust company in the state, and one of few in the country. In its daily operations, GTC provides financial and personal fiduciary services as attorney in fact, guardian, conservator, and trustee to persons with mental and physical disabilities of all ages. Professional staff members come from various backgrounds, and four are Registered Guardians with the National Guardianship Foundation. Board members, which include physicians, nurses, social workers, attorneys, trust officers, brokers, bankers and community volunteers take an active role, working with staff to provide dependable and cost-efficient services of extremely high quality.
Programs
Description

Adult Protective Services regularly looks to GTC to serve as guardian and conservator for wards of the court who have been abused, neglected or exploited and have nowhere else to turn.The person becomes a ward of the court after a hearing in which the court determines that the person lacks the capacity for decision-making and self-care. This person may have experienced medical or physical trauma, abuse, or neglect; may have no family members; and may have been financially victimized as well. 

We provide assistance with living and daytime care arrangements, review and consent for medical treatment, financial management, benefits processing, legal representation, and other matters essential to the best outcome for each client. Our goal is to maximize financial resources to enable the client to live safely in the least restrictive environment possible.
 
Budget 35000
Category Human Services, General/Other Case Management
Population Served Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent, Elderly and/or Disabled,
Short Term Success

Upon appointment as conservator, GTC has several immediate goals: Stabilize the person's environment and eliminate unnecessary challenges raised by malnutrition, lack of care, lack of social stimulation, lack of medication management and/or lack of fiduciary oversight. Improve the person's health and psychological well-being through coordination of appropriate medical, social and financial decisions. Increase the person's longevity and quality of life as stressors decline following implementation of an appropriate care plan. Conserve the person's financial resources through maximization of public benefits, close budgetary oversight and up-to-date understanding of Social Security, Disability, Medicare, Medicaid and other relevant issues in elder care.


pasting
Long term Success
Guardianship and Trusts Corp. seeks to help the courts and Adult Protective Services to ensure that every individual in middle Tennessee whom the court has determined to require conservator services will receive those services, regardless of their ability to pay.
Program Success Monitored By

Conservatorship services promote safety, improved health, and ultimately improved longevity, as many unnecessary stressors are eliminated and care is managed properly. Signs of this improvement include improved nutritional intake and corresponding weight gain or loss, and measurable improvement on the Mini Mental State Examination.

Conservatorship services also maximize financial resources, ensuring that benefits and insurance are in place and that bills are paid on time, and that arrangements are in place for any emergency or eventuality. For clients who have been financially exploited, we pursue recovery of all misappropriated funds.


Examples of Program Success

B.C., a 78 year-old man with diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and dementia, signed a quitclaim deed giving his home away to his siblings. They moved in, sold his furnishings and placed him in a travel trailer. GTC had the warranty deed voided and sold the house. Now B.C. is stabilized in a nursing home where his blood sugar is monitored and he does not have problems falling.

A.S. is a 99 year-old woman with dementia who lost more than $70,000 after giving power of attorney to a longtime friend. GTC identified the improper expenditures and is recovering the funds with the court’s oversight. A.S. has meanwhile improved her nutritional intake.

Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, 54 year-old M.M. was living in an isolated, rustic cabin in a rural county, her finances managed by a family friend in Nashville who never saw her. Concerned neighbors repeatedly found M.M. walking naked around the area, looking for scraps in unattended dog food bowls. Now M.M. lives in a group residence for women where she receives her medications regularly, eats consistently, and has opportunities for social interaction.

Description

We serve as fiduciary over trusts set up for the benefit of persons with mental and/or physical disabilities. These can be Trusts Under Will or Living Trusts, most of which are Special or Supplemental Needs Trusts. We also offer a Pooled Trust, which have lower costs than separately managed trusts but offer the same benefits, while combining funds for investments to benefit all trust participants. Proper management of the trust ensures that the beneficiary does not lose access to any applicable means-tested government benefits like SSI or state Medicaid. GTC has more than thirty years' experience administering trusts under these complicated benefits programs.

Budget 55000
Category Human Services, General/Other Services for Specific Populations
Population Served Elderly and/or Disabled, ,
Short Term Success
Long term Success
Program Success Monitored By
Examples of Program Success
CEO Comments  

GTC’s operations are closely supervised by an involved Board of Directors who meet formally and informally and regularly consult with staff between meetings. In most instances, GTC serves as guardian and fiduciary by court appointment and is subject to regular reporting and oversight requirements of the courts. As a trust company with a Certificate of Authority from the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions, GTC is also subject to the regulatory oversight of the Department. GTC must also report regularly on its handling of client funds to agencies such as the Veterans Administration and the Social Security Administration. GTC is the only non-profit organization in middle Tennessee offering free services to indigent clients.

Where most trust management services are for-profit and can afford to turn down all but the wealthiest clients, GTC has instituted a "Self-Settled Pooled Trust" to hold funds for Supplemental Needs for qualifying individuals with as little as $2,500 to invest. By pooling the funds for investment, GTC enables the clients to receive professional investment management services at a fraction of their usual cost-- meanwhile ensuring through careful disbursement procedures that the client does not lose access to means-tested benefits.

Despite a proven record of success, GTC lacks the resources to market its services to clients who can afford to pay the professional fees that keep GTC operating to serve indigent and paying clients alike. We are taking a first step towards marketing by creating a website in-house and using a no-frills hosting service provider. We hope to expand our web presence over the next year. At the same time, our accounting software is not designed for shared investment accounts, and the spreadsheet system we are currently using will not be tenable if we are able to attract significantly more investors to the pooled fund, as we hope to do.

Board Chair
Board Chair Ms. Carrie Hobbs Guiden
Company Affiliation The Arc of Tennessee
Term Sept 2011 to June 2018
Email cguiden@thearctn.org
Board Members
NameAffiliationStatus
Mr. Chip Blanks Gant Systems, LLCVoting
Ms. Brooks Campany Argent TrustVoting
Mr. Pat Clarke Hilliard LyonsVoting
Dr. John Gibson Nashville Medical GroupVoting
Mr. Richard W. Heiden RetiredVoting
Mr. Charlie Herrell Department of Labor & Workforce DevelopmentVoting
Ms. Carrie Hobbs Guiden The Arc of TennesseeVoting
Mr. William Keith Kesling Equitable Trust CompanyVoting
Ms. Jennifer Kim Vanderbilt University, School of NursingVoting
Mr. John T. Lewis RetiredVoting
Ms. Dora Mitchell Guardianship and Trusts CorporationVoting
Mr. Robert Newman Pinnacle FinancialVoting
Mr. Howard Safer Argent TrustVoting
Mr. Trey Tally Pinnacle National BankVoting
Ms. Angela Webster Disability Rights TNVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 14
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 8
Female 7
Unspecified 0
Governance
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 0%
Does the organization have written Board Selection Criteria? No
Does the organization have a written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage of Board Members making Monetary Contributions 53%
Percentage of Board Members making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Does the Board include Client Representation? No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 4
Standing Committees
Executive
Investment
Program / Program Planning
Risk Management Provisions
Accident & Injury Coverage
Automobile Insurance
Commercial General Liability
Computer Equipment & Software
Directors & Officers Policy
Employee Benefits Liability
Employment Practices Liability
General Property Coverage
Medical Health Insurance
Professional Liability
Property in Transit & Off Premises
Umbrella or Excess Insurance
Workers Compensation & Employers' Liability
CEO Comments

GTC’s operations are closely supervised by an involved Board of Directors who meet formally and informally and regularly consult with staff between meetings. In most instances, GTC serves as fiduciary by court appointment and is subject to regular reporting and oversight requirements of the courts. As a trust company, GTC holds a Certificate of Banking Authority from the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions, which conducts regular audits as part of its regulatory oversight. GTC must also report regularly on its handling of client funds to agencies such as the Veterans Administration and the Social Security Administration. Beyond fiduciary oversight and responsibility, GTC seeks to cultivate board members with experience in fundraising--particularly in major individual gifts as well as foundation grants--to provide the leadership needed to bring existing donors to new levels of giving while overseeing efforts to increase the donor base.

Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Ms. Dora Mitchell
Term Start Oct 2008
Email doramitchell@gtctn.org
Experience

Ms. Mitchell has been with GTC since 1998, previously serving as Associate Executive Director and Director of Social Service until she became Executive Director in 2008. Prior to joining GTC, she was employed by the Mental Health Cooperative of Nashville. Ms. Mitchell earned her Master of Science degree in Public Service Management at Cumberland University. Prior to that, she earned the Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work from Middle Tennessee State University.  Ms. Mitchell has been a National Certified Guardian with the Center for Guardianship Certification since 1999.

Co-CEO
Experience
Former CEOs
NameTerm
Mr. Harlen Cragon Dec 1989 - Aug 1996
Ms. Paula Reed July 1998 - Nov 2009
Staff
Full Time Staff 4
Part Time Staff 2
Volunteers 13
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 75%
Plans & Policies
Does the organization have a documented Fundraising Plan? No
Does the organization have an approved Strategic Plan? Yes
Number of years Strategic Plan Considers 3
When was Strategic Plan adopted? Aug 2015
In case of a change in leadership, is a Management Succession plan in place? No
Does the organization have a Policies and Procedures Plan? Yes
Does the organization have a Nondiscrimination Policy? Yes
Affiliations
AffiliationYear
National Guardianship Association1996
External Assessments and Accreditations
External Assessments and Accreditations
Assessment/AccreditationYear
Certificate of Banking Authority - State of Tennessee1983
Awards
Award/RecognitionOrganizationYear
Heroes in the FightThe Mental Health Association of Tennessee2008
Senior Staff
Title Chief Operations Officer
Experience/Biography B.A., Newcomb College, Tulane University; J.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Mrs. Reed practiced law as a staff attorney for Vanderbilt University and later in private practice in the fields of wills, trusts, taxation and general litigation. She served on the Board of Directors of GTC from 1990 – 1998, holding various board offices, until she became Executive Director of the agency in 1998.  Mrs. Reed now serves as Chief Operations Officer. She has been certified as a National Registered Guardian with the Center for Guardianship Certification since 1999.  She has served on various non profit boards, including the Arc of Davidson County, of which she was President of the Board, and the Arc of Tennessee. She has also been an active volunteer with the Junior League of Nashville and her children’s schools. Mrs. Reed is a member of the Nashville Bar Association.
CEO Comments

GTC’s operations are closely supervised by an involved Board of Directors who meet formally and informally and regularly consult with staff between meetings. In most instances, GTC serves as fiduciary by court appointment and is subject to regular reporting and oversight requirements of the courts. As a trust company with its Certificate of Authority from the Tennessee Department of Financial Institutions, GTC is subject to the regulatory oversight of the Department. GTC must also report regularly on its handling of client funds to federal agencies such as the Veterans Administration and the Social Security Administration. Despite a proven record of success, GTC lacks the human and financial resources to market its services to clients who can afford to pay the professional fees that keep GTC operating to serve indigent and paying clients alike.

GTC seeks to increase revenues by offering a key service: management of funds below the threshold of desirability for banks and other trust service entities. Where most trust management services are for-profit and can afford to turn down all but the wealthiest clients, GTC offers a "Self-Settled Pooled Trust" service for qualifying individuals whose funds may not be significant enough to be accepted by such trustees. By pooling these funds, GTC enables clients with more limited resources to receive professional trust management services at a fraction of the usual cost for such services. The Pooled Trust provides a great opportunity to bring in new clients, but we are challenged to develop this program so that it can add to the revenue stream and thereby enable GTC to accept additional indigent wards of the court. There has been little in the way of marketing for this service, and since GTC lacks the personnel and funds to develop a website—let alone funds to place advertisements and personnel to present the concept to target audiences—the opportunity to join the pooled trust remains unknown to most of the target market population.

 
 
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2016
Fiscal Year End June 30 2017
Projected Revenue $345,000.00
Projected Expenses $340,250.00
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Endowment Spending Percentage (if selected) 0%
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$291,436$279,439$263,292
Administration Expense$59,657$58,604$60,113
Fundraising Expense$0$0$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.050.871.13
Program Expense/Total Expenses83%83%81%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$72,040$65,339$111,568
Current Assets$55,550$48,261$97,293
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$13,126$23,838$26,585
Total Net Assets$58,914$41,501$84,983
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities4.232.023.66
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountProgram Revenue $278,955Program Revenue $231,537Program Service Revenue $306,906
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountFoundations and Corporations $75,510Foundations and Corporations $37,335Individual Contributions $46,865
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, Gifts & Grants $14,041Contributions, Gifts, and Grants $25,690Foundation and Corporate Contributions $12,500
Capital Campaign
Is the organization currently conducting a Capital Campaign for an endowment or the purchase of a major asset? No
Capital Campaign Goal $0.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
TN Charitable Solicitations Registration Yes - Expires Dec 2016
Solicitations Permit
GTC 2016 Solicitation Permit
Organization Comments

GTC receives income from diverse sources including individual donations, foundation and corporate grants, and the United Way campaign. Fees for conservatorship services, most of which are subject to court approval, account for the majority of revenues; trust fees are the other source of service-generated revenue. Due to extensive reporting and oversight requirements, as well as the necessity of frequent court appearances, the services we provide unavoidably involve administrative costs. Nevertheless, fees charged to those who can afford them remain modest by community standards. The flexibility afforded by a small staff and active volunteer board have thus far allowed GTC to maintain a small reserve. Yearly financial results shown on the audit and 990 are calculated according to the accrual, rather than the cash accounting method. Work performed for fee-paying clients but not collected--or in many cases, not even billed--at the close of the fiscal year are calculated in accrual income for the year as receivables. In some cases, payment on a receivable is not expected for some months or even years. Profit or loss in any given year is in large part a function of the increase or decrease in receivables; consequently, results shown on the audit and 990 do not give an accurate picture of actual cash profits and losses for that year. The GTC Board relies almost entirely on the cash accounting method in making and tracking its budget because it accurately reflects actual results. Operating budget figures shown are calculated according to the cash method and do not necessarily reflect activity in reserve and grant accounts.

 

GivingMatters.com Financial Comments
Financial figures taken from 990.
Financials completed by CPA Consulting Group, PLLC.
Comments provided by Kathryn Bennett 2/25/16.
Nonprofit Guardianship and Trusts Corporation
Address 95 White Bridge Road
Suite 330
Nashville, TN 372051484
Primary Phone (615) 259-3610
Contact Email gtc@gtctn.org
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Dora Mitchell
Board Chair Ms. Carrie Hobbs Guiden
Board Chair Company Affiliation The Arc of Tennessee
Year of Incorporation 1983

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