GuideStone Funds honored with premier financial award

Baptist Press
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Posted: Mar 13, 2012 5:52 PM
GuideStone Funds honored with premier financial award
DALLAS (BP) -- GuideStone Funds has won one of the most prestigious awards in the financial world for mutual fund families with up to $40 billion in assets -- the 2012 Lipper Award for Best Overall Small Fund Group in the U.S.

As the first Christian-based socially screened fund family to win the premier Lipper honor, GuideStone was ranked No. 1 among 182 eligible companies for its consistently strong risk-adjusted investment performance across broad asset classes.

GuideStone President O.S. Hawkins, chief operating officer John Jones and chief investment officer Roddy Cummins, along with Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Executive Committee, were in New York City Thursday night, March 8, to receive the Lipper trophy at a dinner sponsored by The Wall Street Journal, Thomson Reuters and Investment News.

Hawkins said the Lipper Award for Best Overall Small Fund Group "recognizes a standard of excellence that we pursue every day as we seek to honor the Lord and enable our faithful participants to invest according to their biblical principles."

Page said it was "an incredible night, not just for GuideStone, but for the entire Southern Baptist Convention and other evangelicals who are seeking biblical integrity not only with their lives and families but also with their finances."

"On Thursday night, the financial world publicly acknowledged that people can successfully invest their money in a God-honoring way," Page said.

At a celebration event in Dallas Monday morning, March 12, Cummins first thanked the Lord for His favor and then recognized the daily collaborative efforts of GuideStone's 450 employees as well as the team of outside sub-advisers to the fund group.

"People often think that they have to compromise biblical integrity for investment performance," said Cummins, who has overseen the growth of the GuideStone Funds family from 13 funds at its inception in 2001 to 27 funds today. "We are dispelling that myth, which is evidenced by the Lipper Award for Best Overall Small Fund Group that now resides at GuideStone headquarters in Dallas, Texas."

GuideStone Funds has achieved its leading level of excellence through its sophisticated proprietary manager-of-managers investment platform that leverages what GuideStone believes to be the best possible intellectual capital worldwide. The 27 funds in the GuideStone Fund group are managed by more than 20 professionals dedicated to its investment process and committed to GuideStone's biblically based, social screening guidelines.

"The Lipper Award is a very meaningful accomplishment professionally for our team," Cummins said, "but most importantly it brings honor to the Lord and reflects favorably on our client base that is faithfully fulfilling their call to Christian ministry or raising their family on biblical values. It's a joy to receive this award on behalf of the pastors, church workers, missionaries and others who are invested in GuideStone Funds. While they are out there living their lives and doing their work for God's Kingdom, we strive to enhance their financial security by delivering the highest quality investment program that reflects their biblical values. They deserve the best and we are thrilled for them in receiving the Lipper trophy."

GuideStone Funds are available to Southern Baptist and evangelical Christian churches and ministry organizations that GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention is authorized to serve. In addition, the dunds are sold to individuals associated with those organizations that are eligible to utilize products and services made available by GuideStone Financial Resources. For more information, visit www.GuideStone.org.

Lipper, a Thomson Reuters company, is one of the financial world's leading fund research and analysis organizations, covering more than 122,000 funds, with 231,000-plus share classes, in 61 registered for sale (RFS) universes. Lipper, in providing independent insight on global collective investments, analyzes mutual funds, retirement funds, hedge funds, fund fees and expenses to the asset management and media communities. Additional information is available at www.lipperweb.com.

Criteria for consideration for the Best Overall-Small Fund Group Award include:

-- Funds are registered for sale in the respective country as of the end of the calendar year of the respective evaluation year.

-- At least 36 months of performance history as of the end of the calendar year of the respective evaluation year.

-- Small fund groups with at least three equity funds, three bond funds and three mixed-asset funds.

Tim Head is executive officer for denominational and public relations services at GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.

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