Established in the late 1980s in the name of Ayatollah Abol-Qassem al-Khoi (d. 1992), marja al-taqlid (authority to be followed) for the majority of Shii Muslims worldwide and superintendent of their religious assets, to provide Islamic education through religious centers and institutions, engage in humanitarian activities, and supervise religious endowments and assets throughout the world. The foundation was set up in New York so that his governance over these assets would be recognized by Western law. Its two major administrative branches are in New York and London. Upon his death, the assets became treated as pious endowments (waqfs) to be supervised by appointed trustees in various countries. The foundation today is managed by businessmen who have registered it as a nonprofit corporation that solicits, raises, accepts, holds, administers, invests, and reinvests funds and other property. Its objective is the representation of Shii interests worldwide, but all goals are defined and executed by the board. Ceremonial patrons since al-Khoi's death have tended to be successors to the position of marja al-taqlid.