What Can I Do?

Committee on Development Meeting

June 2, 2009
Planned Giving and Development are all about the people who complete contributions. Members of the Hamilton family continue to astound us with their extraordinary generosity, even in these difficult times. They wish to support the College, especially now. Beyond the Annual Fund, donors are making wonderful gifts — understanding that additional contributions are the best way to rebuild the endowment and their planned gifts.
At present, donors find a number of contributions attractive:
  • Fixed payment Charitable Gift Annuities,
  • Real estate contributions, outright and in trust,
  • Asset transfer strategies, including charitable lead trusts,
  • Contributions of appreciated bonds and bond mutual fund shares,
  • Outright contributions of IRA assets for donors at least 70 ½ years of age,
  • Making a contribution to offset the tax due from an unusual event,
  • Naming Hamilton the beneficiary of one's Will or retirement plan.
We continue to focus on our “service orientation,” by mentioning planning options to benefit alumni and their families:
  • The importance of having a Will to protect your family and assets … and including Hamilton,
  • Converting traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs,
  • The powerful benefits of Roth IRAs for children and grandchildren,
  • Using opportunities provided by the financial markets to transfer assets to family members,
  • Providing superior stewardship to planned gift donors.

Plans for the next quarter include:

  • Draft a “Will Survey” for all alumni,
  • Prepare planned gift materials for Development Officers to leave with prospects,
  • Provide improved training for Development Officers,
  • Make planned giving even more prominent for milestone reunion classes,
  • Plan a seminar on “intergenerational wealth transfer” for the December Leadership/Trustee Weekend.
Since this committee began meeting on the second floor of the Anderson-Connell Alumni Center in 1986, I have stated that everyone at Hamilton — the president, trustees, volunteers and all development personnel — is involved in planned giving. Hamilton needs everyone pulling in the same direction today more than ever.
In summary, planned giving is working from strength, adapting to change, focusing on “service,” positioning for the future and looking for opportunities in these challenging times.
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