Development Update from Morgan Pope


Donors to the Department of Pathology have been increasingly utilizing gift planning strategies to make meaningful contributions in support of the Department’s research, education, and clinical care missions.  Oftentimes, these gifts honor the memories, places, and people who were a formative part of the individual’s Duke experience.  We are grateful to the alumni and faculty members who have chosen to support the Department through such generous and impactful gifts.

With this in mind, I recently had the opportunity to sit down with two of my Duke Health Development colleagues to discuss the benefits of legacy gifts:  Joseph Tynan, Senior Executive Director of Gift Planning, and Anne Sherman T’94, Senior Associate Director of Gift Planning. Joseph and Anne specialize in charitable gift planning for estates, charitable trusts and annuities, and other complex current and future gift plans, which often have tax or legal implications.  Here are the top five benefits Joseph and Anne shared with me:  

1.  Gift planning is simple
     Gift planning is not complicated: 1) gifts made under your will require little time commitment because Duke provides the designation language that you can share directly with your attorney, 2) you can make a gift from one of your retirement accounts by naming Duke and the designation on the beneficiary form, and 3) you can make a gift to Duke, and we can provide you with fixed or variable income during your lifetime.
2.   Gift planning is flexible
      You can make a significant gift without having to part with any assets now and you can alter the commitment if your circumstances change.  Often, individuals have the desire to make a significant impact at Duke, and while they may not be able to do so during their lifetime, it is possible to leave a meaningful legacy through an estate gift.  
3.    Retirement planning is important
       For many, the majority of assets are often in their retirement accounts, either employer sponsored or IRA.  Most individuals do not realize how easy it is to give those assets to charity because retirement funds do not have to be disposed of via the will.  In addition, there can be significant tax advantages to donating retirement assets to charity.  One thing to keep in mind is that donors 70 ½ and older can make gifts during their lifetime through charitable IRA rollovers, up to $100,000 per year.
4.   Possibility of lifetime income
       No one knows what the future holds.  For an individual who has the inclination to give but also wants to ensure a financially stable future, a life income gift might be a good option.  The donors receive the charitable deduction now and will receive fixed or variable income throughout their lifetimes. Gift annuities and charitable reminder unitrusts are the two most common types of vehicles, and each can have significant benefits depending on the type of assets you wish to utilize.
5.   Your gift is important today  
       While not all planned gifts have an immediate impact at Duke, you will be recognized for the impact of your generosity today.  Alongside Dr. Huang, I make it a top priority to show our sincere gratitude to our estate and gift planning donors by including them in events and other personalized engagement opportunities.  You will also be invited to join the Duke Heritage Society, which includes special gatherings for donors throughout the year.  

As you consider your philanthropic giving, I would be happy to set up a time for us to connect with Joseph and Anne to have further conversations about strategic ways to support Duke Pathology.  Your future gift ensures the vision of the Department will continue forth, and that legacy is vital to our success in the years to come.  

As always, we remain grateful to each and every one of the donors invested in our ambitious vision for the future of the Department.  I wish you and your family a joyful holiday season.

With gratitude,  

Morgan P. Pope
Director of Development
Department of Pathology   
(919) 385-3121