Meet Our Donors

A Gift for Tallahassee

Sandy and Thomas DeLopezfter Thomas DeLopez '67 graduated from Florida State University with a Bachelor of Science degree, he left Tallahassee. But soon he would return...and, together with his wife, Sandy, lift up the community as well as FSU. More »


Vietnam Veteran Supports Other Vets at Florida State

Rick BoehmComing from a family that was proud to volunteer to serve their country during time of war, it was not a difficult decision for Rick Boehm to sign up for the Naval Reserve Officers Training Program during his sophomore year at FSU in 1967. Rick's maternal grandfather served in the Navy during WWI, and his father and two uncles were in the Navy during WWII. More »


Philanthropic by Nature, by Heart...

Dona CormierThroughout her life, Dona Cormier, B.S. '85, has learned the importance of giving back to her church, community and Florida State University. "Philanthropy fills a void that work can't do," she explains. More »


Retiring Dean Includes FSU in Her Estate

Marcy DriscollAs dean of Florida State University's College of Education, Marcy Driscoll is no stranger to conversations about giving. Since 2005, she has raised over $32 million in gifts and commitments with a consistent focus on student scholarships. More »


Perks of Giving Back

Mary and Joe PankowskiMary and Joe Pankowski's strongest ties to Florida State University's mission and work are through the fields of education, public service and law—and what they have in common. "They are marvelously intertwined in terms of a commitment to making a difference in people's lives," Mary says. More »


Passing It on: A Legacy to FSU

GillsFor Carol Gill, Florida State opened up a world of possibilities. “Growing up, I didn’t know anyone who went to college,” says Carol, 67, of San Antonio, Texas. “I was the first in my direct line to go.”  More »


Inspired to Give Back

operaJames "Jim" Taylor was first introduced to the opera as a student at Florida State in the early 1960s and immediately fell in love with the powerful blend of music and drama. Jim went on to become a highly regarded professor at Miami Dade College where he remained an avid supporter of the opera. More »


The Sum of My Debt

Joseph McGranaghanWe conducted an interview with actor and FSU/Asolo Conservatory graduate Joseph McGranaghan. Find out what he says about his decision to study at the Asolo and how a scholarship helped him during his time at FSU/Asolo.  More »



Giving Back: Technology Icon Helps Students Get a "Jump Start" on Life

Donor ThumbnailWhen Roger Roberts (M.S. '69) began thinking about his legacy, it didn't take long for him to decide that Florida State would be included in his plans. "I have always felt that I should contribute back to the institutions that opened so many doors for me," Roger says.  More »


Keith and Patricia Sigmon Make Legacy Impact

Donor ThumbnailKeith and Patricia Sigmon always hoped that someday they would be in a position to give back to the University. As their philanthropic dreams are now coming true, they are discovering the rewards of giving.  More »



Leading the Way: Expert Attorney Discusses Charitable Lead Trusts

Donor ThumbnailAttorney and loyal FSU alumnus Brad Gornto (B.S.,'95) is hard at work. When he isn't counseling his clients on the best ways to keep more of their hard-earned dollars, he's advising them on how to best give to their most important causes.  More »


The Write Stuff: An Interview With Marcus and Geraldine Polk

Donor ThumbnailAs lifelong educators and passionate supporters of Florida State University, Marcus and Geraldine Polk leave a lasting legacy in their estate plans to help future generations of students at FSU. Between writing and traveling for book signings, the Polks give from the heart by delivering scholarships to deserving FSU students.  More »


Love of Law Enforcement: Retired Special Agent Supports College of Criminology

Donor ThumbnailJerry Glass '71 knows firsthand the value of a Florida State University education and the difficulties of working full time while pursuing a degree. For these reasons, he and his wife decided to create the Jerry and Carolyn Glass Scholarship Fund in the College of Criminology and Criminal Justice. More »


Couple's Support Strengthens University in Many Ways

Donor ThumbnailMark and Nancy C. Hillis have long recognized their motivations for philanthropically supporting Florida State University. "The most important motivation is the relationships we have built over the years with fellow alumni, University leaders and administrators, faculty and students."  More »


For Sale? Think Twice

Donor ThumbnailA large number of alumni and friends of Florida State University are interested in contributing to the University's future, but some potential donors may overlook one of their most valuable assets—their property.  More »



Building the Future of Engineering

Donor ThumbnailColleen Stewart has always had strong ties to engineering. Her family has an extensive number of engineering degrees, although they're not all from Florida State University. She and her late husband, Donald, started down the path toward ultimately making a lasting impact on the lives of students enrolled in the Florida State University College... More »


How FSU Changed My Life and Career

Donor ThumbnailWhen L. Wade Humphreys began thinking about estate planning, it did not take him long to decide that "Giving Back" for him meant to the academic institutions that had meant so much to the course of his life. More »



Passing on Their Values: How a Couple Helped FSU and Received Security in Return

Donor ThumbnailHoward M. '71, '72, and Cheryl S. Beckert '72, have always appreciated how their Florida State University degrees helped their careers. "The education and relationships we were blessed with at Florida State University have been very instrumental to the successes we have had in life," Cheryl says.  More »


The Last Gift to Her Husband: A Commitment to FSU

Donor ThumbnailFor Elaine Alexander, a non-alumna of Florida State who lived 3,000 miles from Tallahassee in the Seattle area, the opportunity to connect with FSU was seldom. But all of that changed when her husband, Robert C. Alexander '68, '72, lost his battle with cancer in late 2009. Since then, an unlikely journey has taken place and new connections. More »


Alumna Gives Back to University That Provided So Much to Her

Donor ThumbnailAs a young girl, Cassandra D. Jenkins spent hours reading mystery novels and watching crime shows, where she imagined investigating crimes and solving cases alongside the heroes and heroines of her stories. More »



Retired Army Nurse Sees Gift Annuity As a Great Way to Give Back

Donor ThumbnailHad her parents chosen to move to Florida one year later than they did, retired Army Col. Faith Sterling would never have come to Florida State University. More »



Ensuring Quality Performance in Baroque Music for Future Generations

Donor ThumbnailIn October 2009, while attending the inaugural Ringling International Arts Festival in Sarasota, Fla., Albert H. Cohen happened upon a string quartet playing Beethoven—a group of undergraduates from the Florida State University College of Music. More »


Giving Graduate Students a Boost

Donor ThumbnailThough Dr. James "Jim" O'Brien formally retired in 2005, most days you'll still find him at the Center of Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction Studies (COAPS) on the southwest campus of Florida State University. "I flunked retirement," he says with a jocular smile. Jim has been a fixture at Florida State for more than 40 years. He was dubbed... More »


Providing for Increased Excellence in Education

Donor ThumbnailCynthia Schumacher and longtime friend Nina Shuman spent more than 30 years of their lives as teachers. Though both retired in 1985, they have continued their work to provide quality public education through their philanthropic activities. Most recently, Cynthia established a charitable gift annuity (CGA) that will ultimately support the College... More »


Exceptional Estate Planning Creates Extraordinary Opportunity

Donor ThumbnailRecently, the Frank and Yolande Fowler Chair in Biological Sciences was established to fulfill the legacy of two Florida State University friends whose passion for biology fueled their desire to fund biological research and lure stellar students to the university. Yolande Jaquelin Fowler was born in a small French village near the end of World War I.  More »


Community Service and Charity

Donor ThumbnailThe Florida State University freshman class of 2008–09 possesses many exceptional qualities, such as an average SAT score of 1265 and ACT score of 28. One quality among these students that might go unnoticed, however, is a penchant for community service prior to arriving at FSU. This attribute is readily acknowledged at the Center...  More »


A Conversation With Dr. Donald Smith, B.A. '56, M.A. '69, Ph.D. '72

Donor ThumbnailIn January 1999, Dr. Donald Smith established two charitable remainder unitrusts with the FSU Foundation. He continues to add to these trusts whenever he is able. In addition to receiving income from these trusts for life, Dr. Smith is entitled to a charitable income tax deduction every time he makes a cash addition to one of these trusts.  More »


An Incredible Commitment to Medicine

Donor ThumbnailThe commitment, leadership and influence of Dr. Laurie L. Dozier Jr. is clearly felt throughout northwest Florida, specifically by the students and faculty of the FSU College of Medicine and the patients and medical staff of Tallahassee Memorial Hospital (TMH). TMH has benefited from 20 years of Dr. Dozier’s knowledge...  More »


Invested in Art

Donor ThumbnailThe development and notoriety of the FSU/John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art are largely attributed to the generous support of its devoted constituents. Two such donors, Robert “Bob” Blalock, a Bradenton attorney and former trustee of the Museum, and his wife, Marlene (an FSU attendee), have long been passionate about the importance...  More »


A Lifelong Interest in Medicine

Donor ThumbnailHaving served on the boards of the FSU Foundation, FSU Boosters and the FSU Alumni Association, Mina Jo Powell is very familiar with the benefits and personal rewards of giving back to the University. Her well-established relationship with FSU dates back to 1946, when she enrolled as a freshman in the University’s first coeducational class.  More »


Harpers' Gifts Demonstrate Their Passion for Education

Donor ThumbnailIn January 2006, Florida State University lost one of its most distinguished scholars and benefactors. During his illustrious career in academia, George Mills Harper was an author and editor of 12 books primarily concerning the Irish poet William Butler Yeats. George finished his extensive teaching career in 1982 at Florida State University after serving in... More »


Estate Gift Creates Special Opportunities for Deserving FSU Students

Donor ThumbnailOn Oct. 6, 2005, the Ocala-based family of the late Clifford "Cliff" and Jeanette Davenport presented a $1 million check to Florida State University. The intimate ceremony honoring the Davenports' gift included President T.K. Wetherell; former Ocala Mayor Jim Kirk; Alumni Association President Barry Adams; children Cliff Davenport Jr., Gene Davenport... More »


A Passion for the Band

Donor ThumbnailIn remembrance of how they met, Mike and Judy designated the proceeds of their charitable remainder trust for two student members of the FSU Marching Chiefs: one majoring in music and the other majoring in business. Chiefs is the largest collegiate marching band in the world, composed of students from almost every... More »

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Florida State University a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Florida State University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Tallahassee, Florida, or its successor thereto, ______________ [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the FSU Foundation or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the FSU Foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the FSU Foundation as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the FSU Foundation where you agree to make a gift to the FSU Foundation and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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