4-H has loyal community supporters. Supporters who care about longevity and legacy – not only within our personal families, but within our 4-H family and community. 4-H also has generations that have grown up through the program and have become an extended family.
Those who care deeply about 4-H can be a 4-H super hero by leaving a legacy through a planned gift. Examples can include everything from a simple bequest – leaving a percentage of your assets – to stock gifts in support of 4-H.
While a survey conducted by Caring.com indicates only 42 percent of U.S. adults currently have a will, it can be a rewarding process to work through for you, your family and causes you care deeply for.
Estate planning is critical to managing your assets and protecting your family. A will provides clear direction for the distribution of your estate. Donors may bequeath a specific amount, a percentage of the estate, or a residual after other distributions from an estate are fulfilled to support Michigan 4-H.
In addition to bequests and stock gifts, additional types of planned/deferred gifts include:
- Testamentary charitable remainder trusts.
- Charitable remainder unitrusts.
- Charitable gift annuities.
- Life estate contracts.
- Gifts of life insurance policies or retirement funds.
- Charitable lead trusts.
Additional Planned Gift Considerations
- Planned gifts may establish a new or grow an existing perpetual named endowment or fund.
- Gifts of any type may be designated to support a specific 4-H program area, county 4-H program, Kettunen Center or the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens. Unrestricted gifts may also be made to support future and emerging needs of 4-H youth development.
- Documented planned gift donors qualify for recognition in the A.G. Kettunen Society during their lifetime.
- Both future and realized planned gifts can count toward the Campaign for Michigan 4-H’s Future $12.5 million goal.
If you are interested in exploring planned gift options in support of 4-H, please contact Amanda Masters, assistant development director for 4-H, at (517) 884-4691 or by e-mail at email@example.com, to verify that your gift intent can be met. Consulting with personal legal counsel and/or a tax adviser for definitive assessment of the tax benefits of and limitations on planned gifts is also recommended.
Qualifying donors can make tax-free IRA distributions by making a special gift to Michigan 4‑H.
Donors aged 70½ or older may donate up to $100,000 to charity each year by transferring an amount directly from an IRA to that charity and thereby reducing their taxable income for the current tax year. How, why and key notes:
- Instruct your IRA custodian to distribute a gift amount directly to the Michigan 4-H Foundation. The entire gift amount qualifies as a charitable distribution.
- The gift amount is not included in your personal income for federal taxes.
- The gift amount can count toward the required minimum distribution (RMD) for the tax year.
- Distribution cannot be considered an income tax charitable deduction. The gift is considered a tax-free gift because the donor doesn’t pay taxes on the distribution if it’s made directly to a charity.
- Distributions can be made only from traditional individual retirement accounts or Roth IRAs. Typically, 403(b), 401(k), pension and other retirement plans are ineligible for the tax-free distribution.
For more detailed information, contact Amanda Masters at 517-884-4691 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Remember, this opportunity ends Dec. 31 for current year tax credit.
Estate gift helps Make the Match
Lana Dart leaves estate gift to 4-H
As an Ingham County 4-H alumna and former Calhoun County 4-H staff person, Lana Dart knew the impact that 4-H can have on young people’s lives. She made it her tradition to give to the Michigan 4-H Foundation each year since 1989.
Over the years, Dart gave to a variety of 4-H programs, including Kettunen Center renovations, the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens, the Michigan 4-H Legacy Fund and most recently, the County 4-H Endowment Match Pool and the Ingham County 4-H Endowment. The match pool provides a 1:1 match for gifts from 4-H clubs, volunteers, parents, members, staff members and friends to build county 4-H endowments.
Before Dart passed away last fall, she had made a planned gift for a portion of her estate to support the area of greatest need for 4-H. The Michigan 4-H Foundation Board of Trustees has allocated the gift to help match gifts to the Make the Match County 4-H Endowment Campaign to honor where Dart’s most recent gifts were given.
In an interview several years ago, Dart shared why she felt it was important to give back to 4-H.
“It’s a program that I think has value,” she said. “While I’m not an active participant in the program at this time, it goes back to the wonderful experiences that I had as a 4-H member. You remember you were in 4-H and the experiences that came along for you, and it triggers the thought of giving.
“I think you get into a pattern of giving,” she said. “Certain organizations are on your pattern of giving each year. It may not be the same amount, but it’s important that you give every year,” she said.
Dart, of Lansing, passed away on Nov. 30, 2017. She graduated from Mason High School and earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Michigan State University (MSU) where she was a member of the Mortar Board Honor Society. She began her career as an MSU Extension home economist and 4-H agent in Calhoun County. She was employed with MSU for 33 years before retiring in 1992. She was an elder, deacon and a clerk of the Session for Mason First Presbyterian Church. Dart also served as a board member of the Ingham County Fair. She was a member of the Lansing Women’s Club, and a member and officer of the Mason College Club.
Estate gifts, such as this gift from Dart, are considered a type of planned gift. Documenting and planning a future gift to support 4-H can leave a legacy for years to come. Planned gift donors are recognized as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society to provide lifetime recognition to donors who have made documented future gifts to 4-H. Documenting a planned gift allows donors to share their wishes and the impact they would like to see their gifts make to benefit Michigan’s youth. A.G. Kettunen Society members receive a recognition certificate, permanent acknowledgment as legacy donors in the annual report, and, for gifts that exceed $25,000 at maturity, recognition as Cornerstone Society members.
Any donor considering a planned gift may contact Amanda Masters, assistant development director for 4-H, at 517-884-4691 or by email at email@example.com to verify that your gift intent can be met.
The Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens has received several distributions from the estate of Owen G. Barr, of Grand Ledge.
Barr was born July 15, 1921, in Delaware Twp., Ohio, and passed away Sept. 3, 2014, in Lansing, Michigan. Owen was the owner of Lansing Ice and Fuel and a veteran of WWII, serving in the U.S. Army. He took great pride in caring for his house and yard along with giving back to his community.
Estate gifts can make a difference by meeting critical needs for 4-H, and in this case, the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens.
“The gardens exist on private funding. When estate gifts are received, they are turned right back around to developing the program and supporting the staff that works at the gardens,” said Norm Lownds, Michigan 4-H Children’s Garden curator. “The 4-H Children’s Gardens depend on donations for it to even exist.”
Thanks to Barr’s generosity, several upgrades to the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens have been made possible in preparation for the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens’ 25th anniversary next year. The renovations being made will help enhance and expand the efforts to connect kids to plants and the environment.
“Estate gifts allow us to enhance and expand both the physical 4-H Children’s Gardens and the programs that we offer. These gifts allow us to continually meet the changing needs of teachers, students and parents in ways that enable kids to experience plants in new and exciting ways,” Lownds said.
Estate gifts are considered a type of planned gift. Planned gift donors who provide documentation of their legacy commitments for 4-H in advance are recognized as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society. Established in 2007, this society allows donors to share their wishes and the impact they would like to see their gift make to benefit Michigan’s youth. A.G. Kettunen Society members receive a recognition certificate, permanent acknowledgement as legacy donors in the foundation’s annual report, and, for gifts that exceed $25,000 at maturity, recognition as Cornerstone Society members.
“An estate gift to the 4-H Children’s Gardens is an excellent way to leave a legacy that will impact the community and next generations. Support will ensure that our world-class children’s garden and its world-class educational opportunities are available to children and families for years to come. Support provides opportunities for children to experience plants in ways that will impact them for the rest of their lives. Estate gifts help to ensure that the amazing space that is the 4-H Children’s Gardens will be here for kids to experience for the next 25 years and beyond,” Lownds said.
If you are considering any type of planned gift, please contact Amanda Masters, assistant development director for 4-H, at (517) 884-4691 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to verify that your gift intent can be met.
Photo cutline: Thanks to an estate gift from Owen G. Barr, several upgrades to the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens have been made possible in preparation for the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens’ 25th anniversary next year.
This past fiscal year, Max and Beverley Benne documented a bequest from their estate, which will provide future funding for Michigan 4-H.
Planned gifts, sometimes referred to as gift planning or legacy giving, are gifts that will support 4-H in the future. Documented planned gifts provide recognition and a legacy for the donor while supporting the next generation of 4-H’ers. Although there are a variety of types of planned gifts, bequests are one of the most common forms of planned gifts.
This past fiscal year, Max and Beverley Benne, of Sturgis, documented a bequest from their estate, which will provide a forthcoming source of funding for Michigan 4-H’s area of greatest need.
“I was a longtime 4-H’er as a young person and I was an IFYE – International 4-H Youth Exchange – participant. Those experiences were very instrumental in my youth and still carry influence today,” Max Benne said. “I appreciate very much the opportunities I had and I am trying to repay a little bit by giving back.”
An Ingham County 4-H alumnus, Max Benne was a 10-year member of the Okemos 4-H Club and was a six-year FFA member during his youth. He received the State Poultry Judging Award, was a National 4-H Congress delegate to Chicago and an IFYE delegate to Denmark.
He received degrees from Michigan State University in dairy production, dairy farm management and a doctorate of education degree. Before his distinguished 29-year teaching career at Western Michigan University, he worked as a 4-H agent, a volunteer coordinator for the Experiment in International Living Program, covering all participating school systems east of the Mississippi River, and an instructor at Lakeland School Corporation and Glen Oaks Community College. Research and professional presentations have taken him to Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Norway, Japan and China.
Beverley also received a degree in teaching from the MSU College of Education in 1967. She taught school for a few years before moving strictly into substitute teaching. More recently, Beverley has found an interest in art. She has created stationery, note cards, and such with her drawings and paintings. Her art has been displayed at a local gallery in Sturgis.
Today, the Bennes co-own and operate Benne Farms, a commercial sheep operation outside of Sturgis and remain strong advocates for St. Joseph County 4-H. Max is a past president of the Michigan Sheep Breeders Association and a past recipient of the Outstanding Commercial Sheep Producers for the State of Michigan Award. He served as vice president of St. Joseph County Farm Bureau and is a former member of the American Society of Agronomy, the National Association of Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture, the Michigan Soil and Water Conservation Society, and the Kalamazoo Production Credit Association Board.
Legacy commitments to support Michigan 4-H represent a visionary approach to ensuring that 4-H programs are available for Michigan’s young people for many years after we ourselves are no longer able to witness their impacts.
“We do give a small amount to the Michigan 4-H Foundation each year. Documenting an estate gift is a way of designating a larger amount, which hopefully we won’t need, but if we do it is there,” Max Benne said.
A survey conducted by Care.com indicates that less than half of U.S. adults currently have a will. Estate planning is critical to managing your assets and protecting your family. A will provides clear direction for the distribution of your estate. To support Michigan 4-H, donors may bequeath a specific amount, a percentage of the estate or a residual after other distributions from an estate are fulfilled.
To explore planned gift options, contact Amanda Masters, assistant director of development for 4-H, at 517-884-4691 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Karen Hipple, of Scottsdale, Arizona, grew up in East Lansing the youngest of four daughters. Their father, Per G. Lundin, worked for Michigan State University (MSU) Extension as the assistant state 4-H leader on MSU’s campus for 31 years until he retired in 1956.
Hipple went on to graduate from MSU in 1962 with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and became an elementary school teacher. She married and had one son. For many years, she resided in the Birmingham, Michigan and St. Louis, Missouri areas before moving to Scottsdale.
Although she settled away from her hometown, Hipple never forgot the place she loved and called home for many years – MSU. To commemorate this special time of her life, Hipple documented a planned gift in memory of her father’s legacy, which when received will create the Per G. Lundin Fund for the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens.
“It is with great love and admiration that Karen has chosen to honor her father with this gift that will benefit the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens,” said Kristi Bird Hutchings, Hipple’s niece. “My grandfather’s career was devoted to 4-H and the impact he made on many 4-H youth across the state was phenomenal. Aunt Karen and her sisters had a great appreciation for their father’s work, having heard many conversations that took place around their kitchen table while they were growing up.”
Lundin served MSU Extension as assistant state 4-H leader from 1925 to 1956 and as part-time 4-H agent in Schoolcraft County in 1923 and 1924. Lundin is known for his work in developing the 4-H handicraft, electrical and poultry programs in Michigan. He also authored many 4-H bulletins in archery and fire prevention in addition to his specialty areas. A native of Sweden, Lundin received his bachelor’s degree from MSU in 1920 and taught agriculture at Manistee High School before taking a full-time position with MSU Extension.
Once the endowment is funded, it will annually support the delivery of Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens educational programs. The outdoor Michigan 4-H Children’s Garden opened in 1993 as one of the five major gardens of the MSU Horticulture Demonstration Gardens. It was the first garden in the United States developed specifically for the education of young children on a university campus. With over 150,000 annual visitors, the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens have grown to include the original outdoor 4-H Children’s Garden, the Indoor 4-H Children’s Garden and the Smith Schoolyard Demonstration Garden.
“It is Karen’s hope that by sustaining the ongoing mission of the gardens, her gift will help promote an understanding of the importance plants play in our daily lives, nurture the wonder and curiosity in a child’s mind, and provide a place of enrichment and delight for children of all ages,” Hutchings said.
A planned or deferred gift is a donation that is arranged by the donor, typically through a will, trust or estate plan, to be allocated at a future date, often after the donor has passed away. Planned gifts can be funded with cash, equity or property through a variety of gift vehicles.
In recognition of naming MSU a beneficiary of her trust, Hipple has been recognized as a member of the MSU Landon Society. Similarly, planned gift donors to the Michigan 4-H Foundation are recognized as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society.
If you are considering a planned gift, endowment or other special gift to support 4-H, contact Amanda Masters at (517) 884-4691 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
An estate gift from Roderick and Shirley Parsch will help sustain the work of the Michigan 4-H Foundation and its support for Michigan 4-H Youth Development.
Lapeer County 4-H alumnus Rod Parsch served as a Michigan 4-H Foundation trustee from 1964 until his death in 1990. He was posthumously honored as a trustee emeritus. Parsch served as Michigan 4-H Foundation president from 1970 to 1973, chaired the resource development committee and was instrumental in leading fundraising activities on behalf of the foundation.
Parsch was the CEO of Lapeer County Bank and Trust Company from 1956 to 1984. He continued to serve as board chair after his retirement in 1986. He served in World War II, receiving two Purple Hearts, the Silver Star and the Bronze Star. He was active
in several banking associations and served as president of the Independent Bankers Association of America. Additionally, he was active in many Lapeer organizations, including the hospital board and the St. Vincent DePaul Society. He graduated from the School of Banking, University of Wisconsin, and also served on the faculty of Ball State University.
During his tenure on the Michigan 4-H Foundation board, Parsch realized the power of planned giving. Parsch named the Michigan 4-H Foundation as a beneficiary of his trust upon the death of the survivor. Parsch died Feb. 19, 1990; Shirley passed away this past March.
The Parschs’ estate gift qualified them for membership in the Cornerstone Society and also the Founders Society, a new society recognizing donors of $10,000 or more to the Founders Fund Endowment or those who make an unrestricted planned gift that, when received, can be used to grow the foundation’s long-term reserve.
Planned gift donors are recognized as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society, established in 2007 to provide lifetime recognition to donors who have made documented future gifts to 4-H. It allows donors to share their wishes and the impact they would like to see their gifts make to benefit Michigan’s youth. A.G. Kettunen Society members receive a recognition certificate, permanent acknowledgement as legacy donors in the annual report, and, for gifts that exceed $25,000 at maturity, recognition as Cornerstone Society members.
The Michigan 4-H Foundation invites any donor considering a planned gift to contact the foundation at (517) 353-6692 to verify that the intent of the gift can be met.
4-H volunteers build endowments in Kent and Osceola counties with planned gifts
Kent County 4-H Youth Endowment
In 2009, Merry and Jerry Malfroid, of Casnovia, launched an endowment campaign to build a fund to provide long-term support for Kent County 4-H and at the same time honor the service and achievements of Margaret and
Richard Bethel in advancing Kent County 4-H and statewide MSU Extension programs.
In the midst of planning for the campaign, Jerry Malfroid was lost to cancer. After a successful campaign led by Merry Malfroid and Maggie and Dick Bethel, the Kent County 4-H Youth Development Fund was fully endowed in 2011. Merry, a long-time Kent County MSU Extension employee, died July 18, 2012. She designated a portion of her estate to grow the Kent County 4-H Youth Development Fund. Because this is an existing county 4-H endowment fund, this estate gift and gifts honoring Merry and others from Kent County also qualify for the 1:1 county 4-H endowment match.
The fund serves not only to honor Jerry and Merry Malfroid’s commitment to Kent County 4-H but also serves as an ongoing tribute to the contributions of all youth and volunteers involved in Kent County 4-H.
Osceola County 4-H Youth Endowment
A charitable gift from the Adrian R.Sengelaub Revocable Trust has established the Osceola County 4-H Youth Endowment Fund.
The fund provides memorial recognition to Adrian Sengelaub and perpetual support for the Osceola County 4-H program. Because this charitable gift funded a general 4-H county endowment fund, it will be matched 1:1 by the county 4-H endowment match fund, doubling its impact for 4-H.
Sengelaub served 20 years as a 4-H leader and had a zeal for life and helping others. He was also active in St. Philip’s Catholic Church and joined the Knights of Columbus in 1940. In retirement, he volunteered for the Commission on Aging, accumulating over 1,000 hours of service.
A lifetime resident of Richmond Township, Reed City, Mich., Seneglaub died July 18, 2008. He attended Trimmer Elementary School where he graduated eighth grade in 1937. He continued his father’s work as a farmer, carpenter and stone/brick mason. He worked for many farmers in the surrounding area over the years. In addition, he worked as a bus driver for St. Philip’s Catholic School and was also employed by Tubelite (Miller industries) for more than 22 years.
Noel Stuckman and Sandra Clarkson Stuckman, of DeWitt, have documented a planned gift that will help ensure the viability of Michigan 4-H for the future.
“We had been giving cash gifts regularly, and as we got older we thought we had to get more organized in our approach, and it was time for an estate plan,” Sandy said.
A planned or deferred gift is a donation that is arranged by the donor, typically through a will, trust or estate plan, to be allocated at a future time, often after the donor has passed away. Planned gifts can be funded with cash, equity or property through a variety of gift vehicles.
The Stuckmans had each been donors to the Michigan 4-H Foundation and Michigan State University prior to their marriage in 1999. Their annual charitable contributions have been through a variety of outright methods including cash, pledges, appreciated stock, qualified charitable distributions from IRAs and in-kind gifts of property. Over the years, their annual gifts have supported state and county 4-H endowments, Kettunen Center, the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens, the MSU Spartan Fund, the MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Department of Agricultural, Food and Resources Economics and the Doris Wetters Endowed Fellowship Fund. They are also donors to the MSU Horticulture Gardens, Wharton Center and WKAR.
“We want those organizations to continue,” Sandy said. “That’s why we give – because we care about the results of these programs for people. And that’s the basis of our philosophy for philanthropy.”
Both Sandy and Noel grew up as 4-H members in Indiana. Noel received his bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics at Purdue University. He had a career with Michigan Farm Bureau affiliate companies.
“4-H was a part of my life,” Noel said. “My first project was a 4-H Victory Garden – World War II home garden. Then my projects grew into livestock, Berkshire hogs, Ayrshire dairy cattle, county fair, state fair, hogs to the International Livestock Exposition in Chicago.
“I believe that 4-H has a great future,” he continued. “That’s why we’ve decided to direct our money to the Michigan 4-H Foundation. It does a lot of great things, it’s a great support group for 4-H and we believe in it.
“An estate plan is flexible – we can change it as time goes on,” he said. “It’s a working document, and we hope to be around many years to work on our plan.”
Sandy is also a Purdue University graduate. She came to Michigan State University for her master’s degree. She served as Michigan’s state 4-H leader from 1991 to 1998. Under her leadership, the Michigan 4-H China Project and the 4-H Chinese Art Exchange were established; she oversaw the official opening of the Michigan 4-H Children’s Garden; and she was a strong partner through the Kettunen Center Vision 2021 project. During her tenure as state 4-H leader, she also served as trustee and secretary of the Michigan 4-H Foundation Board of Trustees, and in 2014, she was elected honorary trustee.
“I was an MSU Extension staff member when I set up an endowment at the 4-H Foundation for 4-H leadership and community service,” Sandy said. “In addition to giving to that regularly, we have a planned gift that will go there when we’re both gone. I, too, was an Indiana 4-H member for 10 plus years, and part of my career was with 4-H. I was a regional supervisor and was the acting state 4-H leader, so 4-H has been important in my life growing up.”
During this capital campaign, Sandy and Noel have been members of the Leadership 10. They were lead individual donors to the county endowment match pool and co-hosted an event at Cowles House to help grow the match fund. They also helped lead a successful endowment campaign in Clinton County including hosting a kickoff event at the Stuckman farm.
“We really feel privileged to be in a position to do what we’re doing. And, though it takes time, there is satisfaction to know that we’re going to help 4-H youth, leaders and families.” Sandy said.
Sandy and Noel’s planned gift also qualified them as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society. The society was established in 2007 to provide lifetime recognition to donors who have made documented future gifts to 4-H. It allows donors to share their wishes and the impact they would like to see their gifts make to benefit Michigan’s youth. A.G. Kettunen Society members receive a recognition certificate, permanent acknowledgement as legacy donors in the annual report and, for gifts that bring a donor’s cumulative giving at or above $25,000 at maturity, recognition as Cornerstone Society members.
“Our comments may reflect that we had these plans in place all these years. It really has evolved over time,” Sandy said. “It is satisfying once you get there and sign the document and know it’s going to help people in the future.
“The most important thing is to start the conversation, no matter where you are in life, and see where the conversation can go. Never feel that it is too early to start the conversation. The staff are very good at helping you think through options and what you might want to do,” Sandy said.
If you are considering a planned or special gift, contact Amanda Masters at (517) 884-4691 or by e-mail at email@example.com.