Impact Stories

Couple Maximizes Gift to Penn State

Penn State campus

Impact Stories

Couple Maximizes Gift to Penn State

Gail and Dennis Jackman

Gail and Dennis Jackman

For more than two decades, Penn State alumni Gail and Dennis Jackman called a 1930s-style bungalow in Washington, D.C., home. Their first home, in fact. Recently, by gifting a portion of the property to the University, the Jackmans have parlayed the home into an investment in Penn State faculty.

The couple purchased the keys to their D.C. home in 1986 and devoted years of sweat equity to making it just right. It served as home base for their lives and D.C.-based corporate careers. They fell in love with the local dining establishments and found an extended family in their neighbors.

Eventually, job changes turned the home into a comfortable getaway and base for business trips to D.C. from their new home in the Main Line outside Philadelphia.

When Gail and Dennis recently decided to put their D.C. house on the market, they realized that its significantly appreciated value—coupled with the fact that it was now a secondary residence—would mean a hefty capital gains tax liability. Enter their love for Penn State.

By gifting a portion of the property to a charitable remainder trust with Penn State in advance of the sale, they learned, they could cut the capital gains tax burden proportionately and receive an income for life. After their lifetimes, the principal of the trust would be directed to the Penn State program of their choosing, enabling them to fulfill a key philanthropic goal at the University.

"Rather than seeing all the proceeds from the home go through the tax system and have a substantial portion taken off the top, gifting part of the home to the University was a way to make its value go further—and support an institution that has always been a top philanthropic priority," Gail said.

The Jackmans' gift has endowed the Jackman-McCourtney Professorship in the College of the Liberal Arts. The gift leveraged a 1:1 match from fellow Liberal Arts supporters Tracy and Ted McCourtney and will support faculty within the new master of public policy graduate program, set to welcome its first cohort of students in 2019. Because the McCourtneys provided an immediate 1:1 match, the professorship will be endowed right away, even before their deferred gift has been realized. After their lifetimes, the principal of the Jackmans' charitable remainder trust will transfer into their professorship.

While parting with their first home was bittersweet, the Jackmans are thrilled to support Penn State faculty and, by extension, students.

"We remember how important faculty were to our experiences as students, so we're delighted to invest in great faculty who will continue to inspire the next generation of leaders," Dennis said. "And we are so grateful to Ted and Tracy McCourtney for providing a 1:1 match, which was instrumental to our ability to fund this professorship. It feels really good to partner with fellow Penn Staters to support such a worthwhile cause."

Penn State relies on supporters like the Jackmans and McCourtneys to invest in the future of our students, faculty, and researchers. If you have already made a gift to Penn State and not yet told us, please contact Michael J. Degenhart at 888-800-9170 (toll free) so we can recognize your generosity with membership in The Atherton Society.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Penn 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 Penn State University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at c/o Office of Gift Planning, 212 The 103 Building, University Park, PA 16802, 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 Penn State 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 Penn State 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 Penn State 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 Penn State where you agree to make a gift to Penn State 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.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the materials for planning your estate.

First name is required
Last Name is required
Please include an '@' in the email address

eBrochure Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the brochure.

First name is required
Last Name is required
Please include an '@' in the email address