Chi Phi Offers New Giving Option

By January 26, 2015September 23rd, 2015News

At the inaugural Chi Phi Board of Advisors meeting in January 2014, Alumni discussed the MacLean Legacy Society, Chi Phi’s loyal supporters who remember the Fraternity or their Chapter through their estate plan. Advisors discussed the types of gifts MacLean Legacy Society members established and soon realized nearly every member had left a bequest or named Chi Phi as the beneficiary of a retirement account or insurance policy.

The advisors also quickly realized this left several giving options not available to potential donors, including charitable gift annuities and charitable remainder trusts. Both gift annuities and remainder trusts allow donors to transfer assets to Chi Phi Educational Trust, receive an immediate tax deduction and provide the donor with income for the remainder of his life.

Advisors asked Trust Chairman Chris Shuler, Alpha Zeta 1984, to work with the Trust Gift Acceptance Committee and staff to determine if these were viable giving vehicles for Chi Phi Alumni. After investigating the regulatory requirements and reviewing best practices, the Trustees determined charitable gift annuities and charitable reminder trusts did indeed make sense for Chi Phi.

Staff quickly got to work promoting these new giving options to potential donors. Brother Wray Pearce, Tau 1966, and his wife Joan, had been thinking about how they could impact Chi Phi for years to come.

“We wanted to give back to an organization that has given me so much. I had a great time as a Chi Phi at the University of Alabama. I met some of my best friends through the Fraternity,” Wray shared.

As luck would have it, Director of Development, Elizabeth Vaughn, paid Wray a visit during a trip to Birmingham. Wray expressed his desire to remember Chi Phi and to help ensure Joan had a source of income if something happened to him. As a successful CPA who has spent over forty years providing individuals and corporations with tax advice, Wray also wanted to maximize his tax benefits with his gift.

As Elizabeth and Wray discussed his desires, it became clear a charitable gift annuity would help Wray and Joan achieve their goals. Wray’s gift would allow him to take a significant tax deduction in 2014, provide support for Chi Phi long after his life and by naming Joan as a second beneficiary, ensure she received income for the remainder of her life.

“This gift made sense for us. We can help Chi Phi Brothers for generations to come, and we also get a small benefit. Charitable gift annuities are great giving options, especially for Alumni with appreciated securities or those facing significant capital gains tax,” shared Wray.

“We are excited to establish our first charitable gift annuity and to help ensure a bright future for Chi Phi. When we looked at the benefits and challenges of establishing this type of gift, it quickly became clear the benefits far outweighed any challenges,” Hans Stucki, Iota 1970, Trust Gift Acceptance Committee Chair, remarked.

Alumni interested in more information about charitable gift annuities or charitable reminder trusts can contact Director of Development, John Fisher at 404.231.1824 or


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