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Dr. Roger and Margaret Smith

Roger Smith

It was a time of unrest for the nation, yet the Smith family found tranquility in a special place named Ypsilanti, Mich. Dr. Roger F. Smith has many fond memories of the small, friendly town he grew up in during the 1920s and 30s. Ypsilanti was also home to Michigan State Normal College (MSNC), now known as Eastern Michigan University, and the place his father, Dr. Harry L. Smith, worked as a professor of physics and astronomy for 41 years.

"My father was a great man in so many ways. He was dedicated to his family, to his community, to his students and to his work as a physicist. I have always respected him and the legacy he left behind. He inspired me with his many contributions to society and through the passion he had for teaching," Roger says.

A Gift in His Honor
Harry's students felt much the same way about him. Two of them began an endowed scholarship in his name on Sept. 1, 1966—the 50th anniversary of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Eastern—to support physics students who aspire to careers in academia. "It is important that this scholarship always be available for EMU students. It also ensures my father's legacy will always live on," Roger says. "My wife, Margaret, and I have set up a charitable gift annuity to ensure it continues in perpetuity."

A Deep Connection
Roots run deep with the Smiths, Ypsilanti and its university. Not only did Harry graduate from MSNC in 1915, but it is where he met his wife, Eunice Niblick, while she pursued a degree in botany. It is also where Roger spent his first two years of college before going on to become a doctor while serving in the U.S. Army Specialized Training Corps at the University of Michigan. After his surgical residency, he served as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force before going on to a surgical career at the Henry Ford Hospital. Many wonderful memories were created in a little bungalow on West Cross Street where the Smiths lived, and today it has been fittingly deemed a historic structure.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Eastern Michigan 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 Eastern Michigan University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 112 Welch Hall, 850 W. Cross Street, Ypsilanti, MI 48197, 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 EMU 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 charitable lead trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the gift 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 a charitable remainder unitrust with cash or appreciated assets-and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. 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 EMU as a lump sum.

You fund a charitable remainder annuity trust with cash or appreciated assets-and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. 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 EMU 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 EMU where you agree to make a gift to EMU 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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