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Donna Brazzell Gives Back to Georgia State

Donna BrazzellDonna Brazzell recently made a planned gift to Georgia State, but she insists that Georgia State gave her a gift first. Now she is including Georgia State as a beneficiary of her IRA to support students for years to come.

"This place has given me so much," she says. "It has really reshaped my whole future. I've gotten a second career—it's exciting; I'm on a new adventure, learning new things, and growing. And that's a real gift to me."

Going Back to School
Ten years ago, Donna decided to re-enter the working world after raising her children, and she figured she'd use her bachelor's degree in chemistry to make it happen. "I went back to the lab for a job interview, and I looked at it and said, 'This isn't me anymore,'" she says.

After looking through a Georgia State course catalog, though, Donna realized she was drawn to the world of public administration and non-profit management. "I started off in the certificate program because I hadn't been back in school for 25 years, and I wasn't real sure about things," she says. "But once I was in there, I knew I loved it. And within a couple months I'd switched over to the graduate program."

"Even Small Gifts Count"
Today Donna is the executive director of the DeKalb Library Foundation, and she says she enjoys her job every day. So she decided to plan an estate gift for the institution that helped make it possible. "I just thought, Why don't I do this now?" she says. "It's not really that large a gift, but I'm still young, so it could increase over the years. And I'm in fundraising, so I know that even small gifts count.

"I've seen such dramatic growth at Georgia State in the last eight years, and I'm really proud of my alma mater. I'm proud of the direction it's going. And I think I want to see it continue for a long, long time."

Give Your Own Gift
If you'd like to support Georgia State like Donna did, please contact Wendell Clark at 404-413-3425 or giftplanning@gsu.edu to talk discuss your options with our planned giving staff.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Georgia 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 Georgia State University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at P.O. Box 3965 Atlanta, GA 30302-3965, 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 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 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 this type of trust 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 the Foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this 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 the 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 Foundation where you agree to make a gift to the 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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