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Fostering Equality and Opportunity in Atlanta—and Around the World

zera-allen scholarship recipients

Sam (third from left) and Angie Allen (center) appear with five of the 18 current recipients of the Zera-Allen Scholarship. From left: Katie Tamashevich (senior, accounting/finance), Angel Harper (senior, health information technology), Mai Harris (senior, hospitality business administration), Yedei Akproh (junior, finance/computer information systems), and Alexandria Garcia (sophomore, actuarial science).

Pioneers, as Lady Astor once said, are "picturesque figures," but often lonely ones. Angie Allen knew the feeling as she tried to make her way in the investment field in the late 1970s, when there were few opportunities for women to advance or develop their skills. There was, however, Georgia State.

"I really felt that I needed to get my MBA to distinguish my career," says Angie, the daughter of Italian immigrants and a first-generation student. "If it hadn't been for this public university that was located downtown, with such flexible schedules to accommodate people who were working full time, I never could've gotten my degree."

Education Is Opportunity
Recognizing the power of education to "level the playing field"—for genders, classes, and even entire nations—Angie and her husband, Sam, have dedicated themselves to creating similar opportunities for today's students.

Together, they have been loyal supporters of both the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies (including the school's chapter of the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance, which won a national award at a conference in January) and the Robinson College of Business, where they created the Zera-Allen Scholarship in 1998. That scholarship has helped first-generation students from the U.S. and 16 other countries achieve their dreams of earning business degrees.

Those international students, Sam says, "are seeing the best of the U.S. here. And it's not a stretch to think of Georgia State as an instrument of U.S. foreign policy. That may sound a little grandiose, but if these students go back with a favorable opinion of the American people and our educational system, think of what a difference that could make."

The next step: supporting a brand-new course called Women Lead: Paving the Way for Women to Lead. Slated to begin at the Robinson College of Business in spring 2015, the course's goal is to "develop leadership skills with an emphasis on strategic career development," Angie says.

"Our hope is that female students in this program will have a huge leg up in achieving leadership positions in a global market."

Sharing Successes
If the track record of the Allens' other endeavors is any indication, the students in Women Lead will accomplish exactly that. Witnessing those triumphs firsthand, Sam says, has been its own reward.

"These are young people who want to succeed," he says. "With GSU's help in personalizing our interactions with them, we've come to understand their hopes and challenges, and even share their successes with them. So, in effect, we become the beneficiaries as well."

How You Can Help
You have the power to create lasting support for our students. Learn more about giving options, or contact Wendell Clark at 404-413-3425 or giftplanning@gsu.edu.

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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, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Georgia State University [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

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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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