Below are some real-life examples of how Northeastern donors have made planned gifts.
To imagine is to dream. To dream is to accomplish. Marie Milfleur is realizing her dream through the generous bequest of Dorothy G. Cooley, BA '60.
To say that Marie Milfleur knows about struggle and determination would be an understatement. For her, it was a long journey to Northeastern and she's grateful to finally be traveling on that path. The opportunity to attend the university—once only a dream—was realized through a generous bequest established by the late Dorothy Cooley, BA'60.
When Milfleur became a single parent, she and her four young children moved to Massachusetts, where she secured a job at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Once her children were older, she was able to consider fulfilling her desire to study psychology at Northeastern. However, in order to attain her goal, Milfleur needed financial assistance and the flexibility to attend classes while working and raising a family. It was a bequest from Dorothy Cooley that would make her dream a reality.
Cooley achieved remarkable professional success in her lifetime, and was committed to supporting women pursuing both their educational and career goals. Always an accomplished student, she continued her higher education by attending Northeastern at night and graduated magna cum laude with a degree in business administration. In appreciation for her Northeastern experience, Cooley named the university as a beneficiary of her estate—and to this day, makes an impact in the lives of others through the Dorothy G. Cooley Scholarship.
As the grateful recipient of the Cooley Scholarship, Marie Milfleur shares "Once I receive my degree, I would like to dedicate my life to helping others. If it wasn't for Dorothy's bequest, I wouldn't be here."
Through his gift to Northeastern, Bob Clayson, BA '70, crafted his legacy to make an impact on the world.
When Bob Clayson, BA'70, first learned about Northeastern through a family friend, he "found the co-op program completely intriguing." He shares, "It was a chance to get out in the real world, to spend time with people who were doing what I might want to do some day." So Bob enrolled in the D'Amore-McKim School of Business, where various co-op positions helped shape his career in the securities industry.
Grateful to Northeastern for his professional success, Bob deepened his longstanding commitment to the university by making a philanthropic investment in his alma mater. As a volunteer on Northeastern's Corporation, Bob's generosity underscores the value of leadership support to the university by helping to power its momentum and innovative vision.
By naming Northeastern in his will, Bob is ensuring that future students and faculty have the same opportunity for excellence that he discovered as an undergraduate. "When you help Northeastern, you help a lot of people," he shares. "You may not know them, but you know that they're going to better, brighter, more productive people as a result. You know your gift will make an impact on this world."
Designated to the D'Amore-McKim School of Business and the Athletics Department, Bob's legacy gift will ensure the continued recruitment of the best and brightest talent so that Northeastern remains a leader in the global landscape. A self-proclaimed salesman for the university, Bob explains, "Northeastern is a product that I believe in. When a salesman believes in his product, he will make things happen."
Fred Hunt, BA'71 and his wife, Mary MacVey, believe education is a defining time for young adults and they want that opportunity to be available to future generations of students
Charitable gift annuity
Growing up in Worcester with three siblings and not a lot of extra money for college, Fred Hunt, BA'71, worked his way through college in order to get an education. It was Northeastern's co-op program that allowed him to attend school and obtain a degree in business administration.
For Fred, co-op was more than a means to pay for his education - it also helped him discover his professional interests. He learned practical business practices, strategy, and corporate decorum while on co-op in the insurance industry.
After graduation, Fred spent two years in the military, gaining real-world people management experience as an officer. Following his service, he wanted to embark on a career that would incorporate the business skills he acquired at Northeastern and the interpersonal skills he developed in the military. Combined with his MBA from Babson College, Fred built a successful career in human resources.
Fred shares, "Northeastern allowed me to mature, become more worldly, and increase my self-confidence." In gratitude, Fred and wife, Mary MacVey, established a charitable gift annuity to ensure that future students will benefit from a Northeastern education.
Fred explains, "An annuity is a great retirement tool because it provides dependable regular income, and at the end, supports the university." Like Fred and Mary, you can create your Northeastern legacy by designating your gift to the college or program of your choice.
How can you help heal and repair the world? It's a big question, but Amy Stephson L'77 found her answer at Northeastern.
When Amy Stephson, L'77, reflects on her initial interest in law, she remembers one thing: Her fervent desire to improve the world by helping others in need. Believing deeply in the law's ability to generate change, she enrolled in Northeastern's School of Law in 1974.
For Amy, the school's cooperative learning program stands out most during her years as a student. She had the opportunity to practice at firms in Vermont and Anchorage—where she worked on a contract to provide pre-paid legal services to the Teamsters working on the Alaska pipeline—and at two legal services offices in the Boston area. These diverse experiences helped shape Amy's career and influence her professional pursuits.
Today, a practicing attorney with nearly 35 years of legal experience as well as a certified professional coach who provides workplace and business training, Amy gives her law school education much of the credit for her career path. "NUSL taught me to be resourceful and look beyond the routine career options that many lawyers chose," she says. "It also taught me that each of us could create our own vision of a career and work to make it a reality."
Inspired by the law school's mission and motivated to ensure that future students have the opportunity to attend Northeastern, Amy decided to support her alma mater by including NUSL in her estate plans. She shares, "Northeastern trains students to be thoughtful, skilled lawyers and to heal and repair the world in part through cooperative legal education. This is why I have named the law school as a beneficiary of my estate."
Like Amy, you can designate your gift to the college or program of your choice.
Gary Dunton, BA'78 briefly took to the high seas to chart his way in life and it led him to our co-op program.
When Gary C. Dunton, BA'78, graduated from high school, he dreamed of becoming a ship captain. After a semester at the United States Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, New York, he decided to take his profession in a different direction and moved to Boston in search of other opportunities. Like many of his generation, it was Northeastern's cooperative learning program that provided Gary with the finances to attend college.
Driven and motivated, Gary enrolled in the College of Business Administration with the determination to obtain the best possible co-op position. Through advisor guidance, persistence, and hard work, he was appointed to a position within Gillette. Gary returned to Gillette for each co-op semester and after graduation—armed with a solid Northeastern education and extensive work experience—he pursued a master's degree at Harvard Business School.
With degrees from Northeastern and Harvard, Gary went on to build a successful career in financial and insurance management. "I've done some wonderful things and had many great opportunities," he shares. "I ran the second largest business at Aetna; I lead USF&G's insurance operations ; and I was the CEO and Chairman of MBIA all at young ages and all with success. I credit that to Northeastern."
Inspired by his accomplished career, Gary made a commitment to support Northeastern so that future generations will have the opportunity to attend college and to impact the world. As a volunteer leader on the university's Corporation, Gary contributes his time and talent to help drive Northeastern's momentum and innovative vision.
Gary is also investing in the future of Northeastern by naming the university in his will, and for him, this was an obvious and easy decision to make. He shares, "If you went here, you had a good time here, and your education was instrumental to your success. Why wouldn't you give here?" Through his legacy gift, generations of students will have the opportunity to take advantage of a Northeastern education, and use it as their foundation to impact the world.
Like Gary, you can designate your gift to the college or program of your choice.
For Larry O'Rourke, BA'65, Northeastern is more than just his alma mater - it's one of his great loves.
Charitable Remainder Trust
When Larry enrolled in the College of Business Administration, he never envisioned the considerable impact it would have on his world. Like many of his fellow classmates, it was the university's cooperative learning program that afforded him the opportunity to attend college. Larry credits his co-op at United Art Company with shaping his career interests in business merchandising, and he quickly moved up the ranks to positions that offered greater leadership experiences. These roles strengthened Larry's personal and professional skills and helped to build his ever-growing Northeastern community.
As Larry's Husky network expanded, so did his love for Northeastern. "Northeastern is like a family," he shares. His enthusiastic attendance at athletic events, his volunteer leadership on the university's governing board, and his generous philanthropic commitments are expressions of his steadfast dedication to Northeastern. Initially, Larry's charitable interests inspired him to establish a scholarship fund in memory of his late son and Northeastern student, Sean O'Rourke, to support students studying political science. "I think it's important to build the endowment so that hardworking, motivated students have the opportunity to attend Northeastern," Larry shares.
Larry's support of the university today has inspired him to ensure Northeastern's vibrant future for the students of tomorrow. Motivated by the opportunities that Northeastern provided him, Larry decided to additionally support his alma mater by establishing a charitable remainder trust and including the university in his will. "I really want to make sure that I contribute to the future of Northeastern and invest in the generations to come," Larry says. "Many people think they have to be wealthy to leave a future gift to the university, but that's not true at all. We all have to give back in life. Once I took care of my family, I knew I would provide for Northeastern and my other charitable interests.
Larry's gift will ensure that future students have the opportunity to take advantage of a Northeastern education – and to create a Husky family of their own.
Academic Excellence. Community. Each Other. Thomas Kerr, E'69, ME'71 and Carol Kerr, Ed'73, Med'76 discovered this and more at Northeastern.
First-generation college graduates, Thomas and Carol Kerr often think back fondly on their years at Northeastern. Once the "concrete campus" that they remember, the university now boasts new research facilities, increased global learning opportunities, and exceptional interdisciplinary faculty hires. Among the many advances that they find impressive, one constant remains: Northeastern is leading the way in academic and experiential education.
The Kerrs benefited from co-op and praise those experiences for enriching their professional and personal lives. Carol's involvement with the Headstart program inspired her passion for giving, volunteering, and improving the lives of others in the community – a path she pursued professionally as an educator. Through his various co-ops, Tom learned that his interests within engineering rested more in collaborating directly with people rather than focusing on industry manufacturing. It was co-op that allowed Tom and Carol to identify and define their professional passions.
Tom shares, "Northeastern provided a foundation for both of us to grow professionally through the years and achieve what we were able to achieve. We felt it was appropriate to give back."
To support the university, the Kerrs have included Northeastern in their estate plans. Tom shares, "As first-generation college graduates, it's important to us that Northeastern remains committed to providing all students with access to higher education. This is why we have named the university as a beneficiary of our estate."
Consider a charitable gift to Northeastern in your will and help support future generations of students.
The decision that set the course for Joanne Lynch, LA'78, MeD'90 was made early in life and has left a lasting impact.
For Joanne Lynch, attending Northeastern University was the first important life decision she ever made and it continues to impact her to this day.
Her memorable and influential co-op experiences prompted her to pursue a rewarding career in higher education and counseling. Today, as the assistant dean of admissions at the University of Rhode Island, Lynch credits Northeastern's co-op program as the foundation of her accomplished professional career.
Lynch remains enthusiastically dedicated to the university through alumni engagement and philanthropy. Recently, she was inspired to name Northeastern as a beneficiary of her will to ensure that future generations of students benefit from experiential learning, just as she did years earlier.
Q: Why did you choose to attend Northeastern?
A: I wanted the excitement of the city and the diversity of a large campus, but the primary draw was the co-op program. The idea of gaining work experience while in college was very intriguing.
Q: How did your co-op influence your professional career path?
A: I had two co-op experiences that were significant in terms of my ultimate career choices. The first was in Northeastern's (then) College of Liberal Arts dean's office. I was inspired by the assistant dean, Ruth Karp, and her team of academic advisors who helped students in so many ways. Up until that point, I did not have a concept of higher education as a career, except for the faculty.
My second co-op was in the "School Within" Program at Medford High School. One of my assignments was working with students who were habitually tardy, and I really enjoyed the one-on-one counseling aspect of the job. I have followed both paths, having an extensive career in higher education, plus earning two master's degrees, one in College Student Personnel and one in Counseling.
Q: How did Northeastern shape your personal and professional life?
A: I learned a great deal from the diversity of culture and opinions at Northeastern, and these experiences certainly shaped the opinions and beliefs I hold today. Professionally, after graduating from Northeastern, I began working at the university, where I was employed for 14 years, and pursued a master's degree while employed there. I then moved on to two different universities in other states.
Q: Have you stayed connected to Northeastern as an alumna?
A: Most definitely! I serve as the co–leader of the Northeastern Rhode Island Alumni Chapter, and get the chance to connect—and reconnect—with fellow Huskies frequently. My daughter is also an alumna, graduating from the Law School in 2009. Both of her parents are Huskies!
Q: Why were you inspired to name Northeastern as a beneficiary of your will?
A: I would not have had such an interesting and rewarding professional career were it not for the education I received at Northeastern. It is a way for me to "give back" to the university that provided me with an excellent education, which has given me a strong foundation for a career in higher education.
Q: What do you want your gift to accomplish for the future of Northeastern?
A: I was helped in so many ways by faculty and staff at the university, including the academic advisement and support of Dean Karp and her academic advising team. One wonderful faculty member, Dr. Gerald Griffin of the English Department, loaned me publisher's copies of textbooks each semester, so that I would not have to buy them! These gestures were small to them, but very important to me. I have tried to assist others in similar ways during my career, and hope that my gift can help future students in a larger way.
Q: Why is it important for alumni to support Northeastern through a planned gift?
A: Take a moment to trace back to the origins of how you came to be where you are today. For me, the first most important decision I made was my decision to attend Northeastern University. So many of my personal and professional experiences derived from that one decision, and it is one I have never regretted. If the same is true for you, consider a planned gift to Northeastern. It is a very easy process, and will help future generations of students, as you, perhaps, were helped.
I am proud to be a Husky every day!
GOAL!!! It's not just Hockey that fuels Coach Jim Madigan, BA'86. He's spent 25 years - and counting - making a difference at Northeastern.
Jim Madigan, BA'86 has already established quite a legacy at Northeastern. As an alumnus of the College of Business Administration, an accomplished Husky hockey player, and three-time Beanpot champion, Madigan continues his 25-year tenure with the university as the new head coach for men's hockey.
"I have a tremendous passion for this university and for the athletics program. Northeastern is a world-class institution and Boston is a world-class city," he shares. To this end, Jim and his wife Kimberly, PAH'83, have named the university as a beneficiary in their will — furthering their legacy at Northeastern. Their generosity will support future generations of student athletes and sustain Northeastern's comprehensive, high-quality intercollegiate athletics and campus recreation program.
If you dream of making a lasting difference, unleash the power in your will and take your shot at supporting Northeastern!
Learn how you can give for the future right now. Contact us today.
Dreamers are welcomed at Northeastern. Paul Joubert, BA'71 had a dream and co-op helped make it a reality.
Charitable Gift Annuity
Paul Joubert, BA'71, had a dream: to become a first-generation college student. Northeastern's co-op program made it financially possible to make his dream a reality.
"The real-time practical application of what I learned during my co-op experience, in conjunction with what I learned at school, prepared me for the rest of my life," he says.
Joubert went on to build a successful thirty-eight-year career with PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the world's largest professional services firms. Working with Northeastern, he carefully planned a series of charitable gift annuities, providing him with income today, and has named the university as a beneficiary in his will. Additionally, PricewaterhouseCoopers is matching a portion of Joubert's gift through its partner benefit program.
Learn how you can give for the future right now. Contact us today.
Don't call Michael Winston, BA'10 a Millennial, unless you want to celebrate the fact that he's our youngest Frank Palmer Speare member!
Michael Winston knew exactly what he wanted in a college. "I chose Northeastern because of everything it offers," he says. "I wanted to build my resumé with amazing real–world experiences. I wanted opportunities to travel abroad. And I wanted the excitement of living in Boston."
His choice paid off and today, Michael is working as a consultant, a job he secured during his final semester. But the young alumnus isn't just forging his own future—he's planning for Northeastern's, too.
In appreciation for his Northeastern experience, Michael and his parents, Jeffrey and Susan, have named the university as a beneficiary of their estate. The gift, which costs them nothing during their lifetime, will ensure that future students benefit from Northeastern's unique brand of learning.
"If something were to happen to my parents and me tomorrow, we want to be sure the money is put to good use," says Michael. "When I considered which charities I wanted to support with my inheritance, I immediately thought of Northeastern."
Show your appreciation. Establish your legacy. Plan your bequest gift
She's not the shy type. Janet Bullard, MBA'78 is a self-made success story. From humble beginnings the only way was up!
Charitable Remainder Trust
Janet Bullard has never shied away from a challenge. She grew up in "absolute poverty" in her native Canada; was the only woman in her undergraduate business program; balanced a full-time job with her evening MBA studies; and forged a highly-successful career path in the rough-and-tumble financial management industry.
Janet credits Northeastern with paving the way. "Northeastern was very different, very practical. It's right in the city, not separate from people or from the world. And I think that gives it a distinct advantage."
In her gratitude, Janet has named Northeastern as a beneficiary of a charitable remainder trust established through her estate. The gift, which costs her nothing during her lifetime, is a simple arrangement with a significant impact. Additionally, she also has pledged to fund a scholarship for Business Administration students.
"We have to step in and help those with financial need," Janet says. "Education played such a role in my success. I want to ensure that similar opportunities are within reach for future generations."
Janet's legacy will be providing future students access to a Northeastern education.
Donald Kramer, BA'59 felt he always had the edge - and he's made the most of it!
Planned Gift of Retirement Assets
Donald J. Kramer, BA ’59, graduated from Northeastern University with the belief he was well prepared.
“I always felt I knew more than people I was up against,” he quips.
After managing and selling a series of small technology companies, Kramer became a venture capitalist and served on multiple corporate boards.
Kramer’s professional success luckily provided him with substantial retirement assets. After reviewing his financial situation, Kramer decided to designate Northeastern as the beneficiary of one of his retirement accounts.
“I had accumulated assets in a tax-free sheltered account and expected it would provide for my family. But I learned the government would take 70 percent once I died because of double taxation — you have to pay income tax, plus a hefty estate tax.”
“By creating a planned gift at Northeastern, I avoid the double tax and put the funds to good use to help the university at minimal cost to me. It’s win-win-win,” declares Kramer. “It’s effective retirement planning, and lets me give back to the school that launched me.”
Designating Northeastern as the ultimate beneficiary of your retirement assets can be a tax efficient way to support the University.
Go West young man! Irving Levine, E'57 did just that when he set out for California and the future that lay ahead for him in 1961.
Charitable Remainder Trust
Irving Levine, E ’57, is the classic American success story. He ventured out west in 1961 with $100 in his pocket to try his hand in California.
With luck, hard work and drive, Levine built the flourishing Multiquip Construction Equipment Corp. in Carson, California.
He recently sold the company, which allowed Levine more time for his family and charitable endeavors. But the sale also left him with tax issues and the question of what to do with a lump sum of money.
Levine had always credited his business success to his education, and so decided to establish a charitable remainder trust benefiting Northeastern.
“This gift was the smart thing to do. It was a great solution for me, because I was able to benefit the university while avoiding capital gains tax and securing income for my family all at the same time,” says Levine
“This gift is an expression of my thanks and respect for Northeastern. But the real advantage is that it will help educate young minds — there’s nothing more important than that.”
Do you know what it takes to work full-time and attend college at night? Patricia Hanna, UC'74, H'98 has some idea.
Charitable Gift Annuity
When Patricia Hanna was working for Houghton Chemical in the 1970s, the owners recognized her potential. They offered Hanna the opportunity to attend Northeastern at night. As a measure of her deep appreciation, she now helps others pursue higher education. Her vehicle of choice is the charitable gift annuity.
"The planned giving program is wonderful because the income for life generated by an annuity doesn’t have to come back to me. I can share my success with others who are important in my life," said Hanna.
With the help of Northeastern's Office of Gift Planning, Patricia has creatively established annuities that provide lifetime income to her sister and other friends. She also takes great satisfaction in knowing that, eventually, the balance of the annuity will come to benefit specific areas of special interest to her at Northeastern.
Hanna also provides scholarships involving the School of Professional and Continuing Studies, the Fund for the Public Interest at the Northeastern School of Law, as well as the Torch Scholars Program.
"If you receive a gift and it improves your life, then in the future give it back and keep it going. It's a chain that exceeds your lifetime."
Did you ever think you'd find your soul mate at college? Bill and Louise Collins, E'56, LA'56 did and they tell how Northeastern is still a part of their relationship.
Charitable Gift Annuity
“If we can do it, so can you,” say Bill and Louise Collins, (E '56, LA '56) . With a little imagination, they were able to make a meaningful gift to Northeastern University.
“We first met at Northeastern, and the University has always played an important role in our lives,” says Bill. “When we saw others of our generation giving back, we were inspired to express our appreciation as well; that’s why we set up a charitable gift annuity. The bonus is that it will provide us income well into the future.”
“We realized that you don’t have to be the wealthiest person to make a real difference in the future of an institution,” explains Louise. “It is a great source of pride to know that we are doing just that — making a difference for Northeastern University. And all it took was a little imagination.”
Janet M. Smith, L'79 took the bar, and then raised it for herself.
Deferred Charitable Gift Annuity
Boston trusts and estate attorney Janet M. Smith, L'79, often sees baby boomer clients with a particular problem. "They've realized terrific gains through investments and face stiff capital gains tax. They don't need income now, but will in retirement," says Smith.
"I often advise them to set up a deferred gift annuity, which provides a tax deduction now and income in retirement."
Smith makes this recommendation from her personal experience. She and her husband set up a deferred gift annuity with Northeastern to benefit the Law School. They transferred appreciated stock to create a fund that will generate fixed payments when they retire.
"Northeastern prepared me professionally and gave me a competitive edge. This is a great way of thanking the university. It let me make a gift I could afford, knowing it will also provide income when I need it," notes Smith.
"I encourage more mid-career professionals to explore this option. It's a way of helping Northeastern and building a sound financial plan for the future."
Paul Hirtle, E '56 invested in his education and now he's doing the same for the next generation of Huskies.
"Investing in a Northeastern education as a student was one of the most important decisions of my life," says Paul Hirtle, E '56. Not only did Northeastern prepare him for a successful professional career with Sylvania, Polaroid, and GTE, but he also met his late wife, Joanne, while on co-op.
In gratitude, Hirtle plans to leave the majority of his estate to Northeastern. His bequest will one day establish two endowed funds in mechanical engineering - for scholarships, equipment, and research - creating a lasting legacy to his generosity.
"Through this bequest, I am able to help ensure the future of the University and its students. That, to me, is incredibly rewarding," says Hirtle.