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Will and Catherine O'Reilly Collette
Creating a Legacy of Social Action

Will and Catherine O'Reilly Collette deeply understand the importance of playing a role in the well-being of our neighbors in need. As social activists, they support organizations fighting poverty. "I'm a lifetime organizer, and it's always been important for us to help those on the front lines working for social change," explains Will.

Will worked for 25 years in the non-profit realm, and Catherine is now retired from her job as a department head for a national labor union. Will adds "Supporting the Food Bank is a very direct way for us to affect people's lives in a positive way, which has always been one of our priorities."

As donors through our Sustainer's Harvest monthly giving program, the Collettes' generosity provides a consistent revenue source for the Food Bank. "You don't have to give a huge amount to make a difference," Catherine says.

In addition to their monthly gifts, the Collette's, who do not have children, have designated the Food Bank as an IRA beneficiary in their will, creating a lasting legacy that will help future generations. Catherine continues, "It's a great feeling to think we can help after we're gone. You don't have to leave everyting to family. You can certainly put some aside for your community."

Former Food Editor Sees Benefits of IRA Charitable Rollover Donation

Donna Lee Maximizes her Food Bank Donation While Avoiding Taxes

Donna Lee has been involved with the world of food for most of her life. She grew up in Nebraska and Iowa and studied food journalism at Iowa State. She was food editor at the Boston Herald and later went on to become food editor for The Providence Journal Bulletin from 1982 until she retired in 2001. Donna's husband, Christopher DelSesto, is a native Rhode Islander and was Senior Vice President and General Counsel at Johnson & Wales University before he retired.

As a Food Bank Board member for many years, Donna has served on countless fundraising event committees, and remains an active member of the Food Bank's honorary Board of Directors today. So it was only natural for her to recognize the benefits of making a charitable contribution through her IRA to support an organization she cares for so deeply.

The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010 extended the IRA Charitable Rollover for 2010 and 2011. This allows individuals age 70 and older to make direct transfers totaling up to $100,000 per year to 501(c)(3) charities, without having to count the transfers as income for federal income tax purposes. In addition, a rollover donation counts toward your required minimum distribution.

"I like to donate to charities such as the Food Bank with a tax-free transfer from my IRA," says Donna. "It means more money for the Food Bank, no taxes for me. Suppose your combined federal and state tax rate is 33%. If you withdraw $1,000 of income from your IRA, you pay $330 in taxes and net $670. Then you have only $670 to donate to the Food Bank. Wouldn't you be happier if that $330 also went to the Food Bank instead of the IRS?" asks Donna.

"I'm happy about saving on taxes and happy to help the Food Bank provide food to Rhode Islanders in need. The Food Bank is very efficient in using its donations to combat hunger in RI. It's a goal I care about deeply. The more I can help, the better I feel. And, I can't bear to think of people going hungry."

To learn more about making an IRA Charitable Rollover from your IRA, click here.

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