While a student at SLUH, I was told by a Jesuit that I could be anything I wanted to be in life, but I would not be truly happy unless I found a way to touch the lives of a lot of people in a positive way. It was a very profound moment for me, partly because this man knew me better than I knew myself at that stage in my life.
I made a commitment, to myself I suppose, to not only support SLUH every year, but to increase the level of my commitment each year. The thought was that my earning power would increase over time, and I should increase my gift correspondingly. As my annual gift increased, and given the fact that I was a tax specialist with an international CPA firm, I decided I should use tax-advantaged methods. After all, I was in the business of advising my clients to use these same methods to reduce their tax burden.
Aside from the obvious tax advantages inherent in planned giving, I have to say that it is fairly painless. It's easier, psychologically, than writing a check. From a tax standpoint, it allows me to "control" my tax liability from year to year. I get a real sense of satisfaction knowing that my dollars are going where I want them to go.
While I support other charities, I know I am "leveraging" my charitable dollars when I give to SLUH. SLUH continues to develop "men for others," who, as they go through life, will give of their considerable talents, time and financial resources to countless other charitable and civic organizations. I can't get that same kind of "multiplier effect" anywhere else.