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Leaving BSU Better Than They Found It


Dr. Richard and Dorothy Burkhardt

By Alexandra A. Donaldson, Communications Intern

Through the generosity of Dr. Richard and Dorothy Burkhardt, Ball State's liberal arts programs and Museum of Art have been able to grow. Knowing that the need for scholarships would never end, the Burkhardts created three endowments to benefit students in history, foreign language, and study abroad programs.

Richard received an LLD from Ball State and served the university as a history professor, vice president for academic affairs, and provost, and was acting president in 1979. Dorothy (MA '58) was a French professor for 27 years.

Many would say that the Burkhardts' donation to the renovation of the Ball State Museum of Art was their most impressive gift. Their sentimental connection to the museum is what makes it even more special. Dorothy often spent her mornings there for classes, and Richard has fond memories from his early years of reading the graduates' names at commencement from the walk inside. "I always thought of the building as a place where really important things happened for the university, and the two of us had reasons for sustaining and enhancing this important campus landmark," Richard says.

The inspiration to give not only came from the Athenian Oath, but from Dorothy's father building churches wherever they moved when she was growing up. When Richard heard about the foundation's gift-giving program from former chairman Ralph Whitinger (1953-1982), there was no turning back. After discussing the program with him, Richard has lived by the philosophy of giving back and given generously to BSU.

The Burkhardts plan to continue their legacy through planned gifts from their estate with a bequest, beneficiary designation in a life insurance plan, charitable remainder unitrust, and charitable remainder annuity trust. "Ball State has given us the opportunity to live in a pleasant and friendly community and to be part of the development of a strong university. It has been a privilege that is priceless and deserves our thanks and support," Richard says.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Ball State University Foundation 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 Ball State University Foundation, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 2800 W. Bethel Avenue, Muncie, IN 47304, 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.

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 potential 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 may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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 may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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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