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Private Foundation

Wealth Manager






I’m Marilyn Meyers Buckey, former financial executive and advisor of the Robert A. and Jean C. Meyers Family Fund at Akron Community Foundation.

Marilyn Meyers BuckeyThroughout my parents’ lives, they instilled in me values of legacy and giving back: values your family probably shares.

Perhaps your private foundation’s assets are not what they used to be, or the legal and financial expenses are becoming too much to handle alone.

I am an Akron Community Foundation client of 14 years, and I can assure you that they can save you money and relieve you of those burdens while you continue to support the organizations you love.

With a minimum transfer of $5,000, the community foundation can help you convert your private foundation to a permanent charitable fund in your family’s name. You can add to the fund at any time and enjoy up to a 20 percent tax advantage over gifts to your private foundation. 

Through my family’s donor-advised fund at the community foundation, we have the freedom to recommend grants to our favorite causes and charities locally and across the country, however and whenever we wish. And unlike with a private foundation, we are not required to pay out 5 percent in grants every year, so we can make a few small grants one year and save up for a high-impact grant the next year.

Fund advisory rights can be passed down from generation to generation, so your grandchildren, their grandchildren, and even their great-grandchildren’s grandchildren can choose worthwhile causes to support in your family’s name. The community foundation staff can engage them in discussions about philanthropy and provide them with grant-making options that fit with your funding priorities.

Perhaps your family isn’t as involved as it used to be with your foundation, or maybe you prefer the advisory rights to end with your living heirs. Akron Community Foundation's board will ensure your charitable wishes continue on forever by making grants from your fund to the causes, charities or initiatives you loved during your lifetime.

How do you want to leave your family’s permanent legacy?

I want to reduce my foundation's recordkeeping and tax burden.

Our donor-advised fund option offers you a full and immediate tax deduction for your contribution. The community foundation handles all the paperwork, gift acknowledgement and tax filings, and you can continue recommending grants to your favorite charities. Because the community foundation doesn't require you to make a mandatory 5 percent payout, you can take your time distributing grants to whichever 501(c)(3) nonprofits you wish. Making your grant recommendations are easy: by mail, email, phone or via our online fund management tool, DonorCentral.

I want to avoid paying excise tax on my foundation's investment earnings.

The best option for you is a donor-advised fund. When you are a fundholder at Akron Community Foundation, our 501(c)(3) status means your fund is exempt from paying excise tax on realized gains and income. To learn more, contact Steve Schloenbach, vice president and chief financial officer.

I am already considering starting (or closing) my private foundation.

Before you do, compare your options and see the differences between a private foundation and a donor-advised fund. The community foundation makes it easy to open a fund and can help you do so in a single transaction. As always, one of our staff members is available to talk to you, your foundation administrator, or your advisor to discuss which option would be most advantageous for you. Donors to your fund can claim up to 50 percent of their adjusted gross income from contributions of cash and 30 percent from contributions of appreciated securities. This is significantly higher than the deductions allowed for gifts to private foundations, which are 30 percent and 20 percent, respectively.

I want to include my children and grandchildren in my philanthropy.

We would love to help you create a family legacy with your fund. Akron Community Foundation offers fundholders the ability to name their children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews or other family members as successor advisors who recommend grants from your fund. By communicating with your family about your charitable goals and values, they can help carry on your legacy for years to come. Our donor services staff meets with families throughout the year – at the community foundation offices and in their home – to facilitate talks about charitable giving. If the family wishes, they can even offer a list of fully vetted nonprofit programs in the family's area of charitable interest. Children especially enjoy learning about local programs and selecting their favorite organizations to receive grants.

I want to make sure our family's charitable legacy outlives me.

We can help you make ongoing grants through what’s called an endowment. Grants from an endowed fund are made in perpetuity in your fund's name and are celebrated through our grant announcements, annual reports and media releases, should you wish. Should the cause or organization you support cease to exist, the community foundation’s board and staff will protect your original intent by directing grants in your fund’s name in the same spirit and to a similar, viable cause or charity.

I want my financial advisor to continue managing my fund's assets.

You've come to the right place. If your family starts a donor-advised fund with an initial gift of $250,000 or more, you can recommend that your current financial advisor manage the assets of your fund, as long as he or she is in accordance with our official outside manager policy.

I want insight into the local nonprofit community so I can make wise giving decisions.

Donor advisors can take advantage of the community foundation’s deep knowledge of the region’s nonprofits. We can offer you potential grant opportunities based on your area of interest and give you insight into local issues. We can even take you to visit a nonprofit so you can see its programs in action. Or, we can contact one of the nearly 800 community foundations across the country if you, for example, want to recommend a grant where another family member lives. Except in extraordinary cases where significant expenses are incurred, there is no charge for this service.

I want to be sure my charitable investments are managed prudently and at a fair rate.

All community foundation funds are carefully managed, with complete transparency in our financesinvestment policiesasset allocationsmanagersfeesaudits and performance. All fundholders receive regular statements and can also review them online through DonorCentral. If you create a fund and wish to recommend a qualified investment manager to oversee your gift, Akron Community Foundation is happy to consider the request in accordance with our official policy.