Recognition of a Donor's Generosity is Critical to Success - Even in Charitable Estate Planning!
Every estate planning professional knows that when philanthropy is to be part of the Donor's estate plan, charitable intent should be present. We all know, however, that people do charitable planning for tax planning and for other reasons. Whether the tools you are going to use include charitable remainder trusts, gift annuities of family foundations, if you haven't convinced your client to benefit a philanthropic effort, the plan may not be implemented.
Every charity's Development Officer also knows that "recognition" is a "must" for major gifts, whether they are outright gifts or through a charitable trust. "Recognition" is one of the primary factors that keeps the donor coming back with more gifts.
It is strange that the typical professional estate planner doesn't include the "recognition" factor in the estate plan, nor realize just how significant the role that "recognition" plays.
The Trust Counselor's Network, Inc. (TCN), a group of charitably oriented professional estate planners with development experience, recommends that you recognize your major donors in a significant way. The TCN suggests that one of the best ways to show your appreciation to a donor is through a gift of highly treasured "collectible art".
Recognizing a donor by giving, for example, a piece of bronze sculpture created by a highly recognized international sculptor shows the charity's appreciation in a big way. Especially if the artist's work appears in the White House and the Vatican. Who wouldn't be pleased to receive a "limited edition" bronze sculpture that is also owned by the President, Pope John Paul II, or by celebrities that everyone knows. Many charities are now using bronze sculptures in their fund-raising efforts, including Art auctions and as gifts for major gifts from donors.