A $3 million bequest in 1972 from the estate of Frank and Margaret Spain has provided more than $27 million in grants over the past 40 years, making it possible for the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham to create the first public-private partnership to create the McWane Science Center, to spark $15 million in support for three parks and to leverage almost $14 million in federal and private foundation funding to fight obesity and tobacco use in Jefferson County.
That’s quite a payoff for the Community Fund that bears the Spains’ name. Especially because, even after investing more than $27 million in grants over almost 40 years, the $3 million endowment has grown to more than $20 million.
A bequest in 2010 from Mary Lib and Charles Lupton promises great returns as well. After years of faithful and passionate support for the Southern Environmental Law Center, the Birmingham Zoo, UAB and other organizations through an Advised Fund, the Luptons provided for a final gift of $1 million after both were deceased.
The Luptons’ bequest created a field of interest fund at the Community Foundation to benefit education, human services and the environment. Based on what the Spains’ gift has accomplished, we can’t wait to see what impact this generous gift will have in the future.
And the Luptons’ adult children, all of whom live outside of Alabama, have told us they appreciate the fact that their parents chose the Community Foundation to continue this commitment forever in their names.
We have plenty of stories about gifts from generous and forward-thinking people like the Spains and the Luptons. The size of gift varies, as does the asset they choose to use, from stock to the family home. But every bequest reinforces the same commitment to a future these donors won’t see themselves, to planting a tree whose shade they will never sit under, as the African proverb says.
To find out more about how you can include the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham in your will or estate plan, contact Erin Stephenson. Or consider directing your current Advised Fund into a Field of Interest or Community Fund so that your interests will be represented forever through the Results Framework of the Community Foundation.