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December 2012 Newsletter

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Planned Giving Mentor

Of Counsel: Winton C. Smith, Jr., JD

Professional Partnerships: Hospice Philanthropy Group L.L.C.

Quotes for today: “To give away money is an easy matter in any man’s power. But to decide to whom to give it, and how large and when, and for what purpose and how, is neither in every man’s power nor an easy matter.” — Aristotle (Ethics, 360 BCE)

Identify...Cultivate...Illuminate...Close...Jerry Panas' formula for success

You've got to have vision to be successful.

Past issues of the Newsletter are available in the Newsletter Archives Connect on Linkedin


4 Ways to get better at asking..... Development is all about obtaining current and future financial commitments for your charity. You need to obtain commitments from your probable donors, your loyal donors, boards and volunteers. If you are going to gain those commitments you’re going to have to ask for them.

Here are four ways to get better at asking.

1. Tie your asking to future value creation. One way to improve your ability to gain a commitment is to focus on the future value you’re going to create. How will the gift change the life of a those you serve? Do you ask for access to your prospects decision-influencers? How would your donor’s decision affect them? With a planned gift ask most likely there will be a transfer of assets from your donor to your charity and have a negative effect on the professional advisor. How will you face this dilemma? If it is early in the cultivation process create value by giving them information and ideas they can use, regardless of whether they support other charities. Make it easy for them to say yes later.

2. Earn a commitment before you ask. The more value you create during each donor visit the more you earn the right to ask for the gift your need. Early in the cultivation process paint a picture of the ideas that will benefit them, you make it easier to gain a commitment to move forward. The opposite is also true. The less valuable you are during each interaction, the more difficult it is for you to ask for an appropriate gift, either outright or future commitment.

3. Practice asking. You get better at asking if you practice. The more practice the more comfortable you will be with the words coming out your mouth and the easier it will be for you to ask. Don’t be too shy or embarrassed. Your prospect knows why you are there. The rewards are high for those who rehearse the words and practice the language. Try practicing with a group of your peers. Make it a group game, critique one another and offer suggestions. You will get the opportunity to listen to the language of others and steal some for your own visits.

4. Remember you are in fund raising. Don’t worry about being in fund raising. Guess what you are and you can’t change it. You are the front line for securing financial support for your charity. Fund raising is a contact sport. The more contact the more success you will have. If you tie asking to future value creation the process will become easy. You will not win them all but you will improve your average. Using planned gift strategies you will be helping your prospect fulfill their goal of leaving a legacy of hope and accomplishment.


American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.....Much has been written about the significant tax law changes recently passed by Congress. Excellent summaries were provided by Crescendo, Shape, Cannon Insights, and the Urban Institute center on Nonprofit's and Philanthropy. Click on each to access their information.

Charities faired well in the ATRA 2012. Full charitable deduction was retained and the IRA rollover extended for 2013. IRS has published IRA rollover substantiation guidelines for 2012 and 2013 Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD)transfers.

I encourage all charities to review with your boards the Urban Institute's white paper on "What Does the Fiscal Cliff Deal Mean for Nonprofits?" Tremendous information for boards to consider in their strategy plans.


New Client: Operation Smile......I am please to welcome Operation Smile as a new client. Jean Ahwesh · Senior Vice President of Development and Leadership Giving, Norfolk, Virginia. We will be developing and expanding the Operation Smile planned gift efforts in the USA.


Social Security Averages 40% of Income for Elderly.....reports the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) while the highest earning quintile receive 18.6% of income from social security. Pensions and annuities account for 21% of men's income compared with 16.8% of elderly women's income. Source: EBRI

The maximum Social Security retirement benefit that can be received by an individual reaching full retirement age in the year 2013 (i.e., at age 66) is $2,533 a month (source: Social Security Administration). __________________________________________________________________________________________

New IRS Publication 526 for 2012 Tax Returns.....IRS Publication 526 covers how you can deduct charitable contributions, when to deduct, limits on deductions and records to keep. The last update was in 2010. Not many changes but you can download the latest here.


Two Planned Gift Position Openings....The National Academies, Washington, DC and Betty Ford Center Foundation, Palm Desert, CA

Director of Gift Planning: The National Academies (NAS) is a consortium of four scientific organizations that provide position papers to Congress and the Federal Government on topics of relevance to science, engineering, research, and medicine. Scientists are invited as members from the most noted research institutions and facilities in America. The NAS is supported by philanthropy with donor resources located in all quarters of the Nation.

The Director of Gift Planning is the lead planned and estate giving officer of the organization and would be responsible to further develop the program and work directly with a portfolio of donor prospects nationally. Target salary is $125,000

Planned Giving Officer: The Betty Ford Center is the nationally acclaimed substance abuse facility located near Palm Springs, California. The Betty Ford Center Foundation (BFC Foundation) is seeking a Major Gifts Officer and a Planned Giving Officer to fill critically important positions on their staff. The Foundation is prepared to hire two individuals to head up these separate areas. However, if one person was identified that had the advanced skills to handle both areas, they would consider that arrangement with an improved compensation package. Target salary range for PG position is $115,000 to $125,000.

The NAS and BFC Foundation have retained the services of Paschal Murray, Inc., an executive search firm devoted to positions in philanthropy, to manage these search projects. Information and application details can be found by visiting Contact Colette M. Murray, JD, CFRE at 760-863-4512 or


Laminated Gift Annuity Rate Charts.....The American Council on Gift Annuities has announced new gift annuity rates in 2012. If you would like a laminated rate chart for the most recent rates simply request one using the following E-mail request.


Inherited IRA Gift.....Do not forget those who inherit parent assets even younger prospects. McLeod Health Foundation, Jill Bramblett, Executive Director and Roxanna Tinsley, Development Officer received a $50,000 memorial gift from a physician in memory of her mother. The daughter inherited her mother's IRA and had to begin required minimum distributions(RMD). It was a ready asset to tap for the memorial gift. Income was reported but fully deductible hense the deduction offset the taxable IRA distribution.


Review your Planned Gift Web Site.....National web site providers were quick to update their content to reflect the recent income, estate and gift tax changes.

If you have a homegrown web site that provides planned giving information now is the time to review and update it for the recent tax law changes which resulted from the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.

Over the years I have found web sites which provided out dated charitable gift annuity rates and estate tax information.

Don't fall into the trap of misleading your donors, keep you information up-to-date.


News and Notes....More then 46% of senior die with less than $10,000 in financial assets. (Source: National Bureau of Economic Research)

EVERY eight (8) seconds another American turns 65.

AARP has a new book "Single Women: Retirement Advice for details go to

SIXTY-TWO percent (62%) of senor's age 50+ do not use Social Media, (Source: AARP)

COMPARED TO THE AVERAGE - The average total return of the S&P 500 over the last 50 years (i.e., 1963-2012) has been a gain of +9.8% per year. Reviewing the index’s performance over the last 30 years (i.e., 1983-2012), 18 have been “above average” and 12 have been “below average.” The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index of 500 widely held stocks that is generally considered representative of the US stock market (source: BTN Research).

WHY? - Health care spending per person in the USA is +85% greater than that of Canadians and +90% more than that of Germans (source: Government Accountability Office).

UNEXPECTED - 50% of retirees left the work force sooner than they expected, oftentimes the result of health issues, disabilities or corporate downsizing. Only 8% of those individuals who retired earlier than they anticipated did so for positive reasons, e.g., their retirement accumulation was larger than expected (source: EBRI).

ALL THAT I NEED - Just 15% of American workers believe they should accumulate at least $1 million in savings and pre-tax accounts for their ultimate retirement needs (source: Employee Benefit Research Institute). 7/16/12 BTN issue

THE CHECK IS IN THE MAIL - 56% of “baby boomers” have received or expect to receive an inheritance from their parents of less than $50,000. Only 2% of “baby boomers” anticipate an inheritance of at least $1 million. “Baby boomers” are the 78 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964. In 2013, this group of folks will turn ages 49-67 (source: Allianz).

Kudos Corner

In this section I periodically highlight some recent gift expectancies and gift program elements I think will be helpful and informative, not all gifts are included.

Kudos to all clients as they set a record last year for completed planned gift agreements. Clients completed one life income agreement every 10 days and these agreements totaled over $1,200,000. Real estate gifts are on the increase. Bargain sales benefited both the donor and charity involved. Life insurance support is still popular especially with financial advisors. In addition there were countless revocable arrangements and beneficiary designations completed to join client planned gift societies.



James E. Connell and Associates is a national consulting service devoted to increasing resources for charities using the power of charitable estate and gift planning techniques.

Pinehurst office: PO Box 3335, Pinehurst, NC 28374
Phone: 910-295-6800

Northeast office: 20982 Bayside Avenue, Rock Hall, MD 21661

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