A Boost for Tomorrow's Philanthropists



What’s hot when it comes to gifts for the graduate? You guessed it. Once again, the ever-popular, flexible, and tax-effective donor advised fund carries the day. More and more parents and grandparents across the country are giving a graduating child or grandchild a donor advised fund, pre-established and pre-funded, in the name of the graduate.

Donor advised funds as gifts to the next generation are on the rise at innovative community foundations. “We’re inviting our donors to consider ‘gift funds’ as a way to engage their own family members in philanthropic values,” said Mike McClamroch, East Tennessee Foundation, President & CEO.   “In celebrating the 30th anniversary of ETF, we focused on the growth of family philanthropy and the significance of Generous Genes published by Susan Crites Price.”

What's more, the donor advised fund is a gift that keeps giving. “Many families consider regular communication to be a key part of the philanthropy experience,” commented Mike. “This way, the family’s values stay intact across generations.” Donors can create the fund, including online access, which provides the recipient and any additional designated fund advisors with confidential access.  Families can become reliant on the donor advised fund dialogue to share stories about the joy of giving based on personal experience. Some families even share a list of favorite charities that have meant the most to the family over the years. “Telling stories and sharing experiences are themselves a gift,” added Mike.

Family communication is always a plus, and communication across the generations is even richer when it’s focused on a topic like philanthropy. Intergenerational dialogue is a major advantage of selecting a donor advised fund to anchor a family’s emotional connections. Hats off to donor advised funds!

For more information, including fund minimum requirements and tax benefits, visit our website at or contact Sherri DeCosta Alley, J.D., Vice President for Advancement at (877) 524-1223. 

Back to News Listing