Where There's a Will, There's a Way

Marion Albrough

A dedicated fan, Albrough would arrive hours early to Laker Hockey games. She named Laker Hockey as one of three beneficiaries of her estate.

Donors to Lake Superior State University vary in their backgrounds, financial status and occupations. They are as unique as the 300-plus accounts held at the LSSU Foundation for their respective purposes. The common denominators of our donors are their generosity and their desire to help LSSU students. Such is the case with a recent estate gift from longtime Laker hockey fan, Marion Albrough, who passed away in May 2015.

Albrough was described as a hard worker, employed through the Sault Ste. Marie-based nonprofit, Northern Transitions. She worked for several local industries, took pride in her duties and, according to one employer, displayed a good sense of humor when she wanted to. She was an avid Special Olympian participant in many activities held in LSSU’s James Norris Events Center.

If you have attended a Laker hockey home game, you probably rubbed elbows with Albrough. She was a season-ticket holder and could be found at her spot in the foyer between the Bud Cooper Gym and Taffy Abel Ice Arena, hours before a game, greeting the coaches and players.

“During my time as the Norris Center facility director, I would often visit with Marion,” said Tom Coates, LSSU Foundation executive director. “It was typical to see our hockey coaches and players greeting Marion on their way to the locker room. I could tell a strong rapport and relationship was being built with her.”

That proved to be the case. With the guidance of her family representative, an Irrevocable Living Trust was established in 2001 naming Albrough’s three most important beneficiaries—a local church, her cousin and the Laker Hockey Program.

“I was pleasantly surprised when I learned of Marion’s generous estate gift in support of our hockey program,” said Coates. “It shows how passionate she was about Laker Hockey, and how our coaches and players made such a positive impact on her.” The trust document stipulates that “one quarter of her holdings is earmarked for the sole benefit of the Laker Hockey Team for whom I have been a fan for many years.”

Albrough’s estate settlement is coming to a close after a lengthy legal process. As an estate planning rule of thumb, it is recommended to inform beneficiaries of one’s estate plan. Providing an excerpt or one page from your will is an easy way to notify the intended individual or charitable organization. This can result in timely and potentially less costly settlement of one’s estate.

“We are very appreciative and pledge to be good stewards of Marion’s generosity,” said Coates. “We will collaborate with the Laker Hockey coach and athletic director to fulfill Marion’s wish in helping to advance the hockey program and to properly recognize her for this special gift to Laker Hockey and to the student athletes.”

If you wish to include LSSU in your estate plan, please contact Sharon Dorrity '87 at 906-635-2665 or sdorrity@lssu.edu for additional information. For estate planning advice, please consult with your attorney or an estate planning adviser.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Lake Superior State University Foundation a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

Bequest Langauge

I, [name], of [city, state ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Lake Superior State University Foundation [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose.

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to LSSU Foundation or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to LSSU Foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to LSSU Foundation as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and LSSU Foundation where you agree to make a gift to LSSU Foundation and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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