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Professor Catherine Caraher estate benefits CLAE

Catherine Caraher

History Professor Catherine Caraher left an estate gift to University of Detroit Mercy through a Charitable Remainder Trust that will be used to support scholarships and renovations at the Jane and Walter Briggs Building, where most of the College of Liberal Arts & Education courses are taught.

This summer, the first floor of the Briggs building will be enhanced with counters and seating for students using laptops, a large flat-screen TV, and display areas. In the lower level, a new student lounge will offer casual setting for students to study or relax with friends.

A larger portion of the estate gift will be used for an endowed scholarship in Caraher's name. Those funds will also count toward a challenge grant to raise $2 million in scholarships by Dec. 31, 2014 for a 50 percent match ($1 million) from the Madeline Stang Foundation. Caraher's gift was structured as a charitable remainder trust, which also provided retirement income.

As an associate professor who joined the staff in 1962, Caraher later served as chairperson of the History Department and as associate dean of the Liberal Arts College.

"She gave her life to the University and to this College," says Roy Finkenbine, interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Education. "She helped a lot of first-generation students through her teaching and advice."

"She was a formidable woman," notes Joe Moynihan '78, '81. "She enjoyed the banter between student, class and professor. Of all the great teachers at U of D, she was a gem."

Caraher '53, '62 received a bachelor's degree from U of D and master's degrees from both U of D and the University of Michigan. She received a doctorate degree in American Culture from U of M in 1967.

Caraher died July 9, 2012 at age 80. Her obituary in the Traverse City Record-Eagle eloquently stated: "She lived simply but with great generosity; she didn't spend time building castles but fostering souls."

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to University of Detroit Mercy 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

"I give to University of Detroit Mercy, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 4001 W. McNichols Road, Detroit, MI 48221-3038, or its successor thereto, ______________* [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 Detroit Mercy 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 Detroit Mercy 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 Detroit Mercy 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 Detroit Mercy where you agree to make a gift to Detroit Mercy 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.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

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