Financial Security, Lasting Legacy: Producing Their Life Story
As film professionals who traveled widely, Bob Summers and Orly Yadin saw natural resources depleted around the world — and wanted to support positive change. As husband-and-wife entrepreneurs, they needed to generate retirement income.
Through a charitable remainder trust with The Nature Conservancy, the couple has achieved both goals. “I wish we had known years ago how easy it would be to build funds for retirement and help protect the natural world,” says Bob.
Setting the Scene
The stage was set in 2005, when two news items caught Bob’s eye: The Nature Conservancy’s launch of a climate change research station in the South Pacific and — in stark contrast — the existence of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch: the North Pacific subtropical gyre or, as Bob calls it, “The mass of plastic the size of Texas floating around in the North Pacific.”
To Bob the Garbage Patch symbolized failure of environmental stewardship; the Conservancy represented hope.
“We came to environmental awareness gradually,” says Orly, a documentary producer and owner of a stock film footage business. “I was born in Israel, have lived in England and traveled in Europe, the Middle East, Asia ... everywhere I’ve seen destruction of resources.”
Bob, who has also owned a stock footage firm, recalls collecting archival footage of old-growth forests in his native Northwest — woodlands he saw decimated in the 40s as a boy in Washington. Later he saw fish runs destroyed in Oregon and land scarred by drilling in Wyoming.
So when the couple inherited an annuity in 2007 and their financial advisor suggested using it to fund a charitable gift, he remembered The Nature Conservancy’s science-based approach. “We chose the Conservancy,” he says. “They were the organization most aligned with what we believe.” For Bob and Orly, they enjoyed knowing that they were helping the Conservancy’s work as well as securing income for their retirement years.
Rolling Into Action
The couple decided to fund a charitable remainder trust for its multiple benefits: an income tax deduction, lifetime income with growth potential and the satisfaction of supporting conservation.
“The Conservancy made the process easy,” says Bob. The couple lives in Vermont; the inheritance came from an estate in Oregon. The Conservancy’s gift planner easily accommodated Bob’s request to set up the trust by mail.
Realizing the Results
Today Bob and Orly receive a regular stream of income from their gift. They have also made additional contributions to their trust over the years. “The tax deduction helps considerably,” says Bob.
Orly summarizes the couple’s sentiments: “The Nature Conservancy gave us a wonderful way to provide for our old age and promote a good cause too. Now while we’re still alive, we see the progress the Conservancy is making — and enjoy the fruits financially.”
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