A Childhood Interest Becomes a Lasting Legacy


Greg Potts

Greg Potts

A native of Boise, Idaho, Greg Potts grew up with Asian art displayed at home, nurturing an interest that eventually led him, as an adult, to become a member of the Asian Art Museum.

After a long career at Bank of America in marketing, product management and training, Greg traveled throughout Southeast Asia. The architecture in Thailand and Laos, its style and decoration, appealed to him.

A chance meeting at a dinner party resulted in an invitation to join the Society for Asian Art (SAA). Greg was so impressed with the people he met that he wanted to get more involved. He started volunteering for both the SAA and the museum.

"I feel so at home here," he says. "What impressed me the most is that, compared to other organizations, you feel as a volunteer you have an impact here. You feel ownership that you are making a difference. I refer to it as my museum."

In addition to Greg's active role as chair of the Travel Committee for the SAA, he has decided to make an investment in the future of the Asian Art Museum by including it in his will. "I believe there is a responsibility to give back to society if you can," he says. "I am fortunate that this is something I am able to do. I believe in the Asian Art Museum and want to help it thrive."

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the Asian Art Museum 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

"I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to the Asian Art Museum 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 the museum 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 gift 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 receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. 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 the museum as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. 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 the museum 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 the museum's partner where you agree to make a gift and our partner, in return, agrees to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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