In fall of 2019, we came in contact with Dan and Natalie Burkey, who live in Council Bluffs. They were in search of a way to be “better prepared for future giving.” In our initial conversations, their generosity and spirit were very relevant.

As a senior leader at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, Dan became aware of the Donor Advised Fund (DAF) and its use as a giving tool. Dan and Natalie became intrigued with the recent increase in the IRS standard deduction, as well as the opportunity to work with the Catholic Foundation of Southwest Iowa (CFSWIA). Plus, the tax planning potential provided by a DAF was very attractive to them both.

“Using the Catholic Foundation of Southwest Iowa was a natural choice for us given the alignment with our values. Their terms for administering and investing the funds were reasonable and competitive,” explained Dan. “Creating our DAF was very easy and was complete within a few days, including a few simple forms and the transferring of the securities. The staff were responsive and helpful with questions and setting up online access to our DAF.”

A Donor Advised Fund (DAF) is a simple philanthropic tool for individuals or families, used to create a segregated account that they can use to conveniently grant dollars to any 501(c)(3) charity/charities of their choice that align with Catholic social teaching. We find many of our CFSWIA DAF owners select a Catholic parish, school, or Catholic organization to grant dollars to. Many donors actively use a DAF during their lifetime in order to build resources, which grow tax-free. The CFSWIA also offers quarterly consulting upon donor request; we offer this as a resource to link a donor’s passion with needs found in the parishes, schools, and Catholic organizations within the Diocese.

Our CFSWIA donor advised funds are invested in accordance with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Catholic values investing principles. Investments are screened and monitored on a quarterly basis to ensure a 90% compliance with these principles. Donors have three investing options in terms of risk: strategic, moderate, and capital preservation. A donor may choose to invest in any combination of the three portfolios to diversify as they desire.

To establish their DAF, Dan and Natalie utilized a transfer of appreciated stock. In doing so, the Burkeys were able to avoid income taxes on the gains of the appreciated stock and “bunch” their charitable contributions. By indicating the full amount they wished to gift to numerous charities, the Burkeys were able to take advantage of itemizing tax deductions. They were also able to take advantage of the flexibility of making grants in the amounts and timing that worked best for them and the charities they support, whether they wanted to make them now or down the road. This fund has and will continue to allow the Burkey’s to advise grant distributions from their DAF, with a specific amount and day that they choose, using an easy online portal.

Dan shared with us, “Our primary contributions will be directed to Creighton University and Saint Albert Catholic Schools, but will include others, as well.” Dan continued, “Our parents made significant sacrifices to provide us with Catholic educational opportunities, from which we benefited both spiritually and academically. We made this a priority for our children and know that many parents desire the same for their children but are unable to afford it without assistance. We have received many blessings in our lives and believe it is important to share what we can with organizations that support causes consistent with our faith.”

To learn more about how you can simplify your giving using a donor advised fund, contact the CFSWIA staff 515-237-5044 or [email protected]