Circle of Stewards Legacy Society

“The greatest thing this generation can do is lay a few stepping stones for the next generation.”

-Charles F. Kettering

The Circle of Stewards Legacy Society is for donors who want to create a philanthropic plan that goes beyond their lifetime to benefit Blandford Nature Center’s future. Planned giving extends your support to the organizations or causes you love, and leaves a legacy for future generations.

This “planned gift” can be any gift made in or after your lifetime as part of your estate planning.

Planned gifts can be set up in many different ways. However, they all share some important benefits:

They can reduce estate taxes

They allow you to support the organizations or causes you are passionate about and leaving a legacy of giving

They give you the opportunity to make a larger gift than you could during your lifetime

Knowledge that your assets during life are to be passed to the individuals and organizations according to your wishes


When you are ready to make your planned gift, please fill out a Circle of Stewards Legacy Society Statement of Intent then contact our President-CEO at or 616-735-6240 ext. 120.

Types of Planned Gifts

A bequest from a will or trust is the simplest type of planned gift. You put language into your estate documents that defines how much you want to give to a particular organization.

It is very simple to add a bequest into your estate planning documents.

You decide how much you want to give-specify a dollar amount, or a percentage of your estate to give.

Your gift may help lower the estate taxes for your heirs.

Life insurance is often a “just in case” purchase. We don’t necessarily plan to use it, but we feel better knowing the policy is there. What many people don’t know is that life insurance makes a wonderful planned gift.

Life insurance is often the most highly-taxed element of an estate. You may reduce taxes on the rest of your estate by giving it to a non-profit.

A life insurance policy has a fixed value, so you know how much you are giving.

You may choose to give all or a portion of the policy to a non-profit.

Life insurance policies are very easy to give to a non-profit. You simply specify them as a beneficiary.

If you would like to explore other avenues, we would be happy to have a conversation with you. Those options could include:

Retirement accounts

Gifts of stock or securities

Gifts of appreciated assets or real property

Charitable remainder trusts

Charitable lead trusts

Please contact our President-CEO at or 616-735-6240 ext. 120 if you would like to discuss other options that are better aligned with your philanthropic goals!

Recognizing Your Gift

Planned giving is a private affair, and donors are not required to share their plans. However, we do wish to sincerely thank and honor donors who let us know about their intentions. The Circle of Stewards Legacy Society is for donors who have informed us of pending gifts in their estate plans.

It is our way of publicly and frequently thanking those who are making choices today that will benefit the future of Blandford. Some donors prefer to give anonymously. If that is your wish, please let us know so that we may honor your request for confidentiality.

We may honor Circle of Stewards Legacy Society members in a variety of ways:

In marketing materials such as our website, newsletters, and annual report

On a special donor wall

At an annual thank-you event

Heather Bell

Charles & Mary Jo Burpee

Katherine Chase (in memoriam)

Michelle Covington in memory of Jean L. Johnson

Mary Jane Dockeray

Don & Laurie Gardner

Arend & Nancy Lubbers

Joseph and Marilyn Martin

Jason & Kate Meyer

Susan & Jeff Meyers

Laurie Rosenberg

John D. Schneider

John P. & Judith Schneider

Winifred L. Spoelstra

Ron & Sandi Steensma

Joan Stuecken

Linda M. Weeks

Robert Zylstra