Leave a Legacy

Sister Mary Denis Schwartz Heritage Club:

The Sister Mary Denis Schwartz Heritage Club was founded to honor those donors who have named The Maine Girls’ Academy in their estate plans for their vision and generosity.

The Club was named after Sister Mary Denis Schwartz when she was the Superior General of the Sisters of Mercy in Maine. In the late 1960s, the number of resident students at St. Joseph’s Academy had declined, which warranted closing, and the Diocese of Portland was closing Cathedral High School because of the condition of the building.

Through Sister Mary Denis’ initiative, the Sisters of Mercy donated the land on which to build Catherine McAuley High School, now The Maine Girls’ Academy, and the Sisters donated their bequests, which they had received from their parents and loved ones, to construct the building. This bold step in 1968 assured the commitment of all-girls’ education in our community and state.

Today, we ask our alumnae and friends to follow the example of Sister Mary Denis and the Sisters. You can become a member of the Sister Mary Denis Schwartz Society by remembering MGA through a bequest in your will, retirement plan, IRA or life insurance policy, or other planned giving tools. Below is more information on these opportunities:

Appreciated Securities:

A gift of long-term, appreciated marketable securities helps you save taxes twice. Such a gift will provide an income charitable deduction and eliminate capital gains taxes.

Life Insurance:

A donor may contribute a life insurance policy to MGA that is no longer needed for its original purpose. Many people own some form of life insurance. In some cases, however, a life insurance policy may no longer be needed to provide for an individual’s family or his/her heirs.

An important, but frequently overlooked, role of life insurance is the one it can play in charitable giving. Life insurance itself can be the direct funding medium of a gift, permitting the donor to make a substantial future gift, with immediate tax benefits. Life insurance can also be used to “replace” for heirs an asset that has been given during the donor’s life.

Please consider these gift options:

  • The Maine Girls’ Academy as beneficiary
  • The Maine Girls’ Academy as owner and beneficiary
  • Wealth replacement

Retirement Plans:

Retirement plans, when passed on to heirs, can incur as much as 70 percent in taxes because this asset faces double taxation. Not only is the amount of the plan reduced by estate taxes, but the recipient must also pay income taxes on the plan. If you plan to make a legacy gift, you may want to consider naming the school the beneficiary of your 401(K), pension or other retirement plan and leaving other assets to your family. Naming MGA as the primary beneficiary avoids all income and estate taxes on the retirement plan and allows MGA to benefit from the full amount of the plan. 

To make this designation, advise your plan administrator of your decision and complete and sign a change of beneficiary form.

Gifts with Retained Interest or Planned Gifts:

You can retain an interest in your gift for your lifetime or for a specified term of years. After that time, the funds become available to MGA. For example, you can establish a trust that allows you to receive income from that trust for a specified period or for life. We can help you structure a gift that meets your financial needs and charitable objectives.

For more information, please contact MGA’s Advancement Office at (207) 797-3802 ext. 2018. 

Thank you for supporting The Maine Girls’ Academy.

The information on this site is not intended as legal, tax or investment advice. For such advice, please contact an attorney or a tax or investment professional.