Debby Hall and Jane Zimmy ’74
Though they didn't know each other as undergraduates, Debby Hall and Jane Zimmy now share a bond forged through more than a decade as co-head class agents for the class of 1974. After celebrating their 35th reunion, they committed to continuing in their volunteer roles through their 50th reunion.
Likewise, with the long-term in mind, both chose to establish deferred charitable gift annuities with Mount Holyoke. Hall and Zimmy describe it as a smart way to secure a fixed income stream for retirement while supporting the College. “Down the road, in exchange for a gift we make to the College now, MHC is going to pay us fixed income for every year as long as we live," Zimmy explained. Financially savvy, both women hold M.B.A.s; Hall graduated from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia while Zimmy earned her graduate degree from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Hall established a deferred gift annuity to mark her 35th reunion. "I was looking for a way to make a larger gift," she said. "By establishing a deferred gift annuity, I could do just that rather than giving a smaller cash gift outright. I directed the gift portion of my annuity to the class of 1974's Reunion Fund. I was able to fulfill my pledge to the reunion effort and secure future income for myself at the same time."
Zimmy also established a gift annuity for her 35th; it was, however, her third. "The one thing I learned in business school is that you need a diversified investment portfolio. You never put all your eggs in one basket. Creating deferred charitable gift annuities is part of the way I've diversified." She directed the gift portion of her annuity to her pledge for the new residence hall.
Both believe that this type of gift planning is especially attractive to women who expect to make a substantial contribution toward their family's retirement income. "Annuitizing a portion of your portfolio to guarantee future income is something many of us are going to do anyway because it makes sense, especially given the fluctuations of current investment earnings," added Hall. Or, as Zimmy noted, "We're two M.B.A.s who believe that the gift annuity is one of the best investments around, right now."
As for why they support MHC, Hall said, "I believe very strongly in the mission of this college to educate women. And I had a wonderful four years here."
Zimmy, too, is a staunch supporter of women's education and particularly admires MHC's commitment to educating a diverse community of women. Still, the two good-naturedly admit that they'd like nothing more than to prove just how long-term the personal benefits of a deferred gift annuity can be. "We're both hoping to outlive the actuarial tables," said Zimmy.