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Planned Giving

John A.
Swanson, Ph.D.

Swanson Analysis Services, Inc.
Member, Alexander Holley Society


Now, it's my turn to help others and I do this through the ASME Foundation.

"Now it's my time to make a difference," Dr. Swanson says. "I'm giving to the ASME Foundation to close the circle. It's just what one does and it's the thing to do. I'm where I am because people made a difference in my life. Now, it's my turn to help others and I do this through the ASME Foundation."

Dr. Swanson's visionary and generous gift of $1 million to ASME Foundation's Federal Fellows program for its Engineering the Greater Good campaign helps policymakers in Washington make informed decisions on issues involving engineering and science. The program enables selected ASME members to spend one year as advisors in the public policy arena in Washington, D.C. These Federal Fellows bring their technical expertise to lawmakers and policy makers, offering input on a broad range of technology issues ranging from energy and nanotechnology to infrastructure development. "The field of engineering is the field of the future and almost all the problems have engineering solutions but require political understanding. This is where the Federal Fellows come in. The main issues are energy, food, and water and you cannot come in with ideas and projects without political influences," Dr. Swanson says. "We need engineering expertise and savvy. That's why I am so enthused by the program." He remains personally involved in the success of the program. "Each year, ASME invites me to join the Federal Fellows as they meet legislators and I attend Congressional briefings," he adds. "I enjoy being part of this organization and making a difference."

A longtime member of ASME, he notes that "ASME is the center of the mechanical engineering experience. The meetings are gatherings of the best and brightest minds. It's a gathering of the clan, where you exchange ideas. It's a real community."

Dr. Swanson, who received his undergraduate and graduate degrees in mechanical engineering from Cornell University, obtained a Ph.D. in applied mechanics by attending night school at the University of Pittsburgh. He created a computer simulation software code known as ANSYS and is internationally regarded as an authority and pioneer in the application of finite-element methods to engineering.

His commitment to energy is both professional and personal. Dr. Swanson drives a hybrid car and installed solar panels on the roof of his home. 'The future is energy," he says. "And through ASME, we can make a difference."

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to ASME 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

Bequest Language

"I, [name], of [city, state ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to ASME 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

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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.

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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 potential 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 may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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 Foundation as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. 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 Foundation as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

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