Leave a Legacy

The Methow Conservancy Aspen Stand

As a land trust, our conservation efforts are designed to last “forever.” That’s a long time—and that means we plan to be around as an organization for a very long time.

You can be a part of our efforts to protect the land and rural character of the Methow Valley forever by considering a planned gift.

Planned gifts—including bequests through your will, retirement plan, or insurance policy—are a powerful way to ensure that the Methow Valley you love will still be here for future generations to fall in love with all over again.

To be sure you are making the most appropriate arrangements for yourself, your loved ones and the Methow Conservancy, we recommend you work with knowledgeable financial advisors and your estate-planning attorney.

You will also want to consider how you would like the Methow Conservancy to use your gift. You can designate your planned gift to our:

  • Annual Operating Fund: for our current needs.
  • Land Fund: for capital purchases, like conservation easements;
  • Organizational Sustainability Fund: a board-advised, general endowment fund;
  • Stewardship Fund: to help us care for the land we protect;
Photo by Dawn Woodruff

Planned Giving Options

Include a Charitable Bequest in Your Will
A charitable bequest to the Methow Conservancy can be as simple as a sentence or two in your will or a codicil appended to your present will. Your bequest may specify a:

  • specific sum of money;
  • particular asset (e.g., my shares of XXX stock);
  • portion of the residue of your estate after other bequests have been paid;
  • “contingency gift” – giving all or a portion of your estate to charity only if your family doesn’t survive you.

Because it is revocable, a bequest provides no current income tax deduction, but when distributed it may be deductible from your taxable estate.

Add a POD or TOD Designation
As desirable as it is to make a will, you can leave a legacy without one. You can add a “pay on death” (POD) designation or a “transfer on death” (TOD) designation to a bank account or security, naming a beneficiary to receive the asset following your death. A charity can be a beneficiary - either the sole beneficiary or one of several.

Use Your Retirement Plan or Pension Plan
You can name a charity as a whole or partial beneficiary of your tax-deferred IRA or 401(k) retirement plan. The money is still yours to live on following retirement.
By naming a charity as the beneficiary, you are giving the charity only what is left at the time of your death – the money you don’t use during your lifetime.

Donate Real Estate
You may wish to explore the donation of your primary or vacation property for conservation protection, or you may be interested in donating your real estate as an asset for the Methow Conservancy to liquidate and then use the proceeds for our conservation mission. Donors intending to donate gifts of real estate are encouraged to discuss the feasibility and practicality of their gifts with Methow Conservancy staff before designating their gift.

Leverage Your Life Insurance Policy
A gift of life insurance can provide significant future support to the Methow Conservancy at an affordable present cost to you. You can name a charity as beneficiary of all or part of the policy proceeds following your death.

Annuities and Remainder Trusts
Some types of planned giving combine a charitable gift with life income for you and/or other beneficiaries you designate. For charitable gift annuities, deferred charitable gift annuities, and charitable remainder trusts, we typically work with the Community Foundation of North Central Washington. If you are interested in these vehicles for giving, please contact us and we can provide more information.

Aspen Stand
Photo by Denny O'Callaghan

The Aspen Stand

All who share with us that they have included the Methow Conservancy in their planned giving efforts will be recognized as members of our Aspen Stand of donors.

We hope you let us know if you decide to include the Methow Conservancy in your estate plans. Please complete our Notification Form and mail or email it to us.

Why are we calling this dedicated group of supporters The Aspen Stand?
Aside from being an iconic feature of the Methow Valley, Aspen Stands possess some unique traits that we think symbolize the powerful an enduring qualities of planned giving:

  • They survive through an extensive root system. Fire may destroy the parent tree, but the extensive roots will regenerate and endure for thousands of years.
  • Aspens send out shoots readily, forming stands of a single organism. Individual trees are short lived but stands can be ancient.
  • The largest organism on the planet is an aspen grove, nicknamed Pando, in Utah -- it is estimated to be 80,000 years old.
  • Aspis, Greek for aspen, means shield. Aspens have long been considered lucky protectors.

Thank you!

Thank you for considering leaving a legacy for the land and community of the Methow Valley. The Methow Conservancy considers being included in an estate as one of the highest honors and signs of trust.

While we do not need to know the details of your estate plan, we do hope that if you decide to make a planned gift to the Methow Conservancy, you will let us know. If you are interested in exploring Planned Giving with the Methow Conservancy, please contact us or call us at (509) 996-2870. We welcome the chance to speak with you about how you can leave a legacy for the Methow Valley.

An important note: The information provided here is not intended as legal or financial advice. We encourage you to consult with your own advisers and professionals. Planned giving information provided by Leave a Legacy of Western Washington. Visit their webpage at www.leavealegacy.org.

Aspen Footer
Photo by Methow Conservancy Staff

Inspiring people to care for the land of the Methow Valley since 1996.

Join Team Methow Conservancy and support conservation work in the Methow Valley!