Giving to HSS

Saying Thank You

Donna MacCrae

“HSS saved my life.”

“I am so grateful for everyone at HSS who has helped me lead an active life, despite the scoliosis.”

For over 40 years, Donna MacCrae has been teaching elementary school students, sitting in small chairs designed for nine-year-olds and stooping to meet her students eye to eye. Diagnosed with scoliosis as a child, Donna credits HSS with allowing her to enjoy her life and her career. “The Hospital is keeping me healthy,” she says.

At age 13, Donna’s legs were different lengths and her spine was curved. Dissatisfied with a physician who advised waiting a few years before intervening, Donna’s mother brought her to HSS to see the late Surgeon-in-Chief Emeritus Philip D. Wilson, Jr., MD. Dr. Wilson successfully performed a spinal fusion on Donna using a relatively new device called a Harrington Rod that reduced the curvature of her spine.

Wilson“Without HSS, I would have succumbed to a lung complication a long time ago,” says Donna. “HSS saved my life.” Nearly thirty years after her surgery, Donna returned to HSS seeking relief from back pain. Spine specialists Dr. David B. Levine and Dr. Oheneba Boachie-Adjei prescribed exercise and physical therapy. “I made a lifelong commitment to maintaining my back health.”

Motivated by her life-changing care and the advancements she has witnessed, Donna became an annual donor and included HSS in her estate plan. “Continuing the research is so important to me.” Because of her experience with Dr. Wilson, she is particularly proud to be a member of the Wilson Society. “I want the environment that Dr. Wilson created at HSS to continue,” Donna says. “I want to give back and say ‘thank you’.”


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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Hospital for Special Surgery 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

"I give to Hospital for Special Surgery, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 535 East 70th Street, New York, NY 10021, or its successor thereto, ______________* [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

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to HSS or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

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.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

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 HSS 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 HSS as a lump sum.

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

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and HSS where you agree to make a gift to HSS and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

A codicil is a document that is used to make changes to a will that has already been created.

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