It was a double date to Homecoming in 1935 when Paul and Katharine Pitman Schmidt, both from the Class of 1939, began their lives together at Lawrence. They weren’t each other’s dates that day, but they got together soon afterward and ended up sharing a life for nearly 70 years in Elkhorn, Wis. Throughout their lives Paul and Kay cherished the time they spent together at Lawrence and stayed closely connected to the college. They worked hard, raised a family and always remembered to give back to the places they cared about.
In the 1990s, the Schmidts worked with their advisors and Lawrence staff to put together the Paul and Katharine Schmidt Charitable Remainder Unitrust. The trust specified support for many priorities at Lawrence, including unrestricted support, endowed scholarship support and funds for physical plant investments. In 2009, Kay passed away and she was followed nine months later by her devoted husband. Their passing triggered the distribution of the charitable trust, and Lawrence learned it would receive nearly $4 million — one of the largest legacy gifts in Lawrence history.
It isn’t often that gifts of this size come to Lawrence, but because Paul and Kay planned ahead they have established a magnificent legacy. Lawrence is grateful to the Schmidt family and their financial advisors who helped to put their plan together, and for the benefits our students will derive, both now and in the future.
What is your Lawrence-Downer legacy? Find out how a good plan can benefit your family and the causes you love by calling Lawrence’s Major and Planned Giving Office, 1-800-283-8320, or by visiting www.lawrence.edu/legacygiving.
Erin Chudacoff ’00 contributed to this piece.