Estate gift helps make the match

As an Ingham County 4-H alumna and former Calhoun County 4-H staff person, Lana Dart knew the impact that 4-H can have on young people’s lives. She made it her tradition to give to the Michigan 4-H Foundation each year since 1989.

Lana Dart head shot.

Over the years, Dart gave to a variety of 4-H programs, including Kettunen Center renovations, the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens, the Michigan 4-H Legacy Fund and most recently, the County 4-H Endowment Match Pool and the Ingham County 4-H Endowment. The match pool provides a 1:1 match for gifts from 4-H clubs, volunteers, parents, members, staff members and friends to build county 4-H endowments.

Before Dart passed away last fall, she had made a planned gift for a portion of her estate to support the area of greatest need for 4-H. The Michigan 4-H Foundation Board of Trustees has allocated the gift to help match gifts to the Make the Match County 4-H Endowment Campaign to honor where Dart’s most recent gifts were given.

In an interview several years ago, Dart shared why she felt it was important to give back to 4-H.

“It’s a program that I think has value,” she said. “While I’m not an active participant in the program at this time, it goes back to the wonderful experiences that I had as a 4-H member. You remember you were in 4-H and the experiences that came along for you, and it triggers the thought of giving.

“I think you get into a pattern of giving,” she said. “Certain organizations are on your pattern of giving each year. It may not be the same amount, but it’s important that you give every year,” she said.

Dart, of Lansing, passed away on Nov. 30, 2017. She graduated from Mason High School and earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Michigan State University (MSU) where she was a member of the Mortar Board Honor Society. She began her career as an MSU Extension home economist and 4-H agent in Calhoun County. She was employed with MSU for 33 years before retiring in 1992. She was an elder, deacon and a clerk of the Session for Mason First Presbyterian Church. Dart also served as a board member of the Ingham County Fair. She was a member of the Lansing Women’s Club, and a member and officer of the Mason College Club.

Estate gifts, such as this gift from Dart, are considered a type of planned gift. Documenting and planning a future gift to support 4-H can leave a legacy for years to come. Planned gift donors are recognized as members of the A.G. Kettunen Society to provide lifetime recognition to donors who have made documented future gifts to 4-H. Documenting a planned gift allows donors to share their wishes and the impact they would like to see their gifts make to benefit Michigan’s youth. A.G. Kettunen Society members receive a recognition certificate, permanent acknowledgment as legacy donors in the annual report, and, for gifts that exceed $25,000 at maturity, recognition as Cornerstone Society members.

Any donor considering a planned gift may contact Amanda Masters, assistant development director for 4-H, at 517-884-4691 or by email at to verify that your gift intent can be met.

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