The Pinkoson family's gifts to Tulane University carry on a legacy of giving back to their alma mater.
March 7, 2012
The Ideal Solution
Having generously contributed to the university for more than 50 years, Dr. Charles Pinkoson and his wife, Rainer Nicholls Pinkoson, naturally thought of Tulane when looking for a place to invest their real-estate profits. In 2002, the Pinkosons found a way to benefit their family and their alma mater by giving $1 million to establish two deferred gift annuities earmarked for the School of Medicine. This offered them an immediate tax deduction and guaranteed lifetime income first for Rainer and then for their two children.
Pleased with the results, the couple increased their commitment to the medical school in 2011, establishing two additional gift annuities for themselves by giving an extra $1 million. They also donated $50,000 to create the Upshaw-Pinkoson Scholarship Fund at the school to see their generosity in action. When the annuities end, the remainder of the couple’s investment will be added to the scholarship.
For their needs, it was the ideal solution. Although a descendant of former Louisiana Governor Francis T. Nicholls, Rainer said she preferred giving to Tulane rather than the university that bears her family name. “We wanted to give back to our alma mater,” Rainer said. “It’s really as simple as that. It felt good to give to Tulane. I’m from New Orleans, my husband spent many years there, our grandson went to medical school there and we just decided it was the right way to support the university and the community.”
Dr. Pinkoson, a native of Gainesville, Fla. received his medical degree from Tulane in 1945. He served as a flight surgeon in the Army Air Corps for two years before returning to New Orleans in 1948 to complete his residency at Charity Hospital. It was there that he met Rainer Broussard Nicholls, a Newcomb alumna who worked in the brainwave laboratory.
In 1951, the couple married and settled in Gainesville, where Dr. Pinkoson devoted his medical career to ophthalmology. Through the years, the Pinkosons gave consistently to the School of Medicine. In 2008, they received the university’s highest honor: induction into the Paul Tulane Society. Membership is awarded to individuals or organizations that have made gifts of $1 million or more to the university. By giving over $2 million, the Pinkosons have ensured that deserving medical school students will be able to receive a quality Tulane education for years to come.
Honoring a Family Legacy
The Pinkoson’s grandson, William Nathan Upshaw followed in his grandfather’s footsteps and earned his medical degree from Tulane in 2004. Dr. Upshaw is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Neurosciences at the University of South Florida. To perpetuate their family’s legacy at the university, the scholarship carries both the Pinkoson and Upshaw names.
The Pinkosons received an immediate tax deduction in the year of the gift even though payments from their first three gift annuities were deferred until future years.
“We liked the simplicity of the deferred annuity,” Dr. Pinkoson said. “By delaying the start of the payments for a few years, we were able to have a higher annuity rate and a larger income tax deduction.”
For their fourth gift annuity, the Pinkosons decided to diversify their charitable giving portfolio and to begin receiving payments immediately.
There are many different forms a gift can take depending on your goals and interests. Contact us to learn more about your planned giving options.
Michael Ramos is a senior writer in the Office of Development.
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