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The Art of Giving

The Art of Giving

Linda and Bob Buford donate art to CFT to use proceeds for charitable good

 When Linda and Bob Buford purchased a contemporary painting in New York 27 years ago, little did they realize it would produce so many rewards. The large painting by abstract expressionist painter Joan Mitchell, with its active brush strokes and vibrant yellows and blues, captured the spirit of the bright, sunny landscapes of the South of France. Along with another work by the same artist, the painting hung in the Bufords’ guest bedroom where Bob often read and admired the two favorites from their art collection.

Last summer, the Bufords’ insurance agent requested that the couple get a new appraisal of the Mitchell paintings. “The appraisal came back at 50 times what we paid for those two pictures in 1981,” Bob said. “We were stunned!”

With the new appraisal, the Bufords began to think of the paintings more as an investment that had appreciated than as beautiful artwork, and they worried about how light and humidity might affect their value. One night over dinner, Bob said to Linda, “Let’s give the paintings to your donor-advised fund at Communities Foundation of Texas.  If CFT can sell the art at auction, then you’ll be able to recommend more grants for the causes you care about.” Linda readily agreed. And she added, “Wouldn’t it be fun to go to the auction and see what happens?”

The Bufords donated the paintings to CFT, which handled the details necessary for selling the paintings at the fall contemporary art auction at Sotheby’s. That included working on details of the consignment agreement, insuring the paintings and arranging for them to be transported to New York by mid-August in order to be photographed for Sotheby’s art catalog. The auction house devoted a two-page spread to the larger Mitchell painting.

Despite turmoil in the financial markets, the fall art auction season remained strong, aided by a weak dollar and expanding wealth from developing nations. The Bufords treated themselves to a trip to New York and attended the auction. Needless to say, they were delighted when there was a great deal of interest during bidding for the paintings.

The Bufords’ donation of the art has left them much to look forward to in the future. One is the empty wall in their house, which they plan to fill with the work of an emerging artist. Even better is knowing the two paintings provided philanthropic dollars to Linda’s donor-advised fund at CFT. “I’m excited about the opportunities I’ll have to recommend grants to charitable organizations I care about,” she said. “We enjoyed the paintings for many years, and now we can experience more joy by using their value to help others.”

A Passion for Opportunity

A Passion for Opportunity

Kristofer Robinson Scholarship Fund at CFT provides educational opportunities for paraplegic and quadriplegic students in Texas


Established after a tragic automobile accident that left the late Kristofer Robinson paralyzed from the neck down, the Kristofer Robinson Scholarship Fund at CFT was created to support the education of paraplegic or quadriplegic individuals. One recent scholarship recipient of the Kristofer Robinson Scholarship Fund is Nathan McClintock.

A Passion for Education

A Passion for Education

Om & Shanti Funds at CFT provides scholarships and opportunities to students


For the Sethis, giving back is a family affair. Parvesh and Jeet Sethi have two charitable funds at CFT: the Om & Shanti Scholarship Fund and the Om & Shanti Fund, a donor-advised fund. Both their family fund and their scholarship fund are centered around providing educational opportunities for students.

A Passion for Community

A Passion for Community

Mary Anne Sammons Cree leaves legacy of giving through CFT's Live Oak Legacy Society


Mary Anne Sammons Cree had a passion for our North Texas community. She spent her life giving back in support of the causes that mattered most to her—the performing and visual arts, museums, education, and nature.

A Passion for the Arts

A Passion for the Arts

Cece Smith Lacy and Ford Lacy fund new works from arts organizations through their fund at CFT


As Cece Smith Lacy and Ford Lacy began their estate planning process, they came to Communities Foundation of Texas for assistance with their planned giving. During their research, they learned about donor-advised funds and decided to open the Cece Smith Lacy and John Ford Lacy Fund at CFT to support their giving during their lifetime.

A Passion for Giving

A Passion for Giving

CFT’s NTX Giving Day becomes an annual celebration for the Ngo family


Joylynn Huynh-Ngo’s children haven’t quite made it out of elementary school, but they know a thing or two about whipping up batches of boba tea, cookies, and lemonade, and sharing their creations with and for the community.

Inclusion Matters

Inclusion Matters

CFT launches #IAMPEARL FUND in honor of Pearl C. Anderson


CFT’s first six-figure gift came from an African American woman named Pearl C. Anderson. Pearl grew up in rural Louisiana during the days of racial segregation and was prohibited from going to school until the age of 12, when a school for Black children was finally built a few miles from her home.