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Your Guide to Simplified Complex Giving

Did you know Communities Foundation of Texas can accept a wide range of gifts, even real estate, art and antiques?

While assets that are most tax advantageous to give may be complex, your charitable giving doesn’t have to be. 

Prior to Peggy and David Rockefeller’s record-breaking art auction this spring, Communities Foundation of Texas held an event in partnership with Christie’s and Bessemer Trust that shared the story behind the Rockefeller family’s philanthropy and highlighted ways to give complex assets, such as art, to charity.

The Rockefeller collection of 1,500 items brought in $832.6 million—the highest ever for a private collection at auction. All of the estate’s proceeds from what is now the most significant charitable auction in history will be directed to charity. In a statement, David Rockefeller, Jr. said: “The auction exceeded our expectations in so many ways. Christie’s and our family had a shared financial goal of raising more than $500 million in estate proceeds for the 12 philanthropies our parents cared about so deeply, and it has been both humbling and deeply gratifying to see a sale total that reaches so far beyond that. These funds will provide very meaningful support to important institutions and foundations devoted to scientific research and higher education, support for the arts, foreign policy, and the conservation of coastal and agricultural lands.”

 “We love helping people think creatively to find ways to give that make the most sense for them with the resources and assets they have," says Carolyn Newham, Senior Director of Donor Relations at CFT. "We have the expertise to find the right way to make these work for each individual, family or business.”

The following are a few examples of complex gifts Communities Foundation of Texas has accepted:

Real Estate to Real Impact

A local CPA recommended that his client partner with CFT when the client was looking into how a property here in Dallas could help fund their philanthropy.
Working with the client, CFT was able to accept and place a percentage of the business into a donor-advised fund where it will produce income that can be used for grantmaking to nonprofits. In the event that the business is sold, that sale will further add to their charitable impact and legacy. CFT works with each scenario to provide the best outcome for the client and the advisor in order 
to maximize the client’s tax benefits while fueling the client’s philanthropy.

The Art of Giving

Longtime friends of CFT, Linda Buford and her late husband Bob Buford were stunned when two contemporary paintings they owned were appraised 
at 50 times what they had paid for the paintings when originally purchased in 1981.

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. They decided to gift the paintings to Linda’s donor-advised fund at CFT so that CFT could sell the art at auction and Linda could recommend more grants to their favorite charitable causes.

The Bufords donated the paintings to CFT, and CFT handled the details necessary for selling the paintings at a fall contemporary art auction in New York, which Bob and Linda attended. CFT negotiated details of the consignment agreement, insured the paintings and arranged for them to be transported to New York in order to be photographed for the auction catalog.

“We enjoyed the paintings for many years, and for the past few years we’ve been able to experience more joy by using their value to help others,” said Linda.

New Uses for Antiques

Have you ever thought about what will happen to your favorite possessions beyond your lifetime? What about gifting those of high value to charity? Creating provisions in your estate can be an impactful way to further your philanthropic passions long beyond your lifetime, and CFT can often be the perfect partner to facilitate this on your behalf.

One of CFT’s donors has been a longtime collector. She has a collection of antiques that are very meaningful to her and wants to keep these items that bring her joy with her during her life. But beyond her lifetime, she will use these cherished assets to create her charitable legacy.

For her, that means supporting her favorite animal causes. She has created a provision in her estate plan stipulating that proceeds from the sale of her collection will support animals in need for years to come through a named fund at CFT. CFT is honored to support her passions on her behalf long into the future.

Learn more at www.cftexas.org/assets or contact Carolyn Newham, Senior Director of Donor Relations and Services, at cnewham@cftexas.org or 214-750-4146​.

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.

Legacy Matters

Legacy Matters

Lange family supports their passions long after their lifetime through CFT


One of the things that matters most to us in building a thriving community is growing community giving over the long term. CFT’s Live Oak Society was established in 2018 to recognize individuals and families who have created a legacy with CFT through a planned gift in their will or estate to their donor-advised fund or to support CFT’s discretionary grantmaking. To date, more than 70 individuals and couples have joined CFT’s Live Oak Society.

Love Matters

Love Matters

Allyson Bohannon Goldman Memorial Fund at CFT honors a heart for service


In 2020, Jody Goldman and Steve and Sharon Bohannon established the Allyson Bohannon Goldman Memorial Fund at CFT. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Allyson Bohannon Goldman passed away unexpectedly at age 30 from a postpartum blood clot seven weeks after giving birth to her daughter, Caroline. “In her 30 years, she left an indelible mark on those who knew her. In addition to being a wonderful mother, wife, daughter, sister, and friend, she lived a life of service to others,” said Sharon Bohannon, Allyson’s mother.

Education Matters

Education Matters

CFT's Educate Texas reimagines learning environments


In the United States, 65% of future jobs will require higher education, but only 39% of Texans have earned a college degree or workforce credential. To help prepare students for college and career pathways, Educate Texas’ Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs bring together state agencies and school districts to strengthen instruction and academics in K-12 schools and build relationships with industry experts.

Generosity Matters

Generosity Matters

Bhatia Family Foundation supports CFT's NTX Giving Day in a big way


CFT’s North Texas Giving Day–the largest community-uniting, generosity-raising giving event in the nation – is a time for celebration, joy, and GIVING! Each September, thousands of nonprofits (this year, more than 3,300!) are supported by the givers in the North Texas region–and friends from around the world–who prioritize lifting the life-changing work done by incredible North Texas organizations every single day. This year, NTX Giving Day marked its 13th annual celebration and broke another record, raising $66 million by way of more than 100,000 donors!

Partnership Matters

Partnership Matters

CFT's philanthropic consulting connects donors to nonprofits


One of the services that CFT provides to individuals, families, and businesses is philanthropic consulting. We recently helped connect a family, who prefers to keep their generosity anonymous, to nonprofits working in the cause areas that matter most to them: literacy and economic mobility.

Opportunity Matters

Opportunity Matters

Denbury Scholarship Fund at CFT provides educational opportunities for employees and their families.


Chris and Eileen Kendall have recently established two charitable funds at CFT: The Denbury Scholarship Fund and The Kendall Family Charitable Fund, a donor-advised fund.

Leadership Matters

Leadership Matters

Jain Foundation Fund at CFT supports causes locally and globally


Anurag and Gunjan Jain are leaders in many community initiatives, one of the most recent being Get Shift Done. One of their shared passions is taking care of people who are hungry, and they’ve been supporting the North Texas Food Bank in a variety of ways for more than a decade. Anurag is a former board chair, and Gunjan has served on capital campaign committees and helped create a “Kids Against Hunger” campaign. Currently, Gunjan serves on CFT’s board of trustees and has been involved with the Global Fund for Children for many years, both locally and globally.

Equity Matters

Equity Matters

Two nonprofits lead the way with new programs to advance equity


Advancing community equity is key to building thriving communities for all. Two equity focused organizations and their new programs we’ve recently invested in are creating big impact for community members of color.

Collaboration Matters

Collaboration Matters

Five health-focused nonprofits partner with CFT to create a Community of Practice


To address community needs during the COVID-19 public health crisis, CFT launched a funding opportunity for organizations addressing vaccine hesitancy, aiming to reduce transmission of the virus in urban and rural communities. We also wanted to help nonprofits build community trust and learn if culturally relevant, grassroots approaches to vaccine education and deployment could make a difference in these communities.

Compassion Matters

Compassion Matters

More than 100 organizations unite $72MM initiative toward ending homelessness in our country


The number of local people experiencing homelessness has increased significantly in the last several years, with a 50 percent increase between 2017 to 2020 and an additional 11 percent jump from 2019 to 2020.

Community Matters

Community Matters

CFT invests in public parks to advance community equity


Our vision of thriving communities for all hinges on our ability to advance community equity. One of our intentional investments from our discretionary funds focused on advancing equity is the creation and expansion of public parks. We’ve been investing in parks since our founding in the 1950s, including significant investments in Klyde Warren Park.

Giving with Meaning

Giving with Meaning

The Ashish & Mona Khanna Family Charitable Gift Fund at CFT


“Giving toward a passion brings home a different message. You see the long-term rewards from investing locally and in an area that holds a special place in your heart. Working with CFT has been incredibly rewarding, because the internal satisfaction that comes when you give with meaning is unparalleled.” – Ashish and Mona Khanna

Leaving Legacies of Love: Future Newlyweds Rise to the Occasion

Leaving Legacies of Love: Future Newlyweds Rise to the Occasion

Newlyweds open a charitable giving fund for their guests to make a charitable donation in lieu of a gift.


“We were so excited to tell our parents about our charitable fund. They are deeply proud of our choice. The response from our friends and family has been extremely positive,” said Sarah.

Leaving Legacies of Love: The Cole Wehunt Fund

Leaving Legacies of Love: The Cole Wehunt Fund

Parents honor late son's legacy through fund at CFT


“Cole inspired giving. He was such a generous person. We wanted to give back to our community because North Texas was Cole’s home and where he thrived growing up,” said Kay.