Leaving a Legacy
"Our lives have been fulfilled by working and helping the community grow. Now we wish to give back to the community to express our appreciation for a wonderful life, " says Charlotte Shaffer who along with her husband, Harold, have enjoyed numerous professional and personal opportunities and experiences in Toledo.
The couple, married 52 years, have made provisions in their estate plans to create the Harold C. & Charlotte L. Shaffer Fund at the Toledo Community Foundation. The Fund will support an endowed chair or professorship in the Department of Biological Sciences at The University of Toledo and support lectures or symposiums for the general public and professionals on health care related topics.
The combination Designated and Field of Interest Fund addresses interests that have been important to the couple since they graduated from The University of Toledo. The Fund is a legacy fund that will not be activated until the last spouse dies and their estate is liquidated.
Harold, professor emeritus of biology at the University, taught from 1951-1985.
For 10 years, he was a full-time volunteer teaching the same courses he had before he retired. He has taught many thousands of students in biology and allied fields. For 35 years, he was director of nursing education at the University and in 1951, in cooperation with area hospitals, started a training program for x-ray technicians at the University.
He served on several nursing schools boards and as a president of the Toledo District Nurse Association.
In 1988, Charlotte retired as executive director of the Toledo-Lucas County Council for Human Services. Under her leadership, the Area Office on Aging of Northwestern Ohio was created, along with several other agencies and programs including the United Health Services and the community's first information and referral center. She was on the staff of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America from 1988-1992.
Although both had job offers away from Lucas County, the Toledo natives determined early in their careers that they would make Toledo their home. Since they have no children, they decided to create the Fund to help people "remember that Harold and Charlotte existed and that we both worked to make their community a better place," explains Charlotte.
They continue contributing through their volunteer efforts. Harold volunteers five days a week at the Greater Toledo Chapter American Red Cross Donor Center and was honored as its volunteer of the year in 2002. Charlotte is on the board of the Area Office on Aging of Northwestern Ohio and the Salvation Army. Both are involved in Olivet Lutheran Church activities.
"Nothing was ever handed to us but opportunities came to us and we have had very fulfilling lives. We so much wanted to give back to this great place," she says.
While reviewing their estate plans with their attorney, they determined that a fund at the Foundation would be a lasting legacy. "We have been touched by so many people and we wanted to do the same for others," she continues.
"Creating the Fund with the Foundation was made easy with the support of the staff who worked closely with our attorney. Together we have developed a plan that we hope will help keep our community growing and carry out our wishes after we are gone. Toledo offers many opportunities and it's a wonderful time for the city to develop. Maybe our Fund will be part of that exciting future," she concludes.