Board President Jim Pierce ’72, P’09 shared news and of a significant planned gift recently been established by Maria Polcari ’73 naming the Academy as beneficiary. The gift which is part of Ms. Polcari’s estate planning is estimated at $3 million dollars.
Jim provided kind and heartfelt recognition to Maria at a dinner during the May board meetings and noted that, as far as the Academy is aware, Maria’s is the largest gift given by a female alumna in the history of the Academy. Fittingly, Maria is a proud member of the class of 1973 which was the first class of graduating females at the Academy. Maria has remained a connected and loyal supporter of the Academy throughout the years and her decision to support the Academy’s future in such a meaningful way will have impact for Academy students well into the future.
Touching on the campaign theme of With True Courage, Jim noted the courage that Maria demonstrated back in 1971 by arriving in the fall as one of twenty-six female day students, joining the ranks of more than three hundred boys. Maria however, says the transition from an all-girls school to the Academy was a positive one and that as she looks back she wished that the Academy had been open to females before 1971. “I can’t think of anything that was negative and I wished that I had been able to attend all four years” she said fondly of her tine here.
Maria said that the Academy was a natural choice when deciding on how her estate planning would be distributed, “there are many charities worth supporting, but in the end it is the one I have a personal connection with that matters most…I trust the way the Academy uses the dollars.” That sense of familiarity and confidence in the Academy was reassuring to Maria as she made her estate plans and also provided her with a sense the importance that her gift will have to the Academy, pointing out that “by putting my affairs in order and planning I was really able to realize how much I can do to support the school”.
When realized Maria’s gift will support unrestricted endowment, meaning that the Academy will have maximum flexibility to utilize the funds where they are needed most. Leadership gifts like Maria’s have provided important momentum for the Academy as the campaign With True Courage is officially launched this fall.