F.A. Midlo and Marianne Rochelle: Jewish Foundation Makes Giving Easier While Helping to Support Community

F.A. Midlo and Marianne Rochelle: Jewish Foundation Makes Giving Easier While Helping to Support Community

F.A. Midlo and her daughter, Marianne Rochelle, are helping to sustain a vibrant and secure Jewish community, now and for future generations, by investing in the Jewish Foundation of Austin and Central Texas.

Guided by Jewish values and the individual interests of donors and organizations, the Foundation provides an opportunity to make a lasting impact through philanthropy in the name of the Jewish community, at home in Austin and around the world.

The Jewish Foundation branch of Shalom Austin and works in partnership with the Austin Community Foundation. Together, this represents more than 50 years of established success in fostering philanthropy, ensuring your investments flourish and make a meaningful difference in the programs and traditions you value most, now and forever. 

What inspired you to make a contribution to the Shalom Austin Jewish Foundation of Austin & Central Texas?

Marianne: I heard about the Jewish Foundation through The Jewish Outlook and conversations with friends in the Jewish community. I have known Jewish Foundation Director MariBen Ramsey through Leadership Austin since the early 90s and it was comforting to me to know she was involved. With my husband Martin retiring in 2017, we created our Donor Advised Fund before the year ended, and that helped at tax time. We liked the idea of being able to dole dollars out to charities over time, with no pressure to do it all in the first year. Our financial adviser is terrific and he agreed this was a good idea. The fees for using the Jewish Foundation are not big, and it helps the Jewish community to have the funds under the Jewish Foundation name. As more people create endowments, that will be especially helpful to the Jewish Foundation, as is the case in bigger cities with larger Jewish communities. 

That said, I met with Wade Monroe and Diane Radin, Jewish Foundation Cabinet co-chairs, about a month ago to talk about the value proposition for the Jewish Foundation, and my hope is that they will continue to articulate the value to the Jewish community of setting up funds with the Jewish Foundation, instead of just opening a fund directly through Austin Community Foundation, Fidelity or otherwise. Austin has a strong Jewish community, and we should have a lot more members of our community participating with the Jewish Foundation. I think they are more likely to consider it if they understand why it matters and the ways they could benefit from doing so. Articles like this help spread the good word. It’s super easy to do, and it’s great for our community!

Why are the Austin Jewish community and Shalom Austin important to you and your family?

F.A.:  I’m most passionate about Women’s Philanthropy and raising money for our community and Jews in need around the world. My Jewish education and spiritual needs are met at Temple Beth Shalom, and I especially enjoy going to weekly Torah Study with Maury. It has been one of my biggest joys to see Marianne go from being a smaller donor to a Pomegranate and now a Lion of Judah. Being Lions together was important to me, and it is delightful for us to roar together!

What are the benefits of a donor-advised fund vs. other charitable giving methods?

Marianne: The three biggest benefits to me and Martin are:

We don’t have to collect acknowledgement letters from recipients of our donations. The one letter sent from the Jewish Foundation when money is deposited into the fund is all we need for tax purposes. That is a big time saver and stress reducer!

It’s super easy to go online and give.

I really liked the idea of starting our fund by liquidating some stock, allowing us to avoid paying capital gains.

How has setting up the F.A. Midlo fund helped you reach your philanthropic goals for the future?

F.A.: When I sat down with Marianne to plan what Maury and I wanted to give to various organizations, she suggested we open a DAF with the Jewish Foundation, too. It helped to sit down and plan our giving for the year. The first two benefits Marianne listed above apply to us too, and she can administer from our fund through the same login she and Martin use for their fund. It gives me great joy to give, and unfortunately having Parkinson’s Disease makes it difficult to write checks. Now, I can just ask Marianne to make a donation of $x, to organization y, for purpose z!  It’s easier for all of us, and it’s easier to balance our checkbook! Yay! 

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