A Short Love Story

Gary and Harriet Short

Gary and Harriet Short

Like the history of Iowa State's treasured campanile, the tale of Gary and Harriet Short is in essence a love story.

The two knew each other growing up in their hometown of Webster City, Iowa, but they didn't start dating until the summer after their high school graduation.

In the fall, Harriet was off to Iowa State. Growing up, she often visited campus with her parents, who were alumni, and she knew fairly early on she would be a Cyclone. "I loved walking the campus and have fond memories of the campanile," Harriet said.

It took some convincing to get Gary to Ames. He started at a community college before "Harriet made it clear I needed to do something else," said Gary, who knew that meant joining her at Iowa State. He was the first member of his family to go to college, earning a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science.

Gary and Harriet's young love blossomed at Iowa State as they studied, worked part time to help pay expenses, cheered on the Cyclones at games and forged lifelong friendships with Phi Kappa Psi fraternity brothers and Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority sisters. Some of these friends would later be members of the couple's wedding party.

After graduation in 1960, Gary briefly bought livestock before becoming a banker and eventually president of Independence Bancshares, Inc. Harriet was selected for the Mortar Board honor society and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Food and Nutrition. She worked in the experimental foods division with Betty Crocker in Minneapolis before moving back to Iowa and marrying Gary in 1961. She earned a second degree in education from another university and became a Talented and Gifted Program teacher in Independence.

Now retired, Harriet and Gary look back on their success and time at Iowa State and want to help provide similar opportunities for today's students from northeast Iowa. "What a college education did for me was open doors that wouldn't have been opened otherwise," Gary said of the Gary F. Short and Harriet Mason Short Scholarship, which they will fund through the proceeds of their charitable remainder trust.

Last year, the couple visited campus and took a moment to honor the long-standing tradition of "campaniling" by kissing under the campus bell tower. Gary said one of his fondest memories from Iowa State is dating Harriet. "She has been very supportive, and she is my best friend," Gary said of Harriet. "It has been a wonderful life."

Show Your Love for Iowa State

Whether you found your true love at Iowa State or discovered a love for your profession, the campus or fellow Cyclones, you can show that love with a gift from your estate. Contact the office of gift planning at 800.621.8515 or giftplanning@foundation.iastate.edu to learn more.

“I thought about what meant the most to me – outside of my family – and it was obvious that I would give to Iowa State. So I called the office of gift planning and they helped me plan the best course of action.”

- Margaret "Margi" Donaldson

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Iowa State University a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Iowa State University, a nonprofit corporation currently located at Ames, Iowa, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Iowa State or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Iowa State as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Iowa State as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Iowa State where you agree to make a gift to Iowa State and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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