Build a legacy that will advance equitable access to opportunity for generations to come.

The long-term investment and collective action of partners like you will support community prosperity for families in West Michigan.

Nancy and Gerry

Gerry and Nancy Hickey

“What really clicked WMCAT into my heart,” shared Nancy, “was the first adult graduation I attended. The place was so noisy, filled with graduating students’ families and excited kids running around.  And as I departed after the graduation, I saw a little boy take his mom’s graduation cap and put it on his head. And I thought, there is now an expectation that he, too, will be a graduate someday. WMCAT changed his mom’s life, but it changed the family’s life too.”

iball cloyd

Brian Cloyd and Agnes Kempker-Cloyd

“WMCAT is one of the most significant nonprofit organizations focusing on supporting the community as a whole,” shared Brian. “Endowments are really, really important because it establishes a gift that will keep on giving – forever.”

You can join the Circle of Opportunity at WMCAT by making a contribution today to our endowment or providing for WMCAT through your estate planning. Gifts will be invested in an endowment fund for the long-term sustainability of WMCAT.

Each family is different. Here are some ideas. Let’s chat about which options work for you. Contact Amy Knape, director of development at WMCAT, by calling 616-454-7004 or emailing amy.knape@wmcat.org.

Make a gift to our endowment now (cash or stock)

Include WMCAT in your estate plan

Make a charitable bequest to WMCAT in a will

Designate WMCAT as a beneficiary in a life insurance plan

Circle of Opportunity Story: Gerry and Nancy Hickey

In the gallery area of WMCAT there is a large glass piece that lists contributors to our most recent capital campaign in alphabetical order. Under “Gerry and Nancy Hickey” is their daughter “Julia Hickey,” herself a WMCAT donor. For the Hickeys, supporting WMCAT is a family affair (their daughter Caroline was once a front desk volunteer). And that family connection is a part of the legacy they want to leave with WMCAT.

“WMCAT is so important to us. We’ve been involved from the beginning,” said Nancy, a former board member and campaign chair for WMCAT. 

It was experiencing another family’s journey that made a lasting connection to WMCAT for Nancy and Gerry. 

“What really clicked WMCAT into my heart,” shared Nancy, “was the first adult graduation I attended. The place was so noisy, filled with graduating students’ families and excited kids running around.  And as I departed after the graduation, I saw a little boy take his mom’s graduation cap and put it on his head. And I thought, there is now an expectation that he, too, will be a graduate someday. WMCAT changed his mom’s life, but it changed the family’s life too.”

Gerry and Nancy have introduced many friends and colleagues to WMCAT over the years, including their two daughters. Now they are joining other longtime friends of WMCAT in our new Circle of Opportunity legacy giving program, making plans to ensure WMCAT will be here for generations to come. 

“We’ve decided to tailor our giving to local organizations that positively impact the Grand Rapids community and mean a lot to us personally.” said Gerry. “And WMCAT is at the top of the list for us. Their impact on the community is great and we’re happy to be a part of it.”

Join Gerry and Nancy by considering your place in the Circle of Opportunity. Connect with Amy Knape, director of development, to discuss options for sustaining WMCAT.

Circle of Opportunity Story: Brian Cloyd and Agnes Kempker-Cloyd

The origin story of WMCAT wouldn’t be complete without longtime friend, leader, and donor, Brian Cloyd. Now, Brian and his wife Agnes (Aggie) Kempker-Cloyd aren’t simply remembering the past of WMCAT, they are looking forward to the future.

They knew the impact WMCAT would have on the West Michigan community from the beginning when they helped set the vision and lead the campaign to open WMCAT. As a family they are now making plans to build a legacy of access and opportunity rooted in equity for years to come – the mission that still drives WMCAT today. 

“This is important work and we have an obligation, because as I say, ‘when there’s a crack in the door, kick it open’ and you hold it open so we can all come in.” 

Sustaining and growing the work of WMCAT allows that door to opportunity to remain open for young people and families in our community. For Brian and Aggie, the option of creating an endowment was how they wanted to advance this work through the Circle of Opportunity.

“An endowment becomes a continuous stream that supports an organization and provides reliability going into the future. And it doesn’t take that much to do it.”

Making sure that they are supporting ‘people and families’ for years to come is vitally important for the Cloyds. However, they see the importance of WMCAT going far beyond its programming. “WMCAT has an important voice,” said Brian. “I see that voice getting louder, broader and wider as a regional organization in the future.”

Join Brian and Aggie by considering your place in the Circle of Opportunity. Connect with Amy Knape, director of development, to discuss options for sustaining WMCAT.

Let’s chat!

Contact Director of Development Amy Knape at amy.knape@wmcat.org or 616-454-7004 to learn more about legacy giving at WMCAT. Together we can find your place in the Circle of Opportunity.
Circle of Opportunity gifts will be invested in an endowment fund for the long-term sustainability of WMCAT.
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