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How Donor Paulette Roberts is Making a Difference

How Donor Paulette Roberts is Making a Difference

After a career with IBM, followed by several years as a mom and volunteer for several organizations in San Diego, Paulette started her second career in healthcare fundraising in 1984. In 1993, she was recruited to join a medical center and later healthcare system in New Jersey where she served as president of their four foundations. After retiring and traveling the world with her husband, he passed away, and she decided to move back to sunny San Diego in 2019 to enjoy her golden years.

While Paulette has retired from her day job, she hasn't slowed down. She continues to support medical research, healthcare, and STEM educational programs as an active volunteer and philanthropist.

Paulette first encountered LJI during the pandemic, when another organization she volunteers for, the ARCS Foundation, selected Erica Ollmann Saphire, Ph.D., Professor, President and CEO at LJI, as their Scientist of the Year. As she planned the Scientist of the Year event with the team at LJI and Dr. Saphire, she learned about the Institute's research, and perhaps just as important, its culture.

When asked why she supports LJI, Paulette said without hesitation, "I really believe init - and I think what's really special is that everyone is so humble - the scientists and everyone who works there. It's like a diamond in the rough."

After the Institute returned to in-person gatherings, Paulette began attending events where she learned more about LJI's cutting-edge research, met scientists and staff, and mingled with like-minded volunteers and donors. She quickly became part of the fabric of the LJI community.

Meanwhile, as Paulette was routinely updating her estate plans, she considered who to assign as the beneficiaries of her pension plans. After making sure to take care of her children, she thought of the causes most important to her and decided to include LJI as a beneficiary of one of her pensions. She realized this gift could be hugely helpful in shaping the future of LJI, hopefully by providing funds for future faculty recruitments, or fueling important discoveries into new frontiers of immunology.

Paulette did not make this gift to inspire others to give, but she is sharing her story for that very reason. For many people, your pension or retirement account is one of your greatest assets, and including a qualified charity as a beneficiary of such an account entitles your estate to unique tax benefits. You can update the beneficiaries of your accounts any time. Paulette shared, "It was so simple. You just fill the form out online."

If you have already included LJI as a beneficiary to your retirement account, pension, or insurance plan, please let us know. We would like to acknowledge your generosity and be sure we understand how you would like your gift to be designated. We will also be happy to welcome you to LJI's Bonsai Legacy Society, where you can meet other wonderful members like Paulette.


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