05.15.18

Legacy Society Spotlight: Lynn Streeter

Hundreds of people who love this community have committed more than $35M to ensure a better future through legacy gifts with Community Foundation Boulder County. For Lynn Streeter, becoming a member of the foundation’s Legacy Society came at a time when estate planning was foremost on her mind.

 
“Our lawyer, Connie Eyster, encouraged my husband and me to think about what we wanted to do with respect to charitable giving,” recalls Lynn. “She mentioned the Community Foundation, and that she was really impressed with what you do to support good works in our community.
 
“It also turns out that my neighbor two doors down is Margaret Katz [who previously oversaw the foundation’s philanthropic services], and I’m friends with [foundation trustee] TK Smith. So I became aware of the foundation’s programs and initiatives, and ways to give.”
 
Adds Lynn, whose husband passed away four years ago: “When we sold our startup to a large company at some point in 2004 and it was clear that I’d have more money than I knew what to do with, I started thinking about where I would put my legacy gifts. I didn’t want everything going to my daughter, and I knew I wanted to give locally. So I made a list of organizations that I felt confident would be around for a long time … Community Foundation Boulder County met all my expectations.”
 
Specifically, Lynn gave a bigger share to the foundation because of the “highly curated organizations” we support. “I like how – even though some of the sums the foundation gives through its grantmaking aren’t huge – you vet the organizations you give to, you track their progress, and you hold them accountable.”
 
Lynn also appreciates the foundation’s TRENDS Report because “it looks at where money could best be spent, given the demographics and specific needs of our community – from basic needs and education, to music and the arts … and other issues that are particularly important to me.
 
“When I first moved here, I read TRENDS from start to finish. I was incredibly surprised to learn that one of the most important issues we’re dealing with is the huge wealth discrepancy in Boulder County,” continues Lynn. “The Community Foundation really knows the issues, and works on behalf of the underserved. At the same time, with respect to my giving goals, the foundation takes the work out of it for me.”
 
Concludes Lynn, “There are so many people without means in Boulder County, yet people in Boulder – a community of great wealth – are often tight-fisted with their money. This is not a philanthropic place at all, which is sad.” 
 
That’s why Lynn is particularly impressed with CEO Jeff Hirota. “Shortly after he accepted the role, I was part of a focus group for him to talk to,” she says. “He impressed me in that he really puts himself in the shoes of the underserved, and he does that in so many ways. What he brings to the good work of the Community Foundation is philanthropy with a heart.”