Richard and Carolyn McGoldrick were considering setting up a family foundation when their attorney suggested they speak with the Maine Community Foundation about a donor-advised fund. This alternative proved beneficial: the couple traded annual IRS reporting requirements and administrative details for a streamlined process.
They also preserved the part of their vision that would enable them to engage their daughters in the concept of giving back. “Philanthropy is a learned behavior,” Carolyn states, “and authentic learning takes practice.” Daughters Katherine McGoldrick Urbanek and Meghan McGoldrick are full voting members. “Each gift must be unanimously approved,” Dick reports, “and we encourage Kate and Meg to propose candidates.”
“Philanthropy is a learned behavior, and authentic learning takes practice.” - Carolyn McGoldrick
One of Kate’s suggestions was the Tanzanian Children’s Fund. She had been to Tanzania and witnessed the poverty and lack of educational opportunities. She spoke to the fund’s board chair about greatest needs. “We funded the purchase of desks and uniforms,” she recounts, “and made an unrestricted gift to the orphanage.”
Meghan proposed funding a turf soccer field at North Yarmouth Academy. A life-long athlete, she wanted to honor her dedicated coach, Jeff Thoreck. “It was nice to be able to give back to a school that had given so much to me,” says Meghan.
The family’s grants focus on their community, children in need, and providing educational opportunities for young people. “My wife and I came from modest backgrounds,” Dick relates, “and we were fortunate to have parents who believed in the value of a college education and were willing to sacrifice for that.”
“Giving back with time, talent, and treasure is a concept we live by,” says Carolyn. “Our family fund is a way to engage our daughters in carrying on that legacy.”