Mike and Connie Lenihan
Mike Lenihan’s initial encounter with Be Concerned was strictly professional. The organization needed help to compile its year-end financial results. Mike’s firm – Rudler PSC, CPAs – agreed to do the job.
That relationship changed dramatically in 2008 when Mike became executor of a client’s estate. Her directions before she passed: find worthy charitable organizations and split the estate among them.
Mike thought immediately of Be Concerned. Its mission of helping people with the most basic of needs – starting with food – and its practice of maximizing the resources it was given had impressed him.
Be Concerned received a $150,000 bequest from the estate, which went for operation of its free pantry over a three-year period. Mike subsequently joined the Be Concerned board and became chair of the agency’s annual golf outing.
“We tell people in our firm that if they are going to get involved with a charity, then get involved,” he said.
The estate gift was one of a half dozen Be Concerned received in the past seven years. Mike sees such planned gifts as a key to the organization’s financial stability, the best hope for broadening Be Concerned’s support base.
It was at his urging that the Be Concerned Board launched a Planned Giving Program this year.
“I believe with an organized program we can create a solid financial base,” said Mike, who in May will begin his second year as President of the Be Concerned board. “So, if the golf outing goes away, we’ll still be able to function at the level we are now.”
Mike and his wife, Connie, demonstrated their commitment to the Planned Giving initiative by pledging their own legacy gift. They have carved out a portion of their retirement plans so that Be Concerned will receive a substantial gift when they pass on.
The Lenihans say they have been blessed with good jobs, strong families, great kids and grandkids.
So, it’s only natural that they want to give back to their community.
To other Be Concerned supporters who’ve never thought about a planned gift, Mike suggests:
“Just consider it. Don’t think that your gift won’t make a difference. If we can get 10-20 people to look at it, we can get there. We can be a small piece of a great big pie.”
Bill Hoppenjans grew up in Ft. Mitchell, went to Catholic schools and had a long career, mostly as a human resources executive, in several local companies. He was best known as dean of students and financial aid director at Thomas More College.
Bill never married, instead taking care of his widowed mother. When he died in 2012, he left most of his estate to charitable organizations that he had valued during his lifetime. Among them was Be Concerned.
His gift came as a surprise to Be Concerned, but not to his friends and family. Helping the poor was always a priority for him.
“Bill was a great person, always very concerned about his community,”
said Louis Boehmer, a cousin.
Bill put no restrictions on his gift, so it was used to support operation of Be Concerned’s free pantry through 2012 and into 2013.
Donors like Bill Hoppenjans – ordinary people with extraordinary commitments to their less fortunate neighbors – have been the saving grace of Be Concerned since its free pantry opened in 1987.
We are so thankful for their support.
Eleanor Galvin never volunteered at Be Concerned and spent a good portion of her life outside her native Northern Kentucky. But the former sister of Notre Dame was well aware of the good work the organization did and remember
When she died in 2011, her estate was divided among nine organizations that held a special place in her heart. Be Concerned was one of them. ed it when she made out her will.
Be Concerned caught Ellie’s attention in large part because of the type of people it helped.
“Ellie was always very connected with the outreach organizations in the area, particularly those working in the inner-city,” said Margaret Schack, chancellor of the Diocese of Covington and a former student of Galvin’s at Bishop Brossart High School in Alexandria.
We are indebted to donors like Ellie Galvin, who made sure that her support of Be Concerned went on after she was gone.