A Family Affair: How a young couple’s bequests create a legacy of giving for their children

It’s never too early to plan for the future, says Rachel Monteverdi.

At 41, she already has amassed a lifetime of experience in public service, and she wants that legacy to thrive long after she’s gone. Monteverdi, a Cooperative Extension agent in Warren County, and her husband, Dr. Bob Monteverdi, recently created their will, establishing 10 bequests to a number of different nonprofit organizations, including two endowments for North Carolina Cooperative Extension.

Bequests made by the Monteverdis will benefit Cooperative Extension, as well as a number of nonprofit organizations.

Each of the couple’s children is connected to the individual charities in some way, whether through an interest in construction (Habitat for Humanity) or a long-time involvement in the Boy Scouts of America. And each child is expected to serve those organizations in some way.

“We structured these gifts in a way that encourages our kids to get involved, to continue philanthropy, to ante up, not only in physical labor and energy but also in dollars,” Monteverdi says. “We pray that they will be successful in their worlds and do good things.”

The “Monteverdi Pay It Forward 4-H Scholarship Endowment” will create scholarships to any two- or four-year institution in the United States for current or former 4-H’ers from Durham or Wake counties. And income from the “Monteverdi Pay It Forward Program Endowment” will be used to support creative grant proposals in the areas of education, the environment, health, human services, parenting, women’s issues and the elderly in a number of North Carolina counties.

“My heart lies in Cooperative Extension,” Monteverdi says. With her husband’s and children’s tremendous support, this legacy of giving truly has become a family affair.

— Suzanne Stanard

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