Generosity Made Easy

Bill and Audree Rincker met at Harpur College, back in the days when students attended class in Quonset huts in Endicott. After their marriage, Bill--a transplant to this area, and Audree--a Binghamton native, raised two children and set their roots down deep in the community.

Bill & Audree RinckerThroughout a distinguished banking career, Bill was an avid volunteer, joining the boards of the United Way of Broome County, the UHS Foundation and many other organizations. As a member of the board of the Stewart W. and Willma C. Hoyt Foundation 15 years ago, Bill played a key role in creating the Community Foundation.

The Hoyt board formed the new organization to give the community a vehicle for exercising its generosity, Bill says. “The Community Foundation provides support and a systematic method for accomplishing what an individual wants to accomplish.”

As the Community Foundation’s first Board chair, Bill understood as well as anyone the value that the Foundation provided to individual philanthropists. So it’s no surprise that he and Audree decided to establish a donor advised fund.

“Through our efforts and good fortune, we had some assets that we thought would be useful to support some philanthropic objectives of our own,” Bill says. With a donor advised fund, the Rinckers could make a single contribution and then make recommendations about how to distribute the money. “From that point on, we were out of the picture,” he says. The Foundation took responsibility for administering the fund and writing checks to selected organizations.

The Rinckers have long used their fund to support local causes such as the UHS Foundation, United Way of Broome County and CHOW. Their support for the William H. and Audree F. Rincker Scholarship at Binghamton University flows through the fund as well. Although their charitable goals have stayed fairly constant, in recent years the Rinckers have added the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the Wounded Warrior Project to the list of organizations that they recommend for support.

Audree says that her reasons for giving are simple. “I had wonderful parents. I met and married a wonderful man. We have two wonderful children and three wonderful grandchildren. Since we have so much to be thankful for, it’s nice to be able to give back.”

People who hear about donor advised funds might feel hesitant at first about starting their own, says Bill. “But if they give it a chance, they’ll find out how easy and rewarding it is to be generous.”

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