Ways to give

The creative economy is driven by creators—your gift ignites both

Keeping Watkins a vibrant institution that catalyzes future artists, designers, and filmmakers is critical—and it requires your support. You can make a tax-deductible donation online or mail a check along with a printed copy of the online form.

We also offer a variety of giving opportunities to scale your ambitions. Email Autumn Parrott, Vice President for Institutional Advancement, or call 615.227.7401 for assistance with any of these options for supporting Watkins.

Annual Fund

Your gift to the Annual Fund supports year-round operations and benefits every area of Watkins, including classroom and studio equipment, faculty and student community outreach initiatives, library acquisitions, and exhibitions.

We accept pledges and gifts to the Annual Fund year-round at all giving levels:

  • Friend ($100 to $249)
  • Benefactor ($250 to $499)
  • Patron ($500 to $999)
  • Samuel Watkins Society ($1,000 to $2,499)
  • President’s Circle ($2,500 to $4,999)
  • Trustees’ Circle ($5,000 to $9,999)
  • Commissioners’ Society ($10,000 and above)

Major gifts

Your tax-deductible major gift secures the mission of Watkins for future generations by providing funds to build buildings, create or renovate spaces, establish programs, fund scholarships, and enable the planning and completion of a variety of long-term activities. Such donations can be in the form of:

  • named and memorial gifts
  • anonymous gifts
  • unrestricted or donor-designated gifts
  • capital campaign gifts

Planned giving

Depending on your circumstances, you may find one or more of our planned giving options advantageous.

  • Bequest. Qualify for an estate tax deduction by including Watkins in your will for a specific amount, a percentage of your estate, or a remainder gift after bequests to other beneficiaries have been paid. You can make a bequest by simply adding a codicil to your existing will.
  • Life insurance. When you make Watkins the owner and beneficiary of a new policy, your premium payments are fully deductible and the policy’s value is not part of your taxable estate. You are entitled to an immediate income tax benefit with an existing policy, or you can name Watkins as the policy beneficiary and qualify for a federal estate deduction for the entire amount at your death.
  • Charitable trust. A charitable trust entitles you to income-tax deductions and provides current income—fixed payouts or variable annual payments—to you and/or a beneficiary. You may fund your trust with cash, appreciated securities, or real estate.
  • Real estate with retained life interest. Your gift of real estate allows you to continue living at your personal residence and avoid future capital-gains tax on any appreciation in value.

Gifts of securities

In addition to all the benefits of a cash gift, your gift of securities may entitle you to additional tax benefits, including eliminating capital gains tax and carrying forward your charitable deduction for up to five years.

Email Autumn Parrott, Vice President for Advancement and Board Relations, or call 615.227.7401 for assistance with any of these options for supporting Watkins.