Video: Your legacy – How planned giving can benefit you and your family

Families can feel awkward or confused by the best way to honor a loved one’s legacy after they are gone. You can ease some of that burden by planning now how you’d like your philanthropic efforts to endure. 

The National Press Club Journalism Institute and certified financial planners from West Financial Services hosted a program about the different types of planned gifts, how to make them, and how to maximize their impact on the causes you care about most. 

Many people feel passionate about a charity or agency, but may believe they’re unable to donate funds at a high enough level to make a “real impact.” That’s not true! Donors with planned giving goals want to make a difference, and use planned gifts — through living trusts or upon their death — as a way to maximize their donation amount and minimize its tax burden on the donor’s loved ones. Gifts can range in size and scope, including annuities, charitable beneficiary designations, blended gifts, and bequests. 

Topics discussed

  • The personal and tax benefits of planned giving
  • How to balance charitable goals and family financial needs
  • Why the time is right to consider charitable gifting now
  • Specific options for planned giving


West Financial Services, Inc. (“WFS”) offers investment advisory services and is registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). SEC registration does not constitute an endorsement of the firm by the SEC nor does it indicate that the firm has attained a particular level of skill or ability. You should carefully read and review all information provided by WFS, including Form ADV Part 1A, Part 2A brochure and all supplements, and Form CRS.

The information contained herein is intended to be educational in nature, and not as a recommendation of any particular strategy, approach, product or concept for any particular adviser or client. These materials are not intended as any form of substitute for individualized investment advice. The discussion is general in nature, and therefore not intended to recommend or endorse any asset class, security, or technical aspect of any security for the purpose of allowing a reader to use the approach on their own. You should not treat these materials as advice in relation to legal, taxation, or investment matters. Before participating in any investment program or making any investment, clients as well as all other readers are encouraged to consult with their own professional advisers, including investment advisers and tax advisers.

About the panelists

Cheryl W. Langston, CFP®

Cheryl joined West Financial in 2019 as a relationship manager. She brings more than 20 years of experience in comprehensive financial planning, trust and estate planning, insurance and investment strategies. Cheryl began her career at a local community bank in North Carolina, where she helped develop a full service trust and investment department. Cheryl graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a degree in Economics and Industrial Relations. She is a graduate of The Southeastern Trust School at Campbell University. Cheryl obtained her CFP® designation in 1998. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional, she provides unbiased advice and service.

Cheryl helps clients navigate through complex financial matters, mitigate risks as much as practically possible, persevere through uncertainty, celebrate achievements and other important life events. Cheryl positions financial planning as a continuous journey with her clients, maintaining regular and open communication throughout that journey.

Having completed the Financial Planning Association’s and the American Heart Association’s Mastery of Philanthropic Solutions, Cheryl realizes the importance of giving back to community. She enjoys helping clients establish charitable legacies, formulate gifting strategies to maximize contributions and tax benefits while insuring families achieve their own financial goals and needs.

Kristan L. Anderson, CFP®, CEBS®

Kristan serves as the firm’s head of retirement plan services and financial planning departments. Her primary responsibility is the development and delivery of consulting services for fiduciaries of 401(k) and related retirement plans. In addition, she is in charge of coordinating comprehensive planning services for new and existing clients. Her goal in both departments is to provide clients with accurate and un-biased analysis and readily understandable solutions to complicated financial issues. As part of her financial planning role, she compiles and edits the company’s newsletter. She is the de facto “grammar girl” of the office and enjoys editing all manner of documents and correspondence. Kristan has been with West Financial Services since 1995, holding positions in office administration and financial planning before being promoted to head the two departments.

Kristan earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Barnard College of Columbia University and is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and Certified Employee Benefits Specialist (CEBS). She recently received her Master’s in Library and Information Sciences (MSLIS), with a concentration in archives. She is excited to put her new education to use by looking for ways to apply learned concepts of information and data management to the planning process. She is a member of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) and the International Society for Certified Employee Benefits Specialists (ISCEBS).

Rick L. Gibson, CFP®

Rick joined the financial planning department in September 2019 and serves as a senior financial planner.  Rick has over six years of experience in financial services. His primary responsibilities are to prepare financial plans, manage the planning process, and maintain client relationships. Rick earned his BS in Applied Economic Management with a minor in Business from Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University. He also is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional.

About the Institute

The National Press Club Journalism Institute promotes an engaged global citizenry through an independent and free press, and equips journalists with skills and standards to inform the public in ways that inspire civic engagement. The National Press Club Journalism Institute has added online programming, a daily newsletter, a weekly writing group, and other support for journalists since the pandemic started.

The Institute has waived fees for most of its services due to the pandemic, saving participants like you tens of thousands of dollars. If you value what you’ve been learning from the Institute during this time, please consider donating whatever you can. The National Press Club Journalism Institute is proud to be the non-profit affiliate of the National Press Club.

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