Self described as "ahead of the curve when it comes to financial stuff," Bruce Hanson of Augusta is thinking of the future.
At an early age, Bruce worked to secure his financial future by contributing to a retirement fund and investing in the stock market-putting a little aside each year in order to be ready to meet his financial needs in the future. Bruce says, "Thinking back, I think that my first membership to support public radio in Maine and my first investment occurred at about the same time. Both interests have grown together in my life, and both have made me somewhat richer, though in quite different ways."
At 40, Bruce began thinking beyond retirement and beyond his own lifetime-remarkable when most people his age are simply satisfied to have some type of retirement plan in place. Ultimately, those thoughts led to planning his estate.
With advice from various sources including a local legal technician, Bruce created a simple will designed to carry out his wishes after he dies. "It doesn't have to be expensive or intimidating," he says. "In fact, there is a great sense of closure to getting this done."
Bruce isn't what one would consider a typical philanthropist. Philanthropy, however, is exactly what he had in mind when he decided to leave a legacy to support, through his will, radio programming at the Maine Public Broadcasting Network.
A firm believer that middle class people can make a big difference in the future of charitable organizations, Bruce says, "Middle class people have an obligation to support something." It's a sense of duty he describes as "bourgeois oblige." His selection of the Maine Public Broadcasting Network as the recipient of his legacy is based on the personal connection he feels to the service. "I live with public radio. It's my daily companion." His commitment to the organization started with annual support, which then blossomed into volunteerism, and now has resulted in providing for the station in his will. "Public radio is a big piece of my life and that's why I chose it for my legacy."
Bruce suggests that people think about something that means a lot to them in their life when planning their legacy-and do it. In his case, Bruce feels "a great sense of satisfaction to leaving something to an organization that will last longer than you do. In a sense, it's my attempt at immortality."
Bruce's attempt at living beyond his years will be a reality someday through his legacy to ensure the future of quality radio programming through MPBN. By a policy set by the Board of Trustees for the Maine Public Broadcasting Network, all unrestricted bequests are contributed to the organization's endowment. In this way, Bruce's hopes and dreams for the service for which he cares deeply will be realized.