October 18, 2019

Although we have widely shared news of Helmut Stern’s amazing $16.2 million estate gift—the largest gift in AAACF’s history from an individual, Friday the 13th of September provided an auspicious opportunity to celebrate and share more of his background and lasting legacy with the community!

A luncheon was held to commemorate the renaming of our legacy society as the “Helmut Stern Society for Community Legacy.” A permanent display honoring Helmut, all legacy society members (people who have made plans for a gift to AAACF in their will or estate), and all annual memorial gifts was also unveiled in AAACF’s lobby and will have interactive capability in the near future.

Legacy donors then previewed the exhibit of Helmut Stern’s photography, inventions, and company mementos that were on display in AAACF’s office for the day. Throughout the afternoon, dozens of community members—even those who personally knew Helmut—expressed their joy in discovering even more about the true Renaissance man and history-making innovations in Washtenaw County!

Exhibit attendees also included community members who helped to make the Stern Nonprofit Endowment Match a success. In just 5 months last year, 145 donors and 50 nonprofit organizations raised $1 million for nonprofit endowment funds held at AAACF, which was augmented by $500,000 in matching dollars—a reason to celebrate with a special reception also held that afternoon.

Click here to view more photos from the exhibit and celebrations. Come see the new donor display in AAACF’s lobby. Contact us to learn more about the Stern Legacy Challenge and how you can name a current fund for community impact just for documenting your legacy plans!

Although the Helmut Stern exhibit was only held for the day, AAACF’s commitment to arts and culture is lasting, as demonstrated by recent investments in CultureMakers.