Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation
foundation news

November / December 2005


The power of private-public partnerships to preserve the past was the focus of a tenth-anniversary celebration at the Nebraska State Historical Society's Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center in Omaha on Friday, October 28. More than 150 donors, clients, and supporters were feted for their involvement in the center's success. Born out of a significant gift from Omaha businessman James Paxson to the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation, the Ford Conservation Center is one of only three regional conservation centers west of the Mississippi. In its decade of service to the region, the Ford Center and its staff of conservators and technicians have provided services to and consulted with thousands of individuals, museums, historical societies, libraries, government agencies, and businesses. Conservators have treated artifacts ranging from the document outlining terms of the Louisiana Purchase to the sculpture of The Little Dancer by Edgar Degas to rare, recovered Oglala-Lakota ledger art.

Private support through the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation allowed the Ford Center to develop its state-of-the-art digital imaging lab and acquire high-end technology necessary for artifact diagnosis and treatment. As the Ford Center enters its "teens," new private support will match a challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to create an endowment to establish a paintings conservation laboratory at the center. Currently individuals or institutions needing help for their paintings incur risk and expense in transporting works outside the region for assessment and treatment. Combining private and public funds will provide this much-needed conservation service for artistic works much closer to home.

The private-public partnership extended to the anniversary party as well; hosts for the event were Ford Center and Foundation supporters Marian and Harold Andersen, Sally and Edson Bridges, and Judy and Ron Parks of Omaha. The inspiring words offered by Larry Reger, president of Heritage Preservation, a national organization that works to save the objects of our history, reminded those in attendance why the work of the Ford Center is so important:

"Paraphrasing A. Bartlett Giamatti's remarks on the occasion of the 150th Anniversary of the Yale University, puts it more poignantly than I could," Reger noted.

"To preserve an historical or artistic work gives present and future generations the opportunity to make a living connection between what we are and what we want to be. It is an act of faith in the power of the human imagination to make ourselves whole, and in that wholeness, for a moment holy. It is an affirmation of that portion of us that can be whole and holy, that will endure, that resists the acid of time, that overcomes the rush to ruin and decay that in all other ways will win. It is no small thing, but finally sublime, to outwit time and make a moment that can last forever."

If you'd like to be a partner in the next ten years of the Ford Center's efforts in making a better future for the past, please contact Jackie Spahn at the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation or Julie Reilly at the Ford Center.

Ford Center staff (from left):
Deborah L. Long, objects conservator;
Sheila Fairbrass Siegler, head of the paper conservation laboratory;
Vonnda Shaw, conservation technician;
Julie Reilly, associate director/chief conservator;
Lisa Metzer Grotrian, administrative coordinator.

Year-End Gifts to the Foundation Could Brighten Your Spring

Year-end tax planning can result in extra tax savings next April when your tax bill comes due. This newsletter highlights some of the ways you might be able to reduce your income taxes and provide important support for the Nebraska State Historical Society. Not all of the ifs, ands, and buts for year-end tax planning are covered in this newsletter, but the topics will get you thinking! Be sure to contact your tax advisor to see how these strategies might benefit you.

As you consider your year-end tax planning, consider making good use of the income tax charitable deduction. Your 2005 year-end gift can significantly reduce your income taxes, while providing the meaningful difference in what we do. And the charitable gifts you make now could leave you much better off on April 15. The amount of the income tax savings will depend on your tax bracket.

For example: If you are in a 31 percent income tax bracket in 2005, and you itemize your deductions, a $1,000 gift to us by December 31 will save you $310 in 2005 taxes. The higher your tax bracket, the more money you save with a charitable gift.

Consider making more charitable gifts in those years when you have the most income and are in the top federal income tax brackets. If such is the case for 2005, you may wish to consider accelerating future charitable gifts into this year. Check with your tax advisor.

Because of the income tax charitable deduction, anyone who makes a gift by December 31 and itemizes can reduce the sting of income taxes for 2005.

There are many year-end, tax-saving gift ideas that can reduce your tax liability while helping us to preserve and protect Nebraska's history. We would be pleased to provide you with further information. Also, we urge you to discuss your tax planning with your accountant or other professional advisor.

For more information contact:

Jackie Spahn, Executive Director
Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation
Kinman-Oldfield Suite 1010
128 North 13th Street
Lincoln, NE 68508-1565


Giving Reminders for 2005

Gifts made by December 31
are deductible in 2005 and can reduce taxes. Your gift must be postmarked by December 31 to qualify for a 2005 gift.

Giving long-term appreciated property
or securities rather than cash can often provide greater tax savings.

Giving through wills, trusts, and other long-range financial planning instruments
can be convenient, economical, and can help reduce estate taxes.

Ask your professional advisor
about the giving method that provides the most benefits to you.

Giving is, of course, much more than tax brackets and charitable deductions. Your charitable gifts make an important difference in what we are able to accomplish. With your help, the Nebraska State Historical Society can provide greater access to the many fascinating stories of our state and the artifacts that tell those stories.

For more information on how to significantly reduce your income taxes next spring and help us safeguard and share our state's history, contact the NSHS Foundation, your tax advisor, or attorney.

Contact Information:

Jackie Spahn, Executive Director
Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation
Kinman-Oldfield Suite 1010
128 North 13th Street
Lincoln, NE 68508-1565

Ph: 402-435-3535
Toll Free: 888-515-3535
Fax: 402-435-3986


2005-06 Foundation Board of Directors

Allison D. Petersen, Walton, President
Steven E. Guenzel, Lincoln, Executive Vice President
Jack D. Campbell, Lincoln, Vice President
C. John Guenzel, Lincoln, Treasurer
Joanne F. Shephard, Valentine, Secretary

James C. Creigh, Omaha
Bruce M. Frasier, Omaha
Dr. James W. Hewitt, Lincoln
Dr. F. William Karrer, Omaha
JoAnne D. Kissel, Lincoln
Carol F. Maddux, Wauneta
Dr. Martin A. Massengale, Lincoln
John D. Massey, Scottsbluff
George H. Moyer, Jr., Madison
James F. Nissen, Lincoln
David H. Oldfather, Kearney
Julie M. Schroeder, Waterloo
Andrew D. Strotman, Lincoln
John W. Webster, Omaha
Dr. John R. Wunder, Lincoln

Patrick Kennedy, Omaha, NSHS President, Ex-officio
Margaret Allington, Lincoln, NSHS Treasurer, Ex-officio

September / October 2005 Issue

Back Issues

Foundation home page


NSHS Home  |  Search  |  Index  |  Top
Last updated 2 November 2005

For questions or comments on the website itself, email
Nebraska State Historical Society - P.O. Box 82554, 1500 R Street, Lincoln, NE 68501
Nebraska State Government Homepage
 |  Website Policies  |  © 2009 All Rights Reserved