E. Paul Robsham Sr., LGSOE ’83, and Joyce L. Robsham, P’86
A Legacy of Love
Parents, philanthropists, and patrons of the arts, the Robsham family has long been associated with Boston College’s theater program. But that was just the beginning of a generosity that spans decades and departments. During their lifetimes, the Robshams’ numerous contributions over the years touched countless BC students—and with an unprecedented $75 million realized bequest to Boston College, their legacy at the Heights will endure for generations to come.
Growing up, Joyce and Paul’s son, Paul Jr., played hockey and had his sights set on attending Boston College. In 1982, his dream came true. But tragedy struck just a year into his undergraduate education at the Heights when he was killed in a car accident.
University President J. Donald Monan, S.J., immediately reached out to the grieving parents, providing spiritual and emotional support. His kindness in that moment fused an enduring bond between them and the University.
Over the next several years, Paul and Joyce devoted time, energy, and resources to BC. “Before Paul passed away, he decided that BC would be the major beneficiary of the couple’s estate,” recalls Robsham estate trustee Jack Downs. “They both valued education. Together they focused on scholarships and tuition assistance and creating buildings that would be for the use of the students.”
In recognition of their nearly $1 million gift to the Heights more than 35 years ago, BC named its new theater in memory of Paul Jr. In the decades that followed, the Robshams always had an eye toward improving the student experience. They invested in several University priorities under President William P. Leahy, S.J., and established funds supporting students, faculty, and facilities. They also hosted events and Paul served as a University trustee and trustee associate.
After Paul’s death in 2004, Joyce worked with Fr. Monan, Fr. Leahy, and other University leaders to target the areas most meaningful to the family, including academic programming, theater, and student life. Joyce finalized the estate plan before passing away in 2018. Now, the couple’s $75 million record-setting gift will strengthen and expand opportunities at the Heights for the future.
“Paul and Joyce Robsham have left a lasting legacy at Boston College,” says Fr. Leahy. “I am grateful for their generosity over the years and its impact on generations of BC students.”
Make a Lasting Impact
Over the years, the Robshams supported BC students’ academic, artistic, and social experiences in ways that also provided them tax benefits. Paul and Joyce collaborated with their financial advisors and BC’s gift planning team to create a multifaceted plan that included ways to contribute to the University via a charitable remainder trust, donor-advised fund, a family foundation, and a bequest.
A planned gift of any size to Boston College will leave a legacy. Some allow you to see your gifts in action during your lifetime—and provide you with a regular income.
Whatever your commitment, you will strengthen the BC experience for the next generation of students and join a special tradition of giving at the Heights that advances our mission of educating Eagles for others.
This contract between you and Boston College provides you with income with growth potential for life or a specified period of time. After your lifetime, BC will receive the remainder of the gift. You can take a charitable deduction the year in which you make your gift and reduce or eliminate your estate taxes.
You can establish a donor-advised fund and use it to support BC. When you contribute cash, securities, or other assets to a donor-advised fund, you are generally eligible to take a tax deduction.
Including BC in your will or trust is a simple way to support Boston College. You can accomplish this by giving a specific dollar amount or percentage of your estate, or by leaving a specific asset—stocks, mutual funds, real estate, or other property. You can also add an amendment or codicil at any time to an existing will or trust.
Family or Private Foundation
A family or private foundation can support BC and also provide you with an immediate tax deduction when you contribute to the foundation.
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For BC Law alumnus Robert Keefe, JD’72, a charitable gift annuity was the most advantageous option for him to make his annual gifts to the law school.
Donor support has a powerful impact on Boston College. This issue of Bookmarks introduces you to people whose thoughtful planning and meaningful commitments help BC shape its future. A monumental estate gift from the Robshams will benefit Eagles for generations. Two charitable gift annuities established by Robert Keefe, JD’72 will support countless BC Law students.