Rae and Audwin Helton Earmark Gift to NCCU Foundation’s Charitable Remainder Unitrust

Posted February 26, 2020, 3:33PM

A generous gift from two alumni business owners has marked the first time NCCU has benefitted from a new investment vehicle that provides tax benefits and income for donors.

The $220,000 gift from alumni Rae and Audwin Helton is part of a charitable remainder unitrust that was created in October 2017 through an agreement between the NCCU Foundation and N.C. Gift Planning LLC.

The Heltons, both 1981 Eagle graduates, own and operate a successful geographic information systems company in Louisville, Ken.

“We decided to invest in the charitable remainder unitrust because it seemed to be a good fit with what we wanted to do on behalf of the university, and it will provide continued support over time,” Rae Helton said.

Chancellor Johnson O. Akinleye welcomed the Heltons’ contribution to the charitable remainder unitrust, a type of trust that provides a fixed annual income to the donors during their lifetime.

“We are appreciative of the generosity of the Heltons and their thoughtful decision to invest in this unitrust to the benefit of their alma mater,” Akinleye said.

Chancellor Johnson O. Akinleye, Rae Helton and Audwin Helton

N.C. Gift Planning was created to allow NCCU and other medium-sized universities within the University of North Carolina system to provide the unitrust option for donations.

As geography and library science majors, the couple used knowledge gained at NCCU to start their successful business, Spatial Data Integration Inc., in 1994.

Audwin Helton, a member of the College of Arts and Sciences Advisory Board, said he is inspired university founder Dr. James Shepard, who held high expectations for students to develop traits such as leadership, perseverance and compassion.

To learn more about estate giving options, contact Institutional Advancement at 919-530-7074 or rchilds@nccu.edu.

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