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Supporting Cutting-Edge Research for the Future

Jane and Drew Lanza

Jane and Drew Lanza

Being on the leading edge of new ideas and innovations comes naturally to Drew and Jane Lanza. In fact, they seem to have made it a lifelong habit.

In part, this is what led the Lanzas to the Planned Giving Office at Stanford Medicine.

They have both worked in high tech—Jane for IBM and Drew in the telecommunications industry, first at Raynet and then helping to fund information technology startups.

Drew has a bachelor's and master's in electrical engineering from Stanford, and also lectured in Stanford's Department of Electrical Engineering for many years. Jane switched from IBM to work for private foundations, including one that helps support Stanford researchers investigating new treatments for Parkinson's disease.

When friends asked them to help fundraise for the Stanford Museum after it was extensively damaged in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, they didn't hesitate to volunteer.

"We started out giving time. When you don't have much money, you give time," says Drew. "When you roll up your sleeves, it's fun and you get to know people."

They both served on the board of directors of the museum and chaired benefit events—including one fundraiser that broke new territory for a Stanford benefit by entertaining guests with the music of the Grateful Dead.

In addition to the arts, the Lanzas began developing an interest in clinical genomics. This interest led Drew to get his DNA sequenced and then to meet the leaders in Stanford's Clinical Genomics Program, launched in March 2018.

"So now we're back to the cloud—big data—all this technology that Stanford created. Suddenly we have all these people who have had their DNA sequenced. That's the future of medicine," says Drew.

"Clinical genomics is such a new field," says Jane. "It's fun to be part of something that's really beginning and starting to grow. It's just so incredibly interesting. We just love being on the front edge of what is happening. It's kind of a nice place to be."

When Drew and Jane started planning for their retirement, they learned that a charitable remainder unitrust (CRUT) could provide significant benefits to them—they would pay no capital gains tax at the time of sale of appreciated securities, they would receive an income for life that could contribute to their retirement security, and they would get a current income tax deduction.

The CRUT will support their interests at Stanford when the trust terminates at their deaths.

"The light bulbs came on," says Drew, when they learned that the CRUT could be invested alongside the Stanford endowment. " University endowments have smart investors. They're at the top of the stack of smart investors and their strategy includes working to protect against inflation. For our situation, it's a good vehicle for retirement. We ran the spreadsheets. When we combine the financial benefits with supporting medical causes we care about, it is a winner."

The Lanzas made an initial gift of highly appreciated securities in 2015 to establish the CRUT and have made multiple additions of the same heavily appreciated securities to the CRUT over the last few years.

Ever the art lovers, the Lanzas chose to direct a portion of the remainder interest in their CRUT to support art for the new Stanford Hospital and the other portion to their new interest in clinical genomics.

"Clinical genomics is a big vision that we want to support. This is something that could change the world," says Jane.

Contact the Office of Planned Giving at 650.723.6560 or pgmed@stanford.edu to learn how you can make a gift that both supports Stanford's research and provides benefits to you.

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