Sonoma State University Office Of Development
SSU Campus

Ways to GIve

Outright Gifts | Planned Gifts | Memorial and Honorary Gifts

All gifts are an investment in our students. Whether your gift is for specific programs or projects, an endowment, a scholarship, or the Fund for Sonoma State, there are a variety of ways you can give in support of Sonoma State University.


Cash | Stock | Real Estate | In-Kind | Matching | Pledges | Payroll Deduction

When you make an outright gift to SSU, your contribution can be put to work immediately either providing funding for our current programs or creating a reliable source of future income by expanding the university’s endowment.

Cash Gifts

Cash gifts are the simplest and easiest gifts you can make. They can be made through credit/debit card transactions, personal checks, cashier’s checks, or money orders made payable to the SSUAF. Give online now or download the Sonoma State University gift form. If you prefer, your gift can be made over time as a pledge by downloading the SSU Donor Pledge form.

Give online
SSU Gift Form (pdf)
SSU Donor Pledge form (pdf)

Stock Gifts

Gifts of appreciated securities, stocks and bonds can provide considerable tax advantages when transferred to Sonoma State University before they are sold. If you have held your securities for more than one year, you may find that your gift will provide a twofold tax benefit; creating an income tax deduction as well as helping avoid the capital gains tax that would have been due on their sale. To make a gift of stock, complete the Securities Transfer Form and ask your broker to transfer shares using the following information:

Morgan Stanley c/—SSU Academic Foundation, Inc.
DTC: 0015 FBO
ACCT#: 122-081113-400

Please let us know when you make a gift of stock so that we can direct it to the fund of your choice.

Real Estate

When you make an outright gift of real property you’ve held for more than a year, you obtain an income tax charitable deduction equal to the property’s full fair market value. This deduction lets you reduce the cost of making the gift and frees up cash that otherwise would have been used to pay taxes. By donating the property to SSU, you also avoid capital gains tax on the property’s appreciation.


Gifts-in-kind are non-monetary items of tangible personal property or other physical assets that represent value to the University. Examples might include equipment, books, and artwork. Gifts in excess of $500 should be accompanied by a fair market estimation from the donor. Gifts that exceed $5,000 are subject to the IRS requirement of an independent appraisal.

Gift-in-Kind Donor Intent form (to be used by donor)(pdf)
Gift-in-Kind Acceptance form (to be used on campus) (pdf)

Matching Gifts

Numerous organizations and corporations will double or triple gifts made to educational institutions from employees, spouses and retirees. Is your company one of them? The Matching Gift Program is an excellent means to substantially multiply gifts to the University.

To find out if your employer (or your spouse’s employer) has a matching gift program, please contact the Human Resources department where you work, or call SSU University Development at 707.664.2712.


A pledge gift is often advantageous as the donation can be made over one or more years. To make a pledge gift to SSU, simply sign and return the Donor Pledge Form.

SSU Donor Pledge form (pdf)
Green Music Center Donor Pledge form (pdf)

Payroll Deduction

Sonoma State University employees are invited to make contributions to any SSUschool, department or program via monthly payroll deduction. The minimum deduction is $5.00. To enroll in the payroll deduction program or change the status of an existing deduction, please fill out the Payroll Deduction Form and return it to Advancement, attention: Janet Hankes.

Payroll Deduction Form (pdf)


Bequest | Charitable Gift Annuity | Charitable Remainder Trust | Charitabe Lead Trust | Retained Life Estate | Insurance

Many SSU alumni and friends express support and leave thier legacy by including the University in their estate plans. Through a thoughtful planned gift, you can help SSU provide opportunities for future generations while receiving tax advantages and possible lifetime income streams for yourself and/or your beneficiaries.

All donors who establish a planned gift in support of Sonoma State are recognized with membership in the Ambrose and Barbara Nichols Founders Society. Society members share a strong common bond of generosity and ensure a successful future for Sonoma State University.


By adding Sonoma State University to your will or living trust, you will be providing countless opportunities for future generations of students who will benefit from an SSU education. Gifts can be unrestricted or designated for a specific purpose and typically reduce estate taxes.

Charitable Gift Annuity

Charitable gift annuities enable you to make a gift to Sonoma State University while earning guaranteed income and tax benefits during your lifetime. The annuity contract is backed by the CSU’s foundation. The charitable gift annuity provides a fixed payout based on age and does not depend on the growth of the gift assets.


  • Current gift annuities provide immediate payments and qualify for current year tax deduction.
  • Deferred gift annuities allow you to defer payments to the future. Delaying your annuity payments still qualifies you for a current year gift tax deduction. You may create a deferred gift annuity at any time, but payments do not begin until age 50 or later, as designated.


  • Income tax deduction and possible capital gains tax savings
  • Fixed payments for life for one or two people
  • Significant gift to Sonoma State University in the future

Estimating Your Annuity Payments
The American Council on Gift Annuities sets the payout rates on an annual basis. Payments are based on the current rate, your age, and number of annuitants. To quickly estimate your annuity payments please visit the ACGA website at, or contact SSU University Advancement for a detailed illustration.

Charitable Remainder Trust

A charitable remainder trust allows you to transfer assets, such as cash, securities or other property, into a trust that provides you or another person with a fixed percentage income. The terms of the trust can be tailored to your specific philanthropic and financial objectives. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal reverts to Sonoma State University. Charitable remainder trusts provide the security of a fixed income.

Charitable Lead Trust

Charitable lead trusts allow you to transfer assets to your children (or other beneficiaries) while the income from those assets goes to the University, giving you tax savings. The trust lasts for a chosen period of years, after which the assets become available to you.

Retained Life Estate

The retained life estate gives you the opportunity to fund a charitable gift with your home, vacation home or farm. You can take an immediate income tax charitable deduction for a portion of the appraised value, and continue to live in your home for life. You remain responsible for all taxes and upkeep. At the end of the life estate, Sonoma State University would assume all interest in your property.


Life insurance can be a tool for many purposes and may be used as one of your charitable gift options. One way to achieve this is through the purchase of a new life insurance policy naming Sonoma State University as the owner and beneficiary. Premiums are paid to the insurer and are tax deductible if the University is the irrevocable owner and beneficiary of the policy. Premium payments may have significant federal income tax deduction of up to 50% of the adjusted gross income of the donor, with a 5-year carry forward of any excess. Favorable gift and estate tax consequences may also result from such a gift.

Another life insurance gift option is to name Sonoma State University as the first, second or contingent beneficiary of an existing policy. This is easily accomplished by changing the beneficiary information with the policyholder.


Any gift to Sonoma State University may be specifically designated “in memory of” or “in honor of” loved ones, family members, friends, faculty members, classmates or those who have made a lasting impact on the lives of you or others. Memorial and honorary gifts may be submitted by fax or mail on our SSU Gift Form.

Sonoma State University Office of Development