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The Wisconsin Legacy Society (WLS) is a recognition society that honors and celebrates alumni and friends who have made a commitment to support the University of Wisconsin–Madison through a planned gift. This details how donors who make planned gifts (bequests and other future gifts) are thanked and how the details of their gift and other interactions with them are conducted upon their introduction into the society.
The Wisconsin Legacy Society (WLS) is a recognition society that honors and celebrates alumni and friends who have made a commitment to support the University of Wisconsin–Madison through a planned gift.
An individual qualifies for the WLS when they provide documentation of their planned gift intentions. This documentation can come in a variety of forms, and most often comes as a result of the donor working with a WFAA development staff member to ensure their personal legal or financial documents align with their philanthropic goals benefitting UW.
When the documentation is received, it is shared with the Office of Gift Planning, who manages input of the gift details into ABE, and initiates the welcome process for the WLS. Gift Planning will also notify the relevant unit-affiliated WFAA staff members of the new commitment, and request that they notify their campus partners for the purposes of stewardship outreach. Every unit varies as far as their stewardship process specific to WLS donors, but these are impactful and often revocable gifts, and the acknowledgment of these commitments is very important.
The welcome packet mailed for the WLS typically includes a thank-you letter, certificate of recognition, and a WLS-branded picture frame. Members also receive a subscription to Legacy, a newsletter that explores various ways to plan an estate and includes updates on legal and tax changes that may affect planning. WLS members may occasionally be featured in Legacy, in Wisconsin Dividends, or on the UW Foundation website. In addition, members may receive special invitations to UW–Madison alumni events and receive regular communication from campus leadership.