Tom and Nancy Brandt: Embracing Baltimore
March 08, 2017
“I was born in Baltimore, and I’ve been involved in the community all my adult life,” says Tom Brandt.
Tom and his wife Nancy have been steadily engaged in community activities since starting careers here shortly after graduating from Duke and marrying in 1974. “I still enjoy an annual dinner with old friends from the 1970s Baltimore Jaycees. There were some big bumps in the road along the way, but friends from church and civic work always enriched our lives, and a lot of folks without our advantages can use some help.”
Tom and Nancy support youth and education causes, including their church and related day schools and the YMCA in Central Maryland. Tom once served as chair of a GBC committee which reviewed the Baltimore City Public Schools budget process under then-mayor William Donald Schaefer.
Tom will be chair of the Y Board for the next 2 years, where a priority is expansion of facilities for youth development and healthy living to address unmet needs in Baltimore City. “I’ve found the Y to be impressively well-run, with scale to have an impact.”
The Brandts have a strong spirit of service and giving, instilled at an early age. “It’s ingrained in both of us,” says Nancy, a retired interior designer. “Tom’s parents were quietly generous, and my parents always found money to support their church, veterans, or whoever needed it . It’s just always been something that we’ve done.”
Tom, a Wharton MBA and CPA, had a career in accounting and finance. After taking two communications technology companies public, he was a board member and CFO at an Annapolis company when it was sold last year. “As a financial guy, when I saw the opportunity coming to sell the company, I started doing research as to how to best deploy proceeds to enable some meaningful charitable giving. I did not even know the term ‘donor-advised fund’ until a former Price Waterhouse colleague suggested the idea to me. I looked it over, and I chose BCF because I respect their role in my home town,” says Brandt. He and Nancy decided to make a gift of appreciated company stock through BCF to start the Brandt Family Fund, an endowed donor-advised fund.
Donating appreciated securities, including stocks or bonds, is an easy and tax-effective way for many donors to make a gift to BCF. By donating appreciated securities, a donor can avoid paying capital gains tax on the sale of appreciated stock and receive a charitable income tax deduction.
Tom and Nancy also plan to involve their grown children in their fund. “It’s a work in progress. Our kids are both very sharp, and live in Maryland. We hope they will be involved in this fund in the future,” says Tom.
Tom chose BCF for a straightforward reason: Baltimore is the place he and Nancy love. And while their zip code puts them in the Millersville area, they still consider Baltimore home. “So many causes in the world have needs; we’ve had a good life in Baltimore, which has a unique history and some tough needs. We hope to contribute to making it better.”