Planning with a long view: AOPA Foundation Legacy Society

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The AOPA Foundation is ensuring a solid future for GA through the important work of the You Can Fly initiatives and the AOPA Air Safety Institute, which are funded by the generosity of the foundation’s donors. But not all giving to the AOPA Foundation is done in the short term. One group of passionate donors plans to make important contributions after they are gone.

“Blue skies and tailwinds” is a loving tribute typically offered aviators when they “fly west.” For members of the AOPA Foundation Legacy Society, they have ensured that a tangible gift to future aviators is also given through their estate plans.

“My passion and drive these days is to make sure we generate interest from the next generation to become involved in aviation,” said Mike “Monty” Montgomery, a member of the Legacy Society. Montgomery, the son of a U.S. Air Force navigator, regularly commutes to work in his KitFox two-seat sport aircraft. He recently included the AOPA Foundation in his long-term financial plans by adding a gift to the AOPA Foundation in his will. “We need to make it easier for them to get involved. This to me seems a perfect way to provide scholarships for younger pilots and support the AOPA programs that keep GA strong for the next generation.”

Scholarships for student pilots are only one of the many efforts to grow and support the pilot population that the AOPA Foundation funds. AOPA’s You Can Fly initiatives provide high school aviation curriculum to thousands of students nationwide. Hundreds of flight schools and flight instructors have received valuable support, more than 135 flying clubs have been launched, and more than 7,700 formerly rusty pilots have returned to flying since the program’s inception in 2014. In just one year alone, Air Safety Institute safety courses, videos, and reports were utilized 7.7 million times in 2019 by pilots seeking to improve their skills and safety. Both the You Can Fly and Air Safety Institute programs are funded by donations to the AOPA Foundation.

“Including a gift to the AOPA Foundation as a part of your estate planning is a powerful way to make a lasting and significant impact on the future of general aviation,” said AOPA Foundation Executive Director Melissa Rudinger. “We are honored to welcome those who have taken this step into the AOPA Foundation Legacy Society to recognize their commitment.”

Members of the Legacy Society can

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