Jim Irvine

Former FFA Chapter President Reaps the Benefits of a Gift Funded with Appreciated Property

Jim IrvineJim Irvine was an FFA chapter president in high school — and so were both of his sons. After a career farming corn and soybeans in Minnesota, he and his wife, Wanda, decided to give some of their crop assets to FFA to set up charitable remainder trusts as part of their charitable action plan.

With a charitable remainder trust, the gift results in payments to anyone of the donor’s choosing for a designated period, after which the remainder goes to the National FFA Foundation. When a charitable remainder trust is funded with appreciated property, the charity does not have to pay capital-gain tax on the appreciation when selling the assets — which the Irvines would have had to pay if they had sold the property themselves.

“I had a lot of assets in corn and soybean and didn’t want to get taxed,” Jim said in explaining his funding of the gift.

Jim’s FFA advisor in high school was also his physics teacher, and he went on to earn a degree in physics and a master’s degree in math. He taught for several years before becoming a farmer. Jim and Wanda are celebrating 50 years of marriage this year and now live in Bend, Ore.

Jim said he thoroughly enjoyed the FFA experience, particularly learning parliamentary procedure.

“FFA teaches our young people to be good citizens,” Jim said. “They have so many areas, not just farming. They teach kids how to take a project and see it through. Your money is going to a great cause.”