January 21, 2022

Donor Spotlight: Lawyer, Novelist, Philanthropist

Jerold Jacover still remembers sitting at his desk in the early 1970s, after graduating Georgetown Law School and becoming a patent lawyer, thinking, “Okay, I’m making some money now, not much by today’s standards but a fortune to us then. How can I help Israel?”

He was intrigued when he learned that the Technion considered building an aeronautics department even before Israel’s independence. “What vision!” thought Mr. Jacover, who graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in electrical engineering. So, Mr. Jacover got involved with the American Technion Society (ATS), where he became the president of the Chicago Chapter. Today, he has created multiple deferred gift annuities to support the Technion in addition to generously contributing to other Technion projects.

“I grew up in a middle-class family with middle class values,” said Mr. Jacover of his upbringing in Chicago. His father, a navigator of B-29 bombers in World War II, worked in the steel mills, and his mother volunteered at various Jewish organizations. Before starting his legal career, he went to work for the political activist and consumer protection advocate Ralph Nader. A man of many talents, Mr. Jacover also has penned two novels.

“There are a lot of wonderful ways to help Israel. But I think the best way is to help the Technion. Period.”

“Judaism was a big part of our life,” said Mr. Jacover. So when a friend brought him to an ATS meeting, it clicked. He attended an ATS Mission to the Technion in the mid-1980s, making his first gift. From there, his involvement grew.

“After talking with a financial advisor, we understood deferred gift annuities would be the most prudent thing to do in our financial situation,” said Mr. Jacover, explaining why he chose this particular planned giving vehicle. Deferred charitable gift annuities provide Mr. Jacover and his wife, Judi, fixed payments for life and a tax deduction today, in exchange for their gift of cash or securities to the Technion. The payments were deferred until his retirement. “I didn’t need the income when I was working. Now, it’s giving us some money, which is nice to have,” he said. “I also know the Technion is investing it and will eventually get this large sum. It’s a nice way to make a gift to the Technion.”

Deferred annuities also allow the Jacovers to help their family. “I have certain goals that I want to reach for my children and grandchildren,” he said. “The income we get from the deferred annuity is great to supplement our retirement income or to give some of it to our children.”

How is the plan working for them? “We’re thrilled with it,” said Mr. Jacover. “I know that my wife and I did something we really wanted to do, to leave a significant gift to the Technion, and it was consistent with our goals and situation.” He added, “There are a lot of wonderful ways to help Israel. But I think the best way is to help the Technion. Period.”

For more information about how you can support the Technion, contact Judy Sager, Executive Director, Planned Giving at judy@ats.org or call at 781.531.0441.