Home is where the heart is

Tom and Charlotte Saponas

After their lifetime, Tom and Charlotte Saponas' home in the bluffs near the University of Colorado Colorado Springs campus will be used for the university's purposes.

Tom ('72) and Charlotte Saponas love their home on the bluffs just north of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs campus.

They enjoy sitting on the deck watching the afternoon storms roll in during the summer. They relish hosting big family gatherings, and every Christmas Charlotte's church choir celebrates here with a potluck and rehearsal because the many glass windows and quarry stone tile create a space with amazing acoustics.

They also love the idea of giving back to Tom's alma mater. The couple recently decided to give their home to the University of Colorado Foundation to support UCCS via a beneficiary deed. A beneficiary deed is available in many states, including Colorado.

This was an ideal solution for Tom and Charlotte: Their home will eventually go to UCCS, and the university can use the home as needed for an official function location near campus or a chancellor's residence.

"I attribute the success I had in my career to going to UCCS," says Tom, who studied electrical engineering and computer science. "I was just very lucky in my career. I wouldn't have had that without my education."

Tom worked for Hewlett-Packard before retiring after 32 years. Charlotte worked as a social worker, and together the couple raised two children. Upon retirement, they decided they wanted to donate most of their wealth to causes important to their family.

In 2000, Tom established an endowment to provide scholarships to undergraduate students at the UCCS College of Engineering and Applied Science and has benefited numerous students over the years.

"I think the greatest gift America gives is the opportunity for people to be successful, and I wanted to create opportunity for others. That's what it's really about," Tom says. "We told our kids in high school that we would pay for their college. My children are successful in their own right, and they are going to be just fine. We gave them their chance to earn their wealth."

Now, by transferring the deed to their home to UCCS, they can provide even more impact to the university in the future.

"We're surrounded by open space in the middle of Colorado Springs," Tom says. "The views are incredible. You really do feel like you are in the woods. It's our dream home, but after a while it's just your home, but we never get tired of that view."

What lies ahead on your horizon? Contact the the Office of Gift Planning at (303) 541-1229 or giftplanning@cu.edu today.