Central States Archaeological Societies
Central States Archaeological Societies
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Donating to your Society, the Central States(CSASI)

by Jeff Anderson, Maxwell, Indiana
and Steven R. Cooper EIC

Central States Archaeological Societies 2011 April Journal


Here’s a question: Have you ever thought of donating to your archaeological society?

A donation can be of your time. It can also be a financial donation. Either will be of great benefit. A time donation will be extremely helpful, as there are always more things to accomplish than there are volunteers. A financial donation will help guarantee the future of your society, and can also gain you a federal tax deduction.

Donating your time and effort can take the form of assisting at shows, such as addressing newsletters, filling out membership cards etc. For example, helping with the organization of a show can take a time consuming task for one person and minimize it by spreading the work among many. The end result is those who run the show will not burn out from work overload, and everyone will be willing to help with the show the next year. Most shows have many positions to fill that need not take up an entire day. Examples would include working the lunch counter, manning attendance ticket sales or judging displays for awards

Donating your time can take the form of being an officer, either for your state society or perhaps the Central States. Many of the officer positions are held by a person for just one year. Usually these require just a few hours a month in order to accomplish the tasks designated for it. In many societies, an individual can hold several officer positions over the years. The Central States has many volunteer opportunities beyond the main positions of President, Vice President, Treasurer, Business Manager and Secretary. While officers at this level are mandated by the society bylaws to specific terms, other positions are open-ended. The publication and finance committee is one example. You can inquire of any Central States officer of a position that you feel you have skills for. If a position is open, you can start anytime of the year. Otherwise the term begins with an appointment at the annual meeting, usually held in March.

Cash and other funding donations can go a long way towards the financial health of the CSASI. Cash donations to a specific state society may or may not be federally tax deductible, depending on if the state society is a non-profit 501(C3) structure. The CSASI is a non-profit 501(C3), thus donations to this body do qualify for a federal tax deduction. Donations can be via check to the Business Manager (find the mailing address on the CSASI web site http://csasi.org/csasi_officers_current.htm or in the back of the Journal.) Donations can also be made from the web site using PayPal or credit card. This process uses a secure layer to assure your information is kept confidential. Donations here can be in the $10.00, $25.00, $50.00, $75.00, or $100.00 denominations.

The federal tax deduction only applies to Schedule A. To utilize the Schedule A, you must have a higher total deduction than the IRS standard deduction. If this is the case, your donation reduces your "income level,” resulting in a reduction of your actual tax paid. Consult a tax adviser or see the IRS web site (http://www.irs.gov/) for additional information.

A donation can also take place during estate planning. The CSASI can be designated as a beneficiary. Most retirement plans and insurance policies have standard forms for naming an institution as a beneficiary. Another option is naming the CSASI as beneficiary of funds in your will. You can guarantee your hobby and this organization a stable future. An example of this kind of giving can be seen though the actions of the widow of the founder of McDonalds, Joan Kroc. She was a listener-supporter of National Public Radio (NPR). She made a donation in the huge amount of $200 Million. This was to insure the viability of an institution she and her husband thought highly of. As of this writing this donation is believed to be the largest monetary gift ever received by an American cultural institution. Obviously your donation doesn’t have to be this large, but it shows the power and value of giving.

Support from donors who value the CSASI is essential to CSASI's long-term financial health and to the fulfillment of its mission. This mission states in part: We endeavor to develop a better understanding among students and collectors of archaeological materials, professionals and non-professionals, as well as museums and institutions of higher learning, and to further understanding by providing a means to publish articles of interest to both professional and amateur archaeologists.

All CSASI operating revenue comes from a portion of state society memberships, sales of journals and donations. So a financial contribution, large or small, will make difference!

Donating your time or money will elevate your collecting experience. If you doubt this, ask any officer or someone who has donated. The rewards for contributing and involvement are great, and will provide added enjoyment to hobby you love.

Donate to CSASI and receive a income tax deduction!
Remember the CSASI in your estate planning!

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