“Aggie Bob” English ’46 attributes much of his success to what he learned in Texas A&M’s Corps of Cadets.
Shortly after receiving his economics degree, English borrowed $1,100 from his parents to start a business selling car batteries, an endeavor that developed into automotive paints. When his paint business was in trouble during the 1970s, English expanded his customer base by paying $1 to anyone who shared a new Aggie joke in his store—a marketing gimmick that earned him the nickname “Aggie Bob.”
In 2010, English gave back to Texas A&M through a charitable gift annuity he established for himself and his wife Marijo.
English had already supported Texas A&M programs through scholarships and other gifts. But he wanted to expand his assistance to the Corps of Cadets, so he contacted Brian Bishop ’91, former Texas A&M Foundation senior director of development for the Corps.
When Bishop visited English in Dallas, he brought along Mark Matthews ’80, a gift planning officer at the Foundation.
“I had been thinking about making a legacy gift for some time,” English said. “When I was ready, I called Mark. He showed me how to reach my goals for giving.” Through a charitable gift annuity, English helped both Texas A&M and his family. With some of the payments from their charitable gift annuity, the couple continues to support the Corps of Cadets.
English had already heard about gift annuities through Foundation newsletters, and Matthews gave him additional details. “My accountant said, ‘It’s a good deal. You ought to do that.’ ”
A charitable gift annuity offers:
- Lifetime payments to one or two people—spouses, for example.
- A generous tax deduction.
- Significant payout rates.
- Fixed payments for peace of mind.
- A choice of payment intervals: monthly, quarterly or annually.
“The process of making the gift—there was nothing to it,” English said. “It’s a perfect way for me and my wife to give at our stage of life. And while I was setting it up, I made some great new friends at the Foundation.”
By Mary Vinnedge
Texas A&M Foundation
The Texas A&M Foundation is a nonprofit organization that solicits and manages investments in academics and leadership programs to enhance Texas A&M’s capability to be among the best universities.