Leaving a Legacy

Spotlight Date: 
March 28, 2016
Mike and Jane Grossman

When Dreyfoos School of the Arts Foundation supporters Mike and Jane Grossman lost Jane’s parents, Nancy and T.S., they believed that honoring their legacy was important. Jane’s parents, met at Lingnan University in Canton, China during the Sino-Japanese War.  American missionaries running the university decided to evacuate students on foot (over 700 miles) to St. John's University in Shanghai, a demilitarized safety zone. They graduated from St. Johns and while T.S. joined the British Air Force as a translator, Nancy taught English at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. After the Air Force, T.S. became an accountant and they moved to Australia, Hong Kong, and eventually settled in the U.S. in California.

The Grossmans decided to use the inheritance from Jane’s parents to set up a Charitable Gift Annuity through the Community Foundation to benefit the Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts.

“We named the fund in honor of Jane's parents. Her mother was a lover of the arts, especially literature and classical music. For them, education was of prime importance. They would be proud to help Dreyfoos High School students receive an education and pursue their dreams.  They would also be proud to give back to the United States, a country whose ideals and values they admired deeply.”

The Grossmans love classical music, and Jane plays piano. They learned about Dreyfoos through a friend and piano teacher Ruo Huang Balko, whose children attended Dreyfoos. “They were exemplary youngsters, which made us curious about the school they attended.​” Their interest led to touring the school with former Executive Director Pat Broxson, and current Director Kris Lidinsky. “It was the happiest student body we had ever seen. The academics were impressive too.​”

Their visit to the school inspired them to give to the Foundation, not only to the Music department, but to the Ray of Light Program, which supports financially disadvantaged students, and to college scholarships awarded to Piano students. “As former teachers, we know the importance of education.” The Grossmans have also named the Dreyfoos School of the Arts Foundation as a beneficiary of their estate, designating the funds for scholarships.

Mike and Jane love to come to Dreyfoos and see the piano recitals in the Brandt Theatre. They believe that supporting the Dreyfoos School of the Arts Foundation helps to increase the appreciation of classical music in the community.  They hope that their planned gift and the annuity honoring Nancy and T.S.’ legacy will inspire others to give.

*Have you left a gift to the Dreyfoos School of the Arts Foundation in your will? Please let us know.