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The Campaign for UC Davis

Office of University Development

UC Davis
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616-5270

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Shields Society: Leaving a legacy

Photo: Laura Lott

Laura Lott is one of the newest members of the Shields Society, which recognizes donors who give planned gifts to UC Davis. (Greg Rihl/Axiom Photo)

UC Davis professor emeritus Dale Lott loved to teach and introduce others to the joys of research in conservation biology and animal behavior. After he died five years ago, his wife, Laura, could think of no more fitting way of honoring him than to establish a fellowship for graduate students in Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology — the department he had helped found.

“He was absolutely devoted to UC Davis,” Lott said. “So much of what I have is because of Dale and the university — that’s why I’m leaving part of my estate to UC Davis.”

By making a planned gift to the university that will fund the fellowship, Lott joined the Peter J. and Carolee W. Shields Society. The Shields Society, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, recognizes the thoughtful generosity of donors who have made or have committed to making planned gifts, regardless of their size, to UC Davis. Planned gifts include will provisions, life income gifts such as trusts, annuities or pooled income funds, retirement plan balances and life insurance policies.

The Shields Society was created in 2000 to honor Peter Shields, founding father of the University Farm, and his wife, Carolee. They established a tradition of philanthropic support at UC Davis with a gift of $7,500 to set up the first endowed scholarship fund in 1938. Upon Carolee’s death in 1972, her bequest went toward scholarships and arboretum improvements.

Like Peter and Carolee Shields, members of the Shields Society contribute to UC Davis’ enduring legacy through their bequests or other gifts. Some of the university’s most significant accomplishments are made possible by the generosity of such partners. Their commitment to the university’s mission of teaching, research and public service is a philanthropic investment in the future of UC Davis as it climbs the ranks of the nation’s top universities.

Photo: Jean and Bill Allewelt

Bill ’50 and Jean Allewelt are long-time donors and supporters of the UC Davis campus. (Greg Rihl/Axiom Photo)

The Shields Society roster represents many dimensions of the UC Davis community — alumni, current and emeriti faculty, staff, volunteers and friends of the university.

Bill ’50 and Jean Allewelt are long-time supporters of UC Davis. Although Allewelt attended UC Davis with the assistance of the G.I. Bill, he recalled that at the time, state funding covered nearly 80 percent of the UC’s entire budget. Jean said her student fees at UC Berkeley (from which she graduated in ’48) totaled $28 per semester.

The Allewelts are also grandparents of a third-generation Aggie, and fully appreciate student needs for private support. That’s why they continue to contribute to the charitable remainder trust they established years ago.

“Giving to these programs is our way of expressing gratitude for all our UC experiences have given to us,” Bill Allewelt said.

This article was originally published in UC Davis Magazine.