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Retirement Assets

Donating all or part of your unused retirement assets—such as your IRA, 401(k), 403(b), pension, or other tax-deferred plan—is an excellent way to support Purdue. 

If you are like most people, you probably won’t use all of your retirement assets during your lifetime. You can make a gift of your unused retirement assets to support Purdue.

How you benefit

  • You avoid potential estate tax on retirement assets
  • Your heirs avoid income tax on any retirement assets funded on a pre-tax basis
  • You receive potential estate tax savings from an estate tax deduction

How it works

You will need to complete a beneficiary designation form provided by your retirement plan custodian. If you designate Purdue University as a beneficiary, our University will benefit from the full value of your gift because your IRA assets will not be taxed at your death. Your estate will benefit from an estate tax charitable deduction for the gift.

If you have already included Purdue as a beneficiary of your retirement assets, please let us know. We would like to recognize you for your generosity.


Contact Jeanne Butler at

Additional Information

Did you know that when your heirs inherit your retirement assets, most will have to withdrawal the entire amount within 10 years and each distribution is taxed at their ordinary income rate? Another option is to leave your heirs assets that receive a step up in basis—such as real estate and stock—and give your retirement assets to Purdue. As a charity, we are not taxed upon receiving an IRA or other retirement plan assets.

Patsy J. Mellott

BS College of Health and Human Sciences, 1969
Fishers, IN

Patsy earned a bachelor’s degree in food and nutrition in business from Purdue in 1969, in addition to an MBA in food marketing from Michigan State University in 1970. She retired from Kraft Foods in 2006 after 36 years in corporate food marketing and marketing communications management.

A community volunteer, Patsy serves on the Women’s Fund of Central Indiana Advisory Board and the Purdue College of Health and Human Sciences Dean’s Leadership Council, in addition to the President’s Council Advisory Board. She is a former member of the Health and Human Sciences Alumni Board. Patsy held several offices from 2006 through 2013, including president and treasurer. She serves her community’s Discover Indianapolis Club in Fishers, holding several leadership roles for over 10 years.

Patsy has received several honors, including the Purdue University Nutrition Science Department Hall of Fame recipient in 2009 and the Purdue University College of Health and Human Sciences Distinguished Alumni Award in 2016. She also received the college’s Gold and Black Award in 2016, an honor reserved for donors who have moved the college forward by committing exceptional financial resources.

In addition to endowing two scholarships, the Patsy J. Mellott Scholarship and Patsy J. Mellott HHS Scholarship, she established the Patsy J. Mellott Teaching Innovation Award in the College of Health and Human Sciences in 2013. In 2015, she endowed the Patsy J. Mellott Women’s Tennis Coach Performance Award. She is a lead donor in the Christine M. Ladisch Faculty Leadership Award and the Purdue Women’s Network Virginia C. Meredith Scholarship for the College of Health and Human Sciences.