Giving Back

Charles Black III plans an estate gift to the UAB School of Dentistry.
uab school dentistry building 2009 1Oral surgeon and dentist Charles Black III, D.M.D., completed his education at UAB more than 40 years ago, but he has never forgotten his appreciation for what the School of Dentistry did for his future. “I feel like almost everything I’ve been able to accomplish has been because of the school,” says Black, who graduated in 1972 and has a practice in Mobile. “Without UAB, I wouldn’t have been a dentist. UAB was my top choice.”

Black named UAB and another school of dentistry as 50/50 beneficiaries of part of his employer-sponsored retirement plan. Designating UAB in a will or arranging a planned gift has tax benefits realized after the person’s lifetime since retirement plans are not assessed income tax when distributed to qualified charities. For an individual whose estate is large enough to also be subject to estate taxes, naming a charitable beneficiary reduces the size of the estate and, therefore, the estate tax liability.

A beneficiary designation made on a retirement account, rather than a designation through a personal will or living trust, allows funds to be distributed directly to the named organization, avoiding the delay and expense of probate.

Black said he certainly considered the financial benefits of including UAB in his estate plans, but giving back to a school that gave him so much was his main motivation. “I feel like it’s good to pay back. You should give back when something has benefited you in the way that UAB has benefited me.”

His hope is that the planned gift will help maintain the quality of education in the School of Dentistry and contribute to updates that are continuously needed to maintain UAB as a first-rate school. “Estate gifts are the ultimate philanthropic expression of support,” says Michael S. Reddy, D.M.D., dean of the School of Dentistry. “By including us in his estate plan, Dr. Black is helping ensure we will maintain a standard of excellence in perpetuity. We are deeply appreciative of his generosity.”

Endowments such as Black’s are a high priority for The Campaign for UAB, Reddy says. Students will benefit immeasurably through the financial support of donors like Charles Black. “Dr. Black’s generous gift to the School of Dentistry’s endowment will help us sustain and grow for generations. Endowments allow us to recruit and retain world-class faculty, provide state-of-the-art clinical training, and offer innovative programs for our students,” Reddy says.

For more information about giving to the School of Dentistry, visit