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January 2012 President’s Message

MRTF Begins 2012 with Thanks!

Every person has their own way of bringing in the New Year and saying farewell to the old. The most common tradition is the practice of making New Year’s resolutions. Most resolutions are made to motivate, with the most common, to simply make a difference.

The New Year is always an excellent time to reassess our priorities, to provide time to pause and assess our accomplishments and at the same time give us a chance to look ahead to the many opportunities and tasks to be accomplished.

At the closing of 2011 the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation (MRTF) has many “THANK YOU’s” that must be expressed. There are so many individuals and Units who have made a diff erence. Thankfulness – gratitude – what we choose to remember matters a great deal. Making New Year’s resolutions is probably pointless; we are unlikely to keep them. Instead, the MRTF will spend the New Year giving thanks to all those who made a difference in 2011.

The MRTF Board and the entire membership of MRTA express appreciation and thanks to two members who are leaving the MRTF Board. Marcia Slaughter, Region 7, has served as Scholarship Chair since its beginning. Board member Larry Smith, Region 3, has also asked to leave the MRTF Board. Both have served the Foundation and the Association well and will be greatly missed. New members joining the MRTF Board are former MRTA Presidents Maggie Elder, Region 1, and Walter Cochran from Region 6.

A first for MRTF is the donation of a 1968 collector’s Chevrolet Chevelle by MRTF Board member, Bill Ray. The Foundation plans to turn this gift to cash with proceeds divided between the building fund and the scholarship/grant fund. Our members should be aware that this is a way to support the Foundation with tax deductible gifts. Thank you, Bill and Mary Ray.

A big thank you also goes to the MRTA members for their financial support of our mailing label campaign and a very successful silent auction. Those two fundraising campaigns netted $38,746.

During 2011 the Foundation was able to make extra principal payments totaling $120,500 on the MRTA/MRTF office facility mortgage and at the same time to award 15 MRTA/MRTF classroom grants. The fi nancial report for December 31, 2011 indicated we are nearing the end of paying for our building owing only $123,806.76. MRTF’s priority continues to be to seek contributions and organize fundraising campaigns to eliminate the mortgage.

On December 13, 2011 the MRTF Board of Directors met at the MRTA/MRTF office for their annual meeting. The major portion of the meeting was to discuss fundraising for 2012.

We must continue to rely on the generosity of our donors, you the members, who are committed to MRTA’s future, OUR future, to finish the task of paying for our office facility and classroom. I wish there was something profound or motivating to share that would encourage us to make this the best year ever. There is no reason we should not be able to pay the remaining $123,000 of the mortgage this year. The 2012 membership contributions will further reduce the mortgage bringing the balance down to $93,000.

To accomplish this, every Unit and every member would need to make a tax deductible contribution to the Foundation now. If every member would send a NEW YEAR Contribution of $10, we could pay the mortgage immediately. A generous contribution will insure your legacy for the future and accomplish our goal of retiring the mortgage in 2012.

The Foundation will be working with MRTA to have two major fundraising campaigns in 2012. The Foundation will continue to concentrate its efforts on paying off our office facility mortgage, having fundraising activities and to encourage businesses, corporations and individuals to make tax deductible contributions to one of MRTF’s four fund choices: building, scholarship/ grant, general and endowment.

I am so very grateful for all you have given. Please accept my warmest wishes for a happy and healthy 2012.

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

December 2011 President’s Message

As the year draws near, we find ourselves looking to the future of the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation. This year, the Foundation celebrated its 10th year as a 501 (c)(3) charitable organization. The Foundation has accomplished so much because of your generosity.

Since our inception, the Foundation has awarded fifty-six (56) $1,000 scholarships to students enrolled in teacher education programs and twenty-four (24) $500 classroom grants to help active teachers with classroom projects, with 14 more classroom grants totaling $7,000 to be awarded in December. Our donors have given more than $3,000 to the Joplin Schools through the Foundation to help with the Joplin tornado recovery efforts. We have purchased a building lot and built an office facility in Jefferson City. This facility is home to the Foundation as well as the offices of the Missouri Retired Teachers Association. With your generous donations, the debt on this building is now less than $143,000. Your response to the Foundation’s fundraising efforts has been phenomenal.

The purpose of this message is two-fold:

  • Please consider making a year-end tax deductible donation to the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation, and
  • While we continue to focus fundraising efforts at paying off the building mortgage as priority, we are also looking to the future of the Foundation and its charitable efforts. Where do you see the future of the Foundation’s fundraising efforts and focus? Please take a few moments to give us your opinion by visiting us at and email us at

Thank you for your past generosity and for all you have given to fellow educators. We look forward to your year-end tax deductible donation. Please make your checks payable to the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation. I wish each and every one of you the very best as we end such a wonderful year and prepare for 2012.

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

August 2011 President’s Message

Hat’s Off & Call to Action

As President of the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation, I wish to extend my sincerest gratitude to each of you who supported the MRTA/MRTF fundraising which made 2010 such a fantastic year. I wish to give my HAT’S OFF to all who participated in our MRTA/MRTF fundraising activities which made it possible for us to pay $136,000 on the building mortgage in 2010. This year is shaping up to be another great year thanks to your commitment to MRTA and your generosity.

MRTF’s priority continues to seek contributions and to organize fundraising campaigns to reduce the mortgage of the new office/classroom facility. Our building is our billboard and has given us status and permanency at the voice of education retirees. Nevertheless MRTA is still assisting educators in the classroom. The Foundation sponsored a fundraising luncheon, featuring Missouri’s First Lady Georgeanne Nixon, for our Classroom Grant Program. The most successful fundraising luncheon ever! Generous MRTA members and corporate contributions enabled us to award seven MRTF Classroom Grants to worthwhile projects across the state. Grant winners are featured on the web at

CALL TO ACTION: Our primary fundraising event for 2011 will be our address mailing label campaign. Early in May 19,000 MRTA members received a gift of address mailing labels from MRTA/MRTF. It is our hope that every post office in Missouri will see our labels with the MRTA and MRTF logos as they travel to every state and country of the world. As you use and enjoy these address labels will you send an appreciation contribution for them? Any amount will be appreciated and will add up in a hurry. If all 19,000 members would send MRTF a minimum contribution of $20 we could retire the mortgage on our office facility this year. Any surplus dollars would be added to our MRTF Endowment fund.

It is so exciting to be able to announce that on June 15, 2011 we were able to reduce our debt by another $39,500 from the address mailing labels and membership dollars reducing our mortgage below $196,000 on an asset valued at $940,000.

For our second fundraising activity this year and after being absent for a year, our popular Silent Auction will return. This is planned for the MRTA Annual Meeting being held September 13 and 14, 2011 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Jefferson City. We are asking every MRTA unit and every Board member to contribute an item to the auction. Cash gifts will be gladly accepted in lieu of auction items. Within this newsletter is more information on some of the items being offered at the Silent Auction and a chance for everyone to participate through a sealed bid opportunity.

It has become clear that now, more than ever, we must rely on the generosity of you, the members of MRTA, who are committed to MRTA’s future to pay off our MRTA/MRTF office facility and MRTF classroom center. If you have not responded with a tax deductible contribution for your address mailing labels please do so today. There is no deadline. We will make a second building mortgage payment this year and how large of a debt reduction we end up with in 2011 is up to you and your generosity.

As MRTA member donors, this enables each of us to communicate a sense of ownership in our office facility. Please make your tax deductible contribution payable to: Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation.

We are very grateful for all of you. Your legacy of service to children and education will stay alive through the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation and the work of MRTA.

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

June 2011 President’s Message

The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation (MRTF) is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) charitable corporation devoted to raising funds to carry out certain charitable, educational, scientific, and literary purposes of the Missouri Retired Teachers Association and Public School Personnel (MRTA).

Since being approved by the MRTA Board of Directors, the Internal Revenue Service and the Missouri Department of Revenue, the Foundation has had as its motto, “Honoring the past and giving to the future.”

As a very young Foundation, established in 2001, partnering with the MRTA we embarked on a major building campaign to provide a permanent office building and public classroom for the Foundation and MRTA. Since ribbon cutting and open house, the Foundation has provided meeting space in its Classroom Center and Board Room for educational organizations and associations, not-for-profit organizations, businesses, and the committees of MRTA. During 2010, more than 1,000 persons attended meetings, classes, or training in the MRTF Classroom Center and Board Room.

MRTF’s priority continues to be to seek contributions and organize fundraising campaigns to reduce the mortgage of the new office/classroom. During 2010, as part of MRTA’s 50th birthday celebration, the Foundation had several fundraising campaigns such as the patio brick and wall tile campaign, entryway tile sealed bid campaign, and a very successful Branson raffle which enabled us to add more $136,000 to the $500,000 that we had previously raised, reducing our debt to less than $262,275. Nevertheless, the Foundation continued to have an annual fundraising luncheon for our Scholarship/Grant Program. Because of the most successful scholarship luncheon ever, and generous member and corporate contributions, we were able to award seven MRTF Classroom Grants in 2010 to worthwhile projects across the state.

Since its beginning, the Foundation has been able to give thousands of dollars in classroom grants and scholarships. To date the Foundation has been able to award $56,000 in scholarships to 56 students working toward degrees in the field of Education. During 2010, classroom grants totaling $3,500 were awarded to seven applicants bringing our total of classroom grant awards to $12,000.

The Foundation will continue to concentrate its efforts on paying the office facility mortgage, having fundraising activities and encouraging businesses, corporations, and individuals to make tax deductible contributions to one of the Foundation’s four fund choices: MRTF/MRTA office facility, educator scholarships/classroom grants, MRTF endowment fund and the MRTF general fund.

As President of the Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation, I wish to extend my sincerest gratitude to each and every one of you who have made donations to the Foundation since its beginning in 2001. We look forward to a successful 2011.

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

January 2011 President’s Message

An Open Letter to MRTA Members

A few months ago MRTA President Walt Cochran and I sent you a beautiful refrigerator magnet announcing the 50th Birthday of the MRTA. To celebrate MRTA’s Birthday we have set a goal to retire the mortgage on our office facility in 2010. The Birthday Celebration and the Annual Meeting are part of our past, but our commitment to retire the mortgage is greater than ever.

The goal to retire the mortgage is achievable, but it will take every member’s effort to do so. To reach our goal we are asking every unit and every member to contribute $50 for 50 years of MRTA service. I know that each of you shares with me my pride in the new office and many have responded with a birthday contribution. MRTF just reported its greatest fund-raising year ever. Your gifts were received and immediately sent to the Bank to reduce the loan. With gifts, raffles and other fund-raising we were able to pay $137,000 on the mortgage before December 31, 2010.

Every dollar matters, your dollars have already made a monumental difference, by reducing the mortgage more than $137,000. On behalf of the Foundation, Association and Staff, I want to extend thanks to each of you for your continued support. To others, we must continue to ask. I would like to convey our feeling of urgency in retiring the mortgage before the end of the year.

A quote from our original letter: “For every dollar you donate to the MRTF Building Fund you will reduce the total cost of our office facility by $4.29 OR put another way, if you donate $50 for MRTA’s Birthday you will reduce the cost of the office facility by $214.50! This is how interest works. We need your generous tax deductible contribution today!

Our new office facility is a once in a lifetime project, a once in 50 year event. The image and influence of MRTA has increased 1,000 fold in the Capitol City of Jefferson City. This building has told the world that MRTA is here to stay. Your building is your billboard! The message of this new office is that MRTA will be protecting and enhancing our retirement benefits and benefits for future generations of MRTA members.”

It is no secret that the longer we are in debt paying for the building the more interest we will pay. This makes it imperative that we continue asking for assistance. We must continue to seek contribution from those who have made individual contributions, as well as those who have not. If you are a first time contributor; every contribution is acknowledged and is tax deductible for both income and estate taxes. Fifty dollars is such a small amount to pay for MRTA’s 50 years.

If at all possible, I am asking you to accept the challenge to donate a minimum of 10% of your tax savings brought to you by the 2007 MRTA sponsored legislation (HB 444). For the tax year of 2009, 50% of your retirement income was tax exempt from Missouri income taxes. The average tax savings for MRTA tax payers was $1,168 and for 2010 we can expect an additional 15%. With no COLA for 2010 and 2011, I cannot imagine what it would be like if MRTA had not been instrumental in providing us with this tax savings.

With such a small staff and continuous fund-raising we are depriving you and every member of the MRTA expanded services and benefits. We must eliminate this debt so that the MRTA can concentrate on protecting our PSRS, enhancing membership services and promoting the retiree and public education.

The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation and the Missouri Retired Teachers Association wants to thank all MRTA members for their contribution. No contribution is too small or too large to be appreciated.

Please make checks payable to the: Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation

August 2010 President’s Message

Foundation Creates Endowment Fund “Leave Your Own Legacy”

The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation and the Missouri Retired Teachers Association wants to thank all of those many MRTA members for their continued support in making contributions to pay for our new office facility.

It is no secret that the longer we are paying for the building the more interest we will pay. This makes it imperative that we continue asking for assistance. We must continue to seek new resources to keep serving our members.

While (75%) seventy-five percent of people give to charity during their life time only six percent (6%) leave a gift to a nonprofit organization in their estates. There are two major reasons: most people don’t think of the possibility and they don’t realize the benefits to not-for-profit organizations.

At the time that MRTA is celebrating 50 years of service to the educational retirees, MRTF is excited to announce the first contribution and the establishment of an endowment fund. It is my hope that this gift will inspire others to do the same thing.

Simply speaking, an endowment is a fund that is made up of gifts and bequests that are subject to the requirement that the principal is maintained intact and invested to create a source of income for an organization. Donors may set up an endowment to fund a specific interest; or a not-for-profit governing body may set up an endowment. In either case, an endowment requires that the principal remains in tact in perpetuity, or for a defined period of time or until sufficient assets have been accumulated to achieve a designated purpose. The practice of investing the principal rather than to spend it allows an endowment to grow over time.

Charitable giving is an American tradition, perhaps more than any where in the world. Today there are more than 1.5 million charities that do their work here in the US and across the globe.

We would like to encourage you to explore the opportunities you have to “Leave a Legacy.” MRTA’s work is so important to every educational retiree. It is very simple, your tax deductible gift to our MRTF Endowment Fund will benefit you immediately, and create an endless gift to keep our MRTA services around for you, as well as our future retirees.

There are many advantages to giving to MRTF. Yes, it will make you feel good, but it will also provide you an immediate tax deduction.

With the creation of the MRTF Endowment Fund, we have provided our membership an opportunity for “giving back.” Please consider placing a bequeath to the MRTF in your will or trust.

Endowments are permanent and personal; it is a gift, a way for you to provide endless support to a charitable cause. Your expression of philanthropy is an investment for the future of MRTA.

The Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation (MRTF) is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) not for-profit corporation devoted to raising funds to carry out certain charitable, educational, scientific, and literary purposes of the Missouri Retired Teachers Association (MRTA).

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation


January 2010 President’s Message

Happy New Year!

I hope 2010 will be a wonderful year for each and every one of you. This New Year’s greeting will be said and heard all around the state this month. The celebration of the New Year is the oldest of our holidays. It was first celebrated by the ancient Babylonians more than 4,000 years ago. The celebration of the New Year is a mix of old and new traditions. Early Christians believed New Year’s Day should be spent reflecting on the past year and focusing on making improvements in their life in the coming year. The practice of making resolutions grew from these ancient customs, with customs such as the dropping of the Ball in Times Square and the singing of Auld Lang Syne became popular in the 20th century.

Many cultures have annual traditions of making New Year’s Resolutions. It is believed the Babylonians were the creators of the New Year’s Resolutions or Promises and people all over the world have been breaking them ever since. Their most often made resolution was to return things they had borrowed during the past year, especially farm machinery.

Traditionally, on New Year’s Eve, activities included fireworks, loud festive celebrations, and activities to scare away evil spirits. It was believed you could affect your luck throughout the coming year by what you did or ate on the 1st day of the New Year. For that reason, it became a tradition for folks to celebrate the first new day of the year with family and friends and to always have black-eyed peas to eat.

As we close the door to 2009, it is only natural that we, too, must reflect on our past year. We must begin by counting our many blessings. May each of us be blessed with good health, kind friends, close family, love and laughter.

Professionally, as we reflect on 2009, we are blessed with MRTF’s new office and MRTA’s permanent home. Many said it could not be done; but never underestimate the power of Strength in Numbers. This past year says, “MRTA we’re here to stay.”

Research shows that approximately 50% of all Americans will make resolutions to change or make improvement at the beginning of the New Year. The most common resolutions or promises made are to lose weight, to quit smoking, and to be better organized.

Whatever your resolution, you are in good company as millions will be working to make positive changes in their lives although more people actually break their resolutions than keep them. Research says that people who write their resolution are 10 times more likely to reach their goals than those who do not.

As a time honored tradition, your Foundation has some resolutions to make for 2010. MRTA’s 50th Birthday Anniversary, and request that all of our MRTA members join us so we can keep our resolutions.

The MRTF first resolves to continue its commitment to excellence.

MRTF resolves to embrace and support a visionary plan for building the future not only for present retirees, but for future retirees of public education. MRTF resolves to make a difference. A wise person once said of paying interest on debts, “…those who understand interest earn it, those who don’t pay it. Once you are free of debt, your money will start working for you.”

With this thought in mind MRTF’s final resolution for 2010 is to celebrate MRTA’s 50th birthday by becoming debt free. To be debt free allows us to use our money to increase member benefits and to promote the teaching profession.

To ensure that MRTF keeps its promises, we seek the help of every member of the MRTA. We need each of you to recruit a new member, buy an extra raffle ticket, join the $50 for 50 years birthday party and to a make a generous tax free contribution to the Foundation.

“By giving, you leave a legacy; you create a memory that will not fade.”

Happy New Year!

Jane Fullerton, President

Missouri Retired Teachers Foundation