For Michael Stoner of Bozeman, Montana, it was the idea of providing scholarships to help students attend quality educational programming that sparked his interest in giving to The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) back in 2008. But even before giving to TFAS, Stoner was committed to educating future leaders and started two scholarships in honor of people who influenced his own educational experience. In 1986, he started a scholarship in honor of his high school math teacher Martha Adams to be awarded each year to a high school senior interested in math and science. He later established the Victor L. Streeter Scholarship at the University of Michigan in honor of his Ph.D. advisor. “Both of these people pushed me and made me work, which was then carried over into my professional life allowing me to become successful,” Stoner recalled.
It’s important to Stoner that current and future students are able to learn from similarly influential teachers like the ones who shaped him. “I like to support young people who are studying and this is what drew me to The Fund for American Studies,” said Stoner.
Stoner says he is also drawn to providing scholarships for students to learn about freedom, liberty and conservative principles.
Our education system has let us down a bit in the area of the founding principles and the things that made this country great,” said Stoner. “I’m very interested in sending my charitable gifts to a place that is trying to correct this problem. That is why The Fund for American Studies was attractive to me.”
In 2011, Stoner was looking to increase his charitable giving, and he says he chose TFAS because of the influence its programs have on today’s students and future leaders. He decided to give to TFAS by establishing a Charitable Gift Annuity, which also provided immediate tax benefits and tax-free income.
Stoner is currently retired and lives 20 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. In his spare time he enjoys wood turning and golf.