Collaboration Lab

Talking About Death: Planned Giving & End of Life Planning

Kimberley Pittman-Schulz

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 3, 3:30 – 5:00 p.m.


Let’s be honest. We actively avoid talking about death. At the same time, most planned gifts are focused on unlocking charitable resources only after our donors’ lives end. Today, especially with our aging Baby-Boomer generation, death is moving out of the shadows as people take control in shaping the ending to their life story. In considering what to do with the resources they have built over a lifetime and how those resources can continue what they most care about, donors are inviting deeper conversations resulting in meaningful charitable legacies. But we need to do better at talking about death. This session will offer insights into the growing movement to support people in charting their own end-of-life journey. Good news: this session will be lively and mixed with humor as we learn skills and approaches then practice them with our peers in small group scenarios and open discussion.

Learning Objectives

  1. Increase skills and comfort level when planning gifts in the midst of conversations about death and dying.
  2. Better counsel donors, their families and their advisors in planning meaningful legacies that embody and empower donor values while supporting charity priorities.
  3. Deepen understanding of how planned giving integrates with the range of end-of-life planning considerations.


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Kimberley Pittman-Schulz

Planned Giving Advisor, Compassion & Choices

Kimberley Pittman-Schulz is stunned to realize she has 30+ years’ experience in charitable gift planning, nonprofit program leadership and advising individuals from all walks of life who want change the world through their philanthropy. She currently serves as Planned Giving Advisor for Compassion & Choices, a national nonprofit and advocacy organization that improves care, expands options and empowers everyone to chart their own end-of-life journey. She previously served as Executive Director of Philanthropy as well as Director of Planned Giving for Humboldt State University, where social justice and environmental responsibility are core to students’ learning. Prior to that appointment, she was a Development Team Leader and Philanthropy & Planned Giving Advisor for ChildFund International, working in 31 countries to help communities create better lives for vulnerable and impoverished children. She’s held additional roles as a community foundation CEO and helped donors make major and planned gifts in the fields of Alaska conservation, human services and veterinary medicine. She volunteers with Hospice of Humboldt, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute of Humboldt State University, CASA of Humboldt, the Humboldt Breast and GYN Program, the University of Washington Coastal Observation and Seabird Study Team (COASST), and is a member of WE Rotary, a virtual Rotary Club, with members around the country and the globe, focusing on peace-building initiatives. A poet and creative nonfiction writer, a hiker, and a sea-kayaker, she lives with her wildlife-biologist husband and calico along Northern California’s redwood coast.