Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley Announce $2.9 Million Bequest From the Estate of Leslie C. Roe

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY - The Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley and its affiliate the Community Foundation of Dutchess County, have formally announced that they have received a bequest of $2.9 million from the estate of Leslie C. Roe. The gift has been named the Leslie C. and Irene G. Roe Fund, named by the late Leslie C. Roe (“Les”) for he and his mother; the first distributions are expected to be made to a variety of charitable organizations, selected by Roe and local to the mid-Hudson Valley, in the spring of 2014.

Roe, who died in 2011, was the former owner of Roe Moving Co. in Poughkeepsie, and was a realtor for Leslie C. Roe Realty. Les served in the US Army during WWII. He was a member of the LaGrange Rotary, Dutchess County Historical Society, Masons and Boy Scouts of America. He was a past member of the Dutchess Golf Club. The Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley, who administer assets totalling over $40 million across more than 500 funds in three counties, worked with Roe to establish a strategy for charitable giving, capturing his goals through the Leslie C. and Irene G. Roe Fund, with the assistance of estate trustees Frederick O. Quenzer and Roger K. Bullis.

“As a former trustee of the Community Foundation, I knew of its professionalism and commitment to the community. During his lifetime, Les was interested in supporting youth programs, including the Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie, Boy Scouts, Future Farmers of America, as well as a number of other charitable and service organizations which had an impact on him. I think he realized that the Community Foundation had the advantages of professional management that would alleviate burdens of investment decisions and governmental reporting, and allow him to name a fund in memory of his mother and ultimately, leave a legacy,” shared Fred Quenzer. “Being a self-made man, Les would no doubt take great pride in the knowledge that his gifts will have such a positive impact on the lives of so many in the community for years to come”.

Each fund within the Community Foundation is tailored to meet the needs and wishes of the individual donor. Once a fund has been set up, the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley, which is an independent organization, generates grants for a number of not-for-profit organizations, and works with families, individuals, attorneys and estate and financial planners to design gift plans which maximize benefit to both the donors and to the beneficiaries. Nationwide, approximately 700 community foundations hold roughly $35 billion in assets, making up one of the fastest growing sectors of philanthropy in the United States. Individuals and groups can contribute any amount of money to a fund through the foundation, and the foundation invests gifts for growth and income, using a payout amount to make grants for the community based on the wishes of the benefactors and the community needs which have been identified by the foundation.

“Les was able to leave a generous gift behind for our region, while also keeping his estate free of certain tax liabilities by setting up this fund with the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley. It was, of course, a wise financial move, but more importantly, a wonderful tribute to a mother, and to a community, that he deeply loved; a tribute which will enhance so many lives, for generations to come”, stated Andrea Reynolds, President and CEO of the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley.

“Les was a great supporter of a familiar Hudson Valley phrase, ‘Think Local First’. He lived a very fulfilling life, to a ripe old age of 96, and met with tremendous success in his business endeavors while maintaining an active personal life. He loved skiing, golf, tennis, hunting, and fishing; he had his pilot’s license and flew his own plane. I knew him for over fifty years both professionally and socially, and have many fond memories. As life goes on, you realize how certain people put a mark on your life. Les was certainly one of them,” shared Roger Bullis, trustee.
For more information on charitable giving options available through the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley, please call 845.452.3077 or visit


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