Donor Profile: Michael ’70, MA’75 and Linda Holbrook

Donor Profile: Michael ’70, MA’75 and Linda Holbrook

“Growing up in a single parent home in the 1950s and 60s carried much more of a stigma than it does today,” said Michael Holbrook ’70, Ma’75. “Not receiving any financial support from my father made it extremely difficult for my mother to pay the bills – much less save for my college education.”

Without the significant scholar- ships that Holbrook received from Fairfield, he would not have been able to attend the University. And, he may never have met his wife Linda.

“We met at Lantern Point on Fairfield Beach in September of 1969 and have been together ever since,” Holbrook said. He and Linda were married at Fairfield University’s chapel, back when it was still located in the basement of Loyola Hall. The couple is now retired and they live near another beach – Fairhaven – in Massachusetts.

Throughout his business career, Holbrook worked as a small business consultant for
a program at Clark University while teaching MBA courses for both Clark University and Anna Maria College. Along the way, he also received an MBA degree and more recently learned how to develop and teach online MBA courses.

“I primarily assisted clients so that they could develop feasibility studies, marketing plans, business plans, or financing proposals. Over the years, I assisted clients to receive more than $20 million to either start a business or expand an existing one.” Holbrook said, looking back on his career.

In planning for retirement, Michael and Linda discussed several potential investment strategies, including the charitable gift annuity program at Fairfield. They learned that with a charitable gift annuity they could make a donation, take an immediate income tax deduction, and receive partially tax-free payments for the rest of their lives.

With a lifelong passion for education inspired by his time at Fairfield, Holbrook had been searching for a way to give back. He found that a gift annuity would not only allow him to supplement his retirement income, but would also help him achieve his philanthropic goals.

“For us, establishing a gift annuity was an easy decision,” Holbrook said. “We could make a larger donation now because of the tax benefits and future income stream. Why not give now and receive some financial benefit, rather than waiting until the very end of life?”

In their retirement, Michael and Linda enjoy days at the beach, traveling, and spending time with their two children and their families. Michael still serves as a consultant to several small businesses and continues to teach MBA courses.