Time out to say thank you: 11th annual Duke Heritage Society lunch

One thing I have noticed during my near 20-year career at Duke is that we can never say “Thank You” enough to our donors.  It’s important to remind our supporters how grateful we are for their generosity because all gifts – no matter the amount – are significant to Duke.

Each year, we invite our local members of the Duke Heritage Society residing in the Triangle area of North Carolina (over 400 people) to lunch as a way to thank them for their support.  (In case you didn’t know, the Heritage Society honors alumni and friends who have included Duke in their estate plans or have made some other type of deferred gift to Duke.)

This year’s event was attended by over 100 Heritage Society members, and it was an exceptionally good time.  Check out the picture below!

The luncheon was held at the Washington Duke Inn and Golf Club, and we kicked off the event with mimosas and limeade to get the group warmed up. President Brodhead provided a welcome, and he gave an update on the state of the university.  Most importantly, he thanked everyone in the room for remembering Duke with their planned gift. We were honored to have the President join us this year.

Our main speaker was Laurie Patton, dean of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences, and she spoke to us about “Duke and the Dynamic Power of Public Scholarship:  Recent News from the Front.” Dean Patton has been fundamental in expanding Duke’s undergraduate course development and has helped drive Duke’s educational programs to other parts of the world. As you’ve probably gathered – we’re lucky to have her!

Everyone left with a Heritage Society tote bag which I am modeling here.

If you live near Duke and were not able to attend this year’s event, we hope you will join us next year so we can say “Thank You” in person.  If you do not live near the university, we hope to bring a luncheon event to you sometime soon!

P.S. Interested in joining the Heritage Society? Be sure to check out the many ways you can become a member by making a planned gift.

TAGS: Duke Events Duke Heritage Society

About the author

Sarah Fish 82


With over two decades’ experience in gift planning and development at Duke, Sarah manages the university’s trust and estate program of about 600 accounts. She also oversees bequests from donors who include Duke in their estate plans. She is a third-generation graduate of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences who bleeds blue for all Duke sports. When she’s not at work, Sarah is an über-aunt extraordinaire to her nieces and nephew in Durham.