Donor Stories and Legacies


ND’s Got Mail

Paul D'AntonioPaul and Ruth D’Antonio’s first gifts to Notre Dame were the tips that Paul would receive at Christmastime from his work as a mail carrier in Swarthmore, PA.  “I loved my job for 28 years,” he says. “Back in those days, we walked our route, and I made sure that everyone I met knew I was a Notre Dame fan.”

Unable to afford a “big” vacation one year, the couple made their first visit to campus. A chance encounter with a generous Notre Dame employee netted two tickets to a football game—their first. From then on, they were hooked.

In 1987, the D’Antonios decided to include Notre Dame in their estate plan and became charter members of the Badin Guild. They have attended Badin Guild Weekends faithfully ever since. “We have made so many friends through the Badin Guild, and it has deepened our relationship with the University. We are confident that Notre Dame will make good use of our estate; the leadership is fiscally conservative like we are.”

Paul took a few college classes before realizing that it wasn’t for him, but one of the courses, Investing in Stocks and Bonds, stuck. “I started investing and began with four stocks, two that I picked and two that a broker picked. I think you know which two did well!” After many years, those investments turned into something more substantial, and several months ago, Paul and Ruth furthered their Notre Dame legacy with a charitable remainder trust (CRT).

The couple’s CRT is invested in units of the Notre Dame Endowment pool, which is managed by Scott Malpass, vice president and chief investment officer, and the Notre Dame Investment Office. During their lifetime, Ruth and Paul will receive distributions from the trust based on the performance of the endowment pool. When the trust terminates, it will establish the Paul and Ruth D’Antonio Scholarship for undergraduates.

“To me, this is a complete win-win,” says Paul. “Our goal is to grow our gift to Notre Dame. If, by chance, Ruth and I die tomorrow, Notre Dame gets the money in the trust. But if we live for another 20 or 30 years, our trust gift will likely grow many times over. And in the meantime, we are likely to get increasing payments from the trust. We can’t lose.”

With good old-fashioned hard work and smart financial discipline, the D’Antonios believe they represent the “everyman.”

“We have always been conservative with our money,” says Ruth. “Now we are glad to have the means to contribute to the spirit of this place. We have gotten more from Notre Dame than we could ever give.”