Scholarship Will Be Alumnus' Lasting Legacy

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Ralph and Pearl Sugimoto

Ralph Sugimoto '63 (Accounting) has a long, rich history with Sacramento State. As one of the first residents of its cinder-block residence halls, he graduated with a business degree before the College of Business Administration was fully established and remembers when the basketball and football programs stood at the top of the Far West Conference.

Since his days at Sacramento State, Sugimoto has led a successful career as a CPA and is partner with the local accounting firm Tate, Propp, Beggs & Sugimoto.

"I believe that Sac State had extraordinary business and accounting faculty that helped direct my career pursuits," he says.

He's also maintained strong ties to the University through the years as a mainstay in the Alumni Association where he helped recharge the Alumni Association Scholarship Program. But, he says, he felt he wanted to give more.

"I have seen others support the programs and the University in a much greater magnitude that I could ever dream," Sugimoto says. "I have gotten to know a lot of people through my involvement with the Alumni Association board and staff and have seen the good and hard work that they were doing. I wanted to do my part."

The gift that he, with his wife Pearl, provided to Sacramento State will ensure their contributions to campus will continue to leave a lasting impact on the University for many years to come.

Their donation, a charitable gift annuity, stays in a special reserve fund and pays them an income every year. After their lifetimes, the remainder of the reserve will be transferred to the University for the philanthropic goal of their choice.

Sugimoto says the gift annuity benefits more than the University and student scholarship recipients, noting it's a valuable option for the donor as well.

"Giving to a charitable gift annuity is a 'win-win-win' situation," he says. "You would be able to contribute cash and/or stock at fair market value without picking up capital gains. You can receive an annuity—based on your and your spouse's actuarial life—at a very generous interest rate, and you are able to deduct a portion, based on your age, as a tax deduction."

As per the Sugimoto's instruction, the full amount of the gift annuity will one day benefit the Alumni Association Scholarship Fund, a cause close to him.

"I was a member of its board for two terms and headed the scholarship committee, initially directed by my good friend Larry Augusta, who was its president at that time," he says. "We started with three scholarship recipients the first year, but the program has grown since, awarding up to 10 or 15 scholarships to deserving students per year."

For more information, please contact Lora L. Hollingsworth at (916) 278-6115 or lora.hollingsworth@csus.edu.