In a world where corporate success and material gain can often feel at odds with making the world a better place, some people have found a path, through philanthropy, that allows them to align business sensibility with the desire to make a positive impact. Jessica Docken, a seasoned human resources professional at Growth Operators, has embraced this path with a passion for improving the world. With a background in philosophy and women’s studies, Jessica started her career in the non-profit sector and has dedicated herself to creating meaningful change through her work as a board member at Guild.
Jessica grew up in a family with a small tax business, where open and lively conversations at the kitchen table were often about money. She laughed when she shared, “Most people don’t talk about taxes in a fun way at the dinner table.” Her family also cared about being involved in the community, so it’s no surprise that her “do all the good you can, in all the ways you can” motto (borrowed from Jon Wesley and her alma mater, Hamline University) led her to be the first person to name Guild as a beneficiary on a retirement account.
Jessica’s family background and education in philosophy and women’s studies ignited a fire within her to contribute to the betterment of society. Though her career led her into the corporate world, it began in the non-profit sector, where her heart always remained. Jessica is driven by a deep-rooted desire to make a positive impact. Her passion for merging her financial savvy with social impact makes her a natural philanthropist, leading her to explore avenues where she could create lasting change and contribute to the causes she champions.
Finding Purpose in Planned Giving
Recognizing the power of planned giving to make a change, Jessica directed her philanthropic efforts towards Guild. Inspired by Guild’s mission and impressed by our wrap-around, whole-person services that address basic human needs, like housing, Jessica incorporated planned giving into her overall philanthropic strategy.
Making a Lasting Impact Through Planned Giving
Planned giving allows individuals like Jessica to make charitable contributions beyond their lifetime, leaving a lasting impact on the causes they hold dear. By naming Guild as a beneficiary on one of her retirement accounts, Jessica ensures that her wishes will be honored and that her support for Guild will continue even after she is no longer physically present. This thoughtful approach empowers her to make a significant difference in the lives of countless individuals, helping us further Guild’s mission for years to come.
The Benefits of Planned Giving
Planned giving benefits charitable organizations, like Guild, and provides advantages for the donor. By engaging in strategic philanthropy, people like Jessica can direct their dollars (and tax benefits) to create a meaningful legacy, and experience a deep sense of fulfillment from their giving. For Jessica, this fulfillment is more about being true to her “authentic self” by supporting solutions to the most pressing problems she sees in the world, like mental health and housing.
Myth Busting: Philanthropy is Only for the Wealthy
There’s often a misconception around philanthropy and planned giving that only wealthy people can afford to give. Jessica refutes this and wants people to know, “You don’t have to be wealthy to give. It’s more about being intentional with your money and with your time. It’s not all about big money. It doesn’t have to be complicated.” She suggests listing a charitable organization even as a second or third beneficiary on accounts. That way, if your intended heirs are gone before you by some stroke of bad luck, your money can be put to good use.
We’re proud to have Jessica as a leader at Guild, and we thank her for all the thoughtful choices she makes to support our work. If you’d like to learn more about planned giving, or supporting Guild with your own philanthropy, you can find more info here.