9000 Wolverine Tower
3003 South State Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1288
Primary Practice Areas
- Charitable Giving
- Charitable Trusts, Bequests, Designations
Donna joined University of Michigan Office of the Vice President and General Counsel in 1997. Her practice focuses on charitable giving to the University. She assists fund raising professionals and others at the University with the legal, tax, policy, and due diligence issues of giving charitable gifts to the University, and drafts agreements for major gifts. She works both with current and planned gifts, including gifts of various assets, particularly those that are difficult to value or have unusual characteristics. She assists in all aspects of making gifts acceptable to the University, including negotiating gift agreements with donors’ attorneys, assisting the University in adopting policies regarding charitable gifts, and other matters relating to donating to the University. Areas of special expertise include affirmative action restrictions in scholarships and gifts of non-public financial interests.
Donna is a member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA) and, in April 2017, published a NACUANOTE titled “Scholarship Restrictions” with co-author Maya Kobersy, also Associate General Counsel at the University of Michigan. In 2015, Donna’s primary clients, the University of Michigan Development Community, awarded her The Victors Valiant Award for her work in assisting them.
Prior to joining the University, Donna was Trust Counsel at Fifth Third Bank in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she advised trust personnel on fiduciary law issues, including matters relating to trusts, estates, investments, and charitable planning.
Donna received her law degree from Marshall-Wythe School of Law, College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, and her bachelor’s degree from the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio.