How Donors Found a Way to Make an Impact Now and in Perpetuity

Theresa and Bill Hertneky

Theresa and Bill Hertneky

Bill Hertneky credits a high school counselor for introducing him to Colorado State University. Despite good grades and his mother's encouragement, Bill wasn't sure about leaving his family's ranch in eastern Colorado. But the counselor told Bill that CSU would be a great place to deepen his knowledge of agronomy and animal science, so Bill agreed to give it a shot for one year.

Five years later, Bill graduated with a degree in agricultural business and a job offer at United Banks of Colorado. This position started Bill on a fulfilling career as a commercial banking executive. The profession also brought Bill and his wife, Theresa, together; the couple met at a banking conference in Denver. From 2003 to 2013, Bill and Theresa, a CPA, helped found and operate New West Bank, a community bank in Greeley.

Philanthropy has always been important to the Hertnekys, and, as the first in their families to graduate from college, they're committed to supporting higher education. When the couple retired in 2013, they decided to make a gift in their estate plan to establish a scholarship in agricultural science at CSU. "We're motived by the idea of paying it forward," Bill says.

A highlight of giving back has been meeting their scholarship recipients at donor receptions. "These are very bright, deserving students," Bill says. "We were so impressed, we decided to expand our gift."

In 2021, Bill and Theresa made a gift through their IRA to endow their scholarship in perpetuity.

For the Hertnekys, it's tremendously rewarding to see the impact of their gift today, while also knowing that their impact will extend beyond their lifetimes. "CSU makes this process easy," Bill says. "If you're thinking about a planned gift, give them a call. If you have an interest area, they can help you. Why wait?"

Pay It Forward

Like the Hertnekys, you can make a difference at CSU through a gift in your estate plan or via an IRA beneficiary designation. We also accept trusts and gifts of life insurance, securities, and real estate. To learn more, contact the Office of Gift Planning at (970) 491-4254 or