A few decades ago, I met Charles W. Collier. He was the Senior Philanthropic Advisor at Harvard University and somewhat of legend in his own time. He had written a book entitled, Wealth in Families, which is an effective manual on the subject of helping families deal with the opportunities and challenges of having wealth. The emphasis of Charlie’s advice, based on experience in working with such families, was that the “why’ questions surrounding family wealth are the most important ones, and yet they are rarely asked. Usually, we deal with the how of transferring family money and neglect the values that may be imparted as part of the strategy. Philanthropy offers an opportunity to accomplish this worthwhile and lasting family legacy.
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