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“I had a feeling of goodwill toward the people of Minneapolis particularly, and it was my desire to live here all my life and to do all possible toward the upbuilding of the prosperity of the community.” —Thomas Barlow Walker, founder of the Walker Art Center

In 1927, T. B. Walker founded the Walker Art Gallery with the gift of his extensive art collection. Many generous donors since have left their own legacies by making planned gifts to the Walker Art Center.

The Legacy Circle was established to honor those individuals who have remembered the Walker in their wills and financial plans. Since its founding in 1991, the Legacy Circle has received generous support from dedicated friends who have recognized the need to ensure access to the Walker for future generations by including the museum in their estate, creating a life income plan, or making one of a variety of other planned gifts.

Through their foresight and generosity, Legacy Circle members make a crucial difference in upholding a sound foundation for the future growth and vitality of the Walker Art Center.

Joining the Legacy Circle

You don’t need to be wealthy to leave a legacy, and there are many options for planned giving to the Walker. The following are examples of ways you may make a charitable donation through planned giving and become a member of the Legacy Circle:

  1. Include a gift to the Walker in your will or revocable trust. You may wish to leave the Walker a bequest for a specific dollar amount or a percentage of your estate. Your gift could include cash, stock, bonds, or personal property. The Walker could also be named to receive the remainder of your estate or as a contingent beneficiary, if other beneficiaries do not survive you. Your estate receives a charitable deduction for your bequest to the Walker.
  2. Designate the Walker as a beneficiary in your retirement plan. Retirement plan assets may be subject to very high taxation rates at your death. Designating the Walker to receive retirement plan assets can provide an important gift at considerable tax savings.
  3. Name the Walker as a beneficiary or owner of an existing life insurance policy or purchase a new policy to benefit the Walker.
  4. Establish a life income trust that enables you to receive income for life while making a gift to the Walker. This type of planned gift allows you to obtain an income tax deduction, reduce your estate taxes, and protect your financial security during your lifetime.
  5. Assign tax-advantaged gifts of securities, property, or art to be made over time, during your lifetime.
  6. Designate a gift of art that the Walker has agreed to accept.


Celebrating the Vision of Legacy Circle Members

Planned gifts help support the Endowment Fund, which has long been the financial driver for the Walker’s budget and has allowed the institution to flourish artistically and become a model in the museum field. The principal of the Endowment Fund is invested to increase over time, and the Walker uses the income it generates to support general operations and innovative, multidisciplinary programming.

Your gift can also support the Walker’s general operation or be applied to particular programming or art acquisitions. New work and new scholarship are expensive to produce and support, but planned gifts from Legacy Circle members ensure that artistic excellence will continually be upheld at the Walker.

In addition to potential tax benefits, Legacy Circle members receive special benefits that include:

  • Exclusive invitations to Walker events and programs, including events with the executive director and curators
  • Recognition on the Walker’s donor panel (if desired), and
  • Recognition in the Annual Report and in other Walker publications (if desired).

We encourage you to join the Legacy Circle and help sustain the financial foundation of the Walker Art Center for generations to come. Kerstin Beyer, Director of the Annual Fund, would be pleased to answer any questions you may have regarding planned gifts to the Walker and Legacy Circle membership. For more information, call 612-375-7562 or e-mail

The Legacy Circle is sponsored by

  • US Trust