Henry Haegg Leaves a Legacy Gift of $4.5 Million for His Community

Published: June 27, 2019 | By: Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation | Category:

Photo: Henry Haegg’s five stepchildren are carrying on his legacy through donor-advised funds that Henry created in their names at the Community Foundation of Collier County in Florida. Pictured are Larry Halpin, Cathy Munsell, Kathleen Halpin (holding picture of stepdad Henry Haegg), Molly Eovino, and Jamey Halpin.

Earlier this month, the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation received a $1.1 million gift from the estate of Henry E. Haegg. This is the third and final gift from the estate, which has provided a total of $4.5 million of unrestricted gifts to the Community Foundation.

Henry E. Haegg, Jr. passed away in 2017 at the age of 93. He was a Cedar Rapids native who served as a Naval officer in Okinawa in World War II and earned an MBA from Harvard before returning to his hometown to start the Haegg Construction Company. In 1969, Henry married widow Margaret (Peg) Halpin and accepted five stepchildren as his own. The Haeggs moved to Naples, Florida in 1970. Besides being a successful businessperson, Henry was also an accomplished fundraiser and a renowned philanthropist. When it came to philanthropy, Henry looked up to local radio and television pioneer William Quarton.

In 2007, William Quarton made the largest gift the Community Foundation has ever received, and he made that gift to the Community Endowment Fund. “Bill said at the time he planned that gift that he could not see the needs that might emerge in this community beyond his lifetime, but he wanted future leaders to be able to respond to those needs,” said Les Garner, President & CEO of the Community Foundation.

As Henry planned his estate, he was pleased with the idea of following in William’s footsteps. The Community Endowment Fund is set up for stability and long-term growth, so it will be around to support community needs forever. In this way, the legacies of Henry and William are preserved.

“This gift will have impact greater than what we can foresee today,” Les said. “Long after we’re gone, Henry’s gift will still be working to improve Linn County by funding exciting opportunities and helping the community meet emerging challenges.” By having the foresight to give to the future of the community, Henry joins a group of distinguished philanthropists that includes William Quarton, Joseph Kacena, William Whipple, Nancy McHugh and many others who have made significant gifts to the Community Endowment Fund.

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