Whalen Legacy Society

Named in honor of Barbara and Kevin Whalen, the Whalen Legacy Society brings together friends of AANE who are committed to supporting the future of the organization with planned gifts.


The Whelan Legacy Society was established in 2021 in honor of AANE’s 25th anniversary. From bequests to gifts of appreciated stocks, there are a variety of ways you can support the future of AANE as a member of the Whelan Legacy Society. Scroll down to learn more about the types of planned gifts that benefit AANE. For more information about making any of these kinds of gifts, please email us at fundraising@aane.org.

With permission, Whelan Legacy Society members are recognized in our Annual Report, at our Gala, and in Society marketing materials. If you have already included a provision for AANE in your will, financial or estate plans, please let us know. Email us at fundraising@aane.org so we can thank you and enroll you in the Whalen Legacy Society.

Ways to Give

Bequest: A gift made through your will, a bequest is a simple and straightforward way to care for the future of AANE.

Retirement Assets: A gift of retirement plan assets could be right for you if you:

  • Have an IRA or qualified retirement plan, such as a 401(k) or 403(b). 
  • Do not expect to use all your retirement plan assets during your lifetime.
  • Have other assets, such as securities and real estate, that you can to pass to heirs.

A gift of retirement plan assets can be an easy way to reduce potential taxes and provide support to AANE. 


Appreciated Stock: Giving long-term appreciated stock is one of the most tax-advantaged ways to make charitable gifts. With careful planning, you can reduce your capital gains tax while supporting AANE. 

Life Insurance: Make AANE the beneficiary (or one of the beneficiaries) of a life insurance policy; doing so will not diminish other investments or assets earmarked for family members. 

Real Estate: A gift of real estate allows you to preserve your cash assets, receive tax advantages, and make a significant charitable gift to AANE. 

Donor-Advised Fund: In addition to granting awards to AANE, you can also designate AANE as your Donor-Advised Fund’s successor beneficiary. 


Thank You to Our Founding Members

We are grateful to our founding members for their leadership and support in creating the Whelan Legacy Society.


The Founding of the Whalen Legacy Society

When Kevin and Barbara Whalen’s son was diagnosed as being on the spectrum in the early 1990s, they immersed themselves in educational plans, research, and support groups. AANE, newly founded in 1996, became a lifeline for Kevin, Barbara, and their family. 

At the time, AANE had only one staff member and a handful of volunteers. Barbara and Kevin became integral members of AANE’s community; Kevin later became the first Chair of AANE's Board of Directors. With gratitude to his family, AANE is proud to celebrate their legacy of service and generosity with the establishment of the Whalen Legacy Society.