Jim Kleinsasser, ..’99, and Sheri (Kleinsasser) Stockmoe, ’97, ’99, are known as two of UND’s greatest student-athletes ever. During their reign in the 1990s, the two were UND letterwinners, team captains, All-Americans and UND Hall of Fame inductees — Sheri in women’s basketball, and Jim in football (he also lettered in men’s basketball).
But behind these two all-stars were two supportive parents, Carter and KathE Kleinsasser, Carrington, N.D.
“We put quite a few miles on our vehicles,” Carter said, as the pair followed their son and daughter to football and basketball games across the region and country.
“And every mile was worth it,” KathE added.
After UND, Jim went on to a successful 13-year NFL career with the Minnesota Vikings; Sheri is co-founder and co-owner of On the Minds of Moms, a bi-monthly magazine distributed throughout the Red River Valley, and mailed to subscribers around the country. She also serves on the UND Athletics Women's Advisory Council. In 2012, Jim and Sheri were named UND Young Alumni Achievement Award Winners, given to outstanding alumni younger than 40.
“They’ve earned what they got,” KathE said. “We’re very proud of them.”
Carter credits Jim and Sheri’s work ethic for their accomplishments. He also credits the University of North Dakota for providing them with vital scholarship support and education. So, as a way to give back to the University of North Dakota Athletics, the Kleinsasser family has committed to a continuing impact on UND's football and women's basketball programs.
The Carter, KathE, Sheri, & Jim Kleinsasser Family Endowment will support tuition and fees for UND women's basketball and football student-athletes on alternating years, with preference given to North Dakota residents.
When the Kleinsassers began thinking about how they wanted to give back to UND and UND Athletics, they knew they wanted to start an endowment because it’s a gift that keeps on giving — endowments are invested, and a portion of the annual return is paid out every year, ensuring the original principal stays in place. In five years, Carter and KathE’s endowment will reach its minimum amount to start giving back to UND student-athletes and securing the Kleinsasser legacy forever.
An additional $1,000 gift will begin providing scholarship support to student-athletes in the fall.
One motivating factor for making their gift when they did was simple: timing. After retiring from farming in 2011, Carter and KathE had sold some of their machinery. Then, after a visit with their tax adviser in late 2013, Carter and KathE came to the conclusion that it was a good time to start an endowment and take full advantage of tax savings this year.
Because they pay taxes in North Dakota and made a gift of at least $5,000 to their endowment, they were able to receive the standard federal tax deduction for charitable giving AND a North Dakota income tax credit equal to 40% of the gift, thereby significantly reducing the net cost to them.
So what’s the secret to supporting two successful children throughout their lifetimes? Don’t put too much pressure on them, Carter says.
And KathE adds a simple life lesson: finish what you start. “If they wanted to participate in something, we were behind them. But if they started something, they needed to finish it. And they did, of course. They enjoyed what they were doing, and that made it so much easier.”
Make your impact
In 2013-14, the average UND student paid $20,751 (in-state) for tuition, fees, room and board. It's easy to see why scholarship support is vital. You can help by establishing an endowment of your own or making a gift to an existing endowment such as the Carter, KathE, Sheri, & Jim Kleinsasser Family Endowment, which will benefit future UND student-athletes for years to come. The UND Foundation holds endowment funds in all areas of campus.
If you pay taxes in North Dakota, you may be eligible to take advantage of an additional tax credit on your gift. With a gift of $5,000 to $50,000 to a UND Foundation endowment, you may benefit from both a federal tax deduction AND a North Dakota income tax credit equal to 40% of the charitable gift, thereby significantly reducing the net cost of giving. Ask your tax adviser for more information.
Giving online is a safe and simple way to support the Carter, KathE, Sheri, & Jim Kleinsasser Family Endowment or an endowment of your choice at UND. To make a gift via our website, log on to www.undalumni.org/givenow.
Mike Mannausau, ’99
Assistant Athletics Director
Executive Director, ND Champions Club
701.777.4216 | email@example.com
Steve Brekke, ’84
Associate Athletic Director
Athletics Major Gifts
701.777.6426 | firstname.lastname@example.org