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Office of Trusts, Estates, and Gift Planning
Cornell University
130 E Seneca Street, Suite 400
Ithaca, NY 14850
Phone: 1-800-481-1865
Fax: 607-254-1204


Taking Stock of Gifts of Stock


By Jose Perez Beduya

Philanthropy brings Sherri Stuewer ’73, MS ’75 close to the heart of her days on the Hill. “My Cornell experience was enabled by the generosity of others, and my support for scholarships and graduate fellowships is a way to enable that same life-changing experience for others,” says the recently retired vice president for environmental policy and planning at ExxonMobil.

Over the years, Stuewer has contributed both time and treasure to her alma mater. She is a trustee emerita and a former member of the President’s Council of Cornell Women and the College of Engineering Advisory Council, which she also chaired. Holding both undergraduate and graduate degrees in operations research and information engineering, she is especially thrilled about expanding opportunities for women.

“When I was a first-year student, only 2% of Cornell’s entering class of engineers were women. Now it’s close to 35%,” Stuewer says. “The increase in women engineers helps to grow the talent pool in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields, and these careers can be very rewarding.”

Stuewer’s own 36-year stint in the energy industry is convincing proof—a distinguished career that she credits to a “broad and deep” Cornell education.

Applying her business savvy to philanthropy, Stuewer espouses the unique power of gifts of stock: “Under current laws, I can give low-basis stocks without incurring capital-gain taxes on their appreciated value. These shares are not only a very tax-efficient way to make a gift, but also a win-win for Cornell and for me.”