November 17th, 2016

Dick Hill with bike

Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering Richard C. Hill, who passed away in July, left an indelible mark on the University of Maine. His work as a Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Dean of the College of Technology and Director of the Department of Industrial Cooperation spanned from 1946 until his retirement in 1992. Even after his retirement, he remained one of UMaine’s most highly recognized and respected emeriti faculty experts because of his extensive knowledge and a communication style that made even the most complex subjects understandable. His writings and speaking engagements around the country brought great recognition and honor to UMaine.


“Many times donors do not realize the broad array of charitable giving mechanisms which can be implemented to achieve their goals. We were very happy to help Dick and Libby with their objectives.”

— Jeff Mills, President/CEO


Professor Hill’s contributions to UMaine are legendary. Beloved by his students, admired by his colleagues and respected by Maine people everywhere, Dick was the first faculty member to receive the Stillwater Presidential Award. His legacy not only includes his body of work in the field of energy, but also endowments that will support programs in perpetuity that Dick and his wife, Elizabeth (“Libby”), cared about across campus. The Collins Center for the Arts, the College of Engineering, the Honors College, the Division of Music of the University of Maine’s School of Performing Arts, the Department of Industrial Cooperation and the Professor Michael H. Lewis Art Scholarship all benefit from Dick’s and Elizabeth’s generosity.

Dick recognized a good idea when he saw one. Back in 1989, he and Libby were wondering what to do with a mutual fund account and looking for a way to help their grandchildren with their college educations. Their attorney suggested that they consider a charitable trust. Dick and Libby placed the account in a charitable remainder trust with a 20-year term and were able to take an immediate income tax charitable deduction.

During those 20 years, the trust income helped their grandchildren pay for their college educations. They attended schools all over the country to study to be a physician’s assistant, a medical doctor, a physical therapist, a teacher, an economist and an engineer. They are incredibly grateful to their grandparents for investing in their futures.

In 2009, at the end of the trust term, the trust’s remainder came to the University of Maine Foundation to be endowed to help the programs Dick and Libby cared about. As a former dean, Dick knew how vital unrestricted support could be to those programs.

Not only can they help grandchildren, but charitable remainder trusts can also provide security, minimize taxes, preserve assets, and ultimately fulfill philanthropic goals. The Foundation would be happy to explore with you and your advisors the possible benefits of including a charitable trust in your financial and estate plans. We welcome the opportunity to be of help.