Leaving a Legacy Through a Forever Gift

In Memoriam: Caren Deming

Planned gifts are transformative for our students, and before her passing, Dr. Caren Deming (B.A. 1965; M.A. 1970; Ph.D. 1975) made a gift that would allow her legacy to live on in the accomplishments of rising scholars who receive support in her name. The Caren J. Deming Fellowship Fund will support first year doctoral students in the Film, Television, and Media program.

Upon her graduation in 1975, Deming spent a few years as an assistant professor at San Francisco State University before finding her academic home at the University of Arizona, where she taught for 23 years. She moved back to Michigan shortly after she retired. “I was in town for a visit and was walking on the Diag and I realized that this is where I’m the happiest. I feel the best when I’m in Ann Arbor. This has always been my home,” she recalled in a 2015 conversation.

During her lifetime, Caren Deming was overwhelmingly generous with her time and resources as a Rackham alumna, and committed to making a difference in the lives of graduate students at U-M. She gave to various funds over the years, including the Rackham Graduate Student Support Fund and was a member of the Rackham Dean's Campaign Advisory Committee where she provided counsel to the graduate school dean and senior staff.

“Graduate students are the hope of the world. That’s how I feel about graduate students, especially Rackham students. They are the future. What they do is incredibly important, and supporting them is one of the most important things we can do. If we have money to contribute, that’s the place to do it. Where better place to invest in the future than with the best graduate students? I can’t think of one. That’s why I volunteer and that’s why I give.

To the 97 Monteith Society members who have included Rackham in their estate plans, thank you for making our students part of your lasting legacy.

Caren Deming visiting the Rackham Building in 2015.