Skip to Content

Beyond Degrees: Giving Back to the UT Family

Warren Carmichael

By Chandra Harris-McCray

Warren Carmichael (UT Martin '72) put his childhood fascination of becoming a fighter pilot on the back burner to follow in the footsteps of his big brother and attend college—something his parents never had the chance to do.

Initially majoring in psychology at the University of Tennessee at Martin, Warren quickly changed his major to business administration, the same field his brother Steve was studying. Steve earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in business administration from UTK. "I knew I could make a living if I studied business," Warren says, reflecting on his decision to attend UT Martin.

With just high school diplomas, Warren's parents made sure their hard work was invested in their sons' education. The Dyersburg native says, "I never had to worry about working while in college because my parents made sure I made it through and kept my focus on academics."

A Successful Career
After passing the CPA exam on his first try, Warren began his career in Memphis with what is now Deloitte & Touche. He later served as the chief financial officer of Kleer-Vu Industries in Brownsville, Tenn. He left Kleer-Vu in 1984, and with several financial management positions under his belt, Warren eventually founded Three Rivers Health Plans Inc. in 1995. Initially formed to operate as a health maintenance organization (HMO) dedicated to providing comprehensive medical care to the Medicaid population of Pennsylvania, Three Rivers began with a mere five employees and grew to more than 600 employees by the time Warren retired as the chief executive officer in 2004.

"I owe a substantial amount of credit for my success to UT Martin," Warren says. "Not every person can afford to attend the Dukes and Vanderbilts. UT Martin was and is offering a quality, name-brand education that stands for educational excellence. UT is a place you can be proud to send your sons and daughters."

A Family Affair
Warren's son Patrick graduated from UT Knoxville in 2007, and he took cues from his dad by studying business while majoring in hotel and tourism management. Patrick's wife, Courtney, is also a UT Knoxville graduate. The nursing alumna met Patrick because of Warren's friendship with Courtney's father, Charles Chilcutt (UT Martin '72). UT is more than just where the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity brothers Warren and Charles received their business administration degrees, "it is part of our family, our history," Warren says.

The UT family legacy will hopefully continue with Warren and his wife, Pat's, first granddaughter, Anna Claire. Pat says, "She is just a year old, but already Patrick and Courtney have started a college savings plan for her, much like we did for him and his brother Brantley (a Penn State graduate). We sacrificed and saved."

Helping Others Reach Their Goals
Extending their financial support to students, many of whom they never have met, Warren and Pat currently support and have established bequests to benefit UT Martin's football program, the UTM College of Business and Global Affairs, and Tennessee Athletics. "When financial success comes, part of that success means being charitable," he says. "We want to make sure educational success touches the lives of students at UT Martin and UT Knoxville."

eBrochure Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the brochure.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to The University Of Tennessee a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to The University Of Tennessee [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to UT or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate, or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the gift tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to UT as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and receive an immediate federal income tax charitable deduction. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to UT as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and UT where you agree to make a gift to UT and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the materials for planning your estate.