Grand Valley mourns first planned giving officer

John and Jan Heerspink were inducted into the Gillett Society in 2007.
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John and Jan Heerspink were inducted into the Gillett Society in 2007.
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The Grand Valley community remembers fondly its first director for planned giving. John C. Heerspink died June 3 at age 68.

Heerspink joined University Development in 2000 to enhance its opportunities for bequests. Prior to his position at Grand Valley, he had worked at Calvin and Kalamazoo colleges. He retired in 2007. That same year, John and his wife, Jan, were inducted into the Gillett Society.

Under Heerspink’s leadership, the Gillett Society was established in 2001 to recognize donors of planned gifts to Grand Valley. Named for Richard Gillett, the Gillett Society is the university’s longest-standing donor society.