Bill and Lore Wiggins – Education, the Joy of Life

Meeting just after World War II in Germany, education has played an important role in the lives of Bill and Lore Wiggins. Passionate about providing opportunities for students, in 1999, Bill and Lore Wiggins created a Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT) as part of their estate planning that named the Community College of Aurora Foundation as the charitable beneficiary. The Trust allowed Bill and Lore to receive quarterly annuity payments for their lifetimes, with all remaining dollars benefiting the CCA Foundation. However, in 2016, Bill decided to accelerate the gift to CCA and made a $335,000 donation from the Trust. When asked why, Bill simply said, “I plan to be around another 20 years and want to see the money put to good use by an organization I care deeply about. This is something Lore would have wanted.”

As part of the college’s master facility plan, $305,000 of the generous donation will eventually be used to create a re-designed welcome and student advising center on the CentreTech campus. The remaining $30,000 will support the Aurora Gives Scholars scholarship program, the foundation’s premiere “debt-free associate degree” scholarship.

To understand why Bill made this legacy gift to CCA Foundation, we have to go back to East Germany where Bill’s wife Lore was born. As bombs fell on Hamburg, Lore’s family was forced to separate and leave the city. At the end of the war, her family was reunited in Crailshim, Germany. After high school, she completed two years of law school. During a summer break between law school semesters, Lore took a temporary job as secretary of the special services office where Bill worked. After knowing each other for six weeks, Bill and Lore were married. Following Bill’s discharge, the couple moved to America where Lore completed a Ph.D. in French at The University of Texas.

After graduation, she took a job at Richland College in Dallas, Texas as a founding faculty member and the director of foreign languages for the community college. She taught at Richland until the family moved to Aurora where she taught French at Gateway High School for 20 years. At age 65, she retired but continued as a substitute teacher in Aurora for ten more years. She was a teacher who gained both respect and admiration from her students as she pushed them to reach their potential. She took students downtown to see plays, attend concerts, and to eat at French restaurants. Education was Lore’s joie de vivre (joy of life).

In 1985, CCA’s first president, Dr. Nai-Kwang Chang, asked Bill to be one of the CCA Foundation’s founding board members tasked with the responsibility of building CCA’s first campus on land the City of Aurora had donated. Lore was proud that they could help meet the post-secondary needs of the city. Bill continues to support Lore’s joie de vivre as a current CCA Foundation board member. Through their thoughtful and generous gift, donors like Bill and Lore will have a lasting impact on thousands of CCA students.


If you have named CCA Foundation as a beneficiary of a planned gift or to learn more about how you can include CCA Foundation in your estate plan, please contact John Wolfkill at 303-360-4833.