Overview Tribute Giving Planned Giving

If wildlife conservation, education and protecting community assets are important to you, talk to a professional about including a specific or residual bequest in your will. Members of Zoo Knoxville’s Legacy Society are dedicated supporters who choose to extend their caring for Zoo Knoxville well beyond their lifetime.

Using estate planning methods may create exemptions from capital gains taxes, which can reduce costly estate or probate taxes within present tax laws.


  • An outright gift of cash or personal property
  • A donation of stocks/securities to the Zoo
  • A specific amount, percentage of, or residual amount of estate
  • Retirement plans
  • Insurance plans

Gifts may be restricted or unrestricted. An unrestricted gift is one that is intended for the general support of Zoo Knoxville and is used at the discretion of the Board of Directors. While unrestricted bequests are of particular value to Zoo Knoxville because of the flexibility allowed in application of funds, Zoo Knoxville realizes many of our supporters have a special connection to particular programs and choose to make a specific request. Therefore, Zoo Knoxville welcomes restricted bequests. Since a bequest will likely not be received by the Zoo until far into the future, we ask that its terms be as general as possible to avoid a gift benefiting a project the Zoo no longer pursues or with terms that will be difficult to meet. If you are considering a bequest for a specific purpose, please call our office to discuss your wishes.


The first step is talking with your estate attorney, tax preparer or financial planner. He or she will help you decide on the type of gift that is most beneficial to you now and into the future.


If you already have a will and would like to remember Zoo Knoxville, your attorney could include us easily with a sentence (codicil) such as:“I hereby give $_______(specific amount, specific asset, ____% of my estate, or ____% of the residuary of my estate after settling) to Knoxville Zoological Gardens (Zoo Knoxville), a not-for profit charitable corporation incorporated in Knoxville, Tennessee and presently located at 3500 Knoxville Zoo Drive.” If you are drafting a new will or trust, your attorney will need the following legal information:

  • Legal name: Knoxville Zoological Gardens (also known as Zoo Knoxville)
  • Mailing Address: 3500 Knoxville Zoo Drive, Knoxville, TN 37914
  • Phone: 865-637-5331
  • Tax ID #: 62-1034633

Zoo Knoxville is a tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Gifts and bequests to Zoo Knoxville are deductible to the extent permitted by law for income, gift and estate tax purposes.


When choosing to honor Zoo Knoxville with a planned gift, you become a member of a committed group of donors known as Zoo Knoxville’s Legacy Society. As a member of our Legacy Society, you will receive regular updates on changes and improvements at the Zoo, and you will be invited to an annual reception celebrating the impact of planned gifts on Zoo Knoxville and welcoming new members. With your permission, you will be acknowledged publicly in print and electronically and will appear in Zoo Knoxville’s “Year in Review” publication.No mater how you plan, making a lasting donation to a community treasure committed to wildlife conservation and education is a decision with lasting positive outcomes. Because Zoo Knoxville is 87 percent self-supporting, we rely heavily on donations to support operations as well as accomplish critical conservation work and build state-of-the-art-habitats.


For more information or to advise us of your plans, please contact Dana Decareaux at [email protected]

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