A Legacy of Giving: Francis & Marion Lederer
Did you know that one of the ways people help The Actors Fund help everyone in entertainment is by making gifts through estate planning? In amounts ranging from modest gifts to large bequests, the amazing roster of people who’ve included The Fund in their estate plans includes George M. Cohan, Madeline Kahn, Katherine Hepburn, Al Jolson, Helen Hayes, Albert Hacket, Lucille Lortel, Tony Randall, Basil Rathbone, Martha Raye, Lynn Redgrave, Clifton Webb, and Jule Styne. And there are numerous ways you can give to The Fund, too: From song royalties to bequests, charitable annuities to gifts of life insurance, you don’t have to be a star to include The Fund in your estate plans.
Whatever the gift may be, we are grateful to each and every one of our donors, such as Marion and Francis Lederer, a couple wonderfully dedicated to making their community the best place it could possibly be.
Marion, born in Canada, was Los Angeles Commissioner of Cultural Affairs from 1980–85, and was a founding member of the American National Theatre and Academy (ANTA), and founded the United Nations’ Sister City Program. Francis was born in Prague and, after service in World War I, became one of Europe’s top male film stars through roles in movies like Maman Colibri, The Wonderful Lie of Nina Perovna, and Pandora’s Box, considered one of Germany’s greatest silent films. He made the successful transition from silent films to talkies, then moved to the United States and became a citizen in 1939 where his performing career — on stage, screen, and television — flourished. One of the earliest members of the Screen Actors Guild, he founded the American National Academy of Performing Arts, where he taught a weekly workshop for actors.
The Lederers’ were married in 1941, and their marriage lasted for 59 years. Honored on numerous occasions, they were proud Ambassadors for UNICEF, and served on the boards of numerous community and civic organizations. We are grateful for the examples they set as citizens of the world and supporters of The Actors Fund.
If you’d like to know more about how you can become part of The Actors Fund’s planned giving tradition, contact Wally Munro at email@example.com or 212.221.7300. It can be very easy to do, and the gifts are often very modest, but the feeling you’ll get by becoming a part of the history of giving is immeasurable.