Julie Ann James Channels Values into JFK Library Foundation Bequest

Fred and Julie Ann James
Fred and Julie Ann James

Julie Ann Narans James’ passion for the JFK Library and Kennedy legacy is inseparable from lessons she learned through her own family members.

In 1959, on a factory floor in Columbus, Nebraska, then-Senator John F. Kennedy asked for her grandmother Maxine’s vote. Years later her father worked on Bobby Kennedy’s campaign. In recalling her father and grandmother, Julie Ann realized, “They passed down that sense of duty to country, duty to fellow man. Even people in small-town Nebraska have a voice and a vote.”

On meeting her husband Fred, who has served for more than twenty-five years as a police officer, Julie Ann shares, “The Kennedy legacy brought us together—what they did and what they stood for, that moral compass.” Julie Ann and Fred are members of the JFK Library Foundation’s New Frontier Network, a group that seeks to activate new generations through President Kennedy’s life and legacy, and even used the JFK stamp on their wedding invitations.

When Julie Ann’s grandmother passed away, she left Julie Ann a financial gift as well as Kennedy memorabilia. It was then that Julie Ann began asking herself: “What do I want to do with my money at the end of my life? I decided to establish a gift to the JFK Library Foundation because I wanted the values that I identify with in the Kennedy legacy to live on.”

Julie Ann set up her will to give all her remaining monetary assets to the JFK Library Foundation. “Everyone wants to leave a mark,” she says. “I don’t think there’s any better place than the JFK Library to carry on the values I believe in. It feels so good to know that when I’m no longer here, I will still be making a difference—because President Kennedy’s values are my core values.”


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