Ciro Farina and CoEd go waaaaaay back–I’m talking farther back than CoEd itself here, people! Read on for our interview with one of our most stalwart supporters and how his path crossed with the CoEd family.

August Tour 2003 129

Ciro (far right) poses with Guatemalan students and teachers on the August 2003 tour

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I was born and raised in Chicago and attended the University of Illinois, where I studied philosophy and law. My late wife, Ann, and Elaine Berninger (the mother of CoEd co-founders Jeff and Joe) were high school friends, and it was our good fortune to be present at the moment CoEd was created when we joyfully joined the Board of Trustees.

What motivated you to remember CoEd in your estate plans through planned giving?

Early on, planned giving seemed to me and Ann to be an effective way of helping CoEd achieve greater financial stability, especially during those economic periods when fundraising is most difficult. With no children ourselves, CoEd has been our family and I can think of no finer way to say “thank you” to that family than to help our “children” in Guatemala.

Do you have any advice for others considering a planned gift?

My only suggestion to these fine people would be to act now, as soon as they can. My wife died a few years ago and her love of CoEd would not have been honored had I delayed any longer. Giving to charity was an important part of our estate planning.

R.G.T2'02 Ciro at Chamil

This one is definitely a throwback: Ciro, Jeff and Joe accept thank you cards from the school of Chamil during an inauguration

Would you like to share anything else about your experience with CoEd?

I have been to Guatemala several times over the years and always come home with a reassurance of the value of CoEd’s efforts. I sincerely believe CoEd is changing the face of Guatemala bit by bit, child by child, day by day and I’m glad to share in that.

Interested in learning more about planned giving? Please contact Jennifer Frederick at or (513) 661-7000 and read more here about leaving a legacy that will endure for generations.