Why We Give: Kevin C. L. Ching ’02

Cooking up a Sumptuous Gift

Kevin Ching, chef and restaurateur, shares the inspiration behind his gift.

This past summer was my 20th Reunion year, and the experience was honestly fantastic. I had a great time catching up with some old friends and learning about new projects and initiatives at Punahou. I’m sure every generation has this feeling when looking back, but it really is amazing to see how learning and teaching at Punahou continues to relentlessly evolve into an ever more inclusive, tech-forward, community-focused, globally minded experience. 

I suppose the most life-impacting gift of my Punahou education was a sense of being part of a global community and a curiosity to explore other cultures. That desire to experience broader horizons ultimately took me to Asia where I lived and worked in China, later went to culinary school, and eventually went on to building restaurant businesses in Thailand and Myanmar. I’ve always been honored to be able to support Punahou. As this was our 20th, I wanted to commemorate that with a more substantial gift than in years past, and I feel very lucky to be in a position to do so. 

I was immediately attracted to the tax benefits of gifting stock. Being able to transfer and claim the full value of the assets by avoiding capital gains just seemed like a no-brainer win-win for both parties. As it happened, I had been looking for an opportunity to offload a couple stocks that had appreciated in the past few years, and the timing worked out well. 

The experience of gifting stock online was seamless and easy. Carrie Ogami (Punahou’s director of Gift Planning) made the process extremely straightforward and was so helpful right from the start. The FreeWill utility could not have been easier to use and the whole process took no more than 10 minutes. I made a quick call to my broker, uploaded a single form and it was done. The timing was such that I was even able to do this while at an airport, in transit, on a trip!

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