Office of Gift Planning — Wills, Trusts, & Estates

We Build Great Beginnings

Jose Lambert’s dream of becoming an architect nearly ended in 1958 when Fidel Castro came to power in Cuba. Families like Lambert’s were no longer allowed to send money to loved ones living in the U.S., and he was forced to leave his studies at the UVA School of Architecture.

“I had to quit school—it was terrible,” Lambert remembers. Fortunately, he’d met Montgomery “Bird” Woods (Arch ’62), a fellow budding architect at UVA. After Woods graduated, the couple moved to San Francisco.

“We didn’t want someone to be in my situation, without enough money to finish school.”

Woods helped Lambert finish his studies at the University of California,
Berkeley. The two built a successful architecture firm, Lambert & Woods,
with offices in San Francisco and New York City. Now, they hope to nurture
a new generation of architects.

We wanted to take the burden of tuition costs off students’ minds so they can stay focused on their education,” says Lambert. The couple created the Lambert-Woods Architects Traveling Scholarships, which helps architecture students with expenses related to their studies abroad. In 2016, they added to their gift using a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) from a retirement account.