Home > American Red Cross, Worst Charities in the U.S., Wounded Warrior Project > The Worst Charities in a Nation of Givers

The Worst Charities in a Nation of Givers

December 21, 2013

American culture is unique when it comes to a belief in philanthropy. In the United States in 2012, total giving to charitable organizations was $316.23 billion (about 2% of GDP), which was an increase of 3.5% from 2011. As in previous years, the majority of that giving came from individuals (an average of 4.7% of their income — median contribution of $2,564, median income of $54,783). Specifically, individuals gave roughly $223 billion (72%); giving by bequest was $22.14 billion (7%); foundations gave $47.44 billion (15%); and corporations donated $18.97 billion (6%). Thirty-two percent of all donations went to religious organizations — much of these contributions can be attributed to people giving to their local place of worship. The next largest sector was education with 13% of all donations. [Source]

America’s middle class is far more generous than the upper classes: Households that earn $50,000 to $75,000 give an average of 7.6% of their discretionary income to charity, compared with an average of 4.2% for people who make $100,000 or more. Rich people who live in neighborhoods with many other wealthy people give a smaller share of their incomes to charity than rich people who live in more economically diverse communities.

Red states are more generous than blue states: The eight states where residents gave the highest share of income to charity vote for the Republican Party; the seven-lowest ranking states support the Democratic Party.

Religion has a big influence on giving patterns: Regions of the country that are deeply religious are more generous than those that are not. Two of the top nine states — Utah and Idaho — have high numbers of Mormon residents, who have a tradition of tithing at least 10% of their income to the church — the remaining states in the top nine are all in the Bible Belt.

When religious giving isn’t counted, the geography of giving is very different: Some states in the Northeast jump into the top 10 when secular gifts alone are counted; New York would vault from No. 18 to No. 2; and Pennsylvania would climb from No. 40 to No. 4.

The reasons for the discrepancies among states, cities, neighborhoods are rooted in part in each area’s political philosophy about the role of government versus charity. [Source]

CBS 11 News in North Texas interviewed Ken Berger, CEO and president of Charity Navigator, a website that claims to be a “national watchdog group that tracks and rates non-profit organizations.” However, if you take the time to review Part IX of a non-profit’s IRS form 990 (available for free at http://nccs.urban.org), you’ll see that Charity Navigator does not take into account the overhead when calculating the percentage of contributions that goes toward the cause (I wouldn’t be surprised if Charity Navigator is funded by the large non-profits to mislead donors, and the same goes for the other “charity watchdog,” Guidestar.org).

For example, according to Charity Navigator, the American Red Cross would apply $92 of every $100 to their mission (which is also what the Red Cross claims on their website and in press releases), but the exact opposite is true: only about $5 of every $100 goes toward the cause and the rest goes toward overhead (just check out Part IX of their IRS form 990s). Of the $3.2 billion the Red Cross received in contributions for 2011, 99% ($3.1 billion) was spent on salaries and other expenses, which left only 1% ($38 million) of contributions for the cause: helping victims of disaster relief. A private foundation is required by federal law to pay out five percent of the average market value of its net investment assets in order to avoid paying excise taxes, so the Red Cross used reserve funds to fulfill the required five percent payout ($174 million of the total $212 million that they awarded in grants in 2011 came from their endowment).

American Red Cross 2011 Total Revenue: $3.2 billion (including $56 million from the U.S. treasury, funded by taxing the income of citizens, etc.)

Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $212 million (1% of revenue plus 6% borrowed from reserves)

Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $1.7 billion (54.64% of revenue)

Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $1.4 billion (44.17% of revenue)

Total Expenses: $3.3 billion ($174 million in the red)

Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $1.6 billion

CEO’s salary: $591,122 plus $37,386 in “other compensation” per IRS Form 990 (Forbes reported her salary as $1,032,022)

1,359 employees receiving more than $100,000 in compensation

57 independent contractors receiving more than $100,000 in compensation

The Red Cross operated in the red in 2011 by $174 million (spending 6% more than revenue after paying administrative costs and salaries), which is why the figures above add up to more than a 100%. However, they are not broke – they ended the year with assets or fund balances of $1.6 billion. Plus, in 2011, they had a large endowment fund worth $828 million, securities worth $563 million, and land, buildings and equipment worth $1.1 billion.

On schedule I of their 990 form, the American Red Cross noted that they made disaster relief payments of $66 million in 2011 and “did not make specific financial assistance to any one individual during the fiscal year exceeding $5,000.”

http://www.redcross.org/images/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m16540911_FY12_ARC_990_Filed_with_IRS.pdf

On their IRS 990 filing for 2011, the Red Cross listed the “reported compensation” for their president and CEO, Gail J. McGovern, as $591,122 plus $37,386 in “other compensation.” However, Forbes reported in 2010 that her pay at the Red Cross was $1,032,022.

Top Person: Gail J. McGovern
Top Pay: $1,032,022
Fiscal Year ending on 06/30/10

Gail J. McGovern joined the American Red Cross as president and CEO on April 8, 2008. Prior to joining the Red Cross, McGovern was a faculty member at the Harvard Business School and served as president of Fidelity Personal Investments, a unit of Fidelity Investments, responsible for half a trillion dollars of assets under management. She was also executive vice president for the Consumer Markets Division at AT&T, the $26 billion residential long-distance organization and largest business unit. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from Columbia University, and has since been recognized as alumna of the year from both universities. McGovern is currently a member of the board of trustees of Johns Hopkins University and the board of directors of DTE Energy. In February 2013, she joined the board of directors of The Weather Company, which operates The Weather Channel, weather.com and other services. McGovern was recognized by Fortune magazine in 2000 and 2001 as one of the top 50 most powerful women in corporate America.

http://www.forbes.com/lists/2011/14/charities-11_American-National-Red-Cross_CH0013.html


In June 2013, CNN partnered with the Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting to showcase the results of their year-long investigation to identify America’s worst charities.

The following are the five worst, according to the joint investigation:

No. 1. Kids Wish Network: In the past decade alone, Kids Wish has channeled nearly $110 million donated for sick children to its corporate fund-raisers. That makes it the worst charity in the nation, according to a Times/CIR review of charities that have steered the most money to professional solicitation companies over time. Kids Wish Network says it has helped make a positive difference for thousands of children.

No. 2. Cancer Fund of America: CFA raises millions yearly and sends 82% to its for-profit fund-raisers. Over the past decade, fund-raisers have collected $98 million in donations. Patients have gotten less than $1 million in direct cash aid over those 10 years, IRS records show. The group’s founder said, “We can only help others with the funds we net whether it be 90 or 20%.”

No. 3. Children’s Wish Foundation International: This group reported spending about $600,000 granting wishes to terminally ill children in 2010 and gave them donated goods valued at $3 million. It paid professional fund-raisers nearly $6 million for their services that year. Its founder said telemarketing has helped the charity find children in need of its help.

No. 4. American Breast Cancer Foundation: One of the most wasteful charities in the nation for 13 years, this group lured donors by promising to pay for breast cancer screenings. It now says it’s using community events to raise money. In its latest tax filing, the charity reported giving a total of $100,000 to five medical facilities to help pay for breast cancer screening services for low-income women.

No. 5. Firefighters Charitable Foundation: This group says it provides financial assistance to people who have been affected by a fire or disaster. From 2002 to 2011, it raised $64 million in donations and paid $55 million of that to its solicitors. The charity spent less than 10 cents of every dollar raised on direct financial assistance to those in need. The group said in 2007 that it planned to change. That hasn’t happened.

From the 2013 report, we learn the following (click here for full version of the report)…

The worst charity in America, Kids Wish Network, operates from a metal warehouse behind a gas station in Holiday, Florida:

Every year, Kids Wish Network raises millions of dollars in donations in the name of dying children and their families. Every year, it spends less than 3 cents on the dollar helping kids. Most of the rest gets diverted to enrich the charity’s operators and the for-profit companies Kids Wish hires to drum up donations.

In the past decade alone, Kids Wish has channeled nearly $110 million donated for sick children to its corporate solicitors. An additional $4.8 million has gone to pay the charity’s founder and his own consulting firms.

No charity in the nation has siphoned more money away from the needy over a longer period of time.

The year-long investigation by the Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting found that Kids Wish is not an isolated case:

Using state and federal records, the Times and CIR identified nearly 6,000 charities that have chosen to pay for-profit companies to raise their donations. Then reporters took an unprecedented look back to zero in on the 50 worst – based on the money they diverted to boiler room operators and other solicitors over a decade (see the chart at the end of this blog post).

These nonprofits adopt popular causes or mimic well-known charity names that fool donors. Then they rake in cash, year after year.

The nation’s 50 worst charities have paid their solicitors nearly $1 billion over the past 10 years that could have gone to charitable works.

Until today, no one had tallied the cost of this parasitic segment of the nonprofit industry or traced the long history of its worst offenders.

Among the findings:

■ The 50 worst charities in America devote less than 4% of donations raised to direct cash aid. Some charities gave even less. Over a decade, one diabetes charity raised nearly $14 million and gave about $10,000 to patients. Six spent no cash at all on their cause.

■ Even as they plead for financial support, operators at many of the 50 worst charities have lied to donors about where their money goes, taken multiple salaries, secretly paid themselves consulting fees or arranged fund-raising contracts with friends. One cancer charity paid a company owned by the president’s son nearly $18 million over eight years to solicit funds. A medical charity paid its biggest research grant to its president’s own for-profit company.

■ Some nonprofits are little more than fronts for fund-raising companies, which bankroll their startup costs, lock them into exclusive contracts at exorbitant rates and even drive the charities into debt. Florida-based Project Cure has raised more than $65 million since 1998, but every year has wound up owing its fundraiser more than what was raised. According to its latest financial filing, the nonprofit is $3 million in debt.

■ To disguise the meager amount of money that reaches those in need, charities use accounting tricks and inflate the value of donated dollar-store cast-offs – snack cakes and air fresheners – that they give to dying cancer patients and homeless veterans.

The Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting called or mailed certified letters to the leaders of Kids Wish Network and the 49 other charities that had paid the most to solicitors. Most declined to answer questions about their programs or would speak only through an attorney. Approached in person, one charity manager threatened to call the police and another refused to open the door. A third charity’s president took off in his truck at the sight of a reporter with a camera. Kids Wish has hired Melissa Schwartz, a crisis management specialist in New York City who previously worked for the federal government after the 2010 BP oil spill:

Schwartz said Kids Wish hires solicitors so its staff can focus on working with children, not on raising donations. According to its 2011 IRS filing, the charity has 51 employees. Schwartz also said donors who give directly to the charity instead of in response to solicitations ensure that 100% of their pledge will be spent granting wishes. She declined to answer additional questions about Kids Wish’s fund-raising operations, saying the charity “is focused on the future.”

Charity operators who would talk defended their work, saying raising money is expensive, especially in tough economic times:

“No parent has ever turned me down for assistance because we got our money from a telemarketer,” said David Thelen, who runs the Committee for Missing Children in Lawrenceville, Georgia. The charity is No. 13 on the Times/CIR list.

To identify America’s 50 worst charities (see the chart at the end of this blog post), the Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting pieced together tens of thousands of pages of public records collected by the federal government and 36 states. Reporters started in California, Florida and New York, where regulators require charities to report results of individual fund-raising campaigns. The Times and CIR used those records to flag a specific kind of charity: those that pay for-profit corporations to raise the vast majority of their donations year in and year out:

The effort identified hundreds of charities that run donation drives across the country and regularly give their solicitors at least two-thirds of the take. Experts say good charities should spend about half that much – no more than 35 cents to raise a dollar.

For the worst charities, writing big checks to telemarketers isn’t an anomaly. It’s a way of life.

The Times and CIR charted each charity’s performance over the past decade and ranked them based on the total donations diverted to fundraisers, arriving at the 50 worst charities (see the chart at the end of this blog post). By this measure, Kids Wish tops the list.

Tracking donations diverted to fund-raising is just one way to rate a charity’s performance. But experts called the rating fair and said it would provide a unique resource to help donors avoid bad charities:

Doug White, one of the nation’s foremost experts on the ethics of charity fund-raising, dismisses the argument made by charities that without telemarketers they would have no money.

“When you weigh that in terms of values, of what the charity is supposed to be doing and what the donor is being told in the process, the house comes tumbling down,” said White, who teaches in Columbia University’s fund-raising management master’s degree program.

Collectively, the 50 worst charities raised more than $1.3 billion over the past decade and paid nearly $1 billion of that directly to the companies that raise their donations.

If that money had gone to charity, it would have been enough to build 20,000 Habitat for Humanity homes, buy 7 million wheelchairs, or pay for mammograms for nearly 10 million uninsured women.

Instead it funded charities like Youth Development Fund.

The Youth Development Fund, which came in at No. 12, has been around for 30 years. Over the past decade it has raised nearly $30 million from donors by promising to educate children about drug abuse, health and fitness. About 80% of what’s donated each year goes directly to solicitation companies. Most of what’s left pays for one thing: scuba-diving videos starring the charity’s founder and president, Rick Bowen:

Bowen’s charity pays his own for-profit production company about $200,000 a year to make the videos. Then the charity pays to air Rick Bowen Deep-Sea Diving on a local Knoxville station. The program makes no mention of Youth Development Fund.

In its IRS tax filings, the charity reports that its programming reaches “an estimated audience of 1.3 million.” But, according to the station manager, the show attracts about 3,600 viewers a week.

Bowen, who runs the charity out of his Knoxville, Tennessee, condo, declined to be interviewed. He defended the practice of hiring his own company with the public’s donations.

“We just happened to be the low bidder,” he said.

America’s worst charities look nothing like Habitat for Humanity, Boys and Girls Clubs, or thousands of other charities that are dedicated to helping the sick and needy. Well-run charities rely on their own staff to raise money from a variety of sources. They spend most of their donations on easy-to-verify activities, whether it’s running soup kitchens, supporting cancer research, raising awareness about drunken driving, or building homes for veterans.

The Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting list of worst charities, meanwhile, is littered with organizations that exhibit red flags for fraud, waste and mismanagement:

Thirty-nine have been disciplined by state regulators, some as many as seven times.

Eight of the charities have been banned in at least one state.

One was shut down by regulators but reopened under a new name.

A third of the charities’ founders and executives have put relatives on the payroll or the board of directors.

For example, for eight years, American Breast Cancer Foundation paid Joseph Wolf’s telemarketing company to generate donations. His mother, Phyllis Wolf, had founded the Baltimore-based charity and was its president until she was forced to resign in 2010. While she ran the charity, her son’s company, Non Profit Promotions, collected $18 million in telemarketing fees. Phyllis Wolf left the charity after the payments to her son attracted media attention in 2010. The charity has since stopped using telemarketers, including Joseph Wolf’s. Phyllis and Joseph Wolf did not respond to several calls seeking comment.

The nation’s worst charities are large and small. Some are one-person outfits operating from run-down apartments. Others claim hundreds of employees and a half-dozen locations around the country. One lists a UPS mail box as its headquarters address. Several play off the names of well-known organizations, confusing donors:

Among those on the Times/CIR list are Kids Wish Network, Children’s Wish Foundation International and Wishing Well Foundation. All of the names sound like the original, Make-A-Wish, which does not hire professional telemarketers. Make-A-Wish officials say they’ve spent years fielding complaints from people who were solicited by sound-a-like charities.

“While some of the donations go elsewhere, all the bad public relations that comes with telemarketing seems to come to us,” said Make-A-Wish spokesman Paul Allvin.

Donors who answer calls from the 50 worst charities (see the chart at the end of this blog post) hear professionally honed messages, designed to leverage popular causes and hide one crucial fact: Almost nothing goes to charity. When telemarketers for Kids Wish call potential donors, they open with a name you think you’ve heard before. Then they ask potential donors to “imagine the heartbreak of losing a child to a terminal illness,” according to scripts filed with North Carolina regulators in 2010:

Kids Wish, the callers say, wants to fulfill their wishes “while they are still healthy enough to enjoy them.” They leave out the fact that most of the charity’s good deeds involve handing out gift cards to hospitalized children and donated coloring books and board games to healthy kids around the country. And they don’t mention the millions of dollars spent on salaries and fund-raising every year.

The biggest difference between good charities and the nation’s worst is the bottom line. Every charity has salary, overhead and fund-raising costs. But several watchdog organizations say charities should spend no more than 35% of the money they raise on fund-raising expenses (Charity Watch advises that no more than 25% of the budget go to administrative costs):

The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central and North Florida is one of dozens of Make-A-Wish chapters across the country. Last year, it reported raising $3.1 million cash and spent about 60% of that — $1.8 million — granting wishes. The same year, Kids Wish raised $18.6 million, its tax filing shows. It spent just $240,000 granting wishes — 1% of the cash raised.

Click here for the database compiled by the Tampa Bay Times and the Center for Investigative Reporting, which allows you to search for disciplinary history on charities. Though the website is titled “America’s Worst Charities,” that does not mean that charities with disciplinary actions in the database are bad charities. As the website says: “Most of the actions in this database involve charities that are not among the worst in America. Many of the actions are related to registration issues, including late registrations.”

To verify a non-profit’s financials, review its IRS form 990 – google “990 form” along with the charity’s name, or go to http://nccs.urban.org. On the first page of the form 990 you can ascertain total overhead (which is detailed on Part IX of the form) by subtracting the amount on line 13 from line 18. To determine percentage, divide the difference by the amount on line 18 and then multiple the result by 100.

Use a charity’s IRS 990 form to verify financials – google “990 form” along with the charity’s name, or go to http://nccs.urban.org. On the first page of the 990 you can ascertain total overhead, which is detailed on Part IX of the form, by subtracting the amount on line 13 from line 18.

The following are key questions to ask when someone is requesting a charitable donation:

• What is the full name of the charity?

• Do you work for a paid fundraiser?

• How much of my donation actually goes to charity?

• Will any local programs directly benefit? If so, how?

• What is the website address of the charity?

trump 1

Unlike the charities described in the report above, 100% of the monies raised by the Eric Trump Foundation goes to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for terminally-ill children, according to their website (their 2009 IRS form 990 shows they raised $389,760, awarded grants of $402,000, had expenses of $24,856, ended the year with $29,171 in cash, and nobody associated with the charity received a salary):

What began as a collaborative effort between a three dedicated friends in 2006, has grown into one of the largest private charities in the country. To date, The Eric Trump Foundation has raised nearly $8 million dollars for St. Jude and recently pledged another $20 million more for the construction of The Eric Trump Foundation Surgery & ICU Center, opening at St. Jude in 2015. This new state-of-the-art medical center will dramatically increase the ability of St. Jude’s brilliant doctors, researchers and scientists to better treat the most catastrophic diseases that affect our most precious segment of society – children.

The Eric Trump Foundation prides itself on having one of the lowest expense ratios in the world. Today, far too many non-profit organizations spend their money on expensive black-tie galas, A-list performers and the overpriced salaries of their CEO’s and staff. Regrettably, the very cause they’re trying to raise money for receives a very small check, after expenses. ETF is committed to using only Trump owned and operated facilities, no paid employees – only full time volunteers – donated food & beverage product, as well as pro-bono celebrity performers, so that St. Jude receives 100% of the monies raised.

nephcure 13

The Nephcure Foundation, the charity Teresa Giudice promotes, is another story. According to IRS form 990 filed for 2011 by the foundation, more than half (51% or $1,205,665) of their total revenue in 2011 ($2,362,971) went toward administrative costs, including management services & salaries ($416,850 to Vizion Group), fundraising events ($262,516), advertising & promotion ($81,504), office expenses ($61,670), information technology ($59,784), conferences/conventions/meetings ($45,038), occupancy ($38,993), lobbying ($28,245), insurance ($7,983), travel ($1,478), and other expenses ($201,604). The 51% in administrative costs exceeds the 33% that Charity Navigator suggests as a guideline (Charity Watch advises consumers should donate to charities that use at least 75% of donations for direct aid; i.e., no more than 25% of the budget going to administrative costs). However, they did borrow from reserve funds to award grants totaling $1.7 million, or 70% of 2011 revenue.

Concerning Autism Speaks (the nation’s largest autism advocacy organization), which the Lauritas promoted on RHONJ in conjunction with blk., employee compensation for the charity in 2008 accounted for more than a quarter of its income, according to its tax filing. In 2008, Autism Speaks took in more than $69 million (over $20 million more than it did the previous year) and provided about $28 million in grants, or 41% of revenue. The organization’s chief science officer, Geri Dawson, received $669,751 in total compensation, including $269,721 in relocation expenses to move her family from Washington to North Carolina. Dawson’s base salary was $373,360, more than any of the organization’s 257 other employees, including Autism Speaks’ president, Mark Roithmayr.

Cindy Waeltermann, founder and director of both Autism Link and the Autism Center of Pittsburgh, wrote a letter in November 2009, Autism Speaks. It’s a Living (excerpt below), to express her disgust with the organization after Autism Speaks’ posted on their website that they would be “postponing” grantmaking for 2009 due to the current economic crisis”:

Autism Speaks recently announced on their website that due to the poor economy they have to “postpone” grant making and giving for 2009. Yes, this charity that hauled in a reported $68 million in funds last year has fallen on hard times. Sad, really, on the surface. But dig deeper. I ask you to consider the following information, taken straight from this organization’s IRS 990 form on their own website:

Geraldine Dawson, Chief Science Officer – Salary: $669,751
Mark Roithmayer, President – Salary: $400,413
Peter Bell, Executive Vice President – Salary: $265,981
Glenn Tringali, Executive Vice President – Salary: $255,256
Alison Tepper Singer, Executive Vice President – Salary: $201,942
Amount Spent on Travel: $2,873,667
Credit Card and Banking Fees: $989,344
Premiums: $1,452,807
Management Fees: $2,038,024
Advertising and Promotion: $2,108,778
Temporary Help: $718,686
Income: $65,826,829
GRANTS PAID OUT: $27,593,390

Now I ask you, does this look like an organization that is suffering? It looks, to me, to be an organization that cares more about highly paid salaries, posh offices on #2 Park Avenue in New York, pricey fundraisers, and getting its name in the newspaper. They seem to exist solely to pay salaries and throw parties.

But hey, they’ve fallen on hard times. So can someone please tell me why the first thing to go is the grant making and giving — the one thing that they claim as their #1 mission? To give grants to find a cure for autism? And don’t they seem a little top heavy to you? A $700,000 salary?? Four Executive Vice Presidents?

Click here to read the full letter.

s5 40

From Christine_Rogers in April 2010:

I’ve started a FB group to try and get the general public to know about Autism Speaks, please check it out, join it and share it here:

http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?topic=42359&uid=183608095328#!/group.php?gid=109130859120272&ref=ts

Here is a link to my letter that I am trying to share:

http://darwin-autismsuperherodog.blogspot.com/2010/04/low-down-and-how-low-it-is-on-autism.html

And here is a copy of the letter:

I’ve been writing a lot about Autism Speaks on facebook and twitter and starting petition campaigns to try and let the general public and, more importantly, the businesses and celebrities who are supporting Autism Speaks, so the truth of this organization (I will not call it a charity) can get out there. I am just one small voice, but there are others of us trying to spread the word; and the more of us there are, the better. I am going to keep on yelling with my one voice! I’ve had a lot of people write me and ask for more info, so I decided to post a response I wrote today here.

You probably know that some parents and many adult autistics really take issue with the ad campaign messages that Autism Speaks puts out and also on their funding research to enable prenatal genetic testing so families can choose to terminate those pregnancies. Those two issues, though, are individual’s morals and choices so for me. I want to let people know that EVEN IF THEY DON’T HAVE ANY PROBLEM WITH THOSE THINGS that they still should not support Autism Speaks, and here is why: The big thing is their financial practices.

The video below is the easiest way to get the low-down on that. All the information in the video came from Autism Speaks own website off of their financial report.

I tend to agree with a comment posted by VTMom5 Puppyface on an story by James Altucher about why he never donates to a major charity:

There are a lot of people right in your own town or state who need help. You don’t have to give to a huge nationwide organization to be a giving/serving member of society. If we all took care of ourselves, our families and our communities (keeping it local), all of our needs would be met. And if a time comes where you yourself may need help, everyone would remember all you had done over the years and would be ready to pay it forward.”

The following are lists of the charities with the highest administrative costs and the highest paid CEOs.

The 50 Charities with the Highest Administrative Costs

On the first page of IRS 990 form filed by the charity, pay attention to total revenue on line 12, grants paid out on line 13, and total expenses on line 18, and subtract the amount on line 13 from line 18 to calculate total administrative costs, which are detailed on Part IX of the form (to locate a charity’s IRS 990 form online, simply enter the search words “990 form,” along with the charity’s name, or go to http://nccs.urban.org).

Rank Charity name Total raised by solicitors Paid to solicitors % spent on direct cash aid
1 Kids Wish Network $127.8 million $109.8 million 2.50%
2 Cancer Fund of America $98.0 million $80.4 million 0.90%
3 Children’s Wish Foundation International $96.8 million $63.6 million 10.80%
4 American Breast Cancer Foundation $80.8 million $59.8 million 5.30%
5 Firefighters Charitable Foundation $63.8 million $54.7 million 8.40%
6 Breast Cancer Relief Foundation $63.9 million $44.8 million 2.20%
7 International Union of Police Associations, AFL-CIO $57.2 million $41.4 million 0.50%
8 National Veterans Service Fund $70.2 million $36.9 million 7.80%
9 American Association of State Troopers $45.0 million $36.0 million 8.60%
10 Children’s Cancer Fund of America $37.5 million $29.2 million 5.30%
11 Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation $34.7 million $27.6 million 0.60%
12 Youth Development Fund $29.7 million $24.5 million 0.80%
13 Committee For Missing Children $26.9 million $23.8 million 0.80%
14 Association for Firefighters and Paramedics $23.2 million $20.8 million 3.10%
15 Project Cure (Bradenton, FL) $51.5 million $20.4 million 0.00%
16 National Caregiving Foundation $22.3 million $18.1 million 3.50%
17 Operation Lookout National Center for Missing Youth $19.6 million $16.1 million 0.00%
18 United States Deputy Sheriffs’ Association $23.1 million $15.9 million 0.60%
19 Vietnow National Headquarters $18.1 million $15.9 million 2.90%
20 Police Protective Fund $34.9 million $14.8 million 0.80%
21 National Cancer Coalition $41.5 million $14.0 million 1.10%
22 Woman To Woman Breast Cancer Foundation $14.5 million $13.7 million 0.40%
23 American Foundation For Disabled Children $16.4 million $13.4 million 0.80%
24 The Veterans Fund $15.7 million $12.9 million 2.30%
25 Heart Support of America $33.0 million $11.0 million 3.40%
26 Veterans Assistance Foundation $12.2 million $11.0 million 10.50%
27 Children’s Charity Fund $14.3 million $10.5 million 2.30%
28 Wishing Well Foundation USA $12.4 million $9.8 million 4.60%
29 Defeat Diabetes Foundation $13.8 million $8.3 million 0.10%
30 Disabled Police Officers of America Inc. $10.3 million $8.1 million 2.50%
31 National Police Defense Foundation $9.9 million $7.8 million 5.80%
32 American Association of the Deaf & Blind $10.3 million $7.8 million 0.10%
33 Reserve Police Officers Association $8.7 million $7.7 million 1.10%
34 Optimal Medical Foundation $7.9 million $7.6 million 1.00%
35 Disabled Police and Sheriffs Foundation $9.0 million $7.6 million 1.00%
36 Disabled Police Officers Counseling Center $8.2 million $6.9 million 0.10%
37 Children’s Leukemia Research Association $9.8 million $6.8 million 11.10%
38 United Breast Cancer Foundation $11.6 million $6.6 million 6.30%
39 Shiloh International Ministries $8.0 million $6.2 million 1.30%
40 Circle of Friends For American Veterans $7.8 million $5.7 million 6.50%
41 Find the Children $7.6 million $5.0 million 5.70%
42 Survivors and Victims Empowered $7.7 million $4.8 million 0.00%
43 Firefighters Assistance Fund $5.6 million $4.6 million 3.20%
44 Caring for Our Children Foundation $4.7 million $4.1 million 1.60%
45 National Narcotic Officers Associations Coalition $4.8 million $4.0 million 0.00%
46 American Foundation for Children With AIDS $5.2 million $3.0 million 0.00%
47 Our American Veterans $2.6 million $2.3 million 2.30%
48 Roger Wyburn-Mason & Jack M Blount Foundation For Eradication of Rheumatoid Disease $8.4 million $1.8 million 0.00%
49 Firefighters Burn Fund $2.0 million $1.7 million 1.50%
50 Hope Cancer Fund $1.9 million $1.6 million 0.50%

Top 25 CEO Compensation Packages (from CharityWatch)

On the first page of IRS 990 form filed by the charity, check line 12 (total salaries, other compensation, and employee benefits) and line 13 (professional fees and other payments to independent contractors), which are detailed on part VII of the form (to locate a charity’s IRS 990 form online, simply enter the search words “990 form,” along with the charity’s name, or go to http://nccs.urban.org).

Name & Title Organization Top Salary*
Peter T. Scardino, M.D., Chairman Attending Surgery Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center $2,207,147
Michael Friedman, M.D., CEO City of Hope $1,434,148
Edward J. Benz, Jr., M.D., President/CEO Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Jimmy Fund $1,406,429
Kenneth Guidera, Chief Medical Officer Shriners Hospitals for Children $1,374,996
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, President/CEO International Fellowship of Christians and Jews $1,203,690
Edwin J. Feulner, Jr., Past President Heritage Foundation $1,172,321
Steven E. Sanderson, Past President/CEO Wildlife Conservation Society $1,163,666
Jonathan W. Simons, M.D., President/CEO Prostate Cancer Foundation $1,123,097
Robert J. Beall, President/CEO Cystic Fibrosis Foundation $1,073,725
Brian Gallagher, President/CEO United Way Worldwide $1,035,347
Harry Johns, President/CEO Alzheimer’s Association – N.O. $996,824
Robert J. Mazzuca, Past Chief Scout Executive Boy Scouts of America – N.O. $987,412
Wayne LaPierre, CEO & Executive VP/Ex-Officio National Rifle Association & Foundation, respectively $972,000
Scott A. Blackmun, CEO United States Olympic Committee $965,359
William R. Brody, M.D., President Salk Institute for Biological Studies $946,823
William E. Evans, Director/CEO St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital/ALSAC $939,979
Christopher DeMuth, Past Senior Fellow American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research $925,950
M. Kathryn Cloninger, Past CEO Girl Scouts of the USA – N.O. $887,209
Nancy A. Brown, CEO American Heart Association $843,779
David Harris, Executive Director American Jewish Committee $842,419
John R. Seffrin, CEO American Cancer Society $832,355
Larry Jones, Past CEO Feed the Children/Americans Feeding Americans $800,000
James E. Williams, Jr., President/CEO Easter Seals $796,501
Rabbi Marvin Hier, President/CEO Simon Wiesenthal Center $790,954
Michael L. Lomax, President/CEO UNCF/The College Fund $773,693

Wounded Warrior Project

Readers wanted to know how the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) was using its donations and whether the charity was spending a large portion of donations in hiring for-profit corporations to raise money. WWP uses a combination of fundraising events, corporate sponsorships, advertising and direct mail appeals to raise money. According to the Tampa Bay Times, of the $150 million raised in 2012, about $81 million was raised through professional solicitors. Wounded Warrior paid 11 percent of that money to cover its solicitors’ fees and the expense of the solicitor-run campaigns.

WWP does not provide direct financial assistance to its alumni, which is what they call those who sign up online for their member services (as of October 1, 2014, WWP has 58,034 alumni). WWP states that they “cannot direct funds to a geographic location or specific individual.” On their website they write:

“Throughout the year, we offer a wide range of events and activities around the country designed just for Alumni. These activities include sporting events, educational sessions, and social events that give individuals a chance to spend time with other injured service members. Alumni can also participate in many WWP activities and events for injured service members.”

WWP provides “programs and services” to their alumni, in addition to backpacks (“WWP packs”). According to their website:

“Warriors receive WWP packs in the hospital. They can be purchased through Under Armour and will be presented to an injured service member recuperating in a military hospital.”

“WWP provides more than 18 programs and services to injured service members and their families, in addition to numerous valuable resources. Sign up online for our WWP Alumni program. It’s free to join. Please visit our Programs page and browse all our offerings that are categorized by Mind, Body, Economic Empowerment and Engagement.”

The following are excerpts from a report on WWP published at Veterans Today on December 8, 2013.

“Sad to say, the Wounded Warrior Project is bled dry by a top heavy, greedy executive structure, and the remaining funds are disbursed to multi-tier distribution organizations with similar management structures. By the time the money actually goes to direct benefits for veterans, there is probably less than 10% that reaches them… WWP does little, if any, direct support of wounded warriors and wounded warrior programs. Rather, WWP makes grants and contributions to other 501.c.3 organizations which operate wounded warrior programs and/or serve veterans directly… While many of these organizations provide valuable services to wounded warriors, many more are suspect. As an example, I question an expenditure of $300,000 for a parade. Some organizations are known to be inefficient and not the favorite of veterans (e.g. The American Red Cross). I also question the use of funds for lobbying activities. It is true that WWP was the center of controversy involving their anti-Second Amendment position. There is no question that WWP does contribute substantial funds for the benefit of wounded warriors. Notwithstanding, it appears that a more effective use of Association funds would be to contribute directly to The Fisher House, Navy-Marine Corps Relief, The Salvation Army, and others.”

Proud Supporter Events listed on WWP’s website are not organized by WWP; rather, they are charity events hosted by other organizations to benefit myriad causes. On WWP’s website it states:

“Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) invites you to honor and empower Wounded Warriors by becoming a Proud Supporter and hosting your own fundraising campaign.”

“You will need to register your event each year to hold a benefit for Wounded Warrior Project® should you hold an annual benefit event. For volunteer opportunities at registered proud supporter events in your area, please visit the Proud Supporter Events Map, locate an event in your area, and contact the event organizer to inquire about volunteer needs. Please note: These volunteer opportunities are not directly with WWP. Please do not contact military bases to invite warriors. These requests should come through WWP’s event staff at events@woundedwarriorproject.org.”

It is important to note that WWP does not provide programs or services to military veterans who served before September 11, 2001. On WWP’S website it states:

“WWP began as a small, grassroots effort to provide immediate assistance when a warrior of this generation was injured. We felt we could do the most good by providing more comprehensive programs and services to the newly injured, rather than spread ourselves too thin by trying to help all veterans. We also knew there were many terrific veterans’ organizations for warriors from previous conflicts, but very few focused on serving our newest generation.”

For 2012, WWP reported that about 73 percent of its expenses went toward programs and services, but the charity is one of many that uses a commonly accepted practice to claim a portion of expenses as charitable works by lumping them under the broad category of “program service expenses.” For example, by including educational material in solicitations, charities can classify some of the expense as good deeds.

Wounded Warrior 2012

In my analysis of WWP’s 2012 IRS Form 990, “Statement of Functional Expenses (Part IX)” [see page 10 – image above], I determined that in 2012:

  • 32.54% of contributions was added to WWP’s endowment fund (banked or invested)
  • 59.81% of contributions was spent on programs and services, direct and indirect costs*
  • 7.65% of contributions was awarded directly in grants

* Of the 59.81% spent on programs and services, 12.31% was for salaries and other compensation and 47.50% was for other expenses, including those spent on “consulting and outside services” and on overhead

The figures above contradict the claims WWP makes on their website and in their annual reports and press releases — this is because WWP uses the broad category of “program service expenses” when reporting their operating costs.

According to WWP: “Based on our fiscal year 2013 audited financial statements ending September 30, 2013, 80 percent of total expenditures went to provide services and programs for wounded service members and their families.”

2013 Expenses By Category:

Program Services: $175,009,142
Management and General: $9,199,900
Fundraising: $34,764,110

Total Expenses: $218,973,152

Total Cash Contributions: $224,063,935

However, in my analysis of WWP’s audited financial statements for 2013, I determined that 82.12 percent of the $175,009,142 in “program service expenses” was for indirect costs (overhead); therefore, in 2013 only 18 percent of total expenditures went to provide services and programs for wounded service members and their families.

WWP is one of many nonprofits that allocates operating costs (overhead) under the category “program service expenses,” giving donors the perception that this is the amount provided in grants or services.

Operating expenses are indirect costs, which include management services, salaries and other compensation, fundraising events, advertising and promotion, office expenses, information technology, conferences, conventions, meetings, occupancy (mortgage/rent, utilities, etc.), lobbying, insurance, travel, and other expenses.

Scripps Howard News Service reported in May 2012 that chief executives of nonprofit organizations sign their annual Form 990s to the IRS promising “under penalties of perjury” that the information provided is “true, correct and complete;” however, there is “great incentive to fudge the numbers” and “legal action for a false filing is extremely rare.”

“They are fudging the numbers, and there is great incentive to fudge the numbers,” said Christine Manor, a certified public accountant from Rockville, Md., who advises GuideStar and other nonprofits in how to report to the IRS. “Why does anyone think we are so stupid?”

Yet the problem has been known for many years, at least since the mid-1990s, when the IRS began compiling and publicly releasing data from the Form 990 income-tax statements that most large nonprofits are required by law to file annually.

“This has been a long-standing area of concern,” said Washington, D.C., attorney Marcus Owens who was director of the IRS’ Exempt Organizations Division for 10 years.

The Journal of Academy of Business and Economics published a study in February 2003 on the intentional misreporting of “program expenses” by nonprofit organizations. The study examined the motivation of nonprofit organizations to use IRS Form 990 to manipulate financial results by allocating indirect costs as part of the expense composition of “program services” (as opposed to costs for funding activities directly related to the organization’s mission).

Why would a nonprofit misreport “program service expenses”?

When reviewing IRS Form 990s, donors judge organizations reporting a higher proportion of total expenses classified as “program services” or “program expenses” as more likely to use donations to fund activities directly related to the mission rather than on indirect costs associated with operating the charity. 

In other words, donors likely perceive high amounts of total expenses devoted to “program services” as indicative of an organization awarding direct financial assistance to those in need.

To make matters worse, online watchdogs like Charity Navigator use a nonprofit organization’s “program expenses” to rate the charity, so the higher the “program expenses,” the better the rating. On its website under “How Do We Rate Charities’ Financial Health?,” Charity Navigator states:

Charities exist to provide programs and services. They fulfill the expectations of givers when they allocate most of their budgets to providing programs. Charities fail givers expectations when their spending on programs is insufficient. To evaluate a charity’s program expenses, we divide its program expenses by its total functional expenses. Charity Z spends $2.5 million on program expenses, compared with its overall operating budget of $3.5 million. Thus, Charity Z spends 71.4% on program expenses.

The following are excerpts from the February 2003 study, “Indirect cost allocations and the incentive to report high program service expenditures in Form 990: an examination of donors’ perceptions”:

As an overseer of the nonprofit sector, the government has sought to ensure that nonprofit organizations have not engaged in activities that have violated their tax-exempt status. To fulfill this duty, the federal government currently requires most tax-exempt nonprofit organizations (501(c)(3) organizations) to file a yearly informational return, the Form 990.

The Internet presence of Forms 990 has provided nonprofits with increased incentives to report high program service expenditures. Organizations can artificially inflate these expenditures by allocating large amounts of indirect costs to program services.

An experiment investigating donors’ perceptions regarding program services and indirect cost allocations finds that nonprofits’ attempts to mislead donors through cost allocations may succeed, even when signs of potentially manipulative allocations appear on functional expense statements. Donors possessing financial analysis skills may, however, detect these attempts, suggesting that web sites may need to emphasize a careful examination of the expense composition of program services.

Despite Form 990’s role as one of the most commonly used sources of nonprofit financial information today, many in the nonprofit field fear that the informational return may mislead donors.

One area of special concern lies in the reporting of “program service expenditures” and the use of cost allocations to artificially inflate their magnitude.

This paper discusses an experiment conducted to investigate donors’ perceptions of potentially manipulative indirect cost allocations reported in Form 990. In providing a preliminary indication of the likely success or failure of organizations’ attempts to mislead donors through cost allocations, the paper offers some practical suggestions for web sites housing Forms 990.

In its reporting of organizational expenses, Form 990 uses one of three categories to classify all expenses:

1. program services
2. management and general
3. fundraising

Because of the increased accessibility of Forms 990, nonprofit entities face incentives to disclose high “program service expenses” and low management and fundraising expenses (overhead) to ensure a donor’s favorable impression of the organization. Organizations may respond to these incentives by allocating large amounts of indirect costs to the “program service expense” classification to inflate its magnitude, a practice that, according to critics, charitable organizations have committed in the past.

While the IRS encourages organizations to allocate indirect costs among the three expense classifications (program services, management and general, and fundraising), it fails to specify an appropriate allocation method. Further, professional accounting organizations offer only limited cost allocation guidance.

One professional website dedicated to Form 990 preparation advises nonprofit organizations: “If the percentages for either fundraising or management and general appear too high, go back and make sure that your organization used appropriate guidelines when classifying expenses.”

A Statement of Functional Expenses included in Form 990 may provide assistance to donors in detecting an organization’s efforts to manipulate program service results. This statement reveals the individual expenses, both direct and indirect—comprising total program service, management and general, and fundraising—and reports, in columnar format, the manner in which an organization allocated its indirect expenses among the three expense classifications. Some have maintained that this statement is the most important financial report of a nonprofit organization, since it may disclose unusual cost allocations.

Note From Fame: The Statement of Functional Expenses was Part III of Form 990 but the IRS moved it to Part IX, essentially burying it near the end of the form—this statement reveals the actual expense composition of the totals appearing in Part I, and, in turn, how each organization allocated its major direct and indirect costs.

When evaluating the performance of nonprofit organizations, donors and public service agencies rank the ratio of total “program service expenditures” to total organizational expenditures high in importance. Donors can calculate this ratio from data appearing in Part I of Form 990—this statement reports an organization’s revenue sources and the total dollar amounts spent on program services, management and general, and fundraising. Donors likely perceive high amounts of total expenses devoted to “program services” as indicative of an organization’s use of contributions to support program service activities.

The IRS grants nonprofit organizations considerable discretion in their determination of “program service””, management and general”, and “fundraising” expenditures. It encourages these organizations to allocate its indirect costs among the three expense classifications, although it provides only limited guidance as to the allocation techniques or methods.

Regulators and oversight agencies have long considered the Statement of Functional Expenses (Part IX of IRS Form 990) of primary importance in revealing questionable cost allocations. However, evidence from this study suggests that disclosure on the functional expense statement of a nonprofit organization’s potentially manipulative use of indirect cost allocations to inflate “program service expenditures” may go undetected, implying that organizations may find it relatively easy to mislead donors using Form 990.

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  1. parkview
    December 21, 2013 at 2:35 AM

    Very informative. Dig deep and think of those people you may know who can use some help. Then give without identifying yourself. True charity.

    • December 21, 2013 at 7:49 PM

      Hey celi, the Red Cross wasn’t included in the original blog post. I added the following:

      I checked the IRS form 990 for the American Red Cross for calendar year 2011, and I was shocked to find that they spent 8 times more on salaries and compensation for employees than they did on their cause (programs & services for people affected by disaster).

      Of the $3.2 billion the Red Cross received in contributions for 2011, 99%, or $3.1 billion, was spent on salaries and other expenses, which left 1%, or $38 million, of contributions for the cause: helping victims of disaster relief (they used reserve funds to supplement the $38 million remaining after salaries and other expenses to fund programs & services, for total grants of $212 million).

      Total Revenue: $3.2 billion

      Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $212 million (1% of revenue plus 6% borrowed from reserves)

      Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $1.7 billion (54.64% of revenue)

      Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $1.4 billion (44.17% of revenue)

      Total Expenses: $3.3 billion ($175 million in the red)

      Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $1.6 billion

      CEO’s salary: $591,122 plus $37,386 in “other compensation” per IRS Form 990 (Forbes reported her salary as $1,032,022)

      1,359 employees receiving more than $100,000 in compensation

      57 independent contractors receiving more than $100,000 in compensation

      The Red Cross operated in the red in 2011 by $175 million (spending 6% more than revenue after paying admin costs and salaries), which is why the figures above add up to more than a 100%. However, they are not broke – they ended the year with assets or fund balances of $1.6 billion. Plus, in 2011, they had a large endowment fund worth $828 million, securities worth $563 million, and land, buildings and equipment worth $1.1 billion.

      On schedule I of their 990 form, the American Red Cross noted that they made disaster relief payments of $66 million in 2011 and “did not make specific financial assistance to any one individual during the fiscal year exceeding $5,000.”

      http://www.redcross.org/images/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m16540911_FY12_ARC_990_Filed_with_IRS.pdf

      On their IRS 990 filing for 2011, the Red Cross listed the “reported compensation” for their president and CEO, Gail J. McGovern, as $591,122 plus $37,386 in “other compensation.” However, Forbes reported in 2010 that her pay at the Red Cross was $1,032,022.

      Top Person: Gail J. McGovern
      Top Pay: $1,032,022
      Fiscal Year ending on 06/30/10

      Gail J. McGovern joined the American Red Cross as president and CEO on April 8, 2008. Prior to joining the Red Cross, McGovern was a faculty member at the Harvard Business School and served as president of Fidelity Personal Investments, a unit of Fidelity Investments, responsible for half a trillion dollars of assets under management. She was also executive vice president for the Consumer Markets Division at AT&T, the $26 billion residential long-distance organization and largest business unit. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from Columbia University, and has since been recognized as alumna of the year from both universities. McGovern is currently a member of the board of trustees of Johns Hopkins University and the board of directors of DTE Energy. In February 2013, she joined the board of directors of The Weather Company, which operates The Weather Channel, weather.com and other services. McGovern was recognized by Fortune magazine in 2000 and 2001 as one of the top 50 most powerful women in corporate America.

      http://www.forbes.com/lists/2011/14/charities-11_American-National-Red-Cross_CH0013.html

      • kayswhims
        December 21, 2013 at 10:09 PM
      • Anonymous
        December 21, 2013 at 11:43 PM

        I know the Girl Scouts pay out a ton of money. You should look at GSUSA!!

      • December 22, 2013 at 6:44 AM

        The Red Cross is a very effective worldwide organization, what people don’t realize is every organization has overhead. Check out salaries for large non profit hospitals, you would be shocked. This is my area of expertise.

        • December 22, 2013 at 12:14 PM

          I just updated my comment above with exact figures for 2011:

          Of the $3.2 billion the American Red Cross received in contributions for 2011, 99%, or $3.1 billion, was spent on salaries and other expenses, which left 1%, or only $38 million, of contributions for the cause: helping victims of disasters. An organization’s cause should be where the majority of contributions go, not for salaries and other administrative costs (there are more than a million American Red Cross volunteers who work for nothing). In 2011, the American Red Cross spent nearly $2 billion compensating 30,000 employees and spent over $3 billion for other expenses, and only made disaster relief payments of $66 million (of the $212 million total paid out in grants).

          If a charity spends most of its contributions on salaries and other expenses rather than its mission, it is inefficient and ineffective, IMO, much like the U.S. government – a big, bloated bureaucracy, rife with waste, fraud and abuse (politicians, bureaucrats and public sector labor unions greasing one’s palms and not caring about the citizens it supposed to serve while, under the guise of fighting terrorism, stripping us of our God-given rights, which the U.S. Constitution was designed to protect) and lacking any true accountability for how it spends a giant money-pot (in the government’s case, we are forced to pay into the ginormous money-pot through taxation; at least we have the choice to give to the Red Cross, although every year the government gives taxpayer money to the organization – $55 million in 2011).

          I read reports that seven years after the 2004 tsunami, billions in private contributions still had not been distributed by the Red Cross.

          Major humanitarian crises in the past decade have prompted unprecedented amounts of private donations: the tsunami that caused widespread devastation across the Indian Ocean in December 2004 saw US$3.9 billion raised in private aid; the response to the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti generated at least US$1.2 billion in contributions from the general public; and US$450 million was channelled in response to the 2010 floods in Pakistan.

          Based on a conservative estimate, at least US$18 billion was raised from private donors in response to humanitarian needs between 2006 and 2010.

          http://www.globalhumanitarianassistance.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Private-funding-an-emerging-trend.pdf

          The report below is from 2011 – I haven’t found a more recent story to see if the contributions ever got to Haiti and other places.

          Should You Donate to the Red Cross?
          http://www.theagitator.com/2011/03/13/should-you-donate-to-the-red-cross/
          Sunday, March 13th, 2011

          Should you heed the calls to donate to the Red Cross to help Japan? Maybe not. Here’s an Atlanta Journal-Constitution op-ed from January of this year:

          When a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti, the world community came to its aid. Millions of private citizens in this country and around the world reached into their household budgets and gave generously to the Haitian people who were grappling with the devastation…

          Despite billions of dollars pledged from private citizens and world governments, a serious health scare has arisen. With poor sanitation, malnutrition, little safe drinking water and no sewage systems, the crowded temporary housing tent communities provide ideal breeding grounds for cholera.

          One independent report has conservatively estimated that there is one toilet for every 273 people in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area. Throughout Haiti, a year after we opened our hearts and wallets, the latrines are not cleaned on a regular basis and human waste spreads into the streams by the frequent rains. Now, a year later, limited water distribution continues, with little development of sustainable, municipal water-filtration systems.

          In the face of these conditions, Haiti remains the non-governmental organization (NGO) capital of the world. Before the earthquake, there were more than 5,000 organizations on the ground in Haiti. From the International Red Cross to any number of church and civic organizations, Haiti is replete with people of good will who are there to make it a better place to live. Each of these organizations conducted their own fundraising campaigns after the earthquake and collected millions of dollars.

          With millions of dollars at our disposal do we really lack the ability to support basic sanitation and clean water? Do we lack the ability to stop a preventable, deadly water-borne disease right off our coast? What happened to the money?

          Many of the charities on the ground have reported they are setting aside a portion of their donations (sometimes up to 70 percent) for the “reconstruction” period. It’s clear from the outpouring of support many of those who donated from their own scarce family budgets believed they were giving to save lives immediately. In the face of a preventable public health emergency, like cholera, many will be surprised that more than half of their donations continue to sit in U.S. banks.

          My organization has attempted for nearly a year to get the Red Cross to account for the money they collected for Haiti. In a recent meeting, I was told that 70 percent of their donations remain in “reserve” for longer-term reconstruction.

          So here’s my question for any readers out there who know more about these things than I do (which isn’t much). Who deserves our donations? I’ve heard that Doctors Without Borders is on the ground early after disasters, has low overhead, and delivers immediate relief.

          I’m also open to the possibility that the op-ed above is wrong, or that there are credible responses to or justifications of the points it raises. But I’d like to see those responses. It’s hard to fathom why the Red Cross would have 70 percent of Haiti donations still sitting in the bank a year later, while the country battles preventable disease outbreaks caused by poor sanitation.

          • kayswhims
            December 22, 2013 at 1:11 PM

            “If a charity spends most of its contributions on salaries and other expenses rather than the cause, it is inefficient and ineffective, IMO.” That sums it up for me.

            Other expenses is what troubles me and I think it is a crying shame.

            Keep these facts in mind when “donating”. As you open your pockets for yet another natural disaster, keep the following facts in mind; we have listed them from the highest (worse paid offender) to the lowest (least paid offender).

            The worst offender was yet again for the 11th year in a row is, UNICEF – CEO, receives $1,200,000 per year, (plus use of a Royal Royce for his exclusive use where ever he goes, and an expense account that is rumoured to be well over $150,000.) Only pennies from the actual donations goes to the UNICEF cause (less than $0.14 per dollar of income).

            The second worst offender this year is Marsha J. Evans, President and CEO of the American Red Cross… for her salary for the year ending in 2009 was $651,957 plus expenses. Enjoys 6 weeks – fully paid holidays including all related expenses during the holiday trip for her and her husband and kids. including 100% fully paid health & dental plan for her and her family, for life. This means out of every dollar they bring in, about $0.39 goes to related charity causes.

            The third worst offender was again for the 7th time was, Brian Gallagher, President of the United Way receives a $375,000 base salary (U.S. funds), plus so many numerous expense benefits it’s hard to keep track as to what it is all worth, including a fully paid lifetime membership for 2 golf courses (1 in Canada, and 1 in the U.S.A.), 2 luxury vehicles, a yacht club membership, 3 major company gold credit cards for his personal expenses…and so on. This equates to about $0.51 per dollar of income goes to charity causes.

            Fourth worst offender who was also again in the fourth spot, for every year since this information has been made available from the start 1998 is amazingly yet again, World Vision President (Canada) receives $300,000 base salary, (plus supplied – a home valued in the $700,000 – $800,000 dollar value range, completely furnished, completely paid all housing expenses, including taxes, water/sewer, telephone/fax, HD/high speed cable, weekly maid service and pool/yard maintenance, fully paid private schooling for his children, upscale automobile and an $55,000 personal expense account for clothing/food, with a $125,000 business expense account). Get this, because it is a “religious based” charity, it pays, little to no taxes, can receive government assistance and does not have to declare were the money goes. Only about $0.52 of earned income per dollar is available for charity causes.

            Of the sixty some odd “charities” we looked at, the lowest paid (President/C.E.O/Commissioner) was heading up a charity group right here in Canada. We found, believe it or not, it was……

            The Salvation Army’s Commissioner Todd Bassett receives a salary of only $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 Billion dollar organization. Which means about $0.93 per dollar earned, is readily available and goes back out to local charity causes… truly amazing… and well done “Sally Ann”.

            No further comment is necessary…”Think Twice” before you give to your charity of choice as to which one really does the best for the most – or the least for the most, for that matter.
            Read more at http://www.snopes.com/politics/business/charities.asp#DmRxrJQHEeqBlGbF.99

            • Pittsburghfan
              December 23, 2013 at 4:25 PM

              Thank you Fame and Kay for your research. I stopped giving to the Susan B Koman foundation when I found out of the founder makes over $600,000 per year. I gave money through work to the Salvation Army just because I knew nice people that happened to work for them. When I give I want to make a difference.

          • December 24, 2013 at 11:33 PM

            THANK YOU FAME ,
            MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL OF YOU

  2. December 21, 2013 at 6:35 PM

    I am always so hesitant to donate to charities as there are so many scammers out there. I do donate to th Red Cross during disasters or those that are verified to give 100% to the victims etc. even them I’m very leery.

    There needs to be more regulations around these scam charities and the exorbitant salaries. It’s sad.

    • December 21, 2013 at 7:51 PM

      So true, mzjules. You might want to rethink giving to the Red Cross – see my update to this blog post.

      • December 21, 2013 at 8:44 PM

        I try to avoid them if possible.

  3. December 21, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    ‘With Charity for All,’ by Ken Stern
    By SFGate
    October 18, 2013

    Founded in 2002, the U.S. Navy Veterans Association raised more than $100 million during the decade following IRS approval of its charitable status. Run by an all-volunteer staff, which reports to Jack Nimitz, a silver-haired retired captain, 41 state chapters of the USNVA provide financial support and medical care to Navy veterans in need.

    So say the telemarketers. The truth, according to Ken Stern’s new book, “With Charity for All,” is that USNVA business addresses are post office boxes and vacant lots. The organization’s only employee is Bobby Thompson, a shabby-looking man holed up in a run-down duplex in Ybor City, Fla. Sixty cents of every dollar raised went to Associated Community Services, the telemarketer. The rest, presumably, went to Thompson, who paid off some elected officials through a political action campaign, and then directed less than 1 percent to former servicemen and women.

    It is a mistake, Stern says, to dismiss this as an isolated case. In fact, many charitable organizations are rife with theft, grand and petty, grotesquely high salaries, waste and incompetence.

    In his book, Stern, the CEO of a digital media content company and the former CEO of National Public Radio, provides an eye-popping – and devastatingly detailed – critique of them. With annual revenues of $1.5 trillion a year and $3 trillion in assets, the charitable sector, Stern points out, is responsible for about 10 percent of economic activity in the United States. Subject to virtually no oversight, many charities do not deliver the results they promise.

    Stern demonstrates that donor psychology is a big part of the problem. Responsive to stories by and about individuals, especially children, who are the victims of disease, malnutrition, hurricanes, floods or violence, donors take out their wallets without investigating the track record of the organization asking for their money. Satisfied with “feel-good benefits in the form of a ‘warm glow,’ ” they do not follow up to inquire about results. And they obsess about how much money a charity spends on “overhead,” unaware, apparently, of the importance of infrastructure, inventory, telecommunications, training, supply chain management and self-evaluation in bringing value to people in need.

    Just as disturbing, Stern reveals, is the ease with which charitable status can be gained in the United States. By paying a modest filing fee, filling out some forms for the IRS, claiming a purpose beneficial to the community, and waiting a brief period of time, just about anyone can do it for just about any reason.

    And, Stern notes, “by and large once a charity always a charity.” Indicating that revenues flow through them to charitable organizations, end-of-season college football bowl games are not only tax exempt, they are recipients of government funds.

    Moreover, although charitable hospitals devote a very small fraction of their resources to the care of indigent and uninsured patients, they get more than $20 billion in local, state and federal tax benefits and incentives. Might the public be better served, Stern asks, if governments redirected the subsidy to more efficient health care providers? And, more poignantly, “when a charity stops being charitable, does anyone notice?”

    The answer, alas, is apparently not. Only 13 states, employing fewer than 100 agents, exercise any oversight of the 1.4 million charitable organizations currently registered in the United States. In a typical year, IRS officers examine only a tenth of a percent of all charitable returns, doing little more than review the documents they have been sent.

    Stern doesn’t want his book to be a downer – or to discourage charitable donations. He gives a shout-out to Youth Villages and Nurse Family Partnership, two relatively small charitable organizations that have delivered a market-based discipline, culture of effectiveness, and results-oriented service. He calls attention to GiveWell, a 6-year-old organization that has used rigorous research to rate 500 charities on the Web and that posts its findings on the Internet. He applauds a 2012 White House mandate to government agencies, which distribute more than $100 billion to human service nonprofits alone, to prioritize funding for organizations that have achieved desirable outcomes. And he recommends that the IRS give charities an expiration date and require peer review as part of an application to renew.

    America’s charitable system, Stern reminds us, is “the most open, most free-wheeling, and in many ways the most democratic in the world.” There are lots of reasons for us to be proud of it. Nonetheless, as “With Charity for All” makes clear, it is in urgent need of reform.

    http://www.sfgate.com/books/article/With-Charity-for-All-by-Ken-Stern-4908298.php

    With Charity for All
    Why Charities Are Failing and a Better Way To Give
    By Ken Stern
    (Doubleday; 258 pages; $26.95)

  4. black enga
    December 21, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Thank you Fame for posting this article. I wish it could be published on front page news. They bombard people with these terrible circumstances that tug at our heart strings which loosens the purse stings. People need to be aware of where their charitable contributions are going and who is really benefiting from them.

  5. Laram
    December 22, 2013 at 12:49 AM

    Very cool post, Fame. Philanthropy is so important. I agree, the people whom often give the most time and energy, do not want accolades. Sometimes, tax write offs, but that was my career for a couple of years. And my degrees (SW an Public Policy), to be a fundraiser.

    What is sad, are the hits that PBS and Arts get when the Arts have been cut out of education. It is also sad that many Cancer, Health and even Head Start get not only cut out, but in case of Cancer/Aids/Parkinsons/ALS—literally get shafted by not only scams, but admin costs!

    • December 22, 2013 at 1:20 PM

      I agree in theory, although I think people shy away from programs like Head Start because they are tinged with the notion that they are wasteful and redundant. That doesn’t mean that they are not helmed or assisted by well-meaning people, I just think people associate government related programs with wastefulness, whereas religious organizations are quite vocal about-and can back up-their efficiency.
      Like you, I am very concerned about health related charities-We are on the edge of immortality, with reserachers now being able to build organs from minimal framework, and the cutting edge work on digitalizing our thoughts, personalities and memories so that we can carry on in a new body. It’s still in the realm of science fiction at this point, but we are not far off (relatively) from making these things a reality.
      Without getting too deeply into a political schpiel, I think government is also hindering progress in healthcare-I truly believe-and Fame has shown-that if Americans had more discretionary money (lower taxes, lower cost of living) we could and would certainly provide for ALL of the uninsured, the meek, the have-nots, the sick, the poor-without the wasteful middlemen (government) who make lofty promises of the ability to distribute our money but, after 200+ years, have still not proven as successful as the private sector.
      Thanks, Fame, for putting this info out there, it is critically important that we continue to have conversations about this and that we continue to recognize that Americanism and our generosity are not a completely lost cause.

      • December 24, 2013 at 1:04 AM

        Yes, jayla, if we had more disposable income via lower taxes and cost of living, we would have more to give, and it would be our choice on how to give it, not the government’s. Like you said, the government is wasteful, unlike the private sector.

        For example, the federal government gives almost $56 million of our tax dollars every year to the American Red Cross.

        • Laram
          December 24, 2013 at 11:30 PM

          I would give, give and give if had disposable income. I have 2 plaques next to our front door. One is the Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi “Make me a channel of your Peace”, the other is “blessed me that more I have, the more I give”, I painted below it kindness and love! But I truly do want to know where my 10% of giving goes…because, I do not want it wasted by a Church, nor an Organization for admin costs!

  6. December 22, 2013 at 7:56 PM

    I wonder if Jacqueline was talking about this being her million dollar deal she got – a DM that Fraud #WackoJacko sent someone saying she has a million dollar deal

    “Jac tweets about a lot of products, mostly ones that she gets paid to endorse, like some Acne product and of course her husband’s BLK water products. On Friday she combined the two. Apparently, she had a pimple and suggested spraying it with fulvic acid (a BLK water ingredient) and the Acne product she endorses. Ever the inquisitive one, TC inquired about Jac’s finances asking if it was really necessary for her to shill an acne product to make ends meet.

    TC@TeeCee66 “@JacLaurita: Woke up2Mt.Helena under my eye.” Mt SAINT Helena? And do you really have to shill for a zit company to make a living?

    And so Jac decided to follow her long enough to DM her, to defend herself twice and then unfollow her. …. ”

    “It seems that Jac has landed some million dollar a year job y’all! On her website she lists all the jobs she’s ever had chronologically but after RHONJ, there is no other employment on her resume. Her husband’s previous apparel company went bankrupt and has had two lawsuits naming both Chris and Jac for allegedly using money that should have gone to the business for their personal bills. I have no idea if those suits ever were resolved one of them was only filed last year.

    But now, Jac has some mystery job pulling in a million a year and tons of other products she doesn’t mention on the show so as not to “cheapen the brand” because you know how the housewives hate to mention their endorsements on the show. She’s not worried about “cheapening” the Acne cream though. It’s all over her website just like BLK water which she is also not worried about “cheapening.” So it’s okay to cheapen her husband’s business and the acne product and the dozens of other things she hawks on twitter, just not her superduper secret products. Those products she shills on twitter are just things she likes to use, like, you know, zit cream. The market for zit cream in the housewives demographic is somewhere below toaster ovens.”

    • black enga
      December 22, 2013 at 9:13 PM

      LMAO!@ The market for zit cream in the housewives demographic is somewhere below toaster ovens.”

      • Laram
        December 24, 2013 at 11:31 PM

        Lol!

    • December 23, 2013 at 5:36 AM

      SO she won’t cheapen her brand but she’ll happily sell her kids? Now that’s a head scratcher.

  7. December 22, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    I forgot the photo

    All Attachments

  8. December 22, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    OMG Fame, did you see this?
    There is a #boycottAutismSpeaks on twitter and this
    http://autisticadvocacy.org/2013/11/2013-joint-letter-to-the-sponsors-of-autism-speaks/

    • December 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM

      Thanks for the link!

      • mzjulesaz
        December 22, 2013 at 10:19 PM

        All I can say is wow

      • December 23, 2013 at 5:34 AM

        Well, we were always offended the notion of “recovering” her child.

  9. Anonymous
    December 23, 2013 at 12:19 AM

    Thank you. I support No Kill animals charities. We have a lot that are only surviving on donations.

  10. black enga
    December 23, 2013 at 2:46 PM

    Do you have any info on this charity Fame?
    http://www.compassion.com/sponsor_a_child/default.htm

    • December 24, 2013 at 1:20 AM

      Here are the 2011 figures for Compassion International:

      Total Revenue: $599 million

      Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $396 million (66% of revenue)

      Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $90 million (15% of revenue)

      Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $100 million (17% of revenue)

      Total Expenses: $585 million (2% of revenue remained after grants, salaries and other expenses)

      Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $186 million

      CEO’s salary: $289,370
      Exec VP’s salary: $218,707
      4 Senior VP’s salaries: $174k – $201k
      5 VP’s salaries: $134k – $180k

      53 employees earned more than $100,000 per year in 2011

      57 independent contractors earned more than $100,000 per year in 2011

      http://www.compassion.com/multimedia/Compassion%202012%20Public%20Inspection.pdf

  11. black enga
    December 24, 2013 at 2:23 AM

    WOW! Thank you Fame!!!!!

  12. December 24, 2013 at 1:39 PM

    Bobby Thompson sentenced to 28 years in Navy Veterans charity scam
    http://www.tampabay.com/news/business/bobby-thompson-sentenced-to-28-years-in-navy-veterans-charity-scam/2157308
    Tampa Bay Times
    December 16, 2013

    Ohio’s case against Bobby Thompson came to a close Monday with a judge in Cleveland handing a 28-year sentence to the man convicted of running a nationwide charity scam from an Ybor City duplex.

    As a special punishment, the judge ordered that the mastermind behind the fraudulent U.S. Navy Veterans Association spend each Veterans Day in solitary confinement for the duration of his prison term.

    It remains to be seen what, if anything, comes of other states’ investigations into Thompson, whose charity raised more than $100 million from donors nationwide. But on Monday, the Florida Attorney General’s Office said it would not pursue any charges.

    In November, an Ohio jury found Thompson, 66, guilty of racketeering, money laundering and identity theft for the charity scam first brought to light by a Tampa Bay Times investigation in 2010.

    During a six-week trial, prosecutors called more than 40 witnesses, including the charity’s former attorney, who testified that the operation was nothing but a facade, with non-existent directors and mail drops for offices. Bank records showed donations were diverted for Thompson’s personal use, with little assistance going to veterans.

    Prosecutors also provided evidence that Thompson stole dozens of identities, including the one he used while running Navy Veterans from 2002 through mid 2010. He is really a Harvard-trained lawyer and former Army military intelligence officer named John Donald Cody.

    As Cody, he faces fraud charges pending since 1984 in U.S. District Court in Virginia. Those charges stem from allegations that he stole nearly $100,000 from a client’s estate and opened bank accounts in false names.

    And several states, including Florida, initiated investigations into Thompson’s role with Navy Veterans soon after the Times’ series in 2010. Those investigations were dropped after he became a fugitive. U.S. marshals from Ohio apprehended him in Portland, Ore., nearly two years later with nearly $1 million cash and a suitcase full of stolen identities.

    A spokesman for Florida’s agriculture and consumer services department said it turned its initial investigation into Navy Veterans over to federal authorities. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Tampa did not respond by late afternoon Monday.

    The Florida Attorney General’s Office said it considers the matter closed.

    “We applaud the Ohio Attorney General’s conviction of John Donald Cody, a.k.a. Bobby Thompson, which will keep him in prison into his 90s and imposes a fine of more than $6 million,” said Whitney Ray, spokesman for Attorney General Pam Bondi. “We were pleased to work with the Ohio Attorney General and the feds to convict Cody, and in light of his conviction . . . we do not intend to pursue any further action.”

    At Monday’s hearing, Thompson slumped in his chair as his sentence was read. Though he did not take the stand to testify during trial, in court filings, he said Navy Veterans was a CIA-funded operation to promote American military interests. Photos showed Thompson shaking hands with President George W. Bush and other major political figures while he was heading Navy Veterans.

    Far from expressing remorse, Thompson complained Monday about alleged abusive treatment by jailers while locked up during the trial. During the final days of the proceedings, Thompson banged his head repeatedly against a holding cell wall, raising a welt on his forehead. The judge said court psychiatric personnel found no indication that Thompson suffered from a mental disorder.

    His defense lawyer said he expects Thompson will file an appeal.

    Judge Steven Gall said the sentence, which carries a minimum mandatory 10-year term, reflected the length, extent and amount of Thompson’s charity “charade.”

    Referring to the impact of Thompson’s ruse, Gall said, “Everyone’s afraid to give.”

    In addition to the prison time, the judge ordered Thompson to pay a $6.3 million fine. Of the nearly $1 million seized when Thompson was arrested, about $330,000 will be used for prosecution costs. The rest will be distributed to legitimate veterans’ charities.

    There may be more coming as well.

    Just a week ago, Thompson’s former landlady in Portland discovered another cache of money Thompson squirreled away while he was on the run.

    Stuffed in the wheel wells of a suitcase the fugitive left behind was more than $10,000 cash.

    It is being returned to Ohio, where a civil judge will determine its disposition.

    Celia Moore, the landlady whose honesty was praised by public officials on Monday, said she hopes it, too, will go toward veterans’ causes.

    • black enga
      December 24, 2013 at 11:56 PM

      SMH

  13. December 24, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    “If Autism Speaks were indeed a charity — both in spirit and in practice — then I don’t think anyone would be that worked up. And I don’t think it’s merely a matter of disagreeing with the stated mission. Rather, I think enough people see it as a sort of ‘slush fund’ for its executives — and that’s what gets people’s ire up. It irritates me that SO much money goes to SO little in the end … but, truthfully, not enough to try to do anything about it. At the end of the day, I think Autism Speaks is kind of a scam — but just ‘kind of’.” – RainingRoses, August 28, 2010

    Autism Speaks is purposely misstating their finances on their website and misleading donors – in 2011, they spent only 32% of revenue on programs & services but state on their website that they spent 74%. The following is a screen shot from their website with a graph of their claims on how they spent their revenue in 2011 compared to what was reported on their IRS form 990.

    “Autism Speaks is easily one of the biggest and loudest voices talking about autism. However, it is also one of the most despised among autistic adults. There are various reasons, many of which involve where their money goes, the stances they take regarding issues that are important to autistic people, their outright refusal to have autistic adults on their board of directors (autistic people do not even have a token presence in Autism Speaks’ leadership), their continual use of pity advertising, their unreproducable facts and figures, and their insistence that autism is universally tragic and that autistic people should not exist (their insistence on ‘curing’ autism, which can only be done if a prenatal test is designed to facilitate the decision of whether or not to abort the fetus). Luckily, there are other organizations that are more favorable to the autistic community, though that’s for another article.” – Marc Rosen, Why autistic people don’t like Autism Speaks

    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/83-cases-of-autism-associated-with-childhood-vaccine-injury-compensated-in-federal-vaccine-court-121570673.html

    http://vactruth.com/2011/06/17/83-reasons-to-question-autism-speaks-for-hiring-big-pharma-scientist/

    http://www.autismspeaks.org/press/robert_ring_vice_president_translational_research.php

    http://vactruth.com/2009/07/14/pfizer-and-company-licking-chops-at-autism-profits/

    Why autistic people don’t like Autism Speaks
    Marc RosenLong Island Autism Examiner
    September 7, 2009

    Autism Speaks has released its 2008 990 tax return form, which is the primary source of the following information regarding its finances. According to their 990, Autism Speaks has 36 employees who were compensated over $100,000 this year. The highest paid employee listed, their Chief Science Officer, Geri Dawson, was compensated $644,274. That’s better than most people make in fairly good positions at Fortune 500 companies! Shockingly, she makes more than the five people listed in the form as “highest compensated employees”, who are listed as being compensated less than $150,000 each by Autism Speaks. Where’s the rest of that money that they didn’t report, and how much is it to make them more highly compensated than someone getting almost $650,000 from a non-profit organization?

    All of the “highest compensated employees” are in some sort of administrative or “relations” position, meaning that they’re part of the Autism Speaks bureaucracy and overhead, except for one who is listed as “Senior Policy Advisor and Counsel”, which could mean that he’s part of their oversized legal department, known for threatening people who make t-shirts or parodies to express their displeasure with Autism Speaks (false allegations of copyright violation were the bulk of those cases).

    Not including federated fundraising money, Autism Speaks spent over $1.7 million on fundraiser expenses, and made only $142,693 from that investment (that’s the net gain, or what’s left after that $1.7 million+ is subtracted from the total monies gained from the fundraisers). In total, they spent $17,756,876 on employee salaries, pensions/401ks, benefits, and payroll taxes. By contrast, their grants to individuals and communities totaled a paltry $66,670, not even a drop in the bucket compared to their total reported expenditures.

    Based on that information, it is clear that Autism Speaks does very little with their money to help autistic people and their families, and I haven’t even shown all the reputation-damaging financial information I have on them from their 990.

    Another huge reason why autistics hate Autism Speaks is their film “Autism Every Day”, in which they film their then-Executive Vice President, Alison Tepper Singer, saying that when her daughter was first diagnosed, she seriously contemplated driving her car, with her autistic daughter inside, off a bridge. Her only reason for not acting on this, according to her own statements, was that she had a neurotypical daughter waiting for her at home who needed her. By her own admission, apparently, she would have preferred to murder her own child than to have an autistic child. There are parents who actually HAVE murdered their children and claimed that it was a mercy killing because said child was autistic. For more information on the minimal sentencing many of these killers got, see thiswayoflife.org/murder.html. Those are all autistic people who were killed/murdered as a direct result of the fact that they were autistic.

    Statements like those in “Autism Every Day” glorify and seem to excuse these horrific actions, lending justification to a parent murdering a child for having a disability. This was originally designed as a form of pity advertising, but has become a destructive influence in autism politics since its release. On a side note, if one looks at the page I linked to, one would find quite a few murder/suicides, which may be in part inspired by Ms. Singer’s remarks.

    There are many more reasons why Autism Speaks is harmful to autistics, and why autistics continue to insist that Autism Speaks does not speak for them. However, it would take too long to disclose them all in a single article, so I limited it to the top two. Since Autism Speaks is headquartered in New York (in a Park Ave. high-rise, no less), I do hope that they’ll read this and respond. After all, you keep saying that you’re listening. Try listening to autistic people who are telling you to go away, for once.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/why-autistic-people-don-t-like-autism-speaks

    March 2, 2013
    Autistic People Are Not Letting Autism Speaks Erase Us From Our Success
    Trigger Warning: Discussion of Autism Speaks and ableist rhetoric.

    I had a lot of things in mind I was going to write for the “Autistic People Are…” Flash Blog Event, but those ideas were pre-empted by current events.

    I found out via Facebook on Friday, March 1st, that Autism Speaks has erased the success of Autistic bloggers in getting Google’s attention and a promise to change their autocompletion feature when the top search strings are the hateful things we blogged about last Saturday. The Autism Speaks news blurb and Facebook page mentioned Google’s altruism but not why they suddenly noticed the issue, despite linking to a story that properly credits the Autistic bloggers’ hard work. (That reporter interviewed the flash blog leader, the owner of Yes, That Too.) Correction: The reporter interviewed a different team member, whose blog is Unstrange Minds.

    So, let me get this straight. Nearly a hundred Autistic bloggers banded together to protest something and succeeded in getting the attention of one of the largest, best-known Internet companies to fix some unintended consequences of their flagship product. You would think that would be big news for the world’s largest Autism charity, wouldn’t you?

    That would be true if Autism Speaks were truly interested in the well-being of Autistic people. Instead, they chose to report this as though Google just magically realized one day there was a problem, with no mention of the activists or the flash blog. Autism Speaks erased the Autistic advocates who dared to speak for themselves.

    And to add insult to injury, they pulled this stunt the day before ASAN’s National Day of Mourning for Autistics killed by their caregivers. This event grew out of last year’s vigils for George Hodgins, an Autistic youth I never met who lived within 5 miles of me and was killed at age 22 by his mother. News reports not only treated the murderer sympathetically, they erased him from the story of his own murder by leaving out the types of human interest details you almost always see about a crime victim.

    These reports uncritically repeated stereotypes and “autism mom” tropes that turned out to be false. Mother was tired of spending 24/7 with her adult Autistic son because she had nowhere to turn for support and no program would take him? No, he was an alumnus of the Morgan Autism Center and they said he was always welcome there. And it goes on from there. (Besides the point that if it were true, murder is still murder even if Mom is tired and frustrated.)

    Many in the Autistic community consider Autism Speaks an accessory before the fact in these cases, because this group for parents of Autistics spent so much time, money, and effort to convince America that having an Autistic child is a disaster that will ruin your life. Parent kills non-autistic child, world hates them. Parent kills autistic child, world is sympathetic because services/burden/etc. According to Autism Speaks, Autistics are a puzzle (probably missing a few pieces, nudge nudge wink wink), an epidemic, a tsunami–a disaster waiting to happen to YOUR family, if you don’t donate now. Not really people because we have strange behaviors and don’t communicate the same way.

    Just having a reporter contact an actual Autistic adult for a news story is a major step forward in Autistic Acceptance. Google paying attention to Autistics’ complaints? That’s a huge advance. But to Autism Speaks, our role in our own stories isn’t worth mentioning.

    I don’t know if Autism Speaks just doesn’t realize what they did, or if they’re conscious of the cognitive dissonance between their “autism is a devastating disease” rhetoric that makes Autistics helpless burdens who have no voice of their own and the success of a social media campaign designed and completed by Autistics. How can they keep extracting money from frightened parents who don’t want their kids to grow up to be enigmatic, subhuman burdens on society if parents realize that Autistics can take initiative and carry out a campaign like we did?

    So the Autistic community is not letting Autism Speaks erase us from our success.

    Please, don’t just comment here. Comment on the Autism Speaks Facebook page and website and feel free to link here. They need to know we won’t just sit back and let them silence us.

    (And please visit other “Autistic People Are…” blogs, too!)

    http://spectrumviews.blogspot.com/2013/03/autistic-people-are-not-letting-autism.html

    ABA for Autism Is Pointless
    October 16, 2012

    There are thieves all over the USA who are selling Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) as a cure for autism. It does not work and you should not waste your money, your insurance company’s money or your valuable time on this nonsense.

    Autism is caused by mercury and the only way to cure it is to remove mercury from the brain with Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA). Since the medical profession who caused the autism by shooting mercury into our babies with vaccines doesn’t want you to know this, they support crazed, expensive and useless therapies like ABA to try to deflect blame away from themselves.

    The largest supporter of ABA is the corrupt charity, Autism Speaks. Autism Speaks was founded by a former executive from General Electric. GE owns their own thimerosal manufacturing facility. Thimerosal is the mercury compound in vaccines that caused the autism epidemic.

    This corrupt founder of Autism Speaks helped his daughter use chelation to try to cure his autistic grandson. He doesn’t publicize that though and Autism Speaks advises people that chelation doesn’t work and is dangerous. Since those of us who used chelation to cure our children know that this advice from Autism Speaks is completely false and misleading, we don’t have to wonder why this bogus charity refuses to tell the truth about autism. It’s obvious that they are protecting the medical industry by lying to parents of autistic children.

    Autism Speaks has been campaigning all over the country to force legislation down the throats of the unwitting public to compel insurance companies to pay for ABA. They know ABA can’t possibly cure any autistic children so they used some very sneaky propaganda to change the definition of autism. By changing the definition of autism to include children who merely have Asperger’s syndrome, Autism Speaks and the thieves who sell ABA can show that ABA works.

    ABA is a torturous behavioral tool that abuses children much worse than any beatings that they may have received to modify their behavior when I was young. Disabled children whose behavior is challenging due to the mercury that causes their brains to function improperly are browbeaten for hours upon hours by “therapists” until they “learn” to behave the way the therapist wants them to behave. Where a few smacks with a belt might have produced improved behavior years ago, children are now psychologically “whipped” into compliance. This does absolutely nothing to address the mercury that causes their brains to malfunction but it can produce acceptable behavior in high functioning “autistic” kids. And, this torture does not have permanent effects to remedy unwanted behavior.

    For confirmation of my opinion, I cite this brilliant essay by the eminent autistic research scientist, Michelle Dawson who states: “In the early 90’s, a trio of children with autistic behaviours got the full ABA treatment from the very best, including Dr Lovaas. He, Tristram Smith, and Morten Klevstrand reported on the results in 1995. The treatment was an utter failure; the one girl who showed any progress in any area concurrently regressed so drastically in others that the authors seemed actually distressed. The children, who started with low intelligence scores, finished untestable after thousands of hours of intensive behaviour intervention. They did not recover or become indistinguishable from peers designated as typical.” One may also find countless examples of autistic adults who liken ABA to torture. They understand that their brains work differently and they don’t want to be trained like circus animals into acting in a manner that happens to please society but forces them to act against their own desires. Of course, most of these adults also don’t comprehend the fact that their brains don’t work properly due to mercury poisoning but that’s another story.

    The point I hope parents learn about ABA here is that it can’t do anything at all to address brain damage caused by mercury. The only thing that can address that damage is chelation to remove the mercury and, after the mercury is removed, a number of various methods to address damage that may be permanent. Ask questions if you’d like to know more.

    http://autismfraud.blogspot.com/2012/10/aba-for-autism-is-pointless.html

    83 Reasons to Question Autism Speaks for Hiring Big Pharma Scientist
    Jeffry John Aufderheide
    June 17 2011

    The big secret finally is out. Autism Speaks made a radical announcement May 9th, 2011 that said Robert Ring, PhD, a scientist from Pfizer, was placed “into to the newly-created position of vice president of translational research.” Ring’s appointment was made simultaneously with the discovery that 83 cases of vaccine-induced autism were paid compensation secretly by the U.S. government’s Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP).

    Why is former Pfizer employee Ring’s appointment radical? Two years ago Pfizer announced the pharmaceutical industry’s first “Autism Spectrum Disorders Unit.” Robert Ring led that group since 2009. I’ll provide more information on this later, but I also want you to consider another very important point.

    After the U.S. government’s secret payouts, consider Autism Speaks’s position on vaccines. The organization’s Chief Science Officer, Dr. Geri Dawson says this:

    “Let me be clear: Autism Speaks fully supports childhood immunization and strongly encourages parents to vaccinate their children. Our vaccine program is one of our nation’s most effective programs for preventing serious infectious diseases.” [JJA Emphasis]

    See Dawson’s statement here: http://www.autismspeaks.org/science/overview/policies/vaccine_research_safety_statement.php

    This is not a neutral position! As a matter of fact, if you keep reading, I will show you the ties Autism Speaks has to the pharmaceutical industry; the same companies that manufacture products (vaccines) parents believe caused their children’s Autism – and that’s just the beginning.

    Profitable Parachutes and Executive Pay

    “How much?” – that’s the burning question. How much will Robert Ring get paid for this position? I contacted the Public Relations Officer at Autism Speaks to ask if they would reveal what Robert Ring’s salary would be. The official response I received from the organization was,

    “All qualifying salaries appear on the annual 990 form, and as applicable, Dr. Ring’s will appear.”

    However, we can get a fairly accurate estimation for his salary. That is possible by studying an Autism Speaks IRS Form 990 dated from 2008. On page 50 you will see the salaries of top officers are generally in excess of $150,000.

    Chief Science Officer, Geraldine Dawson: $669,751
    President, Mark Roithmayr: $400,413
    Executive Vice President, Peter Bell* (see note below): $265,981
    Glenn Tringali: $255, 256
    Alison Singer: $201,942
    Richard Brown: $190, 938
    Andy Shih: $187, 449
    Sophia Colamarino: $182,220
    Clara LaJonchere: $173, 310
    Thomas Hetzel: $167,732
    Elizabeth Emken: $151, 486

    Here is a link to Autism Speaks 2008 IRS Form 990: http://www.autismspeaks.org/docs/Autism_Speaks_Form_990_2008.pdf

    Note: Risperidal (Risperidone) is an anti-psychotic drug which, at the moment, is the only FDA approved drug to treat autism. Risperadal is manufactured by ORTHO, MCNEIL, and JANSSEN – a Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceutical company. http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cder/drugsatfda/index.cfm?fuseaction=Search.Overview&DrugName=RISPERDAL

    *According to one article, Peter Bell (mentioned above) was one of the marketing masterminds behind the drug [Risperidal] while working at McNeil Pharmaceuticals. http://www.ageofautism.com/2010/08/new-york-autism-insurance-bill-protects-and-serves-whom.html

    Mr. Bell’s bio on the Autism Speaks website states, “Peter joined Cure Autism Now in 2004 following a successful 12-year marketing career at McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, a member of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies.” http://www.autismspeaks.org/leadership.php

    At this point in the article, all we have is a pharmaceutical insider getting a top position that pays pretty well at a non-profit organization that supports vaccinations. Now here is where the story gets interesting.

    Frodo Baggins, Autism Speaks has the ring!

    By their own account, shortly after Pfizer created the Autism Unit, Autism Speaks was involved in establishing a partnership with the pharmaceutical company. Page 43 of a document entitled ‘Autism Speaks 3-Year Strategic Plan for Science’ states,

    Autism Speaks and Pfizer’s Neuroscience unit established a partnership that will launch Autism Speaks’ Translational Medicine Initiative. In 2010 [a year before Ring’s official appointment], leaders in the field were brought together to spearhead the development of two key conferences co-sponsored by both organizations that will help the field develop more targeted and effective therapeutics. [JJA emphasis and note]

    See the Strategic Plan document here: http://www.autismspeaks.org/docs/strategic_plan/Autism_Speaks_Strategic_Plan_2009-2011_Fall_2010_Update.pdf

    The importance of Dr. Ring’s appointment is apparent. The two conferences mentioned above were to birth and legitimize pharmaceuticals to treat autistic children. But, instead of leaving this up for interpretation, page 44 of the same document spells it out in plain language:

    “…The goals of this meeting are to facilitate the entry of pharmaceutical companies into autism, assist in identification of molecular targets and strategies for their validation, and better pinpoint the challenges, gaps, and needs in moving from discovery to application.

    “Both meetings are intended to provide a forum for cross-fertilization among leaders from research funding agencies, the pharmaceutical industry, the Food and Drug Administration, as well as experts in outcome measurement and clinical trials…” [Emphasis added]

    Despite this early relationship, Autism Speaks Public Relations assured me in an e-mail that “Dr. Ring was selected following a competitive process involving a number of highly qualified candidates, concluding with his appointment by the Autism Speaks Board.”

    The Straw That Breaks The Camel’s Back

    Now that we know the most highly qualified candidate received the position, and his role is to facilitate pharmaceutical intervention in Autism, shouldn’t we take a look at influence? It actually comes subtly from a very pro-vaccine organization.

    In the fall of 2010, Autism Speaks sent an update on their strategic plan. None other than Bill Gates, Sr., handpicked Fay Twersky of the Gates Foundation, as Page 2 notes:

    “We wish to express our appreciation to Fay Twersky, Director, Impact and Planning, Gates Foundation for her generous time and advice… We also wish to thank Bill Gates, Sr. for introducing us to Fay and for his ongoing support of individuals with autism and their families.”

    Gates’s son, Bill, can be seen calling for everything but Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s head in this CNN interview. See the interview here: http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2011/02/bill-gates-attacks-andrew-wakefield-and.html

    Of course GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations) is almost exclusively funded by the Gates Foundation, which spends many millions vaccinating children worldwide.

    Parents Beware!

    Here’s this author’s opinion on the matter, since I have a child with ‘autistic-like symptoms’.

    Autism Speaks is known for raising enormous sums of cash to raise awareness for autism. The problem is, Autism Speaks has chosen to ignore vaccines as a causal mechanism for autism – and now we know why. They are facilitating Big Pharma’s entry into the “Autism Market” to pose as the pharmaceutical ‘Saviors’.

    In other words, if Pharma can get a well-funded organization to avoid looking at vaccines as the cause of autism, then the organization acts effectively as a steam valve. In the meantime, the folks running the organization are making a ton of money to keep the freight train on its course full steam ahead.

    Will Autism Speaks respond to 83 families having been paid secretly by the government? In my opinion everyone affiliated with that deal just lost all credibility because they now are acting on behalf of the pharmaceutical companies—Big Pharma.

    http://vactruth.com/2011/06/17/83-reasons-to-question-autism-speaks-for-hiring-big-pharma-scientist/

    • Laram
      December 24, 2013 at 11:39 PM

      Trust me, from family experience 2 charities with autism and cancer in family that we avoid, even in disclosures in Obits. Autism Soeaks, and the American Cancer Society. That is just our code of ethics, but will never happen in my family.

      • Laram
        December 24, 2013 at 11:42 PM

        “Speaks”…my family has dealt with both. Sorry on sweet baby Jesus’ bday to call them out. :-), but the recipients and R&D never get the money….nor fo the police and fire departments that target families or seniors!

  14. Miami53
    December 24, 2013 at 4:14 PM

    I want to wish Happy Holidays to everyone and have a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year! I’ve been quiet on the board…came down with a virus a week before I have my holiday with my family and friends. I had less than a week to get everything together, gifts under the tree, clean the house and cook. This was the first year, I didn’t have my Italian cookies made. I just couldn’t do anymore. My holiday was on Sat., Dec. 21, so yesterday I finally made the cookies and delivered to family members. I now feel like its Christmas. So everyone enjoy your day today or tomorrow!!!

  15. mzjulesaz
    December 24, 2013 at 5:30 PM

    For those chomping at the bit, Kathy’s cookbook is on pre order at Amazon . Don’t hay know she is the one and only dessert expert RHNJ. Her legion of Fran’s have been waiting for it … Gag

    • Laram
      December 24, 2013 at 11:44 PM

      Now that will be the “white elephant” gift next grab bag season! Lol

      Jules, hope you are doing okay. I have left you a few messages here and Allabouttrh. God Bless you! Merry Christmas.

  16. mzjulesaz
    December 24, 2013 at 5:32 PM

    Merry Christmas!

  17. Miss Alicat
    December 24, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Merry Christmas Fame-ly!!!

  18. Laram
    December 24, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a wonderful and blessed New Year’s to you all! Thank you for the inspiration, kindness to each other on a blog, and for true sincerity. God Bless and God Speed to all your loved ones. 🙂

  19. December 24, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Glad you are spreading the word. Just go to Charity Navigator to find out about the charity you are thinking about supporting, and you will be given other charities that have better ratings to choose from as well. Complete information is there to view.
    Nice article Fame.

  20. Sackem
    December 25, 2013 at 3:30 AM

    Merry Christmas my Fame- bily. Thankyou for for a wonderful year… Who woulda thunk the amount of care a bunch of “strangers” could show a kid on the other side of the planet! Much love to you and yours!

  21. December 25, 2013 at 4:47 AM

    Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
    Let your heart be light
    From now on,
    our troubles will be out of sight

    Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
    Make the Yule-tide gay,
    From now on,
    our troubles will be miles away.

    Here we are as in olden days,
    Happy golden days of yore.
    Faithful friends who are dear to us
    Gather near to us once more.

    Through the years
    We all will be together,
    If the Fates allow
    Hang a shining star upon the highest bough.
    And have yourself A merry little Christmas now. ……..Merry Christmas Fame & All!

  22. dch60
    December 25, 2013 at 1:49 PM

    Merry Christmas to all honoring Jesus’ birthday.

    All those who are blessed to be celebrating with friends and family, breaking bread and exchanging gifts, enjoying everything the day brings, sans the clean up I’m sure, take the time to say a prayer for the soldiers who can’t be home and their loved ones who are missing them. Also remember that as merry and joyful as it is for some, for others it can be the most difficult time of the year… maybe you can include them in your prayers as well.

    May everyone’s day be merry and bright!

  23. December 25, 2013 at 9:09 PM

    Former Chief of Jewish Charity Stole Money Early and Often, Prosecutors Say
    Michael Appleton for The New York Times
    September 24, 2013

    Shortly after William E. Rapfogel became the leader of one of New York City’s most influential social service organizations in 1992, prosecutors say, he began to steal.

    He received envelope after envelope, stuffed with skimmed cash kickbacks, according to a criminal complaint filed on Tuesday. Also cited were a $27,000 check written to a contractor working on his apartment, roughly $100,000 to help his son buy a home, and a campaign finance scheme that manipulated the city’s matching-funds formula, fraudulently increasing campaign contributions to favored city politicians who provided government grants to his organization.

    Over two decades at the nonprofit Metropolitan New York Council on Jewish Poverty, Mr. Rapfogel and two confederates stole more than $5 million, much of it taxpayer money, said the complaint, which detailed the schemes and charged Mr. Rapfogel with grand larceny, money laundering and other crimes.

    Some of the money went to the co-conspirators, who were not named in the complaint; some of it was directed to politicians and political organizations. Mr. Rapfogel, a man whose deeds and connections made his name almost synonymous with the city’s Jewish philanthropic causes, was accused of keeping more than $1 million for himself.

    The cash-stuffed envelopes clearly added up. Investigators found $400,000 squirreled away in his Lower East Side apartment — a sizable chunk in his closet — and in his home in Monticello, N.Y., according to the complaint and a person briefed on the matter.

    Mr. Rapfogel acknowledged unspecified wrongdoing when the charitable organization, known widely as Met Council, uncovered the financial improprieties and fired him last month. He issued a statement saying, “I deeply regret the mistakes I have made that led to my departure.”

    On Tuesday, Mr. Rapfogel, dressed in a blue suit with a white shirt and no tie, was arraigned in a brief proceeding before Judge Kevin McGrath in Manhattan Criminal Court. He did not enter a plea and waived his right to a speedy trial, a move suggesting that he was or would be involved in plea negotiations. Judge McGrath released him on $100,000 bail.

    After the hearing, Mr. Rapfogel declined to speak to reporters outside the courtroom. But his lawyer, Paul L. Shechtman, said: “Mr. Rapfogel hopes for a fair resolution of this case and will continue to make amends to Met Council. It’s a sad day, but happily people who know Willie well are still in his corner.”

    The charges, which the complaint said were in some measure based on investigators’ interviews with Mr. Rapfogel and the two people referred to as co-conspirators, stem from an inquiry by the state attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, and the state comptroller, Thomas P. DiNapoli. They began to look into Mr. Rapfogel’s stewardship of Met Council after the organization detected the improprieties and alerted state authorities.

    “It’s always sad and shocking when we discover that someone used a charity as their own personal piggy bank — but even more so when that scheme involves someone well respected in government and his community,” Mr. Schneiderman said in a news release announcing the charges.

    Mr. DiNapoli said, “The scale and duration of this scheme are breathtaking.”

    Their investigation revealed that Mr. Rapfogel conspired with Met Council’s insurance broker, Century Coverage Corporation, to pad the agency’s insurance payments by hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, according to the complaint.

    The two co-conspirators set up the scheme before Mr. Rapfogel joined the council as executive director, but under his watch, the amount artificially added to the annual cost for insurance steadily increased.

    As part of the scheme, officials said, Mr. Rapfogel directed a co-conspirator at Century to make the political donations on behalf of Met Council, using money obtained from the padded payments. That co-conspirator delivered regular checks for the campaign contributions to Mr. Rapfogel, who in turn passed the checks on to various politicians and political organizations.

    Mr. Rapfogel’s wife, Judy, has since the 1970s served as chief of staff to Sheldon Silver, the speaker of the State Assembly. Under Mr. Silver, the Assembly has in some years provided $1 million in grants to the Met Council, and he has attended the charity’s fund-raising events. Since 2000, Century and people identified elsewhere as its employees have donated $13,000 to Mr. Silver or committees he controls.

    Read of the article plus the document: Felony Complaint Against William E. Rapfogel at the link below:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/25/nyregion/charitys-fired-chief-is-charged-with-stealing-millions.html?_r=0

  24. December 25, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    Charity Watchdog: HSUS Has Violated IRS Rules
    HumaneWatch.org
    November 7, 2013

    We’ve long pointed to the Humane Society of the United States’ deceptive fundraising and poor marks from charity watchdogs, HSUS defending in a RICO lawsuit, and Members of Congress calling for a federal investigation of the group. It now appears that HSUS has filed years of incorrect tax returns with the IRS.

    Today, Bloomberg News reports on a complaint we have filed against HSUS with the IRS, citing an accounting practice that inflates HSUS’s contributions—namely, counting donated air time as contributions. We first exposed this in July, and we have company in our concern. Bloomberg quotes a Minnesota lawyer who specializes in nonprofit tax returns who says HSUS should not be doing this practice, calling it “a relatively elementary rule.” And CharityWatch, formerly known as the American Institute of Philanthropy, is an independent charity watchdog that, in its latest report, also takes issue with HSUS’s accounting, saying it’s a big no-no:

    HSUS produces and distributes public service television, radio, and newspaper announcements about companion animal and wildlife issues. This airtime and ad space is donated to HSUS free of charge. The charity estimates the value of these in-kind donations and records it as contributions and expenses in its tax filings. This has the effect of making HSUS appear to be a more efficient fundraiser since the value it places on the PSAs increases its reported annual donations. It also makes HSUS appear to be spending more on its programs since the value of the PSAs is included in program expenses on its tax forms. HSUS’s reported value of these donated PSAs, according to its tax forms, has increased from approximately $4.3 million in 2009, to $15.7 million in 2010, to $17.7 million in 2011. There is just one problem. Reporting donated PSAs in the financial statements of charity tax filings violates IRS reporting rules.

    In fact, CharityWatch writes that HSUS’s spending on charitable programs is “much less efficient than what HSUS claims on its website.” No kidding. CharityWatch analyzes charity tax returns and tosses aside the accounting tricks to get down to how efficient a charity is. CharityWatch gives HSUS a “C-minus” grade—which, while a slight improvement over the “D” that HSUS has earned over the past two years, would still get a kid grounded by his parents.

    And as for that whole “violates IRS reporting rules” thing, we figured the IRS might want to know about it. So we told them. We sent the IRS a letter laying out the evidence according to the IRS’s own instructions for completing a tax return. The evidence is pretty clear-cut to us; the IRS says that “Contributions do not include… Donations of services (such as the value of donated advertising space or broadcast air time).”

    The only person it doesn’t seem clear to is Ken Berger, the head of Charity Navigator, a nonprofit rating service, who tells Bloomberg that HSUS’s violation is a small matter, “if it is an error.” If? It’s really embarrassing for the head of a charity evaluator to not even know the rules about filling out tax returns, which his own organization relies on for evaluations. But such incompetence is par for the course at Charity Navigator. Charity Navigator also overlooks an accounting trick—a legal one, but misleading—that allows HSUS to count fundraising costs as “program expenses,” which gives HSUS a higher score at Charity Navigator by making it seem more financially efficient. Tens of millions of dollars are shuffled around in this way for HSUS, and Charity Navigator looks the other way and gives HSUS a “four-star” score.

    That’s not such a small matter now, is it?

    And since Charity Navigator does dock the ASPCA and other charities for doing the same thing, the fact that it doesn’t do likewise for HSUS makes us wonder if there’s some funny business going on.

    According to the IRS, if HSUS has filed incorrect tax returns it could be fined up to $100 per day, up to $50,000, per return—or close to $200,000 for these four years of filings. We’ll let you know if we see HSUS filing amended returns. And we’ll be curious to see if HSUS chooses to count donated PSAs as contributions on its 2012 return. We will know very soon.

    http://www.humanewatch.org/charity-watchdog-hsus-has-violated-irs-rules/

    • December 28, 2013 at 11:59 AM

      Happy New Year to my Fame-bly*.*
      Not real sure how to write this but, I was doing some snope-ing and I really want to know how Dr. Perricone and Andy’s sister Emily are connected other than by her charity..I believe it has something to do with Jewish women and education based out of St. Louis? I mean my goodness is everybody connected somehow to Real Housewives? Gotta go to my local Homegoods and Big lots today. I’ll be the crazy lady with the cute little Yorkie in the dog stroller… Yes I am “that girl” *.*
      P.S. tried the corn casserole and it was a hit. Thanks Jeannie^.^

      • Jeannie5233
        January 2, 2014 at 10:27 AM

        Happy New Year! 😀

  25. nsr1076
    December 25, 2013 at 11:17 PM

    I hope all my fame-ily has a Merry Christmas!!!!! God Bless everyone and I wish you all loads of happiness, health , peace, strength, and a prosperous New Year!!!!!
    Xoxo
    Nancy

  26. IamNobodysHW
    December 26, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    Finally got through, my computer is very old and has been giving me problems. Merry Christmas to everyone. Hope your day was filled with happiness and lots of good gifts. I got an ELVIS blanket and will be sleeping warm cuddled up with of ELVIS tonight. LOL Happy first christmas to baby Ava
    Love, hugs and kisses
    Cher

    • December 28, 2013 at 12:42 AM

      We had a wonderful first Chrissie!!!!

  27. GPM
    December 26, 2013 at 12:28 AM

    Just popping in to say Merry Christmas to the Fame-ily! May God bless you and keep you always!

  28. December 26, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to Fame and my fame-ily. I have missed you all so much. Half of the houseguests just left and I hope to be back to this home soon. Love, hugs and kisses to all of you.

  29. black enga
  30. Anonymous
    December 27, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I don’t see the problem with an MD & CEO making about $1,000,000. That seems fair. It’s the CEO’s, without the MD’s, who should make far less.

  31. December 28, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    Little of charity’s money going to help animals
    By David Fitzpatrick and Drew Griffin, CNN Special Investigations Unit
    June 15, 2012

    SPCA International raised nearly $27 million to help animals worldwide, tax records show

    Nearly all of that money was spent on fund-raising expenses, records show

    The charity also misrepresented its “Baghdad Pups” program

    It said the program resettled soldiers’ companion animals, but most were strays

    (CNN) — A charity that raised close to $27 million to help animals worldwide spent nearly all of that money on fund-raising expenses paid to a direct-mail company.

    In addition, CNN found that the charity, SPCA International, misrepresented one of its programs called “Baghdad Pups” on its tax filings and hired an officer for that program with a questionable background.

    In 2010, SPCA International owed $8.4 million to Quadriga Art LLC and its affiliated company, Brickmill Marketing Services, according to publicly available Internal Revenue Service 990 tax records.

    Quadriga Art is one of the world’s largest direct-mail providers to charities and nonprofits. It is the same fund-raiser hired by two veterans charities that spent tens of millions of dollars for its services — triggering a Senate investigation last month into whether one of the charities should retain its tax-exempt status.

    That charity, Washington-based Disabled Veterans National Foundation, collected nearly $56 million in donations over the past three years yet paid Quadriga Art more than $60 million in fees, according to a CNN investigation into the charity’s tax records.

    The other veterans charity, National Veterans Foundation, raised more than $22 million in donations over the past three years to help veterans yet spent about $18.2 million to pay Quadriga Art, according to IRS 990 forms.

    The animal charity SPCA International is still in debt to Quadriga Art, according to a spokeswoman for the direct-mail firm, adding that’s part of the charity’s “aggressive strategy” to build a broad donor base.

    “That resulted in an expected high cost in the beginning of their acquisition program,” said the spokeswoman, who declined to be named. She called SPCA International’s efforts a “successful strategy.”

    Business tactics questioned

    There’s no question that a charity needs to spend money to raise money, according to Bob Ottenhoff, president of the charity watchdog group GuideStar. But he said that SPCA International’s tax records raise “a number of red flags.”

    “No. 1, there is an enormous amount of money going into fund-raising,” Ottenhoff said. “It’s not unusual for a nonprofit to fund-raise. In fact they need to fund-raise. But this organization has an enormous amount of fund-raising costs, certainly relative to the amount of money being spent.”

    Of the $14 million raised in 2010, SPCA International reports it spent less than 0.5% — about $60,000 — in small cash grants to animal shelters across the United States. It also said it spent about $450,000 — about 3% of the total raised in 2010 — to bring back animals from Iraq and Afghanistan as part of its “Baghdad Pups” program.

    On its website and its tax filings, SPCA International describes “Baghdad Pups” as a program that “helps U.S. troops safely transport home the companion animals they befriend in the war zone.”

    Yet the charity admitted that only 26 of the nearly 500 animals transported to the United States from Iraq and Afghanistan were actually service animals. The rest were stray animals, said Stephanie Scott, the charity’s communications director.

    And those 26 service animals were not attached to military K-9 units but belonged to Reed Inc., a private contractor that built roads in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    To highlight the work of the “Baghdad Pups” program, spokeswoman Terri Crisp appeared on CNN’s sister network, HLN, last year with “Ivy” and “Nugget,” two former bomb-sniffing dogs she said were abandoned.

    “As the military pulls out and there’s not as great a need to have these dogs, there’s a surplus,” Crisp told HLN. “These contractors don’t know what to do with them so these are the dogs that are falling through the cracks and they need homes desperately.”

    She said it’s “unthinkable” that the military contractors do not return the dogs back to their countries of origin.

    “And that’s why SPCA International is trying to put a spotlight on this so these dogs are not overlooked,” Crisp said.

    But a spokesman for Reed, the contractor that employed the dogs, told CNN that the animals had been given secure new homes out of the war zone in Kurdistan and that Crisp had suddenly shown up “out of the blue” asking to take them to the United States.

    When asked about those comments, SPCA International spokeswoman Scott told CNN the charity had “not heard that from Reed before” and said the dogs had been removed from “an uncaring environment in Iraq.”

    Questions raised about charity’s management

    It is not the first time questions have been raised about Crisp or charities with which she has been involved.

    Crisp once headed a California-based animal rescue charity, Noah’s Wish, that reached a settlement agreement in 2007 with the state of California. The California attorney general investigated whether contributions for “rescuing and caring for the animal victims of Hurricane Katrina” were used for that purpose.

    In that settlement agreement from the summer of 2007, Crisp agreed not to “serve as an officer, director or trustee or in any position having the duties or responsibilities of an officer, director or trustee, with any non-profit organization for a period of five (5) years from the date of the execution of this Settlement Agreement.”

    Yet in a filing with the North Carolina secretary of state’s office last year, SPCA International named Crisp in its list of officers and directors.

    Crisp did not admit any wrongdoing in the California settlement, but the charity agreed to return $4 million in donations to California officials out of the $8 million raised by Noah’s Wish.

    When asked about the settlement agreement, SPCA International’s Scott said, “We do not believe Terri Crisp is in violation of her settlement agreement in her capacity working for SPCA International.”

    Pierre Barnoti, who founded U.S.-based SPCA International in 2006, also has a questionable record as a charity manager.

    Three years after he founded SPCA International and became its president, Barnoti was fired as the Montreal SPCA’s president after leaving the Canadian charity deeply in debt to Quadriga Art, according to Nicholas Gilman, Montreal SPCA’s executive director.

    Gilman said that the Montreal SPCA still owes Quadriga Art nearly $2 million and that the American fund-raising company has a lien on the Montreal organization’s headquarters building.

    Barnoti told CNN he is fighting his dismissal and, when asked why he was fired, he responded, “It’s not finished yet so there’s no point in discussing something that still is ongoing.”

    He also defended Crisp, saying, “She is there under the bullets trying to save dogs and cats and bringing them back to the American soldiers who befriended them.”

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/06/14/us/animal-charity-investigation/

  32. December 28, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    “The charity scandals began as far back as charities began. Once they get their coffers full, it’s like they won the lottery. I’ve seen it in my own lifetime with AIDS charities that are supposed to help the sick, children’s charities, and now the new rage of the age, vet charities. Their clients are killing themselves in record numbers, but all the directors can do is buy bigger houses and longer limos while their clients suffer in silence because ‘there’s no money.’ It’s sad, but all too common.” – hiddenokie

    “I have worked for a non-profit in the past. Like most non-profits, we provided an invaluable service to those in need. As I moved into management, however, I saw first-hand the tug between providing services to those in need vs. meeting payroll and employee benefits like health insurance and retirement contributions. That is when it became clear to me that the mission took second place to maintaining a stable work environment with salaries, benefits, and employee incentives. It is a fine line. Yes, you want dedicated employees who have a sense of economic well-being while performing a needed service in the community. But when employees start getting six figure salaries and bonuses, a non-profit has lost its focus.” – cassie001

    When private fundraisers get involved, they want a big piece of the funds raised as their pay. They don’t care about pain, suffering and sacrifices other than the huge potential for donations… No one should be surprised about the greed and corruption of many “charities.” When charities start telling me how much a month to give them, I stop giving them anything.

    I’ve been watching the Breaking Bad marathon on AMC, and commercials that pull on your heartstrings keep running ever hour for UNICEF, ASCPA and Heifer. I wouldn’t donate to any of these organizations because I believe an effective and efficient charity is one that spends at least 75% of its donations on its mission, rather than on salaries and other expenses or banking the donations (not spending them at all on programs & services).

    ASCPA is almost as bad as the Red Cross, spending close to 90% or more of donations on salaries and expenses rather than on its mission.

    Below are ASCPA figures from their IRS from 990 for 2011.

    Total Revenue: $148 million

    Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $15 million (10% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $51 million (35% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $79 million (53% of revenue)

    Total Expenses: $146 million (2% of revenue remained after grants, salaries and other expenses)

    Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $183 million (money they didn’t spend on their cause but banked instead)

    Below are Heifer figures from their IRS from 990 for 2011.

    Total Revenue: $10 million

    Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $1.2 million (11% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $879k (8% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $1.1 million (10% of revenue)

    Total Expenses: $57 million (71% of revenue remained after grants, salaries and other expenses, which could have been spent on programs & services but was banked instead)

    Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $183 million (money they didn’t spend on their cause but banked instead)

    Below are UNICEF figures from their IRS from 990 for 2011.

    Total Revenue: $212 million

    Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $143 million (67% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $23 million (11% of revenue)
    Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $39 million (19% of revenue)

    Total Expenses: $205 million (3% of revenue remained after grants, salaries and other expenses)

    Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $61 million (money they didn’t spend on their cause but banked instead)

    • December 29, 2013 at 11:21 AM

      Thanks Fame! Those crazy commercials drive me nuts. Quite sad actually 😦

    • December 30, 2013 at 5:55 PM

      That is disgusting.

  33. December 29, 2013 at 1:45 AM

    If 10% of the money donated for the Katrina victims had been used to rebuild New Orleans, New Orleans would be rebuilt by now. I saw first hand how the Red Cross and FEMA work, as many victims of Katrina were being housed at our university. Our local restaurants were feeding the evacuees, the volunteers and law enforcement. When the Red Cross and FEMA arrived, 5 days later, chaos ensued. The evacuees were given MRE’s, as they were no longer allowed to eat the restaurants’ food, the reason, the source of that food could not be determined. However, the Red Cross and FEMA personnel continued to consume that food, until the restaurants realized what was going on. I witnessed myself that the donations of diapers, formula, personal items, etc. seemed to be stockpiled and not being distributed to the evacuees at the university. I could go on and on, but I believe everyone in this country knows the disaster the relief efforts brought to this state. In my opinion the relief efforts caused as much harm as Katrina did.

    Since then, with the exception of my church, the only organizations I contribute to are Habitat for Humanity, Hope for Animals and my own charity. Our family has worked with both our local Habitat and Hope for Animals. Our local Habitat does a great service for our community (and after Fame posted this, I checked and they seem to be putting the money into the programs). The officers of Hope for Animals are volunteers, as well as the rest of us. This is their report.

    http://dynamodata.fdncenter.org/990_pdf_archive/721/721289951/721289951_201112_990EZ.pdf

    Help someone you know in your community, that is my charity. I started this in 2008, by helping a little old lady with no family, who had spent most of her savings on medical deductibles and hospital sitters. Since she owned her home and still had a few dollars saved, she was not eligible for food stamps or other government services. When I went to the grocery store I would buy her a few groceries and when her utility bill went up in the Summer, I would give her the difference between what she could afford and the actual bill. After she passed, I adopted a hard working family, going through a hard time. The wife won her battle with cancer, but lost her job and became unemployed for over a year, still having to pay thousands of dollars in medical bills that their insurance did not cover. Their family was helping them keep food on their table and they managed to make the house payment and vehicle payment on the husband’s salary. When she finally got a job, it came to my attention that the family would have a hard time purchasing the gas for the wife to go to work. I called and spoke to the woman, who was an acquaintance and offered her the gas money. She did not accept it at first, but, I talked her into it, pulling my “I want to give, but do not trust charities speech”. No, this type of donation is not tax deductible, but the joy it brings to my heart is priceless. The divine creator/positive energy knows all and I believe blessings and good fortune are sent to my family.

    There is someone in your community, a person or organization, who needs the money and will put it to good use, if you really want to give find them.

    • December 29, 2013 at 1:50 PM

      I love what you do moma – and I am certainly not surprised that you do it. You are are a genuinely good person with a heart of gold!

      I also only donate to Habitat for Humanity and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

    • Sackem
      December 31, 2013 at 1:09 AM

      We get bombarded by charities via the phone. As horrible as it sounds, it drives me CRAZY!!!!!! I’m sure it’s more efficient for them. This year, I donated all the “extra stuff” ie products, extra nappies, left over “lady products” to a group which house young pregnant girls at risk so this year, Ava and I went to Toys r Us and bought a few toys for the new babies. I got so much satisfaction from knowing that those kids had something under the tree. That’s the thing about charity giving, it’s rewarding for all and I hate the thought of people giving who are on the bread line (stats released here suggest that the lower middle class are the best at giving) are being “rolled” in a sense.

  34. December 30, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    Happy New Year to all of my friends here and the wonderful Fame!!!!!!

  35. December 30, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Happy New Year to you too gessie & Famey & All! 🙂

    Thanks for a fascinating read (as always) Fame…I give blood but nothing else to the Red Cross (BILLED individuals a year after a tornado…for services NOT provided…very ugly.) Or The United Way since the scandal a few years back. Too many other great charities who take little overhead…like The Salvation Army.

    OT…no way should NeNe ever win Fave HW…even on her own site>>>http://www.neneleakesofficial.com/story/whos-the-best-housewife-of-2013/

  36. Sackem
    December 31, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    Happy New Years my Famebily !! May 2014 bring us all a tone of laughter and happiness!!

  37. December 31, 2013 at 1:59 AM

    Wounded Warrior is another charity trying to raise money by using disabled veterans. They ran commercials featuring Chet Atkins as their spokesperson during the prime time airing on Monday of the Breaking Bad marathon.

    From Wounded Warrior’s 2011 form 990: donors contributed $155 million but the organization only spent $6 million, or less than 4%, on its mission:

    Total Revenue: $155 million

    Revenue Paid Out in Grants for Its Cause: $5.5 million (4% of revenue)

    Revenue Spent on Salaries & Compensation: $21 million (14% of revenue)

    Revenue Spent on Other Expenses: $69 million (45% of revenue)

    Total Expenses: $96 million (38% of funds raised were banked rather than spent on programs & services)

    Net Assets or Fund Balances at Year End: $90 million

    The following are two comments from vets.yuku.com.

    justavet wrote:

    Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) serves veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury, illness, or wound, co-incident to their military service on or after September 11, 2001. The Alumni program provides long-term support and camaraderie for Wounded Warriors through complimentary programs, events, discounted services, and an online community. No dues here – you paid those on the battlefield.

    The Vietnam Veterans of America, allows for an associate membership to all veterans, regardless of time of service. The VVA legislative action agenda includes issues that affect all periods of service, not just the care giver issue and supports activities which include all era veterans. I don’t believe for a minute the WWP is opposed to the care-giver issue. They are just not championing anything for pre-9/11 vets. The VVA has also spearheaded many of the benefits now available to those who followed us. The motto of the VVA is: “Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.” We have held true to that promise.

    In one of the most run ads by the WWP, Chet Atkins, sings “from the fields of Vietnam to the mountains of Afghanistan.” This leads one to believe they are there for all wounded vets, obviously they are not. I am not opposed to any veteran being helped. However, there are Vietnam vets who would benefit from inclusion in WWP agendas and activities. Unfortunately, we are a dying organization and so, I assume, not relevant. Just MHO

    WWP Financials wrote:

    While WWP has helped some vets they use that fact for donations. They oppose the Second Amendment and religious groups. They also oppose the Caregiver Act being expanded to Veterans Caregivers of all eras. Look at where the money really goes before you send it to them. Here is the 990 and once you see where money actually is spent you will look for another charity I am sure..If you want to assist Vets directly try Operation First response, or CAUSE, or PHWFF, http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/media/477620/wwp-900-fy-2012.pdf

    http://vets.yuku.com/reply/804092/Wounded-Warrior-Project-a-Scam-or-NOT#.UsJuE_vY9_Y

  38. December 31, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    May all of you and your families have a very Happy New Year, filled with love, health and happiness.

  39. December 31, 2013 at 8:49 PM

    We have a Veterans Committee @ my work…they recently stopped donating to WW for the very reasons you just posted Fame.

    And a Happy NYE and New Year to you and all here @ FW’s! Let’s have a cup 0’Kindness, shall we? *clears throat to sing*>>>*raises glass*>>>>

    Should old acquaintance be forgot,
    and never brought to mind?
    Should old acquaintance be forgot,
    and old lang syne?

    CHORUS:
    For auld lang syne, my dear,
    for auld lang syne,
    we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
    for auld lang syne.
    And surely you’ll buy your pint cup!
    and surely I’ll buy mine!
    And we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
    for auld lang syne.

    CHORUS
    We two have run about the slopes,
    and picked the daisies fine;
    But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
    since auld lang syne.

    CHORUS
    We two have paddled in the stream,
    from morning sun till dine;
    But seas between us broad have roared
    since auld lang syne.

    • black enga
      January 2, 2014 at 1:40 AM

      LOLZ! I just want you to know I sang this with you last night. Can you imagine how crazy my kids thought I was singing to a computer screen? Haa Ha ha!

  40. IamNobodysHW
    January 1, 2014 at 12:00 AM

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
    Wishing you all health, happiness and lots of love.
    Thank you all for the friendship and FAME thank you for all you do.
    Love,hugs and kisses
    Cher
    P.S.
    I am going thru new treatments at the moment so feel yucky. But I hope to get some strength back soon.

    • Sackem
      January 1, 2014 at 4:28 AM

      Oh Cher ! I hope 2014 brings you a reprieve!!!!

    • January 1, 2014 at 5:25 AM

      Hope you feel better soon Cher.

    • January 1, 2014 at 5:39 AM

      Thank you, Cher… I included you in my prayers.

    • black enga
      January 2, 2014 at 1:43 AM

      ((((((((((((((SENDING LOVE PRAYERS AND HUGS CHER!))))))))))))))

    • Jeannie5233
      January 2, 2014 at 10:23 AM

      Love Hugs and Kisses to you too Cher! Hope these new treatments help you once you get over the yuckiness!

  41. January 28, 2016 at 12:33 AM

    WWP has a terrible non-profit ratio of donations actually making it to veterans. According to Charity Watch, WWP also raises money using the names “Soldier Ride” and “Believe in Heroes” and has a C rating. 40 – 60% of the cash they raise goes to overhead.

    Retired Army Staff Sgt. Erick Millette came home from Iraq in 2006 with a Bronze star and a Purple Heart — along with a traumatic brain injury and PTSD. Wounded Warrior Project enrolled him in its program Warriors Speak, which “provides important life skills that help warriors succeed.” In 2013, the charity hired him as a public speaker. But Millette quit last year. He told CBS News correspondent Chip Reid that Warriors Speak is less like a program to help veterans and more like a fundraising vehicle.

    “They will tell you it’s not. But it is,” Millette said. “I began to see how an organization that rakes in hundreds of millions of dollars a year is not helping my brothers and my sisters. Or at least not all of them.”

    CBS News has interviewed more than three dozen former employees of the Wounded Warrior Project and nearly all of them told us they’re concerned that the organization has become more focused on raising money than on serving wounded veterans.

    Many of those former staffers believe that after raising more than a billion dollars since 2003, the charity should be providing more comprehensive services to wounded veterans.

    “I think they want to show warriors a good time. I think they get these warriors to events, but where’s the follow up?” one former employee said.

    Two former employees who spoke to CBS News didn’t want to show their faces, fearing retaliation.

    “A lot of the warriors I saw needed mental health treatment. They don’t get that from Wounded Warrior Project,” one of the employees said.

    “What happens when you make a suggestion that there’s a better way to serve veterans?” Reid asked.

    “If you use your brain and come up with an idea, within a matter of time, you’re ‘off the bus,'” the other employee said.

    “They don’t need you. It’s their way or the highway,” he added.

    “I would raise issues. Why aren’t we doing follow up? Why don’t we have any case management?” Millette said.

    “How would they respond?” Reid asked.

    “‘We don’t call warriors. Warriors call us,'” Millette recalled. “Again, as a disabled veteran, it just makes me sick.”

    The organization declined our repeated requests to interview Wounded Warrior Project CEO Steven Nardizzi, but the charity offered us Capt. Ryan Kules, a recipient of its programs and services and its director of alumni.

    “Wounded Warrior Project contacts alumni and family support members multiple times over the course of the year, we call each and every one of our alumni and family support members on their birth month to be able to ensure and check in, see how they’re doing, and see if they need other programs and services,” Kules said. “And then also have multiple opportunities for them, and us to follow up and see how they are doing.”

    Marc Owens is a former director of tax-exempt organizations at the IRS.

    “What was your biggest concern in reading these forms?” Reid asked him, showing him the WWP tax forms.

    “That I couldn’t tell the number of people that were assisted,” Owens said. “I thought that was truly unusual.”

    “They do put some of those numbers on the website,” Reid pointed out.

    “Yes, they do,” Owens responded.

    But what’s the difference?

    “Form 990 is signed under the penalties of perjury,” Owens said.

    “You have to be careful on there,” Reid said.

    “That’s right, you have to be certain,” Owens said.

    Millette said he expects retaliation from Wounded Warrior Project, but said that won’t stop him.

    “As a disabled veteran, I feel that other veterans need a voice. I am in a position where I can be their voice,” he said. “And I feel if I don’t stand up and do what I feel is right, and voice their concerns, what I’ve heard, and how I feel, then I’m leaving them behind.”

    Capt. Kules, Wounded Warrior Project’s representative, told CBS News that mental health services are important to the charity, and that it is committing $100 million over three years to a warrior care network in a partnership with four hospitals nationwide that will provide outpatient mental health services to post-9/11 veterans.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/wounded-warrior-project-investigation-veterans-charity-accused-of-no-follow-up/

    Former Wounded Warrior employees accuse charity of wasting millions

    Wounded Warrior Project accused of falling short of mission

    “I have been going to the Walter Reed Military medical center representing the marines helping marine (MHM) program almost every week for 13 years and we have seen almost every marine wounded warrior that has ever been processed thru there. I know i can say without a doubt that i rarely saw anyone from the wounded warrior project visiting the wounded. By the way, the mhm program spends over 98% of donations on the wounded. Also, we are all volunteers and there are no salaried employees. No one gets reimbursed for any personal expenses.” – @Yoch Man @mountainstates1

    “I sent a letter to the president of Wounded Warriors about four years ago when I became concerned about a co-worker who was participating in WW walking and running events nationwide with her boyfriend, who was a veteran with a very minor knee injury acquired while working in a warehouse stateside. He had never seen combat anywhere or even been TDY outside the United States. He was, amazingly, able to run in all of these races. The two of them had been participating in WW “events” without any cost to them for more than a year. Airfares and hotel rooms were being paid for with WW funds. It was quite disturbing to see WW television ads with veterans who really needed help while knowing that some people were clearly taking advantage of WW funds and the vetting process was lacking. As with your inquiries, my letter was unanswered. In all fairness, in my own investigation I discovered that while there are some local chapters that operate appropriately, there are definitely issues at the national level.” – georgethesixth

    “The thing about these big charities is that the majority of it goes to paying a CEO and marketing efforts. I turned down a request to participate in a breast cancer walk after Komen sent me a 4-color, glossy, thick-paged, very expensive looking booklet that only told me things that I already knew about their organization. I hear the argument again and again, that they have to pay up this big money to attract top CEOs, so they can bring in more money, etc. It raises a big question for me. Why am *I* being asked for money, when a CEO is getting paid, and is the only one NOT donating? I think a charitable CEO can donate their time to make a cause better. Maybe they can find more than one CEO to help out, so that it’s not full-time. When I used to work for charities, I don’t get paid. I no longer donate to charities for this reason.” – DJTrump4Prez2016

    “Why does no-one mention that the leadership at WWP are all civilians with little to no ties to the military. And having met a few of them at their lavish events, they are truly selfish, self-entitled scum. Wonder why they used the disabled vet as their patsy frontman for tis interview….” – USMCKILL

    “I’m a Marine Corp Vietnam vet and own a successful sports marketing company. In 2012 I worked with a non-profit veterans crisis center here in Oregon doing fund raising and creating partnerships. I approached Wounded Warrior several times in order to try and work together with them on events we were planning here. It was very hard get anyone to answer a phone call or email, and when they finally did it was very disappointing. Unless we were going to deliver loads of cash to them, they weren’t interested. And I had to traverse thru several layers of bureaucracy just to get that far. It appears they have lost the focus of their message and now the only priority is to raise more cash and promote glitzy events. Last month I reached out to 3 Wounded Warrior execs to discuss a program one of my clients created that provides the non-triggering safe source of adrenalin we’ve all craved since leaving combat. It’s a great program. I left VM messages for all 3 and never received a response. They’ve lost sight of their stated mission.” – rcanard

    “Wounded Warriors has a terrible ratio of donations to actual help for non-profits. Salvation Army has one of the highest ratios of donated money actually going to veterans and homeless veterans. When the top 10 in the Wounded Warriors Project makes more then $100k up past $300k you can see it’s about greed, not help.” – Broey77

    “Susan Komen, The Red Cross, the list goes on, the CEO’s of these companies are getting paid almost a million dollars a year. Not to mention all the trips, parties, etc. I have not donated any cash to any non profit in 5 years. I now contribute locally as in food drives, supporting the local sports teams, pizza, diner cards, etc.. They are all crooks and should be ashamed of themselves.” – mattmosc

    “This happens in many charitable organizations. The people at the top get greedy, start taking huge salaries and benefits. They get to the point where only 15-20% of money donated actually goes to charitable work. They’re playing on the sympathy of people for those wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan. They should be ashamed.” – dman6015

    “Does this rip off surprise anyone. These organizations almost always spend almost nothing on those they claim to help, they spend on each other and those that are running it. This problem has always been the case and this is why I do not contribute to these organization that attempt to present themselves as helping veterans. Put your money to local charities.” – wmdmia

    “I’m a veteran that went to the Wounded Warriors for assistance, and the representative told me, before I could get the words out of my mouth, literally, “We can’t. Help you.” Those words tore through my heart seeing I was already feeling discouraged. I live in Richmond, VA where this took place.” – pastormoore

    “Just another group living off of the misery of our veterans who need help and care. It all sounds good but if the money is not going to the vets in need it should be shut down.” – ubentuk2

    “Welcome to the world of “charitable organizations”. I use to give to a number of organizations I believed really helped people until they made me crazy with their constant mailings, emails, and telephone calls. How many address labels, notepads, calendars, and key chains does anyone need. I also decided to stop volunteering for organizations because most of the time we were only needed to sit somewhere and smile and be friendly to get people to part with their money. Money is the root of all evil and when greed enters the picture it’s time to say enough is enough.” – applepie15

    “I called within the last two months for help for my son (2 tours in Iraq vet) for his PTSD and Orthopedic -related pain (knees, legs, feet due to multiple missions/day). I was told that WWP does not assist with these issues because the VA does. (That’s a whole other set of non-treatment problems.) Then I see an ad for WWP treatment of PTSD. What? Plead for donations but don’t supply the services? Lost my monthly donation.” – Stephanie11!

    MrsSaf wrote:

    “As a family member of the Independence Program and one who’s warrior receives thousands of dollars of care a month from WWP that the VA won’t provide, I keep getting my comments erased by CBS. Why? because there are hundreds upon hundreds of families who are a part of IP and other programs at WWP who will tell you where the money goes. WWP never provided services to pay someone’s bills. They provide training and mental health support, a trust for those of us with severely wounded warriors and now mental health and TBI care all of which cost massive amounts of money. This too will be deleted by CBS because no one actually wants to hear from those of us who get REAL support…”

    USMCKILL replied:

    “@MrsSaf Seems to me you’re one of the stooges they give freebies to to keep happy and then exploit the hell outta them to make even more $$$$ for themselves. No surprise they only use 10% of their 300+ million a year to help vets. open your eyes and realize its not only about you and what a small handful of exploited vets get.”

  42. May 16, 2016 at 8:04 PM

    ‘Worst’ charity for veterans run by VA employee
    May 16, 2016

    CNN – At first glance, the National Vietnam Veterans Foundation is a roaring success. According to its tax filings, the charity has received more than $29 million in donations from generous Americans from 2010 to 2014 for what it calls on its website “aiding, supporting and benefiting America’s veterans and their families.”

    But look a little closer on those same filings and you can see that nearly all of those donations have been cycled back to telemarketers, leaving less than 2 percent for actual veterans and veterans’ charitable causes.
    That’s why Charity Navigator, one of the nation’s largest and most influential charity watchdog organizations, has given the charity a “zero” out of four stars for those same four years.

    “It’s a zero-star organization and you can’t go lower than that,” says Michael Thatcher, Charity Navigator’s CEO. “They don’t have an independent board of directors, they actually don’t even have a comprehensive board of directors — only three members on the board at this point in time and some of them are family. So one can say, is this representative of an independent board? It’s not.”

    The charity’s most recently filed tax return, for 2014, lists a catalogue of expenses paid for by donations: including $133,000 for travel, $21,000 for unnamed “awards”, $70,000 for a category described as “other expenses” and even a little more than $8,000 for parking.

    Charity president works at VA

    The CEO and founder of the National Vietnam Veterans Foundation, himself a veteran, is J. Thomas Burch, who is also a federal employee working as an attorney for the Department of Veterans Affairs. Burch is deputy director in the VA’s Office of General Counsel, where he pulled down $127,000 in salary in 2014. That’s the same year he drew a salary of $65,000 as head of his “zero-star” charity.

    A VA spokesman told CNN Burch’s position at the veteran’s charity is not a conflict of interest “per se”. But the spokesman added the VA is now “reviewing” the situation and that the agency’s Office of Inspector General is handling that review.

    When contacted by CNN, Burch asked that we not contact him at his job at the Department of Veterans Affairs, but he refused to answer phone calls placed to his home. CNN tried to confront Burch as he drove home from work in a black Rolls Royce, but upon seeing a CNN camera crew, Burch gunned the Rolls Royce down his suburban Washington, D.C. street and disappeared.

    The charity’s vice president, David Kauffman, said in an email that the NVVF was responsible for “feeding homeless and unemployed veterans by donating to food banks, sent personal care kits to hospitalized veterans and donated blankets, hats and gloves to homeless centers.”

    According to the charity’s tax filings, though, it accounted for about $122,000 in cash donations to veterans, out of more than $8.5 million raised in donations in 2014. That is less than 2% of the charities cash donations being used to support veterans and their families.

    http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/16/politics/vietnam-veterans-charity/index.html

  43. September 12, 2016 at 10:45 AM

    James Huling, Tim Levasseur, and “Bullies Reality” Charity Scam

    ***WHAT’S THE REALITY BEHIND “BULLIES REALITY”?***

    http://bigbrotherlivefeedupdates.blogspot.com/2016/09/pov-aftermath-red-flag-on-field-bb18.html

    The time has come to talk about this “non-profit”, since it’s come up quite a few times this week, and is closely connected to the Big Brother community.

    This “non-profit” organization first began making itself known after BB16 ended, with Caleb Reynolds doing a lot of promotion for the organization and it’s events. At that time, there were plans for some sort of TV show, but I’m not sure what the status of that initiative is.

    You can clearly see on the Twitter profile on the left that it says it is a “501c Non-Profit” company. Just so you know, you can’t just “decide” to be a non-profit organization….you have to actually file paperwork and apply with the IRS for approval. And the government oversight doesn’t end there…an annual tax filing must be made, and there are a number of public disclosures that must be made, including making the tax filing available to anyone who’d like to see it. A non-profit tax filing (Form 990) includes information about how much money was raised, and what it was used for. For example, how much of the money earned was used for the company’s non-profit mission, and how much was spent on “overhead”, as well as information regarding salaries paid to employees, and information about the Board of Directors.

    These mechanisms are put in place to protect people—if you are going to donate your hard-earned money, you have a right to know where it went, and what it was used for. I am all for charitable works….I donate regularly to causes that are important to me, and I also have a number of non-profit clients that I provide consulting and tax services for. So I am quite familiar with the non-profit business arena, and I know what aspects seem ordinary, or in this case, extraordinary.

    Here’s what I know about Bullies Reality. Let’s start with the website (bulliesreality.org)

    First of all, maybe they just need to invest in a website update, because the current logo indicates that it’s a reality show, while all of the current chatter identifies it as a “non-profit” or a “foundation”.

    And look who the Head Honchos are…..that is Derrick Levasseur’s dad Tim and his wife Krissy. Long-time readers know that I was a big Derrick fan during BB16, but this post has nothing to do with him. In fact, I don’t think Derrick is involved much, or at all with this “non-profit” organization. I know he had some sort of fall out with his father after BB16, but I thought the source of the conflict was related to Tim’s relationship with Caleb, but in retrospect I’m not sure about that, and Derrick certainly didn’t say much about it. So I’m just going to leave Derrick out of this, other than to say that all I remember Derrick saying specifically about his dad on the BB16 live feeds was that Tim had some sort of business collecting and selling rare coins.

    But apparently Tim is also a TV show creator and the CEO and/or President of a charitable organization. These two also have an LLC that was created in 2015 that may or may not be related to the charitable effort—-but apparently when the LLC was created the goal was to “make a movie”.

    And James considers himself to be heavily involved with Bullies Reality, and has discussed the charity and also his relationship with Tim many times on the BB18 live feeds In fact, just last night on BBAD I heard James telling Natalie that he is careful to measure his words before speaking, so that he doesn’t say anything to anyone that would cause him to not be able to make appearances with Bullies Reality.

    ***HERE’S THE THING***

    I can’t find Bullies Reality listed as an approved non-profit organization anywhere, not even on their own website….but they do say that on Twitter, and frequently identify it as a non-profit foundation every time we hear reality people talk about it.

    As a CPA there are usually two places where I go to research non-profits for my clients, or to research prospective clients.

    1. IRS website – I recommend doing some investigation on any charity that wants your money, particularly small charities whose names are unfamiliar to you. You can’t deduct contributions to companies that aren’t on the list, so there’s that.

    2. Guidestar.org – This is another resource that provides all sorts of information about qualified non-profit organizations, including access to tax filings and administrative information.

    I couldn’t find “Bullies Reality” listed anywhere, on either website. It’s possible that the corporate name is different. For example, the “Hearts of Reality” organization operates under the GKTW, Inc charitable corporation. Whenever I get a business inquiry from a non-profit organization, I ask for their IRS “determination letter”, and they ALWAYS know exactly what I’m talking about, and asking them for.

    So I tweeted some questions this morning, and will let you all know via an update to this post as soon as I get a response, one way or another.

    Just to be clear, I’m ALL ABOUT helping people, but if donors are being MISLED or DECEIVED that is quite a different reality, and perhaps taking donation dollars away from organizations that are doing the right thing.

    ***EXCITING UPDATE***

    Before I even posted this, I did get a response from Bullies Reality, as follows:

    If you start a business, one of the first things to do is to apply to the IRS for an EIN number, which is really just an SSN for a business. It even has nine digits, too, just like your SSN, but there is only one dash in the series as you can see above. It’s great that Bullies Reality (i.e. Tim) replied to me, and in such a polite manner, but this has NOTHING to do with non-profit status. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

    So I’ll let you know if anything is clarified further. As you know I am all about the facts.

    Rob Cesternino just did a whole podcast with Rodney from a recent season of Survivor, although Rob only introduced Rodney as a “friend of James”, leaving many Big Brother fans scratching their heads.

    And guess who else Rob didn’t properly introduce? Tim Lavasseur, who was with Rodney in the background of the podcast, since Rodney was apparently staying at his house. Rodney (and Tim) wanted to discuss the way James is throwing his game away this season, and also to promote this big event they are throwing in James’ honor in the town where he lives.

    If you want to sell tickets to a party, and maybe donate a portion of the proceeds to a charity, that’s one thing, but I find the whole situation confusing. IS BULLIES REALITY A QUALIFIED NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION OR NOT?

    Here are a few tidbits that I remember hearing about all of this over the summer, just off the top of my head.

    * James told Paulie that this Rodney fellow was moving to Texas (Austin,maybe?), telling Paulie that Rodney was looking for a roommate.

    * I heard James gush over how great a guy Tim was several times this summer, even mentioning once that if James ever needed any money, Tim was happy to give it to him, and frequently tells James to let him know if “he needs anything”.

    (I’ve worked, and do work, with 100’s of small businesses, and that statement immediately got my attention. But maybe Tim is just really generous with his personal funds. Who knows.)

    * Just last week James was trying to convince Natalie that she should move to Texas, mentioning that his friend could get her a job “at a non-profit”.

    * I was under the impression that this organization was dedicated to empowering kids who are being bullied, but in the podcast Rodney said they are now going after “cancer, and anything else” that can harm people or kids.

    Um….that’s certainly a lofty ambition, but that’s not the way a non-profit foundation works. After I heard Rodney say that, I knew I was going to write about this topic. Something seems strange to me about all of this.

    Look, if you want to take advantage of celebrity to do good things for people, that’s great. But if you want to grab a piece of the limelight to mislead, or deceive, then the spotlight cuts both ways. That’s all I’m saying.

    Bullies Reality ‏@BulliesReality May 28
    Our mission is to save the lives of afflicted children across America
    Homeless to Home Sweet Home!! #blessed

    James Huling ‏@AsianJamesBB17 Aug 4
    James loves charity @BulliesReality helps him give back. Give them a follow to see all the good work they do.

    Bullies Reality ‏@BulliesReality Mar 21
    @AsianJamesBB17 So glad to have this man as apart of Bullies Reality. #StopBullying #changelives

    Bullies Reality ‏@BulliesReality Apr 13
    Chat with @meeshfitz from #SurvivorKaohRong for Bullies Reality Foundation. http://www.ebay.com/itm/-/162037731967 …?
    https://t.co/WBAT4NLyti

    James Huling ‏@AsianJamesBB17 Jul 19
    What do yall think if this design @zappa2001 made for James charity shirts? I love them!

    James Huling ‏@AsianJamesBB17 Jun 26
    The day he left for bb18. What would you say to him in an Hoh letter? @DerrickL told him don’t win till after jury

    James Huling ‏@AsianJamesBB17 20h20 hours ago
    James is laying low and keeping it all social advice from his favorite player @DerrickL How do you think he’s doing?

    Comments:

    On BB18 James’ occupation is labelled as “staff recruiter.”

    Is this organization what James is the “staff recruiter” for? He would be recruiting “celebrities”, essentially?

    Feed Watcher September 4, 2016 at 6:36 PM

    Hmmm. That is a VERY interesting question. I have heard James refer to Tim as his boss, but he usually says “friend”. I’ve also heard James say he works in a big office with a bunch of ladies, so I always assumed he recruited workers over the phone… I think he would be good on the phone with his personality and deep voice.

    I also don’t mean to imply that I think James is doing anything wrong….I do think he believes in what he believes to be a qualified non-profit, and has good intentions about it, of course.

    M. Poor September 4, 2016 at 6:22 PM

    Thanks for the info on the “Bullies Foundation”. This is the type of thing that really gets my goat **no ref to corey :)) Many Many Reality fans donate blindly because of a player they want to support, not because of the actual cause. I ALWAYS suggest if it’s a cause someone feels strongly about giving to, go directly to the cause & donate to ensure 100% of it goes to the cause. In the case of “Bullies” I would assume a portion of the donations goes to Rodney & Tim Lavasseur in the form of “operating”costs. The BIG question is “how much?” Cant wait to hear what you find out. I feel a whole separate column needs to be dedicated to this topic & investigation. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

    Jackie September 4, 2016 at 6:46 PM

    Just to add to your list, about an hour ago, Nicole asked James who would come to the finale for him. She assumed his roommate but he told her Tim is going to come.

    Optics September 4, 2016 at 7:20 PM

    RE “Bullies Reality” I am really happy you posted about this and it needs to get out. I am also working for a non-profit and accounting, and felt exactly the same especially after listening to RHAP yesterday. I also did a little bit of research, with the same thoughts as you, though I am from Canada. They claim to have helped 134 kids, but there is no link to check on the names. I looked everywhere for Financial Statements and found None. I checked out the reality members involved, and they are B or C rate people, such as I view James. I feel this is a ‘scam’ that Tim has come up with bouncing off his son’s win. The people involved aren’t burning bright lightbulbs. Unless or until I see proof they are a legit nonprofit, I don’t believe it, and people need to be cautioned.

    Celinka Serre September 5, 2016 at 6:04 AM

    I’m in Canada too. In Quebec a non profit has to be part of some sort of order. Like a lot of things. The Provincial government regulates so much, it’s insane. But it does weed out the sketchy folk when it comes to things like this, I presume. I didn’t watch that RHAP. I know that Rob remains as neutral as possible when trneding sketchy waters, if he suspected it wasn’t legit, he wouldn’t let on, but might let CBS know privately. I saw a documentary once that showed a guy scamming people to work for him, calling people to get them to donate and the workers got paid, but after a few weeks, the guy would disappear and all the money received with him. He’d emerge somewhere else under a different name, different organisation, to get more money, pay people and disappear, leaving the ”employees” scratching their heads.Sounds to me this is something very siimilar. Sounds to me Derrick knows his dad and if this is sketch, it could be the reason they don’t talk. Derrick’s dad migt be getting money through scams and Derrick the cop can’t be associated with that and might not have enough proof to stop him himself. Who knows. But the fact that he stopped talking to his dad is telling IMO.

    Unknown September 4, 2016 at 9:51 PM

    Wow – this is what newspaper journalism used to do in this country – congrats!!!!! I love your blog but this is sensational stuff – sounds like CBS is fostering this scam – WOW. Just my opinion, but enough here to paint James and CBS by implication and knowledge as involved in a not for profit scam. Just my opinion, sounds really dirty – wow – why did they bring James back? Why is there so much BB and survivor crossover? Under the table payments to cbs for casting? This has all the makings of a major scandal! Will anyone pick up the ball and run with it??????????

    Feed Watcher September 5, 2016 at 11:34 AM

    No…CBS has nothing to do with this mess.

    They brought James back because thousands of people who are not me just loved his “funny” pranks and his “love affair” with Meg. He won AFP, for gods sake!

    And Julie Chen says he is Les Moonves’ favorite player. That will get you on just about any show on CBS, I’m sure.

    Pete R September 4, 2016 at 9:57 PM

    Wow – sensational – James is a feeder for a scam non-profit? Is he funneling money to CBS people?

    Feed Watcher September 5, 2016 at 11:29 AM

    Thanks for your input, but I think you missed the part where I requested “solid proof” from the charity itself.

    Tim L. put himself out there as soon as his son made a name for himself playing Big Brother, and continues to do so, attaching himself to a wide array of CBS reality stars.

    Please feel free to go ahead and write him a big check if you want to…no one is stopping you.

    And my blog is all about THE FACTS of what happened on the live feeds, with my opinions about it thrown in. If I really wanted to bury Tim L. I would have written a separate post about the matter and made it the headline, but instead it’s buried at the bottom of a rather long and boring post.

    And just because someone uses their name on the internet, it doesn’t mean it is their real name. I didn’t even allow comments for years when I first started this, and only opened up comments to Anonymous posters a few seasons ago.

    Anonymous September 6, 2016 at 2:18 AM

    James has mentioned many times that Tim represents him. I assume as some sort of agent. Several times now he has asked Tim through the live feeds to book him some meet & greets.

    I recall Derrick on the BB16 feeds saying he did not get along with his dad. Then post show discovered his dad had made regular visits to a local radio station in TX discussing BB. Caleb, Cody and Derrick were invited to be on that show and also made some type of club appearance. Caleb was presented a truck from Tim and subsequently began filming for a TV show (mentioned in your post.) According to rumor Derrick warned Caleb to be careful of his dad and it wasn’t long there was a falling out between Tim & Derrick. Caleb chose Tim’s side and Cody chose Derrick’s. The TV show eventually fell through. Then last year the Bullies appearances picked up again but this time as meet & greet types and not as a TV show. And once BB17 ended it seemed Tim had connected with James and somehow became his manager.

    I do find the entire thing sketchy. I always fall back on Derrick’s words of warning about his own dad. No idea what their relationship is now but many times Tim has been referred to as a “TV producer.” Seems he has many titles. This charity thing just adds more mystery.

    Anonymous September 6, 2016 at 7:48 PM

    A taxable entity search for the State of Texas shows “Bullies Reality” as an active taxable entity. The key here is the word “taxable”. The State of Texas is very friendly to non-profits. If you have an approved determination letter from the IRS, Texas will determine you to be non-taxable to the State as well. The only other reason a non-profit may be listed under the taxable entity search is if they have sales or other production/manufacturing tax issues. Considering their business model as vaguely described in all their public interfaces, other taxes should not apply. Furthermore, Texas has a non-profit database much like the IRS and they are not listed there. Also, Tim is listed as the Agent of Record and the taxable search shows them as active yet without the public information report that is required to be filed annually. It is all rather fishy. I am in the same line of work as you except as an EA instead of a CPA. Non-profits are the bane of my existence but I still somehow manage to not run them all off. In conclusion, let me wish you peace and sleep after Oct 17th. May all the procrastinators find their documents and and may all corporations provide you with an accurate P&L.

    Anonymous September 7, 2016 at 3:47 PM

    Well this is a prime example of Reality stars not knowing what to do after reality tv. It seems like their making up a fake organization to stay relevant, hang out with each other, and fund their lives. How about going to school; getting job. This is sad because I’m a huge fan of both Derrick and James but this “non-profit” does seem sketchy. I never never donate to an organization if they aren’t willing to be transparent.

    From survivorsucks.yuku.com:

    09/07/16 10:38 PM
    Now that he and Natalie are done, the real James is coming back out. He just told Nicole, Corey, and Paul how he and Rodney from Survivor: Worlds Apart had a three-some with a stripper shortly before this season. Probaby using money from unsuspecting donors to Bullies Reality.

    “Bullies Reality” is headed by Derrick’s father: CEO Bullies Reality Foundation Tim Levasseur.

    So Derrick’s dad is a con artist who is manipulating children who feel bullied and their families (and has expanded that to include all “afflicted children across America”) to send him money and enrich himself, and he’s using Caleb and James as ‘celebrities’ to recruit easy marks for his scam?

    I’m pretty sure I heard James tell Nicole earlier that his “family” person he’s flying out to the finale is Derrick’s father. Wow.

    He did say that earlier in the BR. Tim sounds like a scam artist.

    Derrick learned his mental “skills” from his Father….interesting.

    Sounds like Tim is a (alleged) scam artist. Could this be why Derrick and his dad had a falling out? So Tim just gives James money when he needs it? I hope the Feedwatcher guy stays on top of this. I’d love to hear more from the bullied kids they’ve empowered, and the kids with “cancer and other stuff” they’ve helped.

    Oh, and he works for one of those staffing agencies. Probably the ones that make you pay half your income for 3 months or however long if you’re hired–those kind of rip-off places that prey on desperate people. I figured.

    James work(s) for Derrick’s father… prevent Bullying, etc,

    Derrick knows it’s all BS and pretends to not speak to him HAHAAAAAAA

    I guess the staffing agency story is his cover, then. Yep, another one of those “non-profits,” where all the money goes straight to the pockets of the so-called “founders” and their henchmen.

    From Reddit:

    Rob’s podcast was weird. I only listened to the audio version but you could tell Rob was a little sketched out with the whole set-up. Also Derrick didn’t even mention this group during his own recent podcast.

    It sounds like a complete hustle.

    http://robhasawebsite.com/big-brother-2016-rodney-lavoie-james-huling-podcast-bb18/

    And as far as RHAP goes, when Derrick appeared last season(?) Rob mentioned the rumors that Derrick wasn’t speaking to his dad and was embarrassed when Derrick said it was true. I think Rob didn’t acknowledge Tim on the podcast because he doesn’t want to offend Derrick, who is still a pretty big get as a guest on the podcast.

    In an interview Derrick mentioned the organization and invited people to an event and I also think Rodney mentioned Derrick being a main person at one of their events. I don’t know how much involvement he has, certainly not like Rodney and James, but he does seem connected to it now based on what he and others have said. He’s probably just more low-key about it since he knows it’s a scam and doesn’t want negative publicity.

    Rodney post snapchats of him, James and Derrick’ dad taking trips to vegas, and throwing around a shit ton of $1 bills every few months.

    James and Rodney have also mentioned that Derrick’s dad has a jet that they use to take trips to Vegas or Boston or wherever they want to go. Very sketchy.

    I’ve been sketched out by them for a while now. One thing that really gets me is their t-shirt design. On the front is the Bullies Reality logo, and on the back it says ” Cancer Sucks.” Like WTF does that have to do with anything, the charity is supposed to be about bullying!? It sounds like the most pandering/fishing slogan ever. “Rabble rabble rabble…yeah Cancer Sucks!….rabble rabble…give us money….rabble rabble bullying bad yeah..”

    Rodney’s sister died of cancer, and he talked about this on his Survivor season, and also threw the “Rodney Bowl” after the season ended.

    I think Tim pounced on Rodney and latched on to his cancer cause. He’s a real piece of work, that Tim.

    I don’t disagree that Tim exploits the cancer thing to keep these idiots in check (only James, Rodney and Caleb would be stupid enough to think they’re fighting cancer by wearing t-shirts), but Rodney’s sister was an OD.

    http://my.xfinity.com/blogs/tv/2015/01/23/survivor-blue-collar-rodney-if-you-come-after-me-bring-a-hammer/

    Interesting…anyone else remember the conversation one night about going out to clubs and throwing around money? A lot of the house guests were in the Tokyo room (def. James and Paulie, maybe Zakiyah, Natalie, Nicole, Paul? I really can’t remember because J and P were doing most of the talking). And James and Paulie refused to say who exactly they were talking about but said he spends tons of money when they go out and they’ll hook them up, etc. There seemed to be a lot of speculation that it must be Derrick’s dad. Does he have another business? Where is he just making tons of money to give away? The whole thing is bizarre to me.

    Their website just screams scam. I mean nothing says “stop bullying” like this: http://bulliesreality.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/inside4FINAL-500×600.jpg

    The Bullies Reality org doesn’t seem to have much of a clear mission or purpose either…The way Rodney described it was all over the place & it didn’t make sense.

    [–]YourWaterlooSpy Girls 4 points 4 days ago

    That’s so bizarre. What on earth would be Derrick’s father’s motivation in all of this?

    $

    But the charity can’t possibly be taking in that many donations? And it seems like Derrick’s dad is GIVING money to the BB guys?

    His marks are James, Caleb, and Rodney. None are bright. I don’t know what kind of payments Caleb or Rodney got from Survivor, but James had AFP and stipend money. Yet within less than a year his money situation is dire enough that Derrick’s dad gives him money when he needs it? And Derrick’s dad is his “manager”?

    What does Derrick’s dad manage exactly? It can’t be James’s appearances for a beer run to Walmart, I’m a little worried if he’s managing James’s money. Would not be surprised if a hefty chunk of the AFP prize went to this “charity” because a certain manager told him it would be a good tax write off.

    How about email them and ask if you get a tax deduction if you donate. Then ask for the charity tax number.

    [–]purpleflowergangFrank 3 points 3 days ago

    The author of the blog tried that and only got the EIN. Tim isn’t releasing any evidence that they are, or have attempted to file as, a nonprofit. He’s banking on people not understanding the distinction of having an EIN and tax-exempt nonprofit status.

    Because the author of the blog knows the EIN is not proof of charitable status, this has blown up. But any uniformed person (like James) who might have donated and filed the donation with just that EIN better hope they aren’t audited.

    Damn, this article http://m.midlothianmirror.com/article/20150725/news/307259992

    And this scathing comment

    Tim is a real piece of work.

    Edit: the indiegogo campaign mentioned in the article: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/bullies-the-reality-show#/

    This is all pretty fucked up. He is taking advantage of vulnerable kids to jumpstart his reality show creator career. I can’t actually figure out what the fuck they do to help kids in this type of situation. There is a form on the bullies reality website that you can fill out if you’re being bullied, can some put some shit in there and post the response they get? Just curious if they are actually pointing kids to resources or using it as a reality TV recruitment tool

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