Monday, August 27, 2012

Mitt Romney's Tyler Foundation and the Millions He Donates To Charity

For all the bitching and moaning about  Mitt Romney's wealth, over the years the Romney's have donated millions to charitable organizations, according to Forbes.  Since they have the means, and the Mormon Church requires a 10% tithing of annual income, the Romneys have been very generous donating to organizations as diverse as AIDs Action and the Wright Museum through their Tyler Foundation.

Romney and his wife Ann also maintain a separate foundation, established in 1999, the same year that Romney left Bain Capital to serve as CEO of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics Organizing Committee. The couple have contributed approximately$13.6 million, including an initial gift of more than $3.6 million, to their Tyler Charitable Foundation, based in Boston, MA, in the past 13 years.
Since the Tyler Foundation began making grants in 2000, its annual disbursements have averaged approximately $650,000 per year. The foundation’s most active years were 2003 and 2008, with approximately $2 million given away in each. In 2010, the most recent year for which data is available, the foundation hit its average, donating $650,000.
All told, Mitt and Ann Romney have doled out over $7 million via the Tyler Charitable Foundation. And although last year’s annual tax disclosure won’t be publicly available until this coming November, I would wager that the Romneys kept the pace in 2011, and that figure is now around $8 million. As of the 2010 disclosure, the Tyler Charitable Foundation had assets of more than $10 million.

His favorite top ten organizations and charities, and the amounts the Tyler Foundation has gifted  since 2000 are:

1. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints: $4,781,0002. Brigham Young University: $525,0003. The United Way: $177,0004. Right to Play: $111,5005. The George W. Bush Library: $100,0006. Operation Kids: $85,0007. Center For Treatment of Pediatric MS: $75,0008. Harvard Business School: $70,0009. City Year: $65,00010. Deseret International: $50,000Weber State University: $50,000
Yes, the bulk has gone to the Mormon Church, but according to one of the comments in response to a disparaging remark regarding that fact, the Church helps not only the community but aids countries in need.

Yes, Mormons contribute 10% tithing to the Church, as well as more to various other charities. But it is worthwhile to know where the Church is spending that money. Since the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has no paid clergy, it has much more to use for the welfare of its members and their neighbors. When a natural disaster or catastrophe occurs around the world, the Church is often the first organization there to offer help and relief. The Sunday following the Tsunami I was one of the volunteers who removed tons of clothes off the racks of Deseret Industries and prepared them for shipment to Japan. We bundled the clothes on Monday, they traveled to Salt Lake City by truck on Tuesday, and were on a plane to Japan on Wednesday. I was honored to have that privilege. And, one more comment, this one from then US President Ronald Reagan: “If, during the period of the Great Depression, every church had come forth with a welfare program founded on correct principles as the LDS church did, we would not be in the difficulty in which we find ourselves today.” He urged that in our need we turn not to government but rather to ourselves. He also commented, “What I think is that if more people had this idea back when the Great Depression hit, there wouldn’t be any government welfare today, or need for it.”

Well said.

Read the rest on Forbes.

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