Poet Jonathan Swift once said, “Falsehood flies, and the Truth comes limping after it…”
This expression reflects the challenge we face correcting misinformation that persists through social media, emails and a variety of websites. In spite of our best efforts to provide truthful, accurate information about our organization, we do not expect this misinformation to go away, so we have created this page to simply provide the facts.
One persistent rumor goes something like this:
“Think about these before you donate. As you open your pockets to do a good thing and make yourself feel good, please keep these facts in mind…”
The message then quotes erroneous information and salary figures for several nonprofit organizations’ chief executives, including a reference to a so-called “Goodwill CEO and Owner Mark Curran, who profits $2.3 million a year.” This information is simply untrue.
Lorna G. Utley, not Mark Curran, is the CEO of Goodwill Industries International and reports to a volunteer Board of Directors. Ms. Utley’s compensation is only a fraction of the amount reported. In addition, Goodwill is regarded as one of the most trustworthy non-profits in the United States.
…but don’t take our word for it. See for yourself by visiting the popular fact checking website at Snopes.com. You can also review why Charity Watch gives Goodwill an “A” grade as a Charity Watch “Top Rated” organization for Governance & Transparency.
Furthermore, Goodwill organizations are managed at the local level. This means that employee compensation is determined by a local board of directors that are comprised of members within our community. At Goodwill of the Heartland, we believe in complete transparency regarding our finances. Our executive compensation reflects our annual revenues, the number of services we provide, and overall impact we have helping our community.
Here are some other things we think you should know about Goodwill of the Heartland:
- Our employees earn more than the minimum wage
In fact, the average wage paid to our hourly workers is $11.60/hour.
- We’ve probably helped someone you know
From job training to job placement, we have a variety of services that help find jobs for people who struggle with a wide range of personal barriers. Including (but not limited to): homeless military veterans, people who face physical or emotional barriers, and high school students looking for their first work experience.
- While our stores help fund our mission, they don’t come close to covering all the work we do as a non-profit organization
Many people are under the impression income from our stores pays for everything we do. Unfortunately, the need for our services always exceeds our capacity to pay for the programs we provide. Last year, our stores provided 70% of the revenue needed to fund our programs.
- At Goodwill of the Heartland, 89 cents of every dollar goes directly back into our mission
A percentage far higher than most non-profit organizations. This ratio reflects the high priority we place on improving the lives of those who need our help.
- Goodwill has been honored by Forbes Magazine as America’s 25 Most Inspiring Companies
This honor is one of many reasons we think Goodwill is a great place to work. If you want to work for a great organization, we are hiring! Apply at workatgoodwill.com.
- We make a full disclosure on our website of all our financial information, including our CEO compensation, in our IRS Form 990 and Annual Report.
Thank you for taking the time to share this information when you encounter these rumors. Doing so helps us continue our mission to help advance the social and economic well-being of people who experience barriers to independence