JUNE 23, 2011 10:44AM

Has Glenn Beck Honored $1.1 Million Pledge to 8/28 Charity?

Rate: 7 Flag

Updated below.

If Glenn Beck is a man of his word he gave (or will give) the Special Operations Warriors Foundation (SOWF) a personal check in the amount of $1,164,352.

In August of 2010 Beck held his “8/28 Restoring Honor Rally” on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.  He heavily promoted the event as a way for Americans to reconnect with the founding principles of this country and at the same time raise millions of dollars for a very worthwhile charity.

From GlennBeck.com, dated Jan. 25, 2010 [Emphasis added]

So now when I had this idea about restoring honor, 8/28, and you can read all about it at GlennBeck.com, when I had this idea, we started running some numbers and it looks like it could be in, you know, like $2 million to produce this thing… Here’s the deal I’ve made. I’m going to come to you and for anything that we don’t raise and we spend, I’ll cover the rest. It cost $2 million? We raise a million dollars, I’ll cover the rest

According to SOWF’s recently released federal tax return, the 8/28 rally expenses came in at $2,164,532.  “We raise a million dollars, I’ll cover the rest.”  

I’m sure that the sons and daughters of wounded and killed soldiers appreciate the net $3.8 million that Beck’s rally did raise and the additional $1.1 million will help even more of these deserving kids get a college education.

If there is any doubt as to whether Beck will honor his pledge, consider his statement posted at GlennBeck.com, on July 16, 2010: [Emphasis added]

I want to do deals with a handshake. I do deals with a handshake. Now, that doesn’t mean I don’t have paperwork. I mean, you think — you really think giant corporations are going to get into a deal without paperwork? Of course not. I’m perfectly willing to work without a contract. I honor my word.

It sounds to me like he’ll cut them a check, if he hasn’t already.  (There is nothing in the SOWF tax return that indicates that Beck honored the pledge but if he paid up after January 1, 2011 it will be noted on next year's tax return).

Call me cynical but I’ll believe it when I see it.  If I’m right and Beck doesn’t honor his pledge, it’s just one more example of Glenn Beck as P.T. Barnum.  If I’m wrong, SOWF gets another $1.1 million. 

I hope that I’m wrong.

 *    *    *    *


As of this posting Glenn Beck's representatives have not responded to questions regarding this payment.  I will update the article if and when I hear from them.

Update: [Emphasis mine]

Steven McLeary, Executive Director of SOWF, responded to my email.


Dear Mr Fallihee,


Thank you for your email.


Our 2010 financial report all funds collected that year and more funds were raised in early 2011. We actually netted over 4 million and are completely satisfied with the event.


The amount of funds individuals or corporations contribute is kept confidential as per our confidentially policy that you will find on our web site.


This we hold as a promise to all of our donors regardless of the size of a donation.


Another benefit of the rally was tens of thousands of people that have become supporters.


Thank you.

Steven L. McLeary
Major, USAF (Ret)
Executive Director

My reply:

A quick glance at your website shows that JH Cohn donated 75K and Dick's Sporting Goods is matching up to 250K.  Did those corporations waive their confidentiality agreement?

*    *    *    *

I'm still waiting to hear back from Glenn Beck's PR firm, "H Strategies."


Next week:  Why has SOWF distanced themselves from Glenn Beck?

*    *    *    *

SOWF is an organization that “provides full scholarship grants and educational and family counseling to the surviving children of special operations personnel who die in operational or training missions and immediate financial assistance to severely wounded special operations personnel and their families.”

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I believe if it benefits him he will. If he can sneak it under the rug he will do that.
You cannot trust this man.
Rated with hugs
Good investigative journalism. Call me cynical, but I suspect he has a whole blimp-full of hot air to blow in some swamp land. He has plenty of time on his hands to do that now.

Which is worse—making empty promises to help our troops for the sole purpose of appearing sanctimonious, or picketing their funerals for the sole purpose of appearing sanctimonious?
I want him to give the million dollars...xox
Hey, let's hope he gives the money. R
Updated with comments from SOWF.
If he hasn't paid up, they better get it from him soon. After all, he'll soon be an ex-Fox News Blowhard who dished out too much bad craziness for even Fox to digest...

For the sake of the people SOWF benefits, I hope he coughs up. But I have my doubts if his feet can be held to a hot enough fire.
You might ask SOWF to provide you with a copy of their 2010 Form 990, which should be available now. If you compare it with their previous reports you should be able to determine a windfall contribution because their revenue stream is pretty stable.

Their 2009 990 shows that they have pretty slick accountants, meaning they raise $5.7 million a year without showing hardly any fund raising expenses. That's pretty hard to do. In addition, when they do break out fund raising costs, they put it all under "Other." Many other organizations are more transparent about their donor base, but if Glenn Beck's a heavy hitter for you, maybe it's better remain quiet about it.
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