Mikey Weinstein Rakes in $700,000 in Donations

Late in 2014 Michael “Mikey” Weinstein filed his required IRS documentation for 2013 — and it revealed he had a banner year. For the first time, his Military Religious Freedom Foundation topped $700,000 in total income.

MRFF Total Revenue: $701,535

For his part, Mikey Weinstein gave himself a nice raise (literally, since he says he votes on his own pay package), for his highest take home pay ever from the “charity” he founded:

Weinstein compensation: $299,634

In other words, 42.7% of every “charitably donated dollar” the MRFF brought in during 2013 went to Mikey Weinstein’s compensation. That’s slightly less than the 46.8% he took the year prior.

To be “fair,” Weinstein also claimed an increase in work hours, saying he puts in 105 hours a week.  That’s up from 80 hours a week the year prior, and works out to 15 hours a day, 7 days a week, every single week.  That’s what Weinstein filed; given the low output of the MRFF, it is difficult to say what he actually does for 105 hours a week.  (It is also unclear whether Weinstein dissolved his other company, MIBON Consulting, which presumably also takes up a substantial amount of his time to bring in more than $100,000 a year.)

The general breakdown of funding below his paycheck is generally little changed from prior years. His expenses for “consulting” were slightly more than $60,000, his security doubled to more than $20,000, grant-writing nearly tripled to almost $15,000, and his “events” increased ten-fold.

In addition to his prior years’ vague expenses like “consulting” (which increased), Weinstein added more than $30,000 for “production services” and “public announcements.” It would seem Chris Rodda probably received a pay raise, as well.  Previously, she seemed to say she worked “full time” for only $25,000 a year.  Weinstein now claims a research expense of $31,000.

Weinstein also spent $30,000 on somewhat undefined “fundraising.” Despite being a substantial number, it has likely paid off well.  A significant portion of the funds Weinstein has raised come not from individual donors, but from other “charities.”

For example, while not reported by the MRFF, the Aspen Community Foundation gave Weinstein $33,000 in 2013. Information about contributions from other groups won’t be available for some time, but it has historically included the Jewish Communal Fund and Rockefeller Family Fund, totaling more than six-figures from just these three groups.

It is also worth remembering this is financial information for 2013 — it was just filed late into 2014.

The impact of the July 2014 news article saying Weinstein was “cashing in” through his charity, headlining “Nonprofit CEO cashes in on religious freedom campaign,” wasn’t represented in these documents, and it has the potential to be substantial. The public relations blight absolutely affected his individual donors, as Weinstein neither said nor did anything publicly to materially counter that reporting (issues like voting on his own compensation, for example). He complained, certainly, but calling the reporting “character assassination” without rebutting the facts only served to lend credence to the allegations themselves.

Much may depend on when Weinstein receives funds from his large donors (whether before or after the report was published) — and whether they reconsider writing large checks to a man who was in the news for the size of his personal paycheck.

In the meantime, Weinstein is likely resting comfortably, having padded his pocketbook with $1.7 million over the past few years, nearly half of the “donations” for which he begs each year — quite the nice sum for doing little more than attacking religious freedom in the US military.  Who knew attacking Christians in the military was so profitable?

MRFF Compensation to Mikey Weinstein:

2005: Formed
2006: $116,330
2007: $0
2008: $252,485
2009: $296,232
2010: $218,201
2011: $252,681
2012: $273,355
2013: $299,634
2014: Not yet reported.

Prior years discussions: 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008.