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Veterans Charity Raises Millions to Help Those Who’ve Served. But Telemarketers Are Pocketing Most of It.


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This is lower than I thought people went.


"The warning was prophetic.

Maurice Levite sat in a modest office in Falls Church, Virginia, about a decade ago, and cautioned his longtime friend, Brian Arthur Hampton, against continuing to use telemarketers to fund his small veterans charity.

With the help of his fundraisers-for-hire, Hampton had increased Circle of Friends for American Veterans’ income by an astounding amount — tenfold within three years.

But there was a catch — a costly one. The fundraisers were keeping most of the contributions donors were giving to the charity. Almost all of the money left over paid for overhead costs, such as Hampton’s salary. Veterans themselves received scraps.

Levite says he protested, but Hampton ignored him. He hired another telemarketer, Outreach Calling, to assist a related veterans nonprofit he runs out of the same office. This telemarketer — which the New York attorney general’s office says is run by a man they banned for life from fundraising in New York and remains under investigation — kept $9 out of every $10 raised.

Meanwhile, Hampton’s reported compensation quadrupled — to $340,126 between his two nonprofits in 2015 — in less than a decade.

“I’m flabbergasted,” said Levite, who served with Hampton on the board of Circle of Friends for American Veterans from 2006 to 2009. “Those figures blow me away.”

With help from Outreach Calling, Hampton is now expanding his operation into the largely unregulated world of political fundraising, sponsoring a veterans-focused political action committee that’s using the same money-generating tactics as his nonprofit groups, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of Federal Election Commission and Internal Revenue Service documents.

Hampton has already cashed in . . ."

Much more in the whole article here:



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We don't have a land line any more, so I don't get these kinds of calls. When we did, however, I would ask them for the name of their organization, tell them I would look into it, and then hang up. I would then look them up on Charity Navigator:

Charity Navigator

Most of the time, those that call you (rather than you contacting them) aren't worth your time.


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