Tuesday, February 17, 2009

More on Angel Food Ministries' Campaign Contributions

The Atlanta Journal Constitution has also picked up on Angel Food Ministries questionable campiagn contributions.  The AJC reports, though, that the 501(c)(3) is also under scrutiny for making nearly $500,000 in unsecured loans to insiders and disqualified persons. 

Angel Food Ministries, the Georgia nonprofit started to help struggling families with food costs, made more than $453,000 in unsecured loans in 2007 to formerly high-paid family members running the organization. It brought the total of their loans to more than $1.1 million over a two-year period.  Internal Revenue Service documents show that father Joe Wingo; his wife, Linda; and sons Wesley and Andrew together earned $402,097 in 2007, down from $2.1 million in 2006.  However, the organization gave the family growing amounts in unsecured loans. The Wingos owed Angel Food Ministries nearly $663,000 beginning in 2007, and that increased to $1.1 million by the end of the year.

As I mentioned in my most previous post, that's a whole lotta groceries that went, instead of to the poor country folk of rural Georgia, to the founder's pockets.  The most distressing new revelation is that more than 200 metro Atlanta churches participate in the Angel Food Ministries.  One ought to expect that donations will dry up soon.  Here's a good teaching point using the media attention as context:  "what should a tax exempt organization do by way of crisis control when faced with revelations like this?"

dkj

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/nonprofit/2009/02/more-on-angel-f.html

In the News | Permalink

TrackBack URL for this entry:

http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341bfae553ef0111686acd52970c

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference More on Angel Food Ministries' Campaign Contributions:

Comments

Before 2008, the United States was in a period of economic growth, but the Bush administration didn’t use the growth to reduce poverty. Now the number of people living in poverty is rising faster than the needs of the poor can be met. For example, some food banks are turning hungry people away (“Food Banks Can't Meet Growing Demand,” USA Today, November 25, 2008). At the same time, Angel Food is feeding half a million families a month. They do this by recruiting a huge network of volunteers in 38 states. I’m one of these volunteers. I volunteer half a Saturday each month in my local community distributing groceries. I can tell you that Angel Food is much needed. Please, as we see news stories, remember that Angel Food is effective in helping people at a time of great need.

Posted by: Concerned about hunger | Mar 4, 2009 8:49:56 AM

Before 2008, the United States was in a period of economic growth, but the Bush administration didn’t use the growth to reduce poverty. Now the number of people living in poverty is rising faster than the needs of the poor can be met. For example, some food banks are turning hungry people away (“Food Banks Can't Meet Growing Demand,” USA Today, November 25, 2008). At the same time, Angel Food is feeding half a million families a month. They do this by recruiting a huge network of volunteers in 38 states. I’m one of these volunteers. I volunteer half a Saturday each month in my local community distributing groceries. I can tell you that Angel Food is much needed. Please, as we see news stories, remember that Angel Food is effective in helping people at a time of great need.

Posted by: Wilson Thomas | Mar 4, 2009 8:52:00 AM

http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/stories/2009/03/03/angel_food_sex_suit.html?cxntlid=inform_sr

this is a link to a lawsuit that was also filed on the same day as this one meantioned. this is a sexual harrasment suit against jo wingo's son andy.

Posted by: barley | Mar 6, 2009 4:15:09 AM

It seems to me that the focus on donations is misplaced. You may not be aware that angel food does not solicit donations, and it has something less than 1% of its revenue based in donations. It is a social enterprise-- the largest food cooperative in the nation. This changes many things, and while it may not speak to loans it does speak to the type of executive function and compensation that is required to operate such a massive operation. In addition to this, our nation is facing a broken emergency food safety net, which cannot address the demand for food. Perhaps what is needed is another question, how can we support and provide a nurturing environment to the emerging social entrepreneurs across the nation, who like Angel Food are trying to meet the growing needs of a burgeoning underclass.

Posted by: William Riley | Mar 6, 2009 1:48:30 PM

Post a comment