You see it on TV all the time. Wounded Warrior Project being hawked by some rustic individual or veteran, asking you to give money to help our injured service men and women. Normally it would be an honorable pursuit. However, you might be surprised at the truth.
Wounded Warrior project has raised more than $1 billion dollars in donations since 2003. 300 million of that came in 2014 alone. Giving the money WWP has raised, they helped oodles of veterans. Right?
WWP spends 40-50 percent of its money on “overhead.” That works out to over half a billion in 13 years. Where the hell did all the money go?
As a result of what is flat out grift of the public and exploitation of America’s feelings towards injured servicemen, Steven Nardizzi – former CEO, and Al Giordano – former COO, both got their butts FIRED from the charity.
Veterans’ charities typically spend 10-15 percent of their money on overhead, which includes everything from normal administration to fronting the cash for charity events to get more donations.
In 2014, WWP spent $26 million dollars on lavish employee “conferences” that were essentially the adult version of spring break parties loaded with booze at lavish resorts. Clearly this didn’t help needy vets in any way.
Eric Millette, a retired army staff sergeant, worked there as a motivational speaker until he quit after two years. Milette had this to say about the organization:
I’ll be damned if you’re gonna take hard-working Americans’ money and drink it and waste it, instead of helping those brave men and women who gave you the freedom to walk the face of this earth.
Over 40 former employees have reported spending was out of control at the charity. Some of them were so afraid of the organization that they only spoke on condition of anonymity for fears of retaliation.
One quote about a “meeting” at a luxurious Colorado Springs resort says it best.
He [Nardizzi] rappelled down the side of a building. He’s come in on a Segway. He’s come in on a horse.”
Another employee described the same scene:
It was extremely extravagant. Dinners and alcohol and and, just total excess. I mean, it’s what the military calls fraud waste and abuse.
Nardizzi gave a ridiculous non-defense and non-apology statement about this when a comment was requested:
If your only fixation is spending the most on programs, that’s feeling good, but not necessarily doing good.
This doesn’t even make sense. The primary function of any charity is to spend the most it can on programs to help people. Burning through half a billion in donations like a kid in a candy store with an addiction to sugar highs doesn’t help people at all.
This doesn’t even explain where the majority of the money went. $26 million dollars is a huge amount, but it doesn’t even put a dent in the 50 percent “overhead” that has been discovered. There is more to this and it’s really going to stink when it’s uncovered.
Featured image via CBS screen capture