GET THE FACTS ABOUT ONLINE RUMORS!

“Think before you donate” and we think you will see why donating to Goodwill® is the right choice. Goodwill is the leading workforce provider in the world, placing someone in a new job every 30 seconds of every business day. Goodwill has a more than 118-year track record in providing services to people going through transition, whether due to military service, lack of education or work experience, mental or physical challenges, or being impacted by the criminal justice system. There are 156 local 501(c)(3) Goodwill organizations in the U.S. and Canada, and a presence in 12 other countries. Goodwill is proud to be recognized by GuideStar with its Platinum Seal of Approval, the highest rating for nonprofit organizations. Goodwill retains the highest ranking by Charity Watch, formerly known as the American Institute of Philanthropy, which provides information about charities’ financial efficiency, accountability, governance and fundraising.

Because Goodwill is widely known as a retail entity, there is a lot of misinformation and misrepresentations about our brand. In particular, there is a rumor that has been circulating for more than 15 years that insinuates we have an owner by the name of “Mark Curran.” As a nonprofit, Goodwill does not have an owner and no one by that name has ever been affiliated with the Goodwill network. Steve Preston is the president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. Learn more about him.

We know that you want your donations to be used wisely, so here are the facts about Goodwill:

  • More than 85 percent of collective revenue from the sale of donated goods at Goodwill organizations support and grow their critical community-based programs and services, including job placement and training, credentials and certifications, and support services, such as child care, financial education, mentoring and transportation. This is well above the Better Business Bureau’s accountability standards, which require that an organization spend 65 percent of its total expenses on program services.
  • Last year, more than 230,000 people in the U.S. and Canada connected with jobs or earned employment through career services offered by Goodwill organizations in North America. More than 1.5 million people engaged in face-to-face Goodwill services to build their career and financial assets, and advance in their careers. Additionally, more than 24 million people have accessed Goodwill’s mobile and online services, including virtual career fairs and mentoring.
  • Goodwill operates several dozen adult, charter high schools called Excel Centers, which prepare students with both a high school diploma and credentials as well as free childcare for adult learners. These graduates are showing significantly higher wages, many are going on to higher degrees, and even their children are demonstrating improved academic performance.
  • The Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator® (GDCA), a first-of-its-kind collaboration with Google.org equips people with digital skills in a changing economy. Since its launch, it has engaged more than 1 million individuals in digital skills training for career pathways and more than 10,000 receive job readiness training, with an additional 153,000 using those skills to connect with employment. The GDCA enables participants to learn basic online skills as well as train in more advanced skills, such as coding and cyber security skills.
  • Through Goodwill organizations’ donated goods operations, 4.6 billion pounds of people’s usable goods have been recovered by selling them in Goodwill stores and outlets as well as online, giving them a second life and giving people a second chance.

MEET OUR PRESIDENT AND CEO

Steven C. Preston
Goodwill Industries International

Steven C. Preston is the president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International, the nation’s leading nonprofit workforce development provider, whose mission is to help people reach their full potential through learning and the power of work. Goodwill advances its mission through 156 community-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, which operate more than more than 3,300 retail stores, perform commercial services, employ more than 140,000 people and manage workforce development, and other support programs.

Preston held leadership positions in both the private and public sectors as an executive. He orchestrated successful turnarounds as CEO of two private corporations, Oakleaf Global Holdings and Livingston International. He was also the CFO of two Fortune 500 companies — Waste Management and ServiceMaster — during times of significant change and restructuring for each company.

Preston graduated with Highest Distinction from Northwestern University and holds an MBA from the University of Chicago. He currently serves on the Wheaton College Board of Trustees, the Partnership for Public Service Board of Directors and the Northwestern University Weinberg College Board of Visitors.

CHANGING LIVES

Local Goodwills across the United States and Canada serve individuals every day on their path towards job and career success. Each year, Goodwill Industries International recognizes two individuals whose story demonstrates how determination and the right opportunities can lead to lasting, positive change.

GET THE FACTS

Goodwill definitely encourages you to “think before you donate” — the one legitimate message that this otherwise spurious email contains — and to research and learn more about the charities you’d like to support. Be certain the organization you choose uses its revenue for charitable purposes that support a mission you can get behind. Read more about Goodwill’s impact to transform the lives of individuals through our programs.

View Goodwill’s feature in the Better Business Bureau trust report.

Learn more about Goodwill’s strategies to combat viral rumors and best practices by visiting the Ad Council blog and a lecture as part of the National Digital Roundtable. Also, hear about Goodwill’s strategies for combating the rumor by listening to the Public Relations Review Podcast and the Crisis Ahead Podcast or read more in PR Daily.

For more information debunking this hoax email, please visit Politifact and Snopes.com, a website which validates and debunks urban legends, Internet rumors, e-mail forwards, and other stories of unknown or questionable origin.

You can be an advocate for Goodwill. When you hear or read false Internet rumors, please help set the record straight and share this link. Thank you for your support!

DOCUMENTS

We invite you to view our 2019 Annual Impact Report , 2019 990, 2019 990-T, 2019 Audited Financials, 2019 financial donors and information regarding our 2019-2020 Board of Directors.

Find Your Nearest Goodwill Store Today

LAST UPDATED: January 2021