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America's Leading Charity Evaluator Turns 10

Charity Navigator Celebrates 10 Years of Helping Donors


Glen Rock, N.J. (April 4, 2012) - As recently as a decade ago, people donating money to charity had few assurances that their money was being spent efficiently, effectively and ethically.   That all changed when Charity Navigator launched its charity rating website on April 15, 2002.   Today, Charity Navigator helps millions of donors have confidence in their charitable choices, thereby influencing billions of dollars of charitable gifts annually.

Charity Navigator, a nonprofit itself, was created based on a family’s dream.  John Dugan, a successful entrepreneur, and his wife Marion, were surprised to learn how little expert information was available to them when it came time to share their good fortune with those in need.  Within months, they launched a web site to provide other donors with data-driven, unbiased rating evaluations, along with a wealth of other information and tools. The mission of Charity Navigator then and now remains the same - to be a “guide to intelligent giving”.

From Hurricane Katrina in 2005, to the earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and to the everyday giving choices philanthropists face, Charity Navigator has been there to guide donors in giving away their precious dollars.  Its impact on American giving cannot be overstated.  Millions of donors visit the site annually with the vast majority indicating that Charity Navigator is the sole or primary resource they utilize to make their charitable giving decisions.

“When we launched Charity Navigator, we made sure the site was free to the public and to the charities we rated, that the complex analysis our staff performed was translated into an easy to understand star rating system, and that the site included a breadth of organizations so that donors with every type of interest could find a charity to support,” said Ken Berger, President & CEO of Charity Navigator.  “While we’ve stayed true to these fundamental values over the years, our service has evolved to include more ratings, more analysis and more user-friendly features. In ten years, Charity Navigator has driven billions of dollars to high performing charities and I couldn’t be prouder.”

Here is a look at how Charity Navigator has evolved over the years:





Number of charities rated



Number of donors to CN



Number of registered users



Number of annual visits to website


5 million

Number of dimensions to rating system

(Financial Health)

(Financial Health + Accountability & Transparency)

Amount of charitable giving influenced annually by ratings

$100 - $200 million

$5 – $10 billion


One thing that has remained the same over the past ten years is the popularity of Charity Navigator’s Top 10 charity lists.  In conjunction with its tenth anniversary, Charity Navigator has created new Top 10 lists including:

Charity Navigator is best known for its ratings, accessible at no charge at www.charitynavigator.org, of the Financial Health and Accountability & Transparency of more than 5,000 of America’s best-known charities. Charity Navigator’s website offers more Top 10 lists and complementary tools to help donors make informed choices about where their contributions will be used most effectively.


About Charity Navigator (www.charitynavigator.org)
Charity Navigator is the largest charity evaluator in America and its website attracts more visitors than all other charity rating groups combined. The organization helps guide intelligent giving by evaluating the Financial Health and Accountability & Transparency of over 5,000 charities. Charity Navigator accepts no advertising or donations from the organizations it evaluates, ensuring unbiased evaluations, nor does it charge the public for this trusted data. As a result, Charity Navigator, a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization itself, depends on support from individuals, corporations and foundations that believe it provides a much-needed service to America's charitable givers. Charity Navigator, can be reached directly by telephone at (201) 818-1288, or by mail at 139 Harristown Road, Suite 201, Glen Rock, N.J., 07452.



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