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Rating the Clinton Foundation


Responding to stakeholders’ request for Charity Navigator to rate the Clinton Foundation, we published our objective rating on September 1, 2016.

Why hasn’t Charity Navigator published a rating of the Clinton Foundation for the last few years?
For each charity, our rating system evaluates numerous financial and accounting metrics, including a comparison of how these metrics change from one year to the next.  In 2013, the Clinton Foundation merged with one of its affiliates, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). This merger made it difficult to compare financial information of the combined entities with financial information from the Clinton Foundation before the merger.  In situations like this with any charity, we will reevaluate if the charity provides consolidated financial data that will allow us to perform an accurate year-over-year comparison. 


How is it that Charity Navigator is now able to provide a rating of the Clinton Foundation?
At our request, the Clinton Foundation provided pro forma consolidated financial information (in particular, a pro-forma Form 990). This information allowed us to conduct the analysis necessary for us to issue a rating.


Which charities are included in this consolidated rating of The Clinton Foundation?
The rating is based on consolidated information for three public charities: Clinton Health Access Initiative (EIN# 27-1414646), Clinton Global Initiative (EIN # 27-1551550) and the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Foundation (EIN#31-1580204). We have listed this consolidated rating under the name “The Clinton Foundation.”


What does a rating by Charity Navigator mean?
Charity Navigator rates charities by evaluating their financial health and their accountability and transparency. That is, our ratings seek to show donors how efficiently a charity has used previous donations, how well the charity has sustained its programs and services over time, and the charity’s level of commitment to being accountable and transparent about its operations. Charity Navigator does not evaluate a charity’s mission (for example, whether the charity supports medical research or humanitarian causes) and it does not evaluate a charity’s donors (for example, whether the charity receives its donations from individuals or large institutions). 


How does the closing of the Clinton Global Initiative affect the Foundation and CN’s rating?
The current rating is unaffected by the closing of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). Charity Navigator’s rating of the Clinton Foundation is based on data from their 2014 fiscal year. CGI was a program of the Clinton Foundation. In September of 2016, the Foundation announced that they would be closing that program and in January 2017 it was closed, including layoffs of 22 Foundation employees. When we rate the Foundation using their 2017 data the closing of this program will be represented.  

Where can I see The Clinton Foundation’s rating?
Access the rating now.


Are there other charities that are rated based on pro forma Form 990 data?
Yes, as noted in the first question above, our staff regularly analyzes pro forma Form 990 data, particularly in situations where a charity has merged or consolidated with another charity. All pro forma Form 990 data is provided by the charity at our request. Currently we rate 60 charities based on such pro forma Form 990 data, including charities such as the Carter Center, American Cancer Society, USO and Susan G. Komen for the Cure.


Does Charity Navigator have a relationship with the Clinton Foundation?
Charity Navigator has no relationship with the Clinton Foundation.

In 2012, Charity Navigator attended the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) annual event in New York City, along with many other charitable organizations. This event, as well as a commitment by Charity Navigator to increase its charitable activities that is listed on the CGI website, offered Charity Navigator the opportunity to promote its existing independent efforts and initiatives, but these efforts were not funded or aided by CGI.


Does Charity Navigator receive any compensation from the charities it rates?
Charity Navigator accepts no funding from the charities that we evaluate. Furthermore, in our commitment to help America's philanthropists of all levels make informed giving/social investment decisions, we refuse to charge our users for our trusted evaluations.


How can I get my charity rated?
First, find the charity’s page on our site (even if we don’t rate a charity we still have a page of basic information about it on our site). If the charity is potentially eligible to be rated, then you can click on the ‘vote now’ button.


How does Charity Navigator rate charities?
A detailed explanation of our rating system is accessible in the methodology section of our site.

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