• Read more about the circulating email rumors involving Goodwill.

Think Before You Donate

…And Feel GOOD About Supporting Goodwill

Individuals in our northern Michigan community occasionally receive an old email or social media post titled “Think Before You Donate” that contains false information about a number of nonprofits, including Goodwill. This misinformation has been making the rounds for years. We know that you want your donations to be used wisely, so Goodwill Northern Michigan would like to provide you with correct information for responding to these rumors.


The email falsely claims a person named Mark Curran is the president and “owner” of Goodwill. Goodwill is a network of 180 world-wide autonomous non-profit charitable organizations governed by local volunteer Boards of Directors. Goodwill Industries International is an association office that supports the independent Goodwill organizations and is headed by Jim Gibbons, who has been the CEO since 2008. Goodwill International is governed by a volunteer board composed primarily from local Goodwill membership and, as such, does not have an “owner.” Furthermore, no one by the name of Mark Curran has ever headed a Goodwill organization in the country, including Goodwill Northern Michigan, which is led by its Executive Director, Dan Buron.

We would like to address some of the other issues raised in the email. Please note the following facts about Goodwill Northern Michigan:

  • Goodwill Northern Michigan is a registered, reputable 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
  • As a nonprofit, Goodwill is “owned” by the communities it serves and is governed by a board of directors made up of volunteers from throughout its 19-county service area.
  • Donations to Goodwill support our mission of providing housing support, job training, and food resources to our northern Michigan neighbors in need.
  • Goodwill served thousands of individuals in 2015, and employs over 280 people throughout northern Michigan.
  • 91 cents of every dollar earned by Goodwill Northern Michigan retail stores stays right here in our community and helps support our life-changing mission. Nationally, CharityWatch, an independent organization that evaluates philanthropic organizations, gives Goodwill an “A” rating – one of the highest in the country for a non-profit organization.

Goodwill Industries International has also issued a response to the email rumors. It can be found on its website.

At Goodwill Northern Michigan, we believe everyone should “think before you donate.” When you do, you may rest assured that your generous donations to Goodwill help individuals and families in your community find meaningful employment, stable housing, and/or nutritious food on their supper table. These essentials to life help folks rebuild their lives, and communities, one day at a time.

Know your source. Get the facts and learn more about Goodwill Northern Michigan.

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