January 27, 2016

New York Times Investigation Adds to New Criticism of Wounded Warriors Charity

Just hours after CBS broadcast a report of the Wounded Warrior Project raising questions about excessive spending on conferences for staff members and other such purposes, The New York Times released an extensive investigation that highlighted additional concerns, including whether it was doing enough to aid veterans and whether it had fired staff members who criticized the organization’s priorities.

The Times also said that in addition to lavish conferences, the organization has spent significant sums on public relations and lobbying campaigns to deflect criticism of its spending on administration and fundraising and to battle legislative efforts to restrict how much nonprofits spend on overhead.

Steven Nardizzi, chief executive of Wounded Warrior Project, defended the organization saying that the amount the group spent on advertising and marketing had allowed it to provide services to 80,000 people and that it would have grown much more slowly had it followed traditional nonprofit practices.

The newspaper noted that the charity recently pledged $500 million to pay for supplemental health care for severely wounded veterans and on Tuesday started a program to care for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries.