Biden Cancer Initiative Spent Heavily on Salaries Before Shuttering

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 13: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a roundtable on the Cancer Moonshot Initiative as comedian Jon Stewart looks on December 13, 2016 at Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC. Biden held a roundtable to discuss military and first responder care. (Photo by Alex …
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The cancer research non-profit that former Vice President Joe Biden created after leaving the Obama administration in 2017 spent two thirds of its money on staff, with top executives getting as much as six-figures, before shuttering.

The Washington Free Beacon reported on Thursday that the Biden Cancer Initiative directed 65 percent of its total expenditures to staff compensation between 2017 and 2018. Overall, the group raised $4.8 million during the those two years, spending slightly more than $3 million on salaries and benefits for its employees.

“That is well above the 25 percent charity watchdogs recommend nonprofits spend on administrative overhead and fundraising costs combined,” the outlet reported, noting that Biden’s nonprofit “did not cut a single grant to any other group or foundation during its two-year run.”

A number of the non-profit’s highest paid staffers were former Obama-era officials with close ties the former vice president. Most notably Greg Simon, the Initiative’s president, and Danielle Carnival, its vice president, had previously worked on the former administration’s Cancer Moonshot program, which was overseen by Biden. For their services with the Biden Cancer Initiative, Simon was paid more than $654,000 between 2017 and 2018, while Carnival made more than $391,000 over the same period.

The Initiative was shut down in 2019, shortly after Biden announced his presidential run. That decision, though, did not seem to be connected with the former vice president’s run. At the time, Simon claimed it was the result of many of the group’s partnerships with drug companies and healthcare firms not being successful.

Biden has made eradicating cancer a primary focus since his son, Beau, succumbed to the disease in 2015. The former vice president has also frequently while on the campaign trail discussed his desire to “cure cancer” if elected to the White House.


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