The Guardian published an article recently which outlines how some of Elon Musk’s charitable interests have benefited his own various businesses and personal interests.
In an article titled “How Elon Musk’s Secretive Foundation Hands Out His Billions,” the Guardian outlines how Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has benefited both personally and professionally from a number of ventures funded by his charity foundation. Musk’s charity — the Musk Foundation — publishes very little information about its various ventures and charitable donations, instead, the foundation’s website consists of a list of five items describing how the foundation invests its funds.
The list simply states that grants are made in support of:
– Renewable energy research and advocacy
– Human space exploration research and advocacy
– Pediatric research
– Science and engineering education
– Development of safe artificial intelligence to benefit humanity
However, it hasn’t just been in these areas that the foundation concentrates. The Musk foundation has reportedly chosen to donate large sums of money to a number of individuals and organizations personally linked to Musk himself:
The Musk Foundation has disbursed more than $54m in 15 years of operations, more than a third in direct gifts to 160 charities, according to an analysis of filings with the Internal Revenue Services from its incorporation in 2001 to the middle of 2017. Most recorded awards totalled just a few thousand dollars, and many went to environmental, educational, medical, and space advocacy organizations.
Others, however, landed closer to home. Recipients have included a school attended by Musk’s own children, a charity managed by his brother, a protest group fighting gridlock on Musk’s commute to SpaceX, and even an art project at Musk’s favorite festival, Burning Man.
The Musk Foundation has always had extremely close ties to Musk’s family, with his brother Kimbal acting as the secretary and treasurer of the charity; as time has gone on, it appears that more of those linked to Musk have become involved in the foundation:
Also in 2010, the foundation spent $183,000 to help launch Kitchen Community, a Colorado-based charity headed by Kimbal that used “learning gardens” in underserved areas to help children grow and prepare fresh food. Kitchen Community, now called Big Green, would receive a total of nearly half a million dollars over the next four years – one of the foundation’s largest direct awards. As executive director and chairman of the project, Kimbal received nearly $85,000 in payments by Big Green between 2010 and 2016.
Between 2011 and 2013, the foundation also made two $50,000 donations to the Mirman School for gifted children in Los Angeles, a school that Elon Musk’s sons were attending at the time. Musk later started his own not-for-profit school, Ad Astra, located within SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California, which his children now attend.
According to the Guardian, it appears that those that have benefited greatly from the Musk Foundation’s charitable donations have close ties to Musk himself.
Read the full article in the Guardian here.