Black Lives or Black Wallets Matter? Disgraced Leader’s Family Cashes In

AlessandroBiascioli /
AlessandroBiascioli /

Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors might have resigned in 2021. However, the damage she did to the charity is still evident today. It’s like a bad hangover that won’t go away. Under her leadership, the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation splurged on luxury mansions and handed out fat contracts to her friends and family, leaving the organization’s finances in a mess well into 2023. A peek at their latest tax return reveals the shocking details.

Let’s start with the big numbers. The foundation raked in a whopping $80 million during the George Floyd riots in 2020. By the end of 2023, that fortune had shrunk to less than $29 million. How did this happen? The answer lies in the outrageous spending spree under Cullors’s watch. They bought a $6 million mansion in Los Angeles in 2020 and another $8 million in Canada in 2021. Meanwhile, Cullors’s inner circle cashed in big time. Damon Turner, the father of her child, received $778,000 in 2023 from Black Lives Matter for doing absolutely nothing that year.

Black Lives Matter claims these payments to Turner’s firm were for hosting a concert series in early 2022. Convenient excuse. Turner no longer works with the charity, but the damage is done. And it doesn’t stop there. Former director of operations Raymond Howard and his sister Danielle Howard’s consulting firm pocketed a combined $1.1 million in 2023. Talk about a family affair!

The organization also paid six-figure settlements to unnamed former employees. One former board member received $400,000, and another received $335,000. Of course, Black Lives Matter declined to comment on these “confidential” matters. Sounds fishy.

Despite running a $6 million deficit in 2023, Black Lives Matter is trying to paint a rosy picture, calling it the start of a “new era.” They’re talking about managing expenditures and sustainability, claiming they’ve slashed expenses by 71% over three years. But that doesn’t change that Cullors’s legacy of mismanagement and lavish spending continues to haunt them.

Let’s not forget Cullors’s brother, Paul, who made an incredible $200,000 in 2023 as the head of security, with his company, Black Ties LLC, raking in another $1.6 million. Since 2021, Paul Cullors and his firms have earned over $4.2 million from Black Lives Matter, all while the organization calls for defunding the police. Hypocrisy, anyone?

And then there’s Shalomyah Bowers, another Cullors crony, whose consulting firm was paid $2.6 million in 2023 for staffing and management services. The gravy train keeps rolling for Cullors’s crew.

There is a potential silver lining, though. Black Lives Matter has sued the Tides Foundation, accusing them of holding onto $33 million raised on their behalf. If they win, their dwindling funds could be a big boost. However, they’re also facing competition from Black Lives Matter Grassroots, an offshoot led by activist Melina Abdullah, which is vying for control of the movement.

So, while Black Lives Matter tries to navigate its financial woes and internal power struggles, the real question is: can they ever truly escape the shadow of Cullors’s reckless leadership? Only time will tell.