Through a shadowy private foundation, convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein has continued to shell out cash to celebrities, elite universities—and an all-girls school.
...But he continues to quietly distribute his wealth—including to the nonprofits of Deepak Chopra, Elton John and a doctor linked to President Trump—through a shadowy private foundation called “Gratitude America, Ltd.,” The Daily Beast has learned.
..Not to be confused with GratitudeAmerica, Inc., a Florida nonprofit for veterans, Epstein’s latest private foundation doesn’t appear to have a website or online presence. The only traces of the group lie in tax returns, a fundraising site for multiple sclerosis, and a book of abstracts from a 2017 academic conference in California.
..In 2016 and 2017, Gratitude America Ltd. funded an all-girls school in Manhattan, a youth tennis program, cancer charities, Harvard’s famous theater troupe, posh New York arts societies at Lincoln Center and the Met, and a nonprofit linked to the wife of a former Harvard president who flew on Epstein’s private jet, dubbed the “Lolita Express” by the press.
..Gratitude America’s biggest donations included a $375,000 payout to the International Peace Institute Inc., a New York think tank staffed by former United Nations officials and run by Norwegian diplomat Terje Rød-Larsen, and $225,000 to the Melanoma Research Alliance—both of which Epstein boasted of supporting financially in years past.
...In March of this year, The Daily Beast revealed Epstein had funded the nonprofit of a Russian model who advocates for women entrepreneurs.
And Harvard’s Hasty Pudding Institute of 1770, which includes the university’s historic theater troupe, noted Epstein among its top donors in 2018, under the category “The Guardians of the Sphinx.” .. In January 2012, “The Jeffrey Epstein Foundation” announced its sponsorship of a conference organized by MIT’s Marvin Minsky, under the headline, “Top Scientists Meet to Discuss Greatest Threats to the Earth.” In March 2012, another announcement declared, “Science Philanthropist, Jeffrey Epstein, Convenes a Conference of Nobel Laureates to Define Gravity.” It was followed days later with a different bulletin: “Jeffrey Epstein, Science Philanthropist, Organizes a Global Doomsday Conference.”
..Gratitude America Ltd. donated $150,000 each in 2017 to MIT and the Kuhn Foundation, run by writer Robert Lawrence Kuhn, who hosts a TV program called “Closer to Truth.” (One biography on the Chopra Foundation’s site says Kuhn is “an international corporate strategist, investment banker and expert on China” and has “a doctorate in brain research.”)
Epstein also funded a nonprofit that produces a TV show hosted by the wife of Larry Summers, a Harvard economist and Treasury secretary under former President Clinton. In 2016, Gratitude America Ltd. shelled out $110,000 to Verse Video Education. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based nonprofit produces the PBS show Poetry in America, whose creator and host is Harvard professor Elisa New. Verse’s 2016 tax return named New as the group’s president but doesn’t include specific donors for its $1.38 million in total contributions.
..The Crohn’s Colitis Foundation of America, which Epstein has repeatedly funded since at least 2012, received a total of $20,000 in 2016 and 2017. Epstein also donated $10,000 in 2016 to the Women Global Cancer Initiative Inc., a nonprofit run by Next modeling agency founder Faith Kates. And he gave $10,000 to the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai and $5,000 to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. In 2017, Epstein gave $75,000 to the Cancer Research Wellness Institute, a California nonprofit created by a grandson of alternative-cancer treatment doctor Max Gerson, and $25,000 to Nautilus Think, a New York nonprofit that publishes a science magazine. Epstein additionally contributed $50,000 to the University of Arizona Foundation, and the Tucson research university listed Gratitude America Ltd. as a sponsor of its 2017 Science of Consciousness conference inside a book of abstracts.
He donated more money in 2017, with $15,000 going to “Friends of Elton John,” which appears to be the the Elton John AIDS Foundation, a charity Epstein announced funding for years before. Gratitude America listed a donation of $50,000 to the Chopra Foundation; $60,000 to a group labeled as “Association Mind Education” in Rome, Italy; and $50,000 to the United Jewish Appeal (UJA) Federation of New York.
He gave $25,000 to the Film Society of Lincoln Center and $50,000 to MET Orchestra Musicians in 2017. He also donated $10,000 to a Brooklyn-based group, the Independent Filmmaker Project (Gratitude America appears to have miscalled them “Independent Feature Project” in its tax return but used IFP’s same address)...This year, Gratitude America Ltd. apparently donated to prominent litigator Stephen Susman’s fundraising page for Bike MS, a cycling event that raises money for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Epstein’s donation of $10,000 was the highest contribution on the website, next to another $10,000 from Susman’s wife, Ellen. (In 2017, Gratitude America noted a $5,000 donation to “Walk MS” in New Jersey that appears to be unrelated to Susman’s payout.)