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Baby Daddys Matter

Black Lives Matter leadership has been embroiled in controversy ever since it was revealed that donated funds were used to finance their lavish lifestyles. More recently, it was discovered that former BLM executive director Patrisse Cullors paid Damon Turner’s “company” almost $1 million for “live production, design, and media”. The significance? Damon Turner, the father of Patrisse Cullors child, was given more money than the Trayvon Martin Foundation. Other family members’ “businesses” were also paid significant amounts of money. Laughing all the way to the bank!

New York Post: BLM paid co-founder’s baby daddy nearly 5 times more than Trayvon Martin foundation

Lorne Cook; May, 18th 2022

Black Lives Matter paid its co-founder’s baby daddy almost five times the amount the group doled out to the Trayvon Martin Foundation — a charity honoring the black youth whose 2012 death spearheaded the movement.

Patrisse Cullors, the former executive director and co-founder of Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, paid a company owned by Damon Turner $969,459 for “live production, design and media,” according to the group’s latest filings with the IRS. Turner’s for-profit company, which sells $145 sweatshirts on its website and solicits donations for “the movement,” received the second-highest payout the group made in fiscal year 2020, which covers July 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021.

A rapper and artist, Turner is the father of Cullors’ young son, and runs a Los Angeles-based entertainment and clothing company called Trap Heals LLC. Turner has been on the receiving end of Cullors’ largesse in the past. In 2019, his company took in $63,500 from Reform LA Jails, a state political action committee controlled by Cullors, to work for criminal justice reform.

Meanwhile, BLMGNF paid $200,000 to the Florida-based Trayvon Martin Foundation, IRS filings show. The nonprofit was set up by Martin’s parents to “provide emotional and financial support to families who have lost a child to gun violence,” according to its website. Rage over the 17-year-old’s shooting death, and the acquittal of the neighborhood watch member who claimed he shot the teen in self-defense, led to the birth of Black Lives Matter.

The filings are the first public disclosure made by BLMGNF, which raked in $76,872,002 in contributions in fiscal 2020 and paid out $25,997,945 in grants to other nonprofits, filings show.

BLMGNF’s biggest payout — $2,167,894 — went to Bowers Consulting Firm, which is owned by current BLMGNF board member Shalomyah Bowers, a possible conflict of interest, charity experts said. The money was used, among other things, for “administrative support, general consulting, strategy, design … and staff management under the direction of the executive director,” according to the tax filing.

Bowers did not immediately return a request for comment Tuesday.

The organization also doled out $840,993 to Cullors Protection LLC, a company owned by Patrisse Cullors’ eldest brother, Paul, and set up in July 2020, according to California state records. The cash was doled out for “professional security services,” according to the filings. The Post was unable to establish how much security experience, if any, Paul had before setting up his company. Paul is listed as head of security for Cullors’ personal property and BLMGNF’s $6 million LA headquarters, according to reports. He did not return a request for comment.

The filing “shows huge dollar amounts going to family members and close associates of Cullors, eclipsing money to charities like the Trayvon Martin Foundation,” said Tom Anderson, director of the Government Integrity Project at the National Legal and Policy Center, a Virginia-based watchdog group. “We now know why Patrisse Cullors stepped down.”

Cullors is the only board member listed on the 2020 filing. She resigned from the organization a month after The Post revealed that she went on a $3.2 million real estate buying spree. Cullors denied that the money used to buy residential properties in Georgia and California came from the charity, and those properties do not show up in the filing.

“The charity had no whistleblower policy, no document destruction and retention policy, and only one board member during the financial reporting period,” said Laurie Styron, executive director of Charity Watch, a nonprofit that monitors charities. “It reports having and regularly monitoring and enforcing a written conflict of interest policy, but … one person can’t monitor and enforce a conflict of interest policy over themselves. It’s frightening, isn’t it, to consider that this much taxpayer-subsidized public money was being overseen by only one person?”

Other firms that were among the “highest compensated independent contractors” include Washington, DC-based Dewey Square Group, which took in $709,190 for “communications, IT and digital,” and Los Angeles-based Sadler Strategic Media Inc., which made $696,364 for “media planning and placement,” according to filings. Resistance Labs in Oakland, Calif., provided “tech support” for the group and raked in $504,000, according to filings.

Kailee Scales, a consultant who founded BLMGNF with Cullors and whose name is on the original Delaware registration setting up the group in 2017, was paid $139,625. The payment was a severance package for the calendar year 2020, tax filings show. “The terms and conditions of the arrangement are confidential,” according to the filings.

Pastor Corey B. Brooks, founder of New Beginnings Church of Chicago and founder and CEO of Project H.O.O.D. Communities Development Corporation and a leader in the fight against violence on Chicago’s South Side, said he reached out several times for help from BLM and never got a response — or funding.

“We’ve never received one dime from Black Lives Matter,” Brooks told The Post. “It’s unfortunate and very disheartening that they haven’t given to grassroots organizations serving the black communities.”

Brooks noted that 85 children have been shot in Chicago so far this year, and 25 have died.

“We’re facing an epidemic of crime and young black people all over Chicago being displaced and having nothing to do and that leads to a lot of the unbridled crime here,” Brooks said. “The situation is dire. They have nowhere to go and no places to support them. We have construction school programs for former gang members and entrepreneurial programs among others. They would really have benefited from a BLM donation.”

Cullors was not paid a salary to be executive director, filings show. Neither Cullors nor BLMGNF could be reached for comment.

Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images

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