During a recent State Directors meeting the question was posed, “Is there a document of some sort we could share with donors, members and volunteers that would show where our money comes from and how it is spent?” That is a great question so I thought I would address it in this Director’s Message.
MUFON is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Our financial data is a matter of public record. Although that financial data is only available to the Board of Directors, it can be viewed upon request from the IRS. MUFON was created as and remains a VOLUNTEER ORGANIZATION. It has never paid its Field Investigators and never will. The Board of Directors, by law, cannot receive any pay.
MUFON receives its funding from a number of sources: The generosity of our donors, membership dues, book sales, the annual symposiums’ podcasts, MUFON TV, merchandise sales, state/national chapter fees, TV and movie production companies who pay for rights to use our materials. And of course, our volunteers who give their time, skills, and knowledge without which MUFON would not be what it is today. We cannot quantify their contributions, but they are essential to the existence of this organization.
The income that MUFON receives is used to fund the myriad of factors that keep the ship in the air. MUFON has its headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio, and a field office in Irvine, California. We are in the process of closing the West Coast office and centralizing all operations in Cincinnati. This change will result in a tremendous reduction of the organization’s expenses. Not only will there be a considerable decrease in rent, but taxes and all ancillary expenses also will be a lot lower.
There are three people who are paid: The Executive Director, the Office Director and a part-time intern. There are a few contractors who provide specialized services and are paid on an on-demand basis.
MUFON is expanding its Case Management System, and when finished it will provide the largest searchable, translatable database of UFO knowledge on the planet. This is an expensive operation. The digitizing and transfer of files from around the globe alone could easily exceed $50,000. Providing the servers and platform to house the data are also substantial considerations. We are opening a MUFON museum, which is fully funded, in New York. We are expanding the MUFON laboratory, and we plan to put one on wheels and have it double as a mobile command center.
MUFON produces original TV productions, podcasts and a long list of services to deliver knowledge and information concerning the rapidly evolving UFO phenomenon. MUFON publishes a top-notch monthly journal. The monthly cost to produce it can easily range from $6,000-$10,000.
Let me conclude by saying that because of our fund-raising efforts, donors, volunteers and some darn frugal management, MUFON is poised to unquestionably establish itself as the world’s provider of UFO data, research and knowledge. Thank you for all of your efforts.