Leona Helmsley’s foundation to support more than dogs

The trustees for the foundation of Leona Helmsley, who died in 2007 and famously bequeathed the majority of her $5.2 billion in a trust for charities that support dogs (and $12 million in trust for her own dog, an amount that was lowered to $2 million by a judge), announced that they have dispersed the first round of grants from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.

According to a New York Times article, the first $136 million round of funds was primarily granted to medical centers. A February ruling determined that trustees have sole discretion in determining how the money will be distributed and that the Trust does not have to donate only to organizations that support dogs.

According to the Trust’s Web site, the foundation will give in the areas of health and medical research, human services, education and conservation. A Chronicle of Philanthropy article states that the first round of grants include nine $100,000 awards to canine organizations.

Click here to see how the first round of funds was disbursed and for future grant opportunities.


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5 Responses to Leona Helmsley’s foundation to support more than dogs

  1. katherine lewis says:

    all this means that the state can take away your choice of how you want your money to be dispursed. they should be ashamed for not adhering to helmsley’s original wish for where that money should go.

    • Kerry Belin says:

      I agree totally. Why do we have a will made if some judge is going to do whatever he or she thinks should be done with what we leave behind. Is a will not a contract?

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  3. I want to know how to apply for help from Leona Helmsley’s foundation. My name is Karla Goettel and I am the founder of FLOOD THEM WITH LOVE, a flood relief organization in Cedar Rapids, IA. In June 2008 we experienced the 4th worst national disaster in U.S. history with massive flooding. 18,600 people were displaced and many are still struggling today.

    Last Sunday, March 14,2010, one of our 300 families experienced yet another disaster. This couple is extremely “fragile.” Brenda Bly is suffering terribly from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Her doctors even tested her for dementia. Her husband, Jeff, has been unemployed since last June. They lost their home and all their belongings in the flood. On Sunday afternoon Puddles, their only “child,” was struck by a car which then drove away. Puddles suffered critical injuries. She was stabilized at a local emergency veterinary clinic and then transferred to Des Moines where a well-known orthopedic veterinarian put a steel plate with seven screws in her front left leg. She has 76 staples running from her left paw up beyond her shoulder to close a massive laceration, plus stitches in her mouth…both her upper and lower incisors were broken and/or knocked out.

    Puddles is home now, but faces a long, delicate recovery. while our organization has raised over $300,000 since we began, we disburse the money to flood-impacted families as quickly as it is donated. We have helped 300 families, over 1000 flood survivors. Please visit us at http://www.floodthemwithlove.com We are an all-volunteer organization and 100% of donations go directly to flood survivors. We believe Puddles symbolizes the strength of the flood community and in turn we want to symbolize the compassion of all those who care about the flood-impacted families, including their pets.

    Puddles was featured on local news last evening. You may view a video at http://www.kcrg.com.

    Puddles bills will exceed $4000. Please let me know what I can do to apply for aid through the Leona Helmsley Foundation. We are partners with Horizons, a 501(c)3 family service alliance and all donations are tax deductible. I will look forward to your response.
    Thank you.
    Karla Goettel, Founder
    Flood Them with Love

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