An article published in The Hollywood Reporter has rankled celebrity and philanthropist Eva Longoria. Longoria’s charity, Global Gift Galas, came under fire from THR in particular because of suspected misappropriation of funds committed by its co-runners, Longoria’s friends Maria Bravo and Alina Peralta.
Longoria acts as host and honorary chair for a series of charitable events held around the world by Global Gift Galas, which has attracted the attention of celebrities such as Jane Fonda and Victoria Beckham. The organization has raised millions for international causes; however, according to THR, tax documents and accounting records for 2009-2014 show discrepancies the organizers have not been able to explain sufficiently.
Longoria, who has a long history of charitable work in liberal politics, has expressed dissatisfaction with the conclusions drawn by the report, saying that it is misleading. “My first thought is that as a philanthropist I believe in total transparency when it comes to charities,” she said. “My second thought is that the article is inaccurate. The philanthropic space is very complicated.”
Charity organizers Bravo and Peralta were questioned regarding the tax and accounting documents for Global Gift Galas over the course of 15 days by THR reporters. Numerous concerns arose regarding, for example, the numbers for 2013. The organization website stated that they raised $3.4 million for charity that year, but their documents suggest that only $1,349,212 was donated. When questioned, Bravo said the discrepancy was an error and thanked THR for pointing it out.
Certainly philanthropy can be a time-consuming, complicated endeavor, but it is still uncertain whether this situation is merely a series of unfortunate accounting errors or an active attempt to misappropriate funds. Longoria’s involvement appears to be minimal, but the charity remains under scrutiny.