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February 10, 2021


Executive Compensation at the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews

by Anne Paddock

The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) is a tax-exempt, non-profit 501 (c) 3 founded by a rabbi in 1983 as a way to “bless Israel and the Jewish people around the world with humanitarian care and life-saving aid” while “building bridges between Christians and Jews.”

Based in Chicago, Illinois, IFCJ raises about $120 million annually (primarily through contributions, gifts, and grants) and spends a few million less, allowing the organization to accumulate $32 million in net assets. Expenses are about $115 million, half of which are spent on grants to Jewish organizations in the US and Israel. There does not appear to be any grants made to Christian organizations. The other expenses are organization expenses – fundraising, compensating employees, paying fees for services, etc).

121 employees received $13 million in compensation which equates to an average compensation of $107,400.  27 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation with the 10 most highly compensated reported to be:

  • $2,949,100:  Yechiel Eckstein, President, CEO, and Founder (deceased 2/19)
  • $  625,980:  Yael Eckstein – Farkas, President and CEO
  • $  517,100:  George Mamo, COO (thru 8/2019)
  • $  364,900:  Robin Van Etten, Global COO
  • $  200,118:  Damon Card, VP of Information Services
  • $  193,886:  Robert Dalton, VP of Major and Planned Giving (thru 10/2019)
  • $  192,637:  Laurel Simkovich, Controller
  • $  183,535:  Christine Allen, Major Gift Officer
  • $  176,151:  Kristin Henning, Director of Financial Operations
  • $  169,346:  Katherine Rovani, Director of Operations
  • $  154,541:  James Ray, Director of Estate Planning

The former President, CEO and Founder of the IFCJ, Yechiel Eckstein passed away in Feb 2019.  Upon his death, a non-qualified deferred compensation plan vested which pays his beneficiary the present value of $2,949,100, who may be his second wife (of 12 years):  Joelle Medina.   Payments are made monthly and include taxes for 10 years.  Mr. Eckstein received the following compensation in previous years:

  • 2018:  $875,239
  • 2017:  $867,734
  • 2016:  $891,987
  • 2015:  $918,987

Yael Eckstein – Farkas appears to be related (a daughter) to Yechiel Eckstein. In addition, it is important to note that in Schedule L, Part IV, Business Transactions with Interested Persons, Yael Eckstein – Farkas, a business transaction of $521,179 was noted for salary, benefits and other. No other details were provided. In addition, a transaction with Talia Eckstein – Pollack, who also appears to be related to Yael Eckstein, in the amount of $111,594 for salary, benefits, and other was reported. And, finally, a $14,833 business transaction for salary, benefits, and other with Amichai Farkas was reported.

IFCJ paid for companion travel, which appears to be a $6,000 travel benefit paid to Yael Eckstein – Farkas.  This benefit was grossed up.

39  independent contractors received more than $100,000 in compensation. The five (5) most highly compensated independent contractors were reported to be:

  • $1,700,339:  Cannella Response Television, of Burlington, WI for television spot placement
  • $1,544,729:  Forward PMX, of New York, NY for mailing list
  • $1,223,609:  MDS Communications Corporation, of Mesa, AZ for telemarketing
  • $  869,827:  Causeworx, Inc., of Ontario, Canada for telemarketing
  • $  854,964:  Mindset Direct, of Reston, VA for direct mail

All of the above appear related to raising funds for IFCJ.

To read the IRS Form 990 (2019), click here.

Update:  Executive Compensation at the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (2020)

  1. Richard Trapp
    Jan 13 2022

    It’s really sad that not more incoming money could aggressively be used to go directly to those desperately in need. I would be interested in seeing a monthly breakdown of incoming donations and how each dollar is included in the budget. Why would a 503 C3 charity need to carry a 32 million dollar surplus? Why would the President/CEO need over 625 thousand dollars per year plus travel expenses? It also looks like all the Eckstein family members are all getting a piece of the pie. Somebody needs to be reminded that they are a 503C3, not a scam.

  2. Dec 18 2021

    We aren’t financially stable enough to set up cash donations however if I had an address to send packages of food, I could help that way,I could send food directly to one of those suffering people

  3. Rog
    Dec 13 2021

    Seems these people are doing much better than the ones they help. Seems that organisation us one more that makes the CEO rich.

  4. gunnar
    Dec 10 2021

    Most of the Charity Groups in any organizations,police,children,food,health,world,animals,Arm forces,all are crooked,plain and simply.its a shame,disgusting,and evil for sure.

  5. Art lerner
    Dec 4 2021

    Check out the outrageous salaries , perks & benefits of that “ wonderful” board . This is not a charity it’s a money grab I wouldn’t donate a dime ☮️

  6. Jay Alan
    Nov 28 2021


  7. jerry smith
    Oct 27 2021

    I personally think a lot less of the money accumulated in this organization should be spent on salaries an expenses and more invested in people. I am seriously considering with drawing my monthly contributions and giving it to another organization who spends far less on salaries and expenses and more on people

  8. margaret premo
    Oct 23 2021

    Cynthia, please check out World Jewish Congress, Jewish Voice and several other charities to help Jews listed on the Charity Rating site. I, too, donated to IFCJ for a few years until I got a request letter from another Jewish aid charity. This prompted me to compare the two to see how much of my donation went for salaries. I was disgusted at the CEO and other officers salaries at IFCJ and switched to the new charity. Now I check every charity request before writing a check as I am also living on a very limited budget.

  9. Jerry Bachmier
    Oct 21 2021

    Totally disgusting i looked what the ceo wages are 3 million what a bunch of crooks and along with everyone else wages unreal you should all be disgusted at yourselves.

  10. Michael Coulter
    Oct 21 2021

    No top ceo is worth almost a million dollars a year. , I could see 300,000 max a year .

  11. vilas craig
    Sep 21 2021

    not only are ceo’s raping this country. Criminals hide behind the desks of the christian name …. this is not the only organization raping the American people .llook at the president of St. Jude//// look at ceo of salvation army ,fGood Will etc.look at ceo. This why I give directly
    to good causes . think about helping our poor..our indian children, and the children in the Appalachian needing shoes and food etc.

  12. Steve
    Sep 18 2021

    Salaries are way too to high. Glad I did my homework before donating. Very top heavy. This is organized crime. You could feed a lot of people with your salaries. As usual, The rich get richer!
    Very sad.

  13. Mary Ann Wolfe
    Aug 31 2021

    What a disgusting piece of human waste. Basically begging for the old Jews who are suffering while you personally are making millions. Shame on you and your family and may you bring shame on all of them. YOU could save so many but choose to pay obscene amounts of money on supposedly people of God despite what you see when you visit those poor humble suffering Jews. May YOUR God reserve a place in hell for you and those helping to rape the “nonprofit” charity to the detriment of those that its supposed to save. MY god considers what you all are is thieves and liars.

  14. Benny Sonaquma
    Aug 27 2021

    Phuuuque! Gotta start me one of those!

  15. David Middleton
    Aug 7 2021

    I had thought this was a good organization for a long time, until I started seeing their commercials. They are disgusting and without any moral compass. Further, there is no Soviet Union, nor has there been for over 20 years. Then I saw the compensation these thieves pay themselves.

  16. Rj
    Jul 24 2021

    These criminals should be prosecuted. Absolute scam. In the family no less. Disgusting. BTW…it says “Christians and Jews” but no money to Christians. Liars and filth

  17. GLenn Hill
    Jul 19 2021

    It appears that salaries are too high for a non profit with a bit of nepotism in the employees. The salaries over 100k would have fed a lot of hungry holocaust Jews and provided heat and necessities.
    Shame on each of you who are taking these salaries some of which exceeds the salary of the President of the USA.

  18. Anne Regner
    Jun 16 2021

    I had planned to leave my assets to charity but reading about the outrages compensations of VP’s, executives etc is sickening and I am changing my mind. They are in business for their own enrichment, the aid to the needy is a mere afterthought. Instead of showing pictures of starving elderly, sick children etc they should show the executive mansions paid for by poor people’s contributions.

  19. Jun 8 2021

    Let’s see….there is something in between millions and pennies….And, “this is how business is conducted” is not acceptable. That’s tantamount to saying 80% of the most highly compensated employees are male and because its been done that way, it’s ok. Not in my book.

  20. Michael J Archer
    Jun 7 2021

    For everyone complaining. This is how business is conducted. You get paid for what you bring to the table. You want to see real corruption, lets pay these people pennies for overseeing millions. You need to pay to get results and they are producing. Grant it it is a little much and need to get back to the 80/20 rule.

  21. Tom DeLong
    May 23 2021

    Yes that’s why I don’t give to any of these group they are like most these groups they paid the top people all that money and the people who need don’t get so the top people can live high on the hog

  22. Elfriede Hutchins
    May 18 2021

    Please remove me from your mailing list. I am shocked at the salaries that are paid, I donate from our hell of a lot less income, you can do the same. I am disappointed in this organization.
    Elfriede Hutchins

  23. Maryanne
    Apr 29 2021

    The salaries of the president and other executives is outrageous. You could use most of that money to build housing and food for these poor christians and jews. I will NEVER donate to this scam. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

  24. Cynthia D Pitman
    Apr 29 2021

    I give to IFCJ on a monthly basis. I see these commercials that tear my heart cause thd elderly seem like they don’t get very much. Yet I see the salaries that a lot of emcees make and I’m sorry I don’t think it’s right. Give to thise less fortunate. A least that’s why I’m giving snd I’m on a fixed income. I agree with Richard Duffy build a center for the elderly, clothe, feed and take care of them. I really think you receive enough money to do it. Really thinking of dropping my contribution. But I kniw God says take care of my people. So you are responsible to answer to Him.

  25. Richard Duffy
    Apr 20 2021

    Why don’t you build a rest home for these elderly Poor Jewish people you could help many more people . I will not assist the organization ever again after discovering the huge salaries of the Executive personnel! How much are they donating because they sure take a lot of money out of it!

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