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May 1, 2022

How $100 is Spent at the Alzheimer’s Association (2021)

by Anne Paddock

The Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Association is commonly referred to as the Alzheimer’s Association. A tax-exempt, non-profit 501 (c) 3 whose goal is to eliminate Alzheimers Disease through research but also offer support, information/public awareness, and education on the disease, the Alzheimer’s Association raised $405 million in 2021 (compared to $403 million in 2020 and $390 million in 2019), primarily from contributions, gifts, and grants ($377 million including $26 million from the government).

Expenses totaled $366 million (including $4 million in depreciation)  representing 90% of revenue, and can be categorized as follows:

  • $183 million (45% of revenue):  Compensation
  • $ 66  million (16% of revenue):  Grants
  • $ 53  million (13% of revenue):  Office-related Expenses
  • $ 32 million (8% of revenue):  Advertising and Promotion
  • $ 26 million (6% of revenue):  Fees for Services (primarily other with no detail provided)
  • $  4  million (1% of revenue):  Other Expenses
  • $   2  million (1% of revenue):  Travel and Conferences

The largest expense for the Alzheimer’s Association is compensation for the 2,405 employees who received $183 million, which equates to an average compensation of $76,000.  272 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation with the most highly compensated employee reported to be Harry Johns, the President and CEO who received $1,020,006 in compensation in 2021.

Grants totaled $66 million (compared to $52 million in 2020 and $53 million in 2019) and were primarily made to domestic medical schools, foundations, research institutes, and medical centers for program support.  What is important to note is that only 16% of revenue is awarded in grants. Given that research holds the answer to eliminating or treating Alzheimers Disease, it is surprising that more revenue is not allocated to research. This in a year when the organization’s net assets increased by nearly $80 million (by allocating $39 million in unspent revenue and $37 million in unrealized gains on assets) from $276 million in 2020 to $355 million in 2021.

Office-related expenses is the third largest expense ($53 million or 13% of revenue) for the organization with general office expenses and occupancy the primary office expenses.  And, finally, $32 million (or 8% of revenue) was spent on advertising and promotion.

Using the above information, every $100 in revenue received by the Alzheimer’s Association was spent as follows:

$100:  Revenue

-$ 45:  Compensation

-$ 13:  Office-related Expenses

-$  8:  Advertising and Promotion

-$  6:  Fees for Services

-$  1:  Travel and Conferences

-$  1:  Other Expenses

-$ 74: Subtotal Expenses (Compensation, Office, Travel, Conferences, Advertising, Fees, and Other)

  $ 26:  Revenue Remaining

-$ 16: Grants

$   10:  Revenue Remaining:  To General Fund

As illustrated above, most revenue goes towards compensation, office-related expenses, travel and conferences, advertising and promotion, and fees for services.

At year-end, the Alzheimer’s Association had $355 million in net assets (compared to $276 million at the beginning of the year). This improvement was attributable to not spending as much as they received and also to unrealized gains on investments, which leads to asking why more revenue is not being spent on research grants since research is the key to this disease.

To read the IRS Form 990 (2020 for the year ending June 30, 2021), click here.

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