Non-profit

Katie McGrath and J. J. Abrams Family Foundation

Location:

ENCINO, CA

Tax ID:

45-3682112

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)-PF

Budget (2015):

Revenue: $1,948,426
Expenses: $3,149,529
Assets: $1,147,404

Founded in 2012, the Katie McGrath and J.J. Abrams Family Foundation is the philanthropic vehicle for left-of-center film producer and director J.J. Abrams and his wife, CEO and former political aide Katie McGrath. [1]

With a combined net worth of approximately $120 million, Abrams and his wife are among the biggest political donors in Hollywood. [2] [3] A large part of the couple’s philanthropy moves through the Foundation, which distributes millions of dollars annually to nonprofits located in Los Angeles and within the United States. [4]

Background

Before meeting his wife, who had worked in politics, Abrams was reportedly not particularly fond of politics. [5] Abrams has spent his career in the film industry, working as a director, writer, and producer. Some of his works include Lost, Star Trek, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. [6]

Unlike her husband, however, McGrath started her career in Washington, D.C., working as a legislative assistant for then-U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA). She then helped start a political media company in Los Angeles and served as an executive at two public relations firms. Today, McGrath is Co-CEO at film production company Bad Robot Productions. [7]

Abrams and McGrath have three children and live in Los Angeles, California. [8] In 2012, the couple began conducting a portion of their philanthropy through their private family foundation, the Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation. [9]

Funding

Abrams and his wife are the sole contributors to the Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation and have pumped millions into the organization every year. In 2016 alone, they contributed more than $16.8 million to the foundation. [10]

Grant Areas

The Katie McGrath and J.J. Abrams Family Foundation disbursed over $8 million in total grants during 2018, backing numerous nonprofits in Los Angeles and across the United States. Some of its grantmaking has gone to nonpartisan causes, especially organizations dedicated to addressing children’s issues. However, the foundation has also financed many left-of-center organizations with large gifts including the Feminist Majority Fund, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and the media outlet ProPublica. [11]

Children’s Grants

One area that has been a focus of the foundation’s philanthropy has been children’s organizations. In 2016, grantees included the left-leaning Children’s Defense Fund, Children’s Action Network, and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. [12]

Far-Left Grants

Both individually and through the foundation, Abrams and McGrath have been big donors to left-of-center causes and organizations. For instance, during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Abrams and McGrath were among the top individual contributors to the candidacy of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. [13] While nonprofits are prohibited from contributing to political candidates, Abrams and his wife have used their private foundation to fund outlets that share and promote the liberal ideology.

Abortion clinics and advocates funded by the Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation include the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, and the NARAL Pro-Choice America Foundation. [14]

The foundation has also supported left-of-center advocacy groups, including the Community Coalition, Bend the Arc, Advancement Project, Demos, People for the American Way, Liberty Hill Foundation, and The Ally Coalition. [15] [16]

Leadership

Katie McGrath and J.J. Abrams lead the foundation. McGrath is president of the organization and Abrams serves as treasurer. [17]

In addition, there is a small board of directors which helps manage the couple’s foundation. Beginning in early 2018, Michelynn Woodard is currently the executive director of the board. Other board members include Joe Philipson, Abrams, and McGrath. [18] [19] [20]

References

  1. “Leadership.” ProPublica. Accessed January 18, 2019. https://www.propublica.org/leadership/. ^
  2. “J.J. Abrams and Katie McGrath.” Inside Philanthropy. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/glitzy-giving/jj-abrams.html. ^
  3. Staff, THR. “The 20 Biggest Political Players in Hollywood.” The Hollywood Reporter. April 26, 2012. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/20-biggest-political-players-hollywood-315384. ^
  4. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2016. ^
  5. Garrahan, Matthew. “Man in the News: J.J. Abrams.” Financial Times. April 24, 2009. Accessed January 18, 2019. https://www.ft.com/content/bc50e642-30ff-11de-8196-00144feabdc0. ^
  6. Augustyn, Adam. “J.J. Abrams.” Encyclopedia Britannica. December 05, 2018. Accessed January 18, 2019. https://www.britannica.com/biography/J-J-Abrams. ^
  7. “Leadership.” ProPublica. Accessed January 18, 2019. https://www.propublica.org/leadership/. ^
  8. “Leadership.” ProPublica. Accessed January 18, 2019. https://www.propublica.org/leadership/. ^
  9. Adeniji, Ade. “Movies in a Galaxy Far, Far Away-But Philanthropy Close to Home.” Inside Philanthropy. January 21, 2016. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2016/1/21/movies-in-a-galaxy-far-far-awaybut-philanthropy-close-to-hom.html. ^
  10. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2018. ^
  11. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2018. ^
  12. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2018. ^
  13. Lewis, Andy. “Hollywood’s High-Dollar “Hillblazers”: 10 Biggest Donors to Clinton’s Campaign.” The Hollywood Reporter. November 03, 2016. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/hollywoods-high-dollar-hillblazers-10-biggest-donors-clintons-campaign-942916. ^
  14. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2016. ^
  15. Bend the Arc: Jewish Action. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.bendthearc.us/. ^
  16. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2016. ^
  17. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2016. ^
  18. “Michelynn Woodard.” LinkedIn. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.linkedin.com/in/michelynn-woodard-3aa69447. ^
  19. “Joe Philipson.” LinkedIn. Accessed January 17, 2019. https://www.linkedin.com/in/joe-philipson-18aaa728. ^
  20. Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams Family Foundation, Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). 2016. ^

Directors, Employees & Supporters

  1. Kathleen McGrath
    President/Director
  2. J. J. Abrams
    Secretary/Treasurer/Director
  See an error? Let us know!

Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: December 1, 2012

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2015 Dec Form PF $1,948,426 $3,149,529 $1,147,404 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2014 Dec Form PF $1,905,227 $1,929,681 $2,359,910 $1 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2013 Dec Form PF $1,914,372 $1,758,976 $2,384,363 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2012 Dec Form PF $1,919,724 $1,726,395 $2,188,329 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2011 Dec Form PF $1,995,000 $0 $1,995,000 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Katie McGrath and J. J. Abrams Family Foundation

    16000 VENTURA BLVD STE 900
    ENCINO, CA 91436-2760