How Much Has Mort Klein Made from the ZOA? Millions!

Below is a chart of Mort Klein’s salary taken from the official Form 990s filed by the ZOA with the government:

Year   –   $
2001 – 134,747
2002 – 162,029
2003 – 186,279
2004  – 212,769
2005  – 249,462
2006  – 279,346
2007 – 315,385
2008 – 1,245,851
2009 – 717,700
2010 – 467,818
2011 – 518,869
2012 – 472,764

Total for 12 years: $4,963,019
Average for 12 years: $ 413,584

Note that 2008 was the first year in which the ZOA “forgot” to file its Form 990. It was not filed until the end of 2012, so the information about the enormity of Mort Klein’s salary was not publicly available for more than four years. The Form 990s for 2009, 2010 and 2011 were also not filed until late 2012, so again the public was in the dark. Moreover, Mort Klein actually laid off some employees and asked others to take pay cuts starting 2009 because of the recession.

It was the failure to file the Form 990s that caused the ZOA to lose its 501c3 status from May of 2011 until May of 2013, a fact that was covered up by Mort Klein until September of 2012.

Mort Klein justifies his enormous salary by claiming that he donated his time as a volunteer for the first six years at ZOA, and that his big increases were to compensate him for his sacrifice. That excuse doesn’t wash. First, the job was a volunteer one when Mort sought the position in 1994. He knew he was not getting paid. It is disingenuous for him to complain about it later.

Second, Mort Klein has stated in the press that if you averaged his salary for his 20 years of presidency of the ZOA, it would come out to only about $200,000 per year.

But Mort Klein’s arithmetic is off. Here’s the proof. We know Mort Klein earned substantially more than $400,000 in 2013, which will bring his total for 13 years to approximately $5.4 million. Assuming Mort Klein made absolutely nothing for the seven years of 1994 through 2000, his average salary would be approximately $270,000 per year, which is 35% more than the $200,000 he claims. Since Mort Klein almost certainly was paid a salary in 2000, and perhaps earlier, his average compensation is actually even higher.

Mort Klein has to know how much he earned and that his excuse that he averaged “only” $200,000 per year over 20 years is false. Why does he feels the need to understate his income so substantially?

Steve Goldberg, Mort Klein’s challenger for ZOA President, believes the ZOA should be spending money fighting for Israel, not enriching its President. If Steve is elected, the ZOA will no longer be squandering its money on an unseemly salary for its President. Instead, the money will be spent on programs, activism and growth aimed at defending Israel.

Stop Mistreatment of ZOA Employees!

The ZOA, under National President Mort Klein, has suffered unacceptably high turnover of valuable employees. The Forward has chronicled mistreatment of ZOA employees as early as 2006. Unfortunately, the pattern of bullying continues until today. The culture of fear, intimidation, and employee turnover under Mr. Klein derails ZOA from its mission and prevents employees from giving their best. For the ZOA to realize its full potential, employees must be treated fairly. Vote for Steve Goldberg to ensure the dedicated Zionists at ZOA can thrive. Learn more through this video.


ZOA Loses 501c3 Status Under Mort

On Sept. 11, the Zionist Organization of America’s (ZOA) board of directors met in New York and overwhelmingly approved a resolution expressing confidence in the organization’s direction and in the leadership of Morton Klein, its president of 19 years.

The vote came less than a day after a news report that ZOA had had its tax-exempt status revoked as far back as May 2011 for failing to file three consecutive years of key financial documents with the Internal Revenue Service.

Only one board member present at the meeting, ZOA National Vice Chair Steven Goldberg, voted against the resolution. Goldberg, a Los Angeles resident, told the Journal that he believes ZOA’s loss of tax-exempt status points to larger problems with the 115-year-old educational and advocacy nonprofit. In an interview on Sept. 12, Goldberg insisted Klein must be replaced for the ZOA to move forward.



Jewish Journal: Mort’s First Challenger

Over the past two years, Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) President Morton Klein has had to defend himself against three lawsuits from two different fired employees, as well as to weather the temporary loss of his organization’s tax-exempt status and to undergo heart surgery. At the end of 2013, he earned the dubious distinction of being named by The Jewish Daily Forward as one the five most “overpaid” leaders of Jewish organizations.

Now, for the first time since 1993, when he unseated then incumbent president James Schiller, Klein is facing a challenge to his leadership of the 117-year-old hawkish pro-Israel organization. Steven Goldberg, a Los Angeles-based attorney, is actively campaigning to unseat Klein at the board election to be held at the ZOA’s upcoming convention in March.

Goldberg, who was nominated in 2010 to his current position as vice chair of the ZOA’s national board by Klein at the organization’s last convention, announced his candidacy in a YouTube video released on Jan. 21.

“I care about Israel and the Jewish people, and I believe the ZOA is a vitally important organization that really occupies a unique space in Jewish activism and the pro-Israel community,” Goldberg told the Journal in a recent interview. “But unless changes are made, the ZOA, which has existed since 1897, is not going to last much longer.”



End the corruption of Mort Klein