Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Inside Shaun King’s Shadowy $6.7 Million Nonprofit

Shaun King’s Grassroots Law Project amassed and spent millions after George Floyd’s murder—including six-figure payouts to himself and allied consultants.

Shaun King’s nonprofit amassed millions of dollars in donations in the months following the 2020 murder of George Floyd, while its signature project to review and redress prosecutorial injustices in three major U.S. cities floundered—and while King himself and his associates raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars in compensation.

Representatives of the Grassroots Law Project produced the 2020 financial reports for the King-led outfit in response to questions from The Daily Beast. These materials have yet to appear in any public records database, and the Internal Revenue Service did not respond to queries about why the King nonprofit did not show up in its online files. But the Grassroots Law Project’s lawyers noted the agency had suffered internal delays related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The tax documents reveal that during the first year of its existence, a period that coincided with the largest racial justice protests in the nation’s history, the organization collected more than $6.67 million. Further, Federal Election Commission records also show that two political action committees tied to the controversial activist have poured close to half a million dollars into the organization.

The single largest expenditure the Grassroots Law Project made in its first year was $2,654,434, which the disclosures only state went “to bridge the gap between grassroots organizing and legal expertise to reform the American justice system.”

The organization’s representatives acknowledged to The Daily Beast that this referred, at least in part, to the group’s flagship program following its launch: “Truth, Justice, and Reconciliation Commissions”—ostensibly modeled on those instituted after the fall of apartheid in South Africa—that the Grassroots Law Project would go on to help set up in the district attorneys’ offices of San Francisco, Philadelphia, and Boston.


Leave a Reply