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Michael Pinson, founder of Pinson Foundation Details Philanthropic Involvement - Financial Update & Response to Rumors

Oldsmar, Fla. – (Oct. 31, 2011) – Michael Pinson, founder and chairman of The Pinson Foundation, a small non-profit organization and president/founder of Pinson Communications, Inc., a private for-profit company, has clarified questions raised recently about the Foundation’s mission and his priorities for Foundation activities.

“From the time we established the Foundation in 2006, we sought to achieve three goals for charitable projects:  increase community awareness, attract new volunteers and help raise monies through our business relationships and hosting fundraising events,” says Pinson. “We are proud of what we have accomplished and invite those interested to review the supporting documents on the Foundation’s web site,

“People donate to causes they are familiar with,” Pinson adds.  “It has been our pleasure to invite hundreds of local community leaders to my home and other venues to encourage them to learn more about a number of charitable organizations, increasing awareness and, hopefully, reaching all three goals for these worthy causes.

“It has come to the Foundation’s attention that an individual on the Internet has claimed to be a donor to the Foundation while making unfounded claims about our organization. 

Foundation records show that this individual signed up to volunteer to help with one charity event more than two and one-half years ago.  He received two $35 complementary tickets and attended the 2009 Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity event that community leaders, elected officials and members of the board of trustees of The Spring of Tampa Bay attended.  The Foundation has no record of him volunteering or making a financial contribution to our Foundation.”


Following are details about activities conducted by Pinson and the Foundation. Each of these facts is readily verified by financial documents the Pinson Foundation and/or Pinson Communications, Inc. have in their possession.”

  • Events for The Spring of Tampa Bay, 2006-2009:  “Come for the Charity, Stay for the Party.”  Primarily to generate community awareness, increase volunteers for the shelter and support fundraising, these events, with the active involvement of The Spring, resulted in net donations of $16,200 to the organization.  By setting a low ticket price of $35, events attracted as many as 150 guests per event to Pinson’s home and introduced many new people to The Spring.
  • Haiti Medical Team and Emergency Relief: The first private donation of $5,000 was made Pinson Communications to the Foundation to help sponsor an 11-person emergency medical team that provided medical and surgical services to Haiti earthquake victims in January 2010. The Foundation directly paid for transportation, base camp operations, security, food, medical and other supplies and hired workers in Haiti. The Foundation also made cash donations and provided support to several orphanages, missionaries and tent city operations on the island. In March 2010, The Foundation also supported a Tampa-based missionary group to help ship more than 20,000 pounds of food and medical supplies to a school, orphanage, clinic and homeless project in Haiti. In May 2010, The Pinson Foundation Team invested donations to return to Haiti as they hired Haitian workers and provided transportation and volunteers to re-distribute medicine, food and supplies to missionaries and clinics. An estimated of $300,000 in medical supplies had been provided by other international relief organizations for the Foundation to receive for redistribution to support their operations in Haiti.
  • The Foundation has also provided financial support and promoted events conducted by other local organizations in support of their awareness and fundraising activities, including American Cancer Society, Plant High School Athletic Foundation, America’s Second Harvest Food Bank, Make a Wish Foundation, Suncoast Hospice/AIDS Walk St. Petersburg and Relay for Life Cancer Research Event.
  • The business records of Pinson Communications show that in cases such as the 13 Ugly Men White Party, Cattleman’s Ball and many other charity events, Pinson Communications, not the Pinson Foundation, directly paid for the tickets and directly made these donations. Absolutely, no Pinson Foundation funds were used to pay for these events.


From 2006 through 2010, the Pinson Foundation has donated $31,355 for charitable use, with an additional $16,108 in charitable cash reserves for the year ending 12/31/2010. This totals $47,463 of Foundation funds, after all fundraising events hosted by the Foundation, which were allocated for charitable projects.  Excluding funds and in-kind services donated to the Pinson Foundation, Pinson Communications has separately provided $23,867 in cash to other charitable causes such as the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Moffitt Cancer Center and other such organizations.  Thus, since 2006, the combined charitable efforts on the part of Pinson Communications, Inc. and Pinson Foundation totals $71,331 that has been directly allocated to help those in need.

Pinson notes that The Pinson Foundation is an entirely volunteer-driven organization, supported primarily through staff time and rent donated by Pinson Communications.  Given this voluntary structure, expenses for events are primarily food, beverages, and other direct event costs for the events held at Pinson’s home.

“Our most recent Florida filings for the Pinson Foundation (2010, available on the web site of the Florida Division of Consumer Services), indicate that the Pinson Foundation spent only 19 percent of donations on administrative expenses, a percentage that would be even lower if we had charged more for tickets.  Thus, 81 percent of our 2010 funds were used for charitable projects (program services expense),” says Pinson.

“The Foundation officers and I care deeply about our ability to continue to support local charitable organizations and I want to discuss questions about our college grant initiative, my military service and the Foundation’s state registration,” he adds.  “Such questions should never impede the Foundation’s ability to conduct good works, so I want to clarify them.”


  • College Fund Grants:  In 2009, the Foundation had planned to host a fundraiser to help provide college grant monies to single working parents and disadvantaged students. However, due to the weak economy, the event and planned program were canceled. “We really wanted to reach this goal, but we just could not accomplish this goal in such a weak economy,” says Pinson. The Foundation looks forward to accomplishing this goal at a later date.  
  • Florida Registration for the Foundation: The Foundation has been registered with the Florida Division of Corporations as a non-profit organization since 2006. In June 2011, Pinson learned that the Foundation was not properly registered with the State of Florida’s Division of Consumer Services.  The Foundation subsequently registered with this second Florida department with no fines or penalties imposed. The Foundation is registered and fully compliant as a 501(c)3 with the IRS and State of Florida.
  • Military Service: Pinson realized his biography was poorly written on the web site of Pinson Communications, Inc. and subsequently revised it.  The correct description of his involvement was that he was a U.S. Army Military Police Officer in the Gulf War.  After the Cease Fire he was selected for a special assignment to a new operations team of military police officers managed by U.S. Customs, a division of the U.S. Department of Treasury that operated in the Middle East. In 1991 Pinson received a Letter of Commendation for "Outstanding Performance and service to his country" from the 89th Military Police Brigade, U.S. Army and the United States Department of the Treasury Customs Service for arresting suspects and seizing automatic weapons and ammunition from being smuggled from Iraq into the United States.

“Giving back to the community in whatever form is possible is a cornerstone of The Pinson Foundation as well as my business,” says Pinson.  “We invite those who are interested to review our web site and Facebook pages for updates on upcoming activities and events.”

About The Pinson Foundation

Founded in 2006 by Michael Pinson, The Pinson Foundation ( is a totally volunteer-operated charitable organization designed to serve the charitable needs of the Tampa Bay area and other communities. Working through a large network of friends and business relationships, the Foundation generates awareness for charitable organizations, supports their fundraising activities and promotes volunteerism.

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Suporting Documents to Above Press Release 

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Excerpts of letters from The Spring of Tampa Bay to the Pinson Foundation

While we regret having to address person(s) on the Internet making very misleading claims about the Pinson Foundation and the Spring of Tampa Bay charity events, below are excerpts from letters sent to our Foundation by the Spring of Tampa Bay board members. This additional infomration fully discredits any alligations by others in the community who are merely seeking personal attention or trying to use our organizations to make make a name for himself. Members of the Board of Trustees and the Community Relations Director of The Spring helped plan, market and attended all of our charity events. The Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity events where even promoted on the web page of the The Spring. Any claims otherwise by Internet bloggers or ohter individuals would be completely false.

September 19, 2006

Thank you so very much for planning, coordinating and hosting the Summer Mardi Gras Part to benefit The Spring of Tampa Bay.

I am thrilled that the Mardi Gras Party turned out to be such a success, not only in raising money that will help support the many programs and services that are so crucial to victims of domestic violence here in Hillsborough County, but even more significantly in increasing public awareness of a problem which increasingly threatens the very foundations of many families in our community.

Your efforts in bringing together so many people to learn about The Spring means a great deal to us all!

On behalf of The Spring’s board leadership, our entire staff and the families whom we serve, I thank you for believing in our mission to PREVENT domestic violence, to PROTECT victims and to promote CHANGE in lives, families and communities.

Linda A. Oberhaus
Executive Director
The Spring of Tampa Bay

June 15, 2007

We are so grateful to you for hosting a Mardi Gras Party to benefit The Spring of Tampa Bay. 

Thank you for your generous gift as a result of this wonderful event and for your efforts in increasing public awareness about domestic violence around the Tampa Bay area. I want to express my appreciation as well for your thoughtful donation of 8 computer monitors for use by Spring shelter residents and staff.

You are special to these families, without their ever knowing who you are. Your gift insures that they receive sanctuary, specialized services and access to resources.

Please know how much we appreciate your continued support of The Spring’s mission to prevent domestic violence, protect victims and promote change in lives, families and communities.

Linda A. Oberhaus
Executive Director
The Spring of Tampa Bay 

August 8, 2008

Thank you for your gift to The Spring of Tampa Bay from your Mardi Gras Party charity event. Your support of our mission imparts hope and courage to many women and children here in Hillsborough County whose lives are threatened by an abusive partner or violent family member at home. Thanks to the sustained generosity of people like you in our community, for 31 years victims of domestic violence have found safe shelter and access to a continuum of resources as The Spring that restores peace and heals family wounds.

Your remarkable generosity reassures frightened, vulnerable children that they are cherished and that their futures are vital to the community in which they are growing up.

Joanne Olvera Lighter
President & CEO

May 26, 2009

Thank you for your generous gift to The Spring of Tampa Bay….Your belief in our mission and your commitment to helping the Spring save precious lives will also have a last effect on the future of our community’s children.

With your sustained support, The Spring will continue to reach our community’s youth with these life-changing programs and services. On behalf of The Spring’s Board of Directors, I thank you for helping us make a lasting difference for the boys and girls whose homes have been ruled by fear and intimidation at the hand of someone they loved and trusted.

Joanne Olvera Lighter
President & CEO
The Spring of Tampa Bay 

September 20, 2006

...Your generous donation will help us complete the refurbishing and remodeling of the emergency shelter kitchen.

Linda A. Oberhaus
Executive Director
The Spring of Tampa Bay 


Pinson Foundation Medical Team in Haiti: Photos in Facebook

Pinson Foundation Medical Team in Haiti
 (Jan 2010)

Pinson Foundation Medical Team on the ground in Haiti-Album II

Lunch & Meeting with the Haitian Ambassador 
(Meeting in Tampa Bay)

Pinson Foundation Logistics Trip to Haiti (May 2010)


Pinson Foundation Medcial Team in Haiti (after one long day of work) 

Pinson Foundation Medcial Team in Haiti (after one long day of work)



Pinson Foundation Medical Team at work on the ground supporting the University of mobile Miami Hospital in Port de Prince airport.

Pinson Foundation Medical Team at work on the ground supporting the University of mobile Miami Hospital in Port de Prince airport.



Jay Madhu and Michael Pinson in Haiti thanking pilot who made multiple flights from Floirda into Port de Prince Haiti to deliver more food and supplies to the Pinson Foundation team.

Jay Madhu and Michael Pinson in Haiti thanking pilot who made multiple flights from Floirda into Port de Prince Haiti to deliver more food and supplies to the Pinson Foundation team.



2010 May

In May 2010, the Pinson Foundation returned to Haiti. In conjunction with the Brazilian Army and United Nations, the Pinson Foundation team procured transportation to facilitate the re-distribution of $300,000 in food and medical supplies obtained from the University of Miami supply warehouse in Port au Prince. The supplies were delivered to orphanages, tent cities for the homeless, and mission clinics.

Jay Hadhu on the Foundation team managing Haitian Volunteers and hired people to help load rented Pinson Foundation trucks. Loading up controled medicine, medical supplies and rice supplied to the Foundaiton by the Brizialian Armny operations in Haiti.

Jay Hadhu on the Foundation team managing Haitian Volunteers and hired people to help load rented Pinson Foundation trucks. Loading up controled medicine, medical supplies and rice supplied to the Foundaiton by the Brizialian Armny operations in Haiti.

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2009 Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity Party

The Below are photos some of our fantastic supportters who are members of the Spring's Board of Trustee's and others at the 2009 Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity event hosted at Michael Pinson's home. We are very proud of our efforts and as you can see in our photo albums, what certain individuals on the Internet have alledged about women in the pool and hot tubs and other false alligations, never happened at all. Several of these ladies with the Spring (below) helped us plan the event months in advance. They came to the event three hours early to help set up and were the last to leave to help us clean up after each charity event. The good news is that more charity groups are calling us more than ever and asking how we can help them as we have helped the Spring of Tampa Bay.

We thank everyone for their suppport and understanding. The Internet has made many positive things possible in our community. 

2009 Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity event Photos

2008 Pinson Foundation Mardi Gras Charity event Photos





Channel 10 News (CBS Tampa Bay) Covering Return of Pinson Foundation Medical Team from Haiti in Feb 2010


To find this and other updates on the Pinson foundation, please visit our Updates page

The Pinson Foundation's registration number is CH34901.


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