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Top Rated

Environmental Working Group

CharityWatch report issued
December 2017

Top-Rated Charity
CharityWatch Grade
Our independent grade based
on a number of factors.
Program Percentage
Amount spent on programs
relative to overhead.
Cost to Raise $100
Amount spent to raise
$100 of contributions.

Contact Information

Environmental Working Group
1436 U Street NW
Suite 100
Washington , DC 20009

Other Names


Tax Status




Stated Mission

To empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. With breakthrough research and education, drives consumer choice and civic action.

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Data based on Fiscal Year Ended 12/31/2016

Program Percentage: 83%

The percentage of Environmental Working Group's cash budget it spends on programs relative to overhead (fundraising, management, and general expenses).


Calculated Total Expenses



Cost to Raise $100: $10

How many dollars Environmental Working Group spends on fundraising to raise each $100 of contributions.


Calculated Total Contributions


Government Funding

0% to 24%

Percentage of cash revenue
coming from government sources


Financial Documents

Entity Document Type Tax ID
Environmental Working Group IRS Form 990 52-2148600
Environmental Working Group Audited Financial Statements 52-2148600
Entity: Environmental Working Group
Document Type: IRS Form 990
Tax ID: 52-2148600
Entity: Environmental Working Group
Document Type: Audited Financial Statements
Tax ID: 52-2148600

Governance & Transparency

CharityWatch evaluates certain criteria related to a charity's Governance and Transparency. Donors may want to consider a charity's willingness to be open and transparent with CharityWatch to be a good litmus test for determining its commitment to public accountability.
This charity is Top-Rated
What does it mean to be Top-Rated?
Environmental Working Group
meets governance benchmarks.
Environmental Working Group
meets transparency benchmarks.
Provides Financial Information
Audit Accessibility
Governance: Policies
Reports regularly & consistently monitoring & enforcing compliance with a written Conflict of Interest Policy
Reports required, annual disclosure by officers, directors, and key staff of interests that could give rise to conflicts
Reports having a written Whistleblower Policy
Reports having a written Document Retention and Destruction Policy
Governance: Financials
Reports providing copy of tax form to all board members prior to filing it with IRS
Reports that financial statements were audited by an independent accountant
Governance: Board of Directors
Reports at least 5 voting board members
51% or more of voting board members reported as independent
Reports documenting minutes of board and board committee meetings
Privacy Policy
Privacy Policy

  Name Title Compensation
1 Ken Cook President $327,042
2 Scott Faber Senior VP Government Affairs $257,699
3 Craig Cox Senior VP of Agriculture $224,794
Name: Ken Cook
Title: President
Compensation: $327,042
Name: Scott Faber
Title: Senior VP Government Affairs
Compensation: $257,699
Name: Craig Cox
Title: Senior VP of Agriculture
Compensation: $224,794

CharityWatch Analysts perform an in-depth analysis of charities' audited financial statements and IRS tax filings, and often review other documents such as state filings, annual reports, and fundraising contracts during their evaluations. Below are select notes that CharityWatch believes may be of interest to donors.
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) 2016 tax filing, EWG received in-kind donated services and use of facilities on which it placed a value of $1,156,929 in 2016 (IRS Form 990, Schedule D, Part XI).

[Note: CharityWatch generally excludes the value of in-kind (non-cash) donations of goods and services from its calculations of Program % and Cost to Raise $100. More information on how grades are calculated and the treatment of in-kind donations can be found on the Our Process page.]
According to the Environmental Working Group 2016 tax filing re: Compensation Information (IRS Form 990, Schedule J, Part III):

"Heather White, who served as Executive Director until December 31, 2015, received a severance payment of $153,333 during 2016."
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) audit of December 31, 2016 (Note 9, Related Party Transactions):

"EWG is affiliated through common management with the EWG Action Fund (EWGAF). EWG is affiliated with Food Policy Action (FPA) and Organic Voices (OV) through board membership by the President of EWG. EWGAF, FPA and OV are nonprofit, tax-exempt organizations under IRC Section 501(c)(4)..."

"In order for the organizations to minimize duplicative expenses and carry out their purposes in the most economical fashion, EWG provides certain management, accounting and administrative services to EWGAF, FPA, and OV for a monthly fee based upon direct costs incurred and allocable staff and related costs..."

The amounts billed by EWG to EWGAF, FPA, and OV in 2016 were: $226,400 to EWGAF; $6,758 to FPA; and $24,819 to OV.

Additionally, during the year ended December 31, 2016, Organic Voices (OV) provided a grant of $300,000 to EWG to fund its food policy work.
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) audit of December 31, 2016 (Note 5, Commitments and Risks, License Agreement):

"On October 29, 2014, EWG and HCHW [Healthy Child Healthy World] entered into an asset transfer and licensing agreement, whereby the respective Board of Directors of EWG and HCHW considered it advantageous and in the best interest of the individual organizations to improve efficiency and effectiveness of their programs by combining their respective assets and operations. ...As required by the agreement, EWG intends to continue the activities and programs of HCHW as a key program area of EWG for approximately three (3) years from the effective date of the agreement and HCHW has granted and assigned in full to EWG rights, title and interest in and all of its assets, except certain intellectual properties. The exclusive rights to the intellectual properties were instead licensed to EWG for a period until the earlier of the dissolution of HCHW or three (3) years from November 30, 2014, the effective date of [the] asset transfer and license agreement. If EWG fails to substantially invest (i.e., provides less than $150,000 in annual support) or undertake activities to maintain the HCHW programs as key programs of EWG, HCHW may request that all rights revert back to HCHW; however, upon expiration of the license agreement, all rights, title and interest in the intellectual property will be transferred to EWG automatically."

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