Better Business Bureau Report for
Junior Achievement of Chicago

Better Business Bureau Report issued October 2016
Better Business Bureau Report expires October 2018

Does not meet one or more standards
This charity does not meet one or more of the 20 standards for Charity Accountability. Find out more...

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Charity Contact Information

Name: Junior Achievement of Chicago
Address: 651 W. Washington Blvd. Suite #404
  Chicago, IL 60661
Phone: (312) 715-1300
(708) 456-1400
Web Address:
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Better Business Bureau Comments

Year, State Incorporated: 1940, Illinois
Affiliates: None
Stated Purpose: Junior Achievement inspires and prepares young people to succeed in a global economy.

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Evaluation Conclusions


Junior Achievement of Chicago does not meet the following 4 Standards for Charity Accountability.

Standard 3: Frequency and Attendance of Board Meetings - An organization shall have a minimum of three evenly spaced meetings per year of the full governing body with a majority in attendance, with face-to-face participation. A conference call of the full board can substitute for one of the three meetings of the governing body. For all meetings, alternative modes of participation are acceptable for those with physical disabilities.

Junior Achievement of Chicago does not meet this Standard because:

  • Average attendance at its board meetings in the past fiscal year was less than 50%.

Standard 14: Budget - Have a board-approved annual budget for its current fiscal year, outlining projected expenses for major program activities, fund raising, and administration.

Junior Achievement of Chicago does not meet this Standard because, when the organization provided budget information, it indicated that the budget:

  • Was not produced for the current fiscal year.

Standard 16: Annual Report - Have an annual report available to all, on request, that includes: (a) the organization's mission statement, (b) a summary of the past year's program service accomplishments, (c) a roster of the officers and members of the board of directors, (d) financial information that includes (i) total income in the past fiscal year, (ii) expenses in the same program, fund raising and administrative categories as in the financial statements, and (iii) ending net assets.

Junior Achievement of Chicago does not meet this standard because the most recent annual report did not include:

  • Total expenses for each program in the same categories that appear in the organization’s financial statements.

Standard 17: Web Site Disclosures - Include on any charity websites that solicit contributions, the same information that is recommended for annual reports, as well as the mailing address of the charity and electronic access to its most recent IRS Form 990.

Junior Achievement of Chicago does not meet this Standard because the organization's website,, does not include all of the recommended information for those charity websites that solicit for donations. Specifically, it does not include:

  • Electronic access to the organization’s most recent IRS Form 990.
Junior Achievement of Chicago meets the remaining 16 Standards for Charity Accountability.
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Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. In partnership with businesses and educators, JA brings the real world to students, opening their minds to their potential. Their corporate and community volunteers deliver relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. JA programs empower students to make a connection between what they learn in school and how it can be applied in the real world – enhancing the relevance of their classroom learning and increasing their understanding of the value of staying in school. Throughout JA's sequential and integrated kindergarten through high school programs, students think critically and solve complex problems. Through their business, financial, and entrepreneurial educational programs, we prepare students to: • Proactively manage their finances; • Become entrepreneurs; and • Develop skills that will be recognized and valued in a global workforce. During the 2015-2016 school year, JA of Chicago successfully reached 554,742 students of all ages, races, ethnic backgrounds and physical capabilities, including at-risk youth in twelve Chicago-area and northwestern Indiana counties. This represents an 3% outreach growth over the previous school year. The growth has largely been supported by the Whole School Program, which JA of Chicago pioneered in the early 1990’s. This unique approach allows JA to work directly with organizations to “adopt” a partner school in the community where they do business. Every student at a chosen school benefits from JA’s programs, while corporate and community volunteers have the opportunity to develop personal relationship with the students and teachers they work with. Due in part to the success of the Whole School Partnership program, JA of Chicago has become the largest JA Area Office, reaching nearly twice as students annually than any other JA office in the United States (554,742) focusing substantial resources on at-risk students (68%), and maintaining our low cost per student at $12.06 per student last year.

For the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, Junior Achievement of Chicago's program expenses were:

Salary, Payroll taxes and benefits 3,426,484
Program printing and materials 1,231,260
Travel and Meetings 164,979
Rent, Heat and Electricity 144,098
Insurance 98,658
Stationery, supplies and postage 60,437
Telephone 47,057
Maintenance and Cleaning 26,847
Staff Conferences 14,770
Computer Programming 13,451
Promotional Activities 10,189
Miscellaneous 242
Total Program Expenses: $5,238,472
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Chief Executive : Sandy Daffe', President

Chair of the Board: Thomas E. Richards
Chair's Profession / Business Affiliation: Chairman and CEO, CDW Corporation

Board Size: 120

Paid Staff Size: 73

*Compensation includes annual salary and, if applicable, benefit plans, expense accounts, and other allowances.
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Fund Raising


Method(s) Used:

direct mail, telephone, invitations to fund raising events, print advertisements, radio, grant proposals, internet
Fund raising costs were 7% of related contributions. (Related contributions, which totaled $7,143,266, are donations received as a result of fund raising activities.)
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Tax Status


This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.
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The following information is based on Junior Achievement of Chicago's audited financial statements for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016.

Source of Funds  
Corporate and Individual Contributions 4,091,302
Special Events 1,759,489
Appropriation of Board-designated endowments 850,000
Grants and Program Sponsorships 412,475
Contributed Services 30,000
Other Income 5,962
Investment Income 1,249
Less national headquarters' participation fee -142,381
Less expenses related to special events -213,849
Total Income $6,794,247


Uses of Funds as a % of Total Expenses

Programs: 78%  Fund Raising: 8%  Administrative: 13%  Other Expenses: 1%

Total income $6,794,247
Program expenses $5,238,472
Fund raising expenses 526,369
Administrative expenses 881,607
Other Expenses 40,971
Total expenses $6,687,419
Income in Excess of Expenses 106,828
Beginning net assets 14,499,056
Other Changes in Net Assets 2,951,849
Ending net assets 17,557,733
Total liabilities 1,046,041
Total assets $18,603,774

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An organization may change its practices at any time without notice. A copy of this report has been shared with the organization prior to publication. It is not intended to recommend or deprecate, and is furnished solely to assist you in exercising your own judgment. If the report is about a charity and states the charity meets or does not meet the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability, it reflects the results of an evaluation of information and materials provided voluntarily by the charity. The name Better Business Bureau is a registered service mark of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

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