Barbra Streisand is one of the rare celebrities who backs up her ideas with money. In 2012, according to the tax filing that just came available, the multi hyphenate actress-singer-director gave away $666,400 to charities through her personal foundation. And unlike say, Madonna, none of it went to kooky religions or cults or other questionable activities.

The foundation claims net assets of $7.5 million and just one employee. Streisand’s long time political consultant, Marge Tabankin, well respected in the community, makes $168,000 a year. She’s the sole paid staffer. The foundation otherwise has minimal expenses– no rent, and just $2,500 listed for “travel, conferences, etc”.  In other words, they keep it clean, and to the point.

The largest donation is $62,500 to the Clinton Foundation, which is no surprise. The next biggest are to Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles and to the Brooklyn Community Foundation — $25,000 apiece.  Streisand gave $15,000 to pal Donna Karan’s Urban Zen Foundation, a worthy cause.

Streisand’s donations actually increased from 2011 to 2012, although it doesn’t look that way at first glance. In 2011, she gave Cedars Sinai $1 million. The balance — to miscellaneous groups– came to $475,000. The Cedars Sinai bequest was a one time thing (and still pretty amazing).

The rest of the 2012 donations are spread evenly over a selection of arts, health, and women’s groups. Some are repeats from prior years, but not all. Barbra gave MusiCares $15,000 after being named Person of the Year in 2011. Not every singer who receives the honor donates money back to the Grammy foundation for musicians in need. That was a classy touch.

There are a number of donations, of course, to liberal organizations: People for the American Way, NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and Media Matters, among them. Bravo Barbra!




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