Logo for the Mapping Project

The Mapping Project

Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine

Jonathan Lavine is Co-Managing Partner at Bain Capital and Chief Investment Officer of Bain Capital Credit. Using the substantial wealth he has made at Bain, Jonathan Lavine along with his wife Jeannie Lavine financially support several Boston area Zionist organizations and initiatives as well as Boston area educational, media, and medical organizations and institutions.

Support for Israeli Ethnic Cleansing

Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine have made large donations to Boston area organizations and initiatives which support and normalize Israel's ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homeland and theft of Palestinian resources. According to Jonathan Lavine's profile on the website of pro-Israel donor advised fund Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP):

For decades, Jonathan and his wife Jeannie have provided consistent support to Combined Jewish Philanthropies, and in recent years increased focus on their investment in Israel, and in the Jewish future." The Lavines’ contributions to CJP's programs, Onward Israel Boston and Alternative Spring Break, help to build the connection that Jewish young adults have with Israel. The Lavines established the Lavine Family Leadership and Service Learning Fund with CJP,  which allowed CJP to expand Onward Israel Boston and helped to fund the transformational Alternative Spring Break program. In addition to annual giving, the Lavines donated $1 million in 2017 to support CJP’s renovation efforts. 

CJP's profile on Lavine further notes:

[T]he Lavines wanted to ensure CJP’s ability to create and launch new programs designed to intensify Jewish young adults’ connection with Israel. In order to do so, they increased their gift to support Onward Israel Boston and Alternative Spring Break, two programs that provide internship and service learning opportunities for local college students who want to make a difference in Israel while gaining valuable leadership experience in the private and non-profit sectors ... “Israel is our homeland and the historic land of our forefathers, but it is also very much a reflection of the Jewish present,” says Jonathan. “We hope that these programs become permanent fixtures in the lives of Boston youth, and build their love and support for the State of Israel.”

[...] The Lavines’ visionary leadership and generous funding allowed CJP to launch Onward Israel Boston last year. This year, they also supported a significant expansion of the program, helping 70 students from Boston — the largest delegation sent by a single community nationwide—to spend this summer learning, working and living in Israel. Students shared their excitement nearly as soon as their plane touched down, tweeting and blogging about their life-changing experiences, with many already planning for a return visit.

The Lavines are also supporting the Alternative Spring Break program, a week-long service learning project based in Boston’s sister city of Haifa. This year, students volunteered for projects that included working with troubled adolescents at the Yemin Orde Youth Village and restoring a heritage site outside of Jerusalem. Participants returned infused with a love of Israel and with new insights on leadership and activism.

Outside of their donations to Combined Jewish Philanthropies' Zionist programming and initiatives, the Lavines provide financial support to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a pro-Israel lobbying and propaganda organization (see: here and here; see entry on Anti-Defamation League). Through their private philanthropic foundation, The Crimson Lion Foundation, Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine have also donated $5,000,000 to Fidelity Charitable, a donor advised fund which anonymously funnels money from wealthy donors into Zionist, white supremacist, anti-Muslim, anti-LGBTQ, and anti-immigrant organizations (see entry on Fidelity Charitable).

Other Boston Area Influences

Along with their support for Zionist organizations and initiatives, Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine donate to several Boston area educational, media, and medical organizations and institutions through their private philanthropic foundation, The Crimson Lion Foundation. Several of these organizations and institutions the Lavines support are included on our map for their support for Zionism and/or other forms of racism. From FY13-FY19, The Crimson Lion Foundation donated the following quantities of money to the below-listed organizations:

The Lavines also privately made a "record setting $5 million donation" to the Boston area media outlet WBUR.

Private Foundations: Redirecting Resources from the Tax-Base to Preferred Charities of the Wealthy

Assets held within a private foundation, as well as gains on those assets, face considerably less tax liability than assets held as personal wealth. Moreover, private foundations enable wealthy individuals to use tax write-offs to reduce the taxes they have pay on all of their assets, including those held outside of their foundations. Such tax-evasion is perfectly legal, on the condition that a foundation's disbursements (donations + expenses) in a given fiscal year equal at least 5% of the fair market value of that foundation's total assets from the end of the previous fiscal year.

As of December 2019, Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine were holding assets totaling $87,048,226 within The Crimson Lion Foundation. In addition to evading taxes on this $87 million+ within their foundation and reducing their tax liability more broadly through write-offs, Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine also avoided paying taxes on the gains yielded by these assets in their foundation, which they have invested in corporate stock. Interest, dividends, along with revenues from asset sales of the assets Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine hold within the Crimson Lion Foundation totaled $3,735,078 in fiscal year 2019 and totaled $4,387,001 in fiscal year 2018.

Rather than benevolent ventures through which wealthy individuals give away their money for the public good, private foundations should be understood as strategic financial maneuvers through which the wealthy reduce the taxes they have to pay into public budgets, in exchange for committing to donate a portion of the (under-taxed) wealth held within their foundations to their preferred charitable causes. Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine use the Crimson Lion Foundation as a tax-free stock portfolio for over $87 million of their wealth, while funneling derivative income from these stocks into their charities of choice.

31 ST JAMES AVENUE NO 740, Boston, MA 02116

Back to main page.