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Appalachian Mountain Club

CharityWatch report issued
April 2022

CharityWatch Grade
This rating has been downgraded from A- due to the charity having 3.6 years worth of available assets in reserve.
Program Percentage
Amount spent on programs
relative to overhead.
Cost to Raise $100
Amount spent to raise
$100 of contributions.

Large Asset Reserves

CharityWatch reduces the grade of any charity that has available assets equal to three to five years of operating expenses. Charities with "years of available assets" of more than five years receive an "F" grade regardless of other measurements. In CharityWatch's view, a reserve of less than three years is reasonable and does not affect a charity's grade. These reductions in grades are based solely on the charities' asset reserves as compared to budget. The CharityWatch definition of "years of available assets" includes funds currently available for the charity's use, including investments that the charity has set aside as a reserve but could choose to spend if it wanted to do so. Appalachian Mountain Club's letter grade rating has been downgraded because it has 3 or more years of available assets.

See Our Process to learn more about how CharityWatch considers a charity’s asset reserves and the High Asset List for a list of charities whose ratings have been reduced due to high assets.

Contact Information

Appalachian Mountain Club
10 City Square
Boston, MA 02129

Other Names


Tax Status

Stated Mission

Promotes the protection, enjoyment, and understanding of the mountains, forests, waters, and trails of the Appalachian region.

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Data based on Fiscal Year Ended 12/31/2020

Program Percentage: 82%

The percentage of Appalachian Mountain Club's cash budget it spends on programs relative to overhead (fundraising, management, and general expenses).


Calculated Total Expenses



Cost to Raise $100: $18

How many dollars Appalachian Mountain Club 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
Appalachian Mountain Club IRS Form 990 04-6001677
Appalachian Mountain Club Audited Consolidated Financial Statements Multiple
Entity: Appalachian Mountain Club
Document Type: IRS Form 990
Tax ID: 04-6001677
Entity: Appalachian Mountain Club
Document Type: Audited Consolidated Financial Statements
Tax ID: Multiple

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.
Appalachian Mountain Club
meets governance benchmarks.
Appalachian Mountain Club
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 Opt-Out Policy  

  Name Title Compensation
1 John Judge President/CEO $355,097
2 Jennifer Norris VP/Chief Development Officer $190,383
3 Charles W. Johnston, Jr. VP/CFO $188,863
Name: John Judge
Title: President/CEO
Compensation: $355,097
Name: Jennifer Norris
Title: VP/Chief Development Officer
Compensation: $190,383
Name: Charles W. Johnston, Jr.
Title: VP/CFO
Compensation: $188,863

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 Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note N, Extraordinary Grants, Conditional Grant):

"During April 2020, the AMC received a conditional grant from Primary Bank through the Small Business Administration's ('SBA') Paycheck Protection Program ('PPP') in the amount of $3,281,600. The PPP funding is legally structured as a forgivable loan by the SBA. In order to achieve full or partial forgiveness of the loan, the AMC was required to spend the funding for specific purposes and also generally maintain its full-time equivalent level of staffing and wage related conditions over a defined time period. The AMC has elected to account for the PPP loan as a conditional grant... During the year ended December 31, 2020 management believes the AMC has met the substantial requirements for full forgiveness of the loan and as such, has recorded a grant in the amount of $3,281,600. Management deems the forgiveness application and approval process to be an administrative matter and not a significant condition to the recognition of the grant. Final determination with regards to forgiveness of the conditional grant will be made by the SBA... Subsequent to December 31, 2020, the AMC applied for, and received, full forgiveness of the $3,281,600 of funds received..."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note N, Extraordinary Grants, New Hampshire Nonprofit Emergency Relief Fund Grant):

"During September 2020, the AMC received a grant from the State of New Hampshire Governor's Office of Emergency Relief and Recovery through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in the amount of $1,000,000. During the year ended December 31, 2020 the AMC has recorded grant revenue in the amount of $1,000,000..."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note I, Deferred Unemployment Claims and Payroll Taxes):

"During the year ended December 31, 2020, the AMC deferred the deposit and payment of the employer's portion of Social Security taxes as provided for in the Federal CARES Act. This amounted to $456,584 as of December 31, 2020... The payment of the deferrals are due in equal installments of $228,292 on December 31, 2021 and December 31, 2022.

"During the year ended December 31, 2020, the AMC deferred the deposit and payment of the costs incurred to pay COVID-19 related unemployment claims primarily to the states of Massachusetts and New Hampshire as provided for in the Federal CARES Act. This amounted to approximately $100,000 as of December 31, 2020..."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note B re: In-Kind Contribution):

"During 2020, the AMC received a credit, primarily from the states of Massachusetts and New Hampshire, for 50% of the costs incurred to pay COVID-19 related unemployment claims as provided for in the Federal CARES Act. The credit amounted to approximately $100,000 for the year ended December 31, 2020..."

[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 Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note L, Commitments, Advanced Deposit on Future Land Purchase):

"In December 2018, the AMC received a leadership gift of $10 million from the Richard King Mellon Foundation supporting the planned purchase of 26,740 acres of working forestland in Maine for conservation and sustainable forestry purposes. Partnering with The Conservation Fund ('TCF'), a nationally recognized nonprofit, a purchase and sale agreement was executed in January 2019 that provides for the AMC to purchase the land from TCF on or before December 30, 2022. In February 2019 TCF closed on the land purchase with the seller for $18.5 million and the AMC paid TCF $10 million as an advance payment under the AMC–TCF purchase and sale agreement. A 70 acre parcel valued at $46,000 was transferred to AMC and recorded as land. In December 2020, the AMC paid TCF an additional $2.5 million as an advance payment under the AMC–TCF purchase and sale agreement. ... During the holding period prior to the AMC's purchase, TCF will own the property now known as the Pleasant River Headwaters Forest. The AMC's purchase price will be TCF's net purchase price from the seller plus closing, interest, carrying and other costs incurred by TCF, less sustainable forestry net proceeds during the period of TCF's ownership. The AMC has undertaken a campaign to raise $25 million, including the $10 million contribution received in 2018, to fund the purchase of Pleasant River Headwaters Forest and provide for long-term stewardship of AMC's Maine Woods Initiative, LLC land holdings that will total more than 100,000 acres with this purchase."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note O, COVID-19):

"The COVID-19 outbreak in the United States, which began affecting the operations of the AMC in March 2020, continues to cause business disruption throughout the world. The [audited] consolidated financial statements reflect decreases in certain balances and results from 2019 levels because of the response to COVID-19, most significantly in Outdoor Program Centers and Programs operating revenues and expenses. The financial impact and duration cannot be reasonably estimated at this time; however, the AMC expects this to continue to negatively impact the operating results of these balances in 2021."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) consolidated audit of December 31, 2020 (Note P, Subsequent Event):

"In March 2021, the AMC obtained a second Paycheck Protection Program loan from Primary Bank in the amount of $2,000,000 pursuant to the Federal Consolidated Appropriations Act signed in December 2020. The unsecured loan, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Small Business Administration ('SBA'), will be forgiven if certain conditions are met. In order to qualify for forgiveness, funds from the loan may only be used for eligible payroll costs, employee benefits, rent, utilities, and certain other covered expenses as defined in the Act, and certain wage and employment levels need to be maintained. The AMC expects to meet the conditions for a majority of the loan amount in the elected 'covered period' following the loan. However, final determination of any forgiveness will be determined by the SBA. Any amounts not forgiven by the SBA will then be required to be repaid in principal installments plus 1% interest per annum over the term of the loan ending March 2026."

According to the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) 2020 tax filing, AMC reports re: Compensation, Supplemental Information (IRS Form 990, Schedule J, Part III):

Regarding severance payments to officers, directors, trustees, key employees and highest compensated employees (Schedule J, Part I, Line 4a):

"Rebecca Rollins – $35,200 severance package, included in reportable compensation per 990 Part VII, Section A, Line 1a [Compensation of Officers, Directors, Trustees, Key Employees, and Highest Compensated Employees].

"John Kelly – $24,660 severance package, included in reportable compensation per 990 Part VII, Section A, Line 1a."

[Rebecca Rollins is reported as "VP & Chief Comm. & Marketing Officer," with total compensation of $137,484 in 2020; John Kelly is reported as "Lead Web Developer/Architect," with total compensation of $152,437 in 2020 (IRS Form 990, Part VII, Section A).]