Sunday, January 25, 2009

Outward Bound: Forest City Ratner also gives to NY Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger's favorite charity

There's a lot of charitable money coming out of 1 MetroTech. Some, as I've detailed, comes from the Forest City Ratner Companies Foundation. Some, as with the loan/grant to ACORN, comes directly from Forest City Ratner itself. And some comes from Bruce Ratner.

Let's take a look at New York City Outward Bound, which lists Forest City Ratner among those supporters contributing $50,000-$99,999. This comes from the company, not the foundation.

There's an interesting potential synergy; the contributors at that level also include The New York Times Company and publisher Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., who is on the Outward Bound board.

In fact, Sulzberger "helped found and serves as chairman of the New York City Outward Bound Center," according to his official bio. A 12/19/05 New Yorker profile of Sulzberger, headlined The Inheritance, began with an anecdote about Outward Bound, which gave Sulzberger an award for furthering “the Outward Bound mission” Sulzberger said that, when he was a teen, Outward Bound changed his life.

Ratner's motivation?

That's good reason for Sulzberger to give back.

We can't be sure why Bruce Ratner gave--maybe Outward Bound holds a special place in his life, too--but it can't hurt relations with New York City's most powerful publisher, whose opinions are reflected in the Times's editorials (and silences).

Revisiting an editorial

Let's go back to the Times's last editorial on AY, published 8/6/06:
Some $40 million, for example, is for land acquisition for the arena, which should be a developer expense.

Well, that turned into $100 million, and Forest City Ratner may have saved an additional $55 million.

The Times editorial page hasn't seen fit to revisit the issue.

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