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Goodwill Related Questions

Is it true that your CEO makes $2.3 million a year?

No. The CEO of Goodwill Industries International does not make $2.3 million a year. The current President and CEO of Goodwill Industries International is Steven C. Preston.  You can learn more about him here and his compensation here.

Although affiliated with Goodwill Industries International, Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee operates through our own governing board of directors. The CEO of Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee is Matthew Bourlakas. You can learn more about his compensation and view Goodwill’s IRS reporting form here: VIEW Goodwill 990 Form.

Does Goodwill of Middle Tennessee pay its workers minimum wage or more?

Yes. While some Goodwills utilize the “Special Minimum Wage Certificate” as an employment tool, Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee DOES NOT. In fact, all of our more than 1,100 employees are paid minimum wage or more.

Shopping Related Questions

Are the people who work in your stores clients/employees?

Everyone who works in our retail stores is either an employee or a client, and most came through our Career Solutions centers’ training and assessment programs. Goodwill is proud that approximately 75 percent of its employees are mission-related, which means they have a disability or face a barrier to employment.

How does Goodwill use the revenue from the sales of goods to promote its mission?

Goodwill operates almost solely on the revenue from the sale of items that have been donated. The revenue from our retail sales is used to fund programs and services, almost all of them free, for clients who use our Career Solutions centers looking for help finding a job. Ninety-one cents out of every dollar Goodwill spends is applied toward its mission of changing lives through education, training and employment.

How does Goodwill determine prices for its products?

Prices for items sold in our retail stores are based on market value and are competitive with other stores in Middle and West Tennessee. Another advantage to shopping at Goodwill is that the State of Tennessee does not charge tax on used clothing.

Donation Related Questions

What does Goodwill accept/not accept as a donation?

A list showing some of the many items we accept can be found here.

Should I remove the hanger from my clothing before donating or does Goodwill want the hangers?

We sort and organize all donated clothing and then use our own hangers to put them on the appropriate sale racks in our stores. So, we prefer that clothing is donated without a hanger.

How do I assess a value for each item I donated?

It is up to you to assign a value to items you donate, however, a list of suggested values for many commonly donated items can be found here.

Why doesn’t Goodwill give the donations to shoppers since the items were donated?

Goodwill’s mission is to put people to work. Without selling our donated items, we would not be able to employ the more than 1,100 people who work for Goodwill or provide job training and job placement services through our Career Solutions centers. Approximately 75 percent of Goodwill employees are mission-related, which means they have a disability or face some other barrier to employment. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we can can provide these job services to help those in need.

Why should I donate to Goodwill?

Your donations put people to work. From the point of drop-off at a Donations Express Center, to the sales floor in one of our 35 stores and outlets, everyone who processes that donation is employed, thanks to your generosity. Ninety-seven cents out of every dollar Goodwill spends is applied toward its mission of changing lives through education, training and employment. Eighty-nine percent of Goodwill’s employees are mission-related and former clients who received services from Goodwill Career Solutions.

When you donate your gently-used items to Goodwill, you can be assured you’re donating to a reputable nonprofit organization, as you can read in our annual report.

Does Goodwill accept large household appliances or computers?

Large appliances are only accepted at retail site Donation Express Centers. Goodwill only accepts laptop computers. Please be sure to check all electronics to ensure each item is in good working order. Goodwill must pay a salvage company to remove all non-working electronic items including televisions, radios, cameras, microwaves and similar products.

What are the hours for your donation sites?

Donation Express Center hours vary. Please visit our locations page for the latest and most up-to-date hours for each donation site.

I lost my donation receipt. Will Goodwill send another as a replacement?

Unfortunately, Goodwill does not maintain records of donors and will be unable to replace a lost receipt. Please save your receipts with all your current year tax records to ensure you will be able to claim your donation as a deduction. Goodwill does offer an electronic means for donors to track their own donations throughout the year at mygoodwilldonation.org. By signing in to your online account, you can  add information anytime you donate, assign a value to your donations and have a complete record of all your donations available whenever you need it.

When I dropped off my donations recently, I saw an item that had been donated and asked the attendant if I could purchase the item and he said no. Why can’t I buy the items as they are donated?

Donated items must be processed and cannot be sold until they reach the sales floor of one of our retail stores. The best strategy to find exciting merchandise at our stores is to shop often and enjoy the hunt!

Does Goodwill repair items or wash donated clothing?

Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee does not repair broken items or wash donated clothing.

Why didn’t the donation attendant assess a value to my donations?

Based on IRS regulations, it’s up to donors to document and assess the value of all donations to Goodwill. We have compiled a list of prices that we typically use to sell donations. You may use this as a starting point.

Quick tip:
It’s easier to assess the value of your donations as you clear out your clutter and clean your closets. Each time you donate, use this list and record what you think your donations are worth. By following this tip you should feel less stress at tax time and have a complete record of what you have donated to Goodwill.

I inadvertently donated an item. Who do I contact?

If you donated through a Donation Express Center or one of our donation events, you must contact our donations department as soon as you realize the item is missing. Please call (615) 346-1604. Please provide descriptive details of the item, the date of the donation and the donation location.

Does Goodwill offer pickup service for donations?

Rather than offer an all-encompassing pickup service, Goodwill believes the best and most convenient way to accept most donations is to offer multiple donation sites. We have over 45 Donation Express Centers located throughout the 48 counties we serve.

Under certain circumstances, Goodwill will pick up items, and we offer a variety of pickup services that cater to specific situations. You can view all of our pickup services here.

Online Goodwill Related Questions

What is OnlineGoodwill.com?

Just like other online auction sites such as eBay, OnlineGoodwill.com offers thousands of items that are available for bidding, including jewelry, artwork, cars, antiques and rare items. All items that are up for auction have been donated to Goodwill. Most of the auctions begin at $5 per item. The entry page to view all the items offered for auction by Goodwill Industries of Middle Tennessee through the national shopping site is: ShopGoodwill.com.

How do you choose the products for OnlineGoodwill.com?

Donation attendants and processing staff choose donated items that appear online. Although we have thousands of items on OnlineGoodwill.com for bid, those items account for only one percent of the donations we receive on an annual basis. The philosophy is that the items we sell on OnlineGoodwill.com may bring more income which can be applied to Goodwill’s mission and, by doing so, also honor the donor who generously gave Goodwill an item of value.

What’s the bidding process and how does it work?

Much like any online bidding site, OnlineGoodwill.com requires that bidders register online (a free process), and then they’re welcome to browse, bid and buy any item available for sale. The site notifies bidders when they’ve been outbid on an item and if they’ve won or lost the auction. Please visit OnlineGoodwill.com to see all the items available for sale.