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Sat, Aug 13, 2011 at 11:38 AM

The history of the name change from FMF to LUF goes like this.

In about 1997 or 1998 we decided to have the First Millennial Foundation (FMF, which was a not-for-profit Colorado corporation) apply to the IRS for tax-exempt status. This would allow people who made donations to not pay income taxes on the donation. More importantly, it would make the FMF acceptable to grant-making foundations.

As executive director I worked with a tax lawyer to prepare the application to the IRS. This took several months and cost $1,000 (of my money). And it involved personal, one-to-one negotiations between our lawyer and the IRS examiner (which was the main reason for paying the lawyer $1,000--we found a lawyer who knew the system and the IRS people and had worked with them many times before).

The IRS examiner finally ruled that the FMF needed to own all rights to the book, TMP, because it looked too much like the corporation could serve as a front for making a profit on the book.

I was jubilant at our success. But when I asked Marshall, he refused to assign all rights to (and future profits from) his book to the FMF because he still hoped to make money on a Hollywood movie and a board game based on the book.

This surprised me because he and I had previously talked about this (this had been part of the negotiations between our lawyer and the IRS examiner) and he had agreed that rights to the book probably weren't worth anything without the FMF.

In fact he got pissed off at me because he considered it a betrayal for me to ask him this. (This, by the way, is the same route that led to Jack Reynold's leaving the FMF--he was running the Rifle office and Marshall got unreasonably and unrealistically angry at him.)

I thought Marshall was wrong, but I resigned as executive director and member of the FMF because I had told Marshall when I "joined up" in the early 1990s that I recognized him as founder and spiritual father of the FMF and that I would always and only function in line with his interests as he saw them.

Tami Savage, Marshall's wife, felt bad about all this (and I think pretty much agreed with me--she had been aware of the developing negotiations with the IRS examiner as they were going on). A few months later she contacted me that she had incorporated a new not-for-profit organization (also in Colorado) under the name Living Universe Foundation (LUF) and had had a lawyer rewrite the IRS application without any mention of the FMF or the TMP book (but otherwise using the same application materials I had laboriously--and expensively--prepared), and the renewed application had been approved by the IRS examiner for tax-exempt status. And would I please come back on board and get back to all the good work I was doing developing the Foundation.

So I re-upped, became executive director of the new organization (actually the same organization but renamed LUF rather than FMF).

That was a couple of years before I went to Texas to try to get SEE going.

We (the LUF) never were successful getting any donations bigger than a few tens of thousands of dollars (there were four such donors--me, William Gale, Phil Kopitski, and Marshall--many people, probably hundreds, made lesser donations of either money or services).

We did not get positive responses from any of the couple of hundred grant-making foundations I contacted.

Richard Crews

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