Lutheran World Relief

The information in this column was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 10/29/2021. To update the information in this column, please email:


At Lutheran World Relief, we envision a future where all people, in every corner of the world can live full, dignified lives.

Founded by Lutherans in the United States at the end of World War II, grounded in Lutheran theology and building on decades of experience, Lutheran World Relief tackles global poverty by helping people adapt to the challenges that threaten their livelihoods and well-being. We work with people based on need, regardless of race, religion or nationality and we do not evangelize.

We provide aid in emergencies and help families restore their lives. We partner with communities to build and grow rural economies. We break the cycle of poverty, so families and communities can thrive.

Our goal is to help people build selfsufficiency and create new communityowned approaches to problemsolving that will last long after our projects end.

Contact information

Mailing address:
Lutheran World Relief
PO Box 17061
Baltimore , MD 21297-1061


Phone: 800-597-5972


Organization details

EIN: 132574963

CEO/President: Daniel V. Speckhard

Chairman: Jean Hanson

Board size: 15

Founder: U.S. Lutherans

Ruling year: 1945

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 09/30

Member of ECFA: No

Member of ECFA since:


Empowered by God's unconditional love in Jesus Christ, we envision a world in which each person, every community and all generations live in justice, dignity and peace.

Mission statement

Affirming God's love for all people, we work with Lutherans and partners around the world to end poverty, injustice and human suffering.

Statement of faith

Our Lutheran Identity:

We love, because God first loved us. Lutheran World Relief's work is a labor of love. We love, because God first loved us. God's grace calls us and sends us out into the world to help our brothers and sisters living in poverty.
br> We serve our neighbor with impact and integrity. We uphold the Fifth and Seventh Commandments by working for resilient communities and just economies.

God works through human institutions. While other organizations are called to preach the gospel, our call to serve our neighbor is equally important.

All people possess dignity and self-worth. Lutheran World Relief brings aid and resources to others with the knowledge that every person we work with is holy, created in the image of God to be joyful and flourish. We realize that we need others as much as they need us. We need their experience, their knowledge, and their vision, and so we commit to walking alongside them in times of hardship rather than trying to lead or dominate.

All people have a vocation (calling). Lutherans believe that God has a calling for every human being that allows us the opportunity to better serve both God and neighbor. It is Lutheran World Relief's vocation to help people use their calling to the fullest extent.

Donor confidence score

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Transparency grade


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Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Relief and Development

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating875 of 102267 of 85
Fund acquisition rating581 of 102450 of 85
Resource allocation rating746 of 102464 of 85
Asset utilization rating859 of 102269 of 85

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Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$10,321,667$7,401,505$8,687,294$8,086,931$8,833,545
Short-term investments$7,466,370$18,170,167$19,778,321$22,860,826$18,292,139
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$33,828,825$29,386,547$32,607,700$41,223,109$33,265,084
Long-term investments$6,620,498$6,462,950$7,411,796$7,097,505$5,056,047
Fixed assets$183,380$306,352$404,239$484,547$894,818
Other long-term assets$13,402,360$4,081,124$9,519,279$3,026,134$2,818,378
Total long-term assets$20,206,238$10,850,426$17,335,314$10,608,186$8,769,243
Total assets$54,035,063$40,236,973$49,943,014$51,831,295$42,034,327
Payables and accrued expenses$4,510,843$3,474,688$4,289,850$4,962,440$3,975,002
Other current liabilities$5,633,624$0$0$0$0
Total current liabilities$10,144,467$3,474,688$4,289,850$4,962,440$3,975,002
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$0$4,645,661$9,372,652$6,318,381$1,696,532
Total long-term liabilities$3,819,072$6,324,687$11,174,631$8,238,315$3,726,919
Total liabilities$13,963,539$9,799,375$15,464,481$13,200,755$7,701,921
Net assets20202019201820172016
Without donor restrictions$26,515,714$23,450,781$27,339,133$30,266,101$26,212,158
With donor restrictions$13,555,810$6,986,817$7,139,400$8,364,439$8,120,248
Net assets$40,071,524$30,437,598$34,478,533$38,630,540$34,332,406
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$50,427,370$46,842,067$46,984,589$51,779,744$46,181,220
Program service revenue$0$383,661$789,053$1,271,701$987,709
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$1,608,940$891,333$2,688,988$871,575$1,259,714
Other revenue($12,832)$501,005$50,654$69,496$112,492
Total other revenue$1,596,108$1,775,999$3,528,695$2,212,772$2,359,915
Total revenue$52,023,478$48,618,066$50,513,284$53,992,516$48,541,135
Program services$31,719,178$42,611,542$45,283,002$43,880,351$40,943,034
Management and general$5,371,374$6,773,355$5,743,404$3,389,219$3,120,552
Total expenses$40,631,724$52,908,607$54,222,023$51,472,112$48,150,540
Change in net assets20202019201820172016
Surplus (deficit)$11,391,754($4,290,541)($3,708,739)$2,520,404$390,595
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets$11,391,754($4,290,541)($3,708,739)$2,520,404$390,595


Amb Daniel V SpeckhaOfficer - President & CEO$403,535
Richard SantosSenior Advisor (former)$246,066
Timothy McCullyOfficer - Exec VP Internal Rel$243,543
Joann TheysOfficer - Sr VP, Fin., CFO/Tre$219,087
James CoxChief Ops Officer$215,743
Mary LinehanSr Tech, Infectious Diseases$200,603
Michael WattVP Internal Operations$188,194
Edward ByrdVP External Relate & Engag$187,833
Roberto FloresChief Fin. Officer$180,894
Allyson P BearVP International Programs$180,211
Frederick KellettManaging Director, Impact Inve$179,661
Dawn ButcherAssociate VP Human Resources$168,855
Shelly TalcottSr Dir, Trans & Sp Initiatives$146,579
Emily SollieOfficer - Sr Dir Exec Comm$143,188
Cheri KaseChief Information Officer$130,618

Compensation data as of: 9/30/2020

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 10/29/2021. To update the information below, please email:


In 1945, World War II left an estimated one-fifth of the world's Lutherans homeless. Here in the United States, Lutheran churches in at least 20 states mobilized to help in Europe through a new agency called Lutheran World Relief.

Much has changed in nearly 75 years. But in thousands of congregations, in millions of offerings and in uncounted prayers, U.S. Lutherans continue to support Lutheran World Relief's work. Lutheran World Relief was there in the late 1940s, when 800,000 Palestinians were forced from their homes by the creation of the state of Israel ... in the early 1950s when Hong Kong, Korea and Bangladesh and much of Asia was mired in strife ... during the 1970s and '80s, when civil wars and drought plagued Africa.

Today, Lutheran World Relief operates in East and West Africa, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East, helping some of the world's poorest communities build the resilience they need to thrive.

Program accomplishments

Lutheran World Relief program accomplishments are:

Latin America program supports efforts in six countries:El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, Bolivia and Colombia.

  • Small farmers' access to land and local, regional and international markets
  • Agro-ecological production methods
  • Disaster prevention
  • Collaboration with municipal governments
  • Promotion of peace and conflict resolution
In Asia and the Middle East, LWR supports partners and long-term programs in West Bank and Gaza, Jordan, India, Nepal, and the Philippines.

  • Rights based work: (social, economic, cultural and political, embracing justice, inequality and discrimination)
  • Food and water security (incorporating land/water access, trade and environmental issues)
  • Conflict management and resolution (including peace building and reconciliation, reducing violence and trauma counseling)
  • Vulnerability reduction of marginalized affected by emergencies and are living in the Crisis Zones
LWR continues to respond to natural and human-caused disasters throughout Africa.

  • HIV/AIDS prevention (which includes behavior-change communication) and strengthening community capacity to support people living with HIV/AIDS and those affected by it
  • Food security from both farm-based and off-farm activities
  • Empowerment of communities and social equity for all, particularly women


LWR express the ministry's needs as follows:

  • Quilts
  • Layettes: used as gifts for newborns and their mothers.
  • Health Kits
  • School Kits
  • Sewing kits
  • Donations