Once coined the ‘queen of hip hop soul’, Rock Of Ages star Mary J has been labelled a ‘deadbeat diva’ by the New York Post, following reports that the charity she champions alongside Steve Stoute, the Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now aka FFAWN, has defaulted in several payments including, a $250,000 loan, and is facing two law suits.
The Foundation was established to offer scholarships and women’s issue workshops, and boasted having sent 25 women to college in 2010. Though, according to the New York Post, sources close to the charity have admitted the organisation had sought the help of a charity consultant, a forensic accountant, and a law firm specialising in not-for-profit organizations “to look into certain issues.”
Many of the legal issues have stemmed from a benefit concert in May of 2011, where many artists and contractors were paid but the cheques all bounced. The musicians, including Jennifer Hudson and Christina Aguilera, filed a class action, with the group claiming to be owed $167,252 for wages and penalties for breach of contract. The foundation wasn’t without cash as well, having previously taken out a $250,000 loan to set up their office, though the office never eventuated. The bank has since sent two letters of demand.
The foundation, with the main goal of empowering women, was also said to receive $1 from every sale of Bliges signature perfume ‘My Life’, though no record of that has appeared on the books. Jay-Z gave FFAWN $25,000 and Stoute $35,000 in 2009. Gucci ponied up $50,000 and Walmart $33,500 that year, according to the New York Post.