Organizations Where You Can Donate Your Car

Have an old clunker lying around? Get a tax write-off by donating your car to some deserving charities.
Kars 4 Kids

Established in 1994, Kars 4 Kids goes the route of being a public service that doesn’t depend on private sector donations, to fund its charity. This method has proven to be a bonanza for Kars 4 Kids, as it provides a sustained revenue stream. To further maximize the full value of all vehicle donations, Kars 4 Kids handles every aspect of the donation, thereby eliminating any outside processors. This means more revenue goes to its charity programs. Children and families are the focus of Kars 4 Kids charities. Its mission seeks to provide opportunities for all children through mentoring and community outreach.

Islamic Relief USA
As a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt charity, Islamic Relief USA,™ provides worldwide humanitarian relief for over 20 years. Its mission seeks to eliminate hunger, disease, and illiteracy regardless of an individual’s color, creed, religion or race. Compassionate aid in a dignified way, Islamic Relief USA,™ helps communities in need during times of crisis and disaster and assists in establishing self-reliance programs. Vehicle donations provide funds to Islamic Relief USA,™ which provides nourishment, clothing and clean, drinking water to individuals in need in the United States and around the world.

Habitat for Humanity
Automobile, truck, plane and boat donations support Habitat for Humanity’s commitment to families. Nearly one-third of automobiles received come back as refurbished parts or recycled. Using recycled materials promotes a better environment by using less natural resources and reduces pollution. 80% of a vehicle’s worth returns to Habitat for Humanity, after processing from Advanced Remarketing Services.

Wheels For Wishes
Vehicle donations to Wheels for Wishes gives every child an opportunity to succeed in life. Donations help fund Wheels For Wishes charity Make-A-Wish, and its nationwide chapters. Funds derived from donated vehicles helps deliver wishes to children afflicted with severe medical conditions. Delivering a wish to a sick child shifts their focus from being sick to one of hope and just being a kid, and the fun that comes with it.

Car Donation Wizard
Individuals donating to Car Donation Wizard have the opportunity to select from a lineup of bona fide non-profit and charitable organizations, where their funds go. All donations are tax-deductible. Car Donation Wizard accepts trucks, automobiles, trailers, recreational vehicles, personal watercraft, boats, and motorcycles. It recycles vehicles, maximizing the value of donations, with nearly 80% of all donation value returned to Car Donation Wizard.

The Future Looks Bright for Middle East Students

Farah Shamout, a computer engineering major and recent graduate of New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD), is one of two students from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to receive this year’s prestigious Rhodes Scholarship from the University of Oxford. She is the sixth NYUAD Rhodes Scholar in just three short years.

Farah says that her studies at Oxford will provide her the opportunity to grow as a leader, and to return to the UAE to develop health informatics.

While opinions of Muslim countries and their students continue to polarize countries in the West, critics of this polarization see a different side of the Middle East, one that looks more like Farah, and less like the terrorist groups portrayed in the news.

“Both [Middle Eastern Rhodes Scholars] have already achieved remarkable contributions towards their respective fields of biomedical engineering and robotics, and they are committed to playing a leading role in the transition of the UAE towards a knowledge based society,” says Al Bloom, Vice Chancellor of NYUAD (“NYU Abu Dhabi Senior Named UAE Rhodes Scholar”)

For Farah, the chance to study at Oxford is the chance to continue her studies in the field of biomedical engineering, which she plans to use in service to improve the lives of individuals living around the world. Her innovative approach to the fields of biology and computer science place her in position of global engagement.

She hopes to make an impact in the tech sector, particularly by empowering young women to achieve their academic potential and acknowledge their talents. United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States, Yousef Al Otaiba ( echoed this sentiment recently in his address to RAND headquarters campus in Santa Monica. He mentioned that though the Middle East is a place of peril, due to the presence of extremists such as ISIS and Iran’s nuclear aspirations, it is far more a place of opportunity, with young people such as Farah choosing the path of humane engagement and scholarship. (“A New Middle East”)

A clear example of the new Middle East, Farah is poised to make a serious contribution to the field of science, and is looking forward to being an ambassador during her time at Oxford.

Connecticut’s Venture Capital Sector is Emerging

The economic collapse of 2008 has taken its toll on Connecticut’s businesses. As a result, lawmakers had to scramble in an effort to save jobs. The issue for these businesses was not that they were going out of business, but Connecticut was not the most affordable place to do business. Since it was a struggle to keep the larger corporations, legislators turned to growing small and medium sized businesses.

In an effort to help these small businesses, three new funds with a total of 130 million dollars available were created. This is an excellent opportunity for the state, since small startups lacked the funding they needed in the past.

This new capital being offered, has also led to strong growth in a new business sector. Connecticut is now developing a strong bioscience industry. Typically, insurance companies were the state’s only major industry, but adding a second one could make a world of difference.

Along with the in state funding, Connecticut is also seeing an increase from investors out of state. When you go from 2009 to 2010 you would see that there was a 43 percent increase of funding from investors. While some of this comes from in state, the majority is from out of state. And this means there is confidence in the potential growth of Connecticut’s economy.

Additionally, the goal of Connecticut is to get more money out of in state investors. Ryan Brennan of Advantage Capital said that the fund is the first investment in Connecticut made by his firm. Despite being fourth in the nation for capital investment, they are ranked fourteenth in the total amount of money invested in Connecticut. This shows that there is money in the state, but it’s still being invested elsewhere. But if this money were invested in the state, there would be an even stronger potential for growth.

The result of this newfound funding, will be a reduction in the gap between who is investing and where. If Connecticut can continue to increase its venture capitalism, and grow new companies and industries from it, the results would be fantastic. And with the help of a growing economy, Connecticut might be able to turn the state around.

The Power Behind Turkey in The Energy Sector

What many people are unfamiliar with is the large energy sector in Turkey’s economy. One of the main companies behind it is the Habboush Group and its CEO Wadie Habboush. They are excited about Turkey’s future because they absolutely believe that the energy sector in Turkey and its neighbors, including Iraq, could be one of the fastest growing emerging markets in the world over the next five years. This positive outlook is in spite of the fact that presently the region is in a period of global recession. Even though the economies of the region are reacting sluggishly, the affirmative outlook of the Habboush Group and others for the future is based on the fact that Turkey has been the fastest growing economy in the region for two out of the last three years. In Addition to those facts, the energy sectors in Turkey are where everyone is seeing positive economic movement happening. Because of this, it is Wadie Habboush and the Habboush Groups opinion that the energy sector is not just the most important sector for the growth of the Turkish economy but that it is the most important sector for economic growth of that entire region of the middle east.

Wadie Habboush has been working in this region for decades and is experienced in operating and maintaining massive energy and infrastructure projects. In addition to these assets, he is also focusing on the development and management of other energy-related projects to their completion. In Turkey, the Habboush Group has become involved in developing power generation plants in addition to similar projects in Southern Iraq. Because of the group’s commitment to energy production and distribution, it is clear that The Habboush Group, Turkey, and Southern Iraq can play a cooperative role in moving the region forward by forging an economic link while sharing strategies and cross-border resources. The Habboush Group also believes strongly in the Turkish economy as well as Iraq’s economy. This is an obvious conclusion if you just look at the economics and the region’s demographics.

When energy is discussed most people are talking about a $200 plus billion-dollar oil and gas market in Iraq and Turkey. This is in spite of the fact that no one has used any modern day data gathering techniques to precisely assess the potential market. Most of this is based on the area and the deposits that are already known to exist in the region. Because of this data, Iraq has already built important affiliations with distinguished companies involved the energy sector and other forms in infrastructure. What happens from here on out with the Habboush Group and these reserves all depends on what the Habboush Group and its CEO Waddie Habboush are trying to accomplish as a business in the region. Istanbul is a wonderfurl metropolitan city. It is also a true economic and cultural hub between the east and west. Because of these reasons and others, it seems to be the obvious choice of the energy capital for Turkey and Iraq where buyers and sellers of energy resources and other goods can come together and profit.

Crystal Lagoons Brings New Value to FL Real Estate

Fernando Fischmann’s Crystal Lagoons recently joined one of the largest real estate developments in Florida, SoLē Mia, which is part of a joint venture between LeFrak and Turnberry Associates. Turnberry Associates is owned by Jackie Soffer ( and her brother, Jeffrey, and LeFrak is owned by prominent business man, Richard LeFrak.

Fischmann originally joined the real estate field amassing investment equities. However, in 1986 he procured sixty hectares of countryside off the shore of middle Chile. With the plan to establish a vacation getaway, Fischmann here originated a simulated natural marsh which he deemed, San Alfonso Del Mar. The San Alfonso Del Mar pond was unveiled for the first time in December of 2006. This endeavor led Fischmann to expand on his means for sustaining the immaculateness and transparency of the water.

Fischmann developed his scientific know-how to sustain immense amounts of translucent water with minimal maintenance cost. Fischmann’s idea centered around its computerized system of ultra-sonic filtration and electronic pulsing. Unlike other setups, the use of chlorine for water refinement is non-existent. Just as important, the energy consumption of the filtration system is proportionate to two percent of the power expended by pools with typical filtration arrangements.

The Crystal Lagoons infrastructure works with essentially all types of water including freshwater, brackish water, and salt water. In addition, the aquifer mechanics enable runoff water to be refined via a separate treatment lagoon. In this separate lagoon, the water is collected into underground reservoirs to be used when necessary. This not only stores water, but helps conserve it when weather conditions get extra dry.

With its exclusive technology, these artificial marshes feature droves of sensors and tiny injectors that add purifying chemicals where and when they are required. This makes way for a more conducive cleaning approach to pool maintenance. Most pool setups typically lean on a great amount of chlorine to destroy bacteria. However, if a pond the size of some Crystal Lagoons were to be treated with chemicals, it would necessitate massive amounts of chlorine.

With land, it can be difficult to differentiate between one property and another. Man-made Crystal Lagoons ( allow property owners to provide aquatic and recreational sports. A glimmering artificial pond adds capital to a vast amount of real estates. In addition to this, Lagoons can be built anyplace with a water source, even if it is underground. With Crystal Lagoons, a realtor not only adds capital to their investment but can also revolutionize the lifestyle of a populace.

Top Business Schools for 2016

Ready4, a Boston-based company that creates test prep apps, today released its second annual list of the most desired business schools around the world. It surveyed over 250,000 prospective MBA students from 195 countries and asked them to name the top 10 schools they’d like to attend.

Harvard and Stanford held onto their first and second-place spots from last year, while Wharton moved up two positions to become the third-most desired program.

The most desired schools are extremely selective. Harvard enrolled 934 students in its class of 2018, or 10% of those who applied. The much smaller Stanford enrolled 417 students, or 5% of applicants. And Wharton’s 2018 group has 851 students and an admission rate of 13%. Tuition for these schools ranges from $64,000 to $74,000 per year, leading to total annual costs of over $100,000 for each two-year program. But graduates earn median compensation of $180,000 to $208,000 in their first year out of school.

For the full list of 25, continue here.


McLean, VA: Luxury Living Outside of the Capitol

Mclean, Virginia is home to an upscale community where many politicians and high-end professionals live as well. The location of the Central Intelligence Agency and the proximity to Washington D.C. are two of the biggest reasons why high-achieving experts are drawn to the community. McLean is full of lush greenery, hiking and biking trails, posh boutiques, and delectable restaurants.

Home of UAE Ambassador
Yousef Al Otaiba (, who is the United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States, and his wife Abeer live in a beautiful home in McLean, Virginia. The estate was given a modern upgrade with contemporary finishes that fit the lifestyle of Otaiba and his family.

The outside of the home is stunning with an infinity edge swimming pool that has stepping stones lined across so that people look as if they are floating from the pool into the scenic Potomac River in the background. The setting is almost surreal. Arched walkways invite guests to sit around the water on a lounger. The home was designed with the help of several designers to get the desired effect that the couple was looking for in their property.

Inside the Estate
Luxurious blues, slates, and stainless steel adorn the home in a simple but elegant design. The kitchen has high ceilings, a massive stove, and a sink in the island in the middle of the floor. Two refrigerators provide enough space for regular parties and quiet dinners at home. Wood trim and soft white lights finish out the kitchen and carry through to the office with the curved ceiling and wall of windows that let the Ambassador bask in natural light. A long L-shaped desk gives him all the room he needs to conduct business and a quaint seating area with neutral tones make a perfect spot to have a good conversation with friends or delegates.

A uniquely designed bathroom lends character and a reminder of home with Arabic designs and accents in a magnificent arrangement. A formal dining room is headed with a massive black marble fireplace that looks over a very long wood table. The game room has a brighter look with a large wall aquarium, pool table, and spectacular wood floors. The family room is clean and cozy with plump white couches beckoning the family and guests to sit back and relax after a long day of work and discussions. The master bedroom is a mix of whites and creams with flowing curtains held back in a crisp manner to top off the calming style.

Four of the Most Interesting Visionary Awards Winners

There are visionaries and then there are winners of Florida’s Visionary Awards. These are people who have had the vision and drive to work effectively in transforming South Florida. The development of a world-class city requires vision, as well as courage and leadership. Thirty-five years ago, Time magazine featured the city of Miami as “Paradise Lost”, but that situation has been completely transformed. The winners of awards for performing this transformation are many. Of the 13 people awarded the Miami Herald Visionary Awards for 2016, there were four that really stood out from the pack:

* Craig Robins – Architecture/Design
* George Feldenkreis – Business
* Eduardo J. Padrón – Education
* Rachel Silverstein – Environment

Craig Robins won for Architecture/Design and is the CEO and President of Dacra Development Corporation. Husband of real estate mogul, ( Jackie Soffer, Craig assisted Sam Keller in bringing Art Basel to Miami Beach in 2002. The current location of the Institute of Contemporary Art is housed in the Moore Building, a move that was initiated by Robins with DesignMiami. He compares the Design District as a creative laboratory, the place where he invented DesignMiami.

George Feldenkreis won for Business and is Perry Ellis International’s Executive Chairman. He began in Miami as a Cuban refugee selling motorcycle parts in 1961. He became an importer of school uniforms. He has grown in business to head up a company with over 24 brands
and 2,600 workers. He says he never gets bored in the garment industry.

Eduardo J. Padrón won for Education and is the President of Miami Dade College. He also is a refugee from Cuba. Although he had been on the fast track to work at DuPont, Padrón’s professors thought he would be good at teaching at the University. He discovered a passion for changing people’s lives through education. Media outlets around the world have recognized him as a leading educator and most-influential Latino educator in the U.S. He has been much published in his campaigns for educational reform.

Rachel Silverstein won for the Environment and is the Miami Waterkeeper’s Executive Director & Waterkeeper; a nonprofit that promotes clean water for all of South Florida. She calls herself a “professional pot stirrer,” as an activist who felt forced to confront the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers about their Port of Miami dredging operations that were killing local endangered coral reefs. Her efforts resulted in the Army Corps paying $400,000 to have surviving coral relocated.

Read about all of the Visionary Award recipients at

UAE Takes Space Program to the Next Level

While the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is small in population and geography, its ambitious efforts to make headway in space is turning head. According to Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba, the country’s efforts to strengthen space exploration, improve scientific research and expand our horizons has already produced positive results, even though the program is extremely young.

The UAE’s space program really began in earnest only 7 years ago when the first government owned satellite was launched into orbit in 2009. Since then, the country has engaged in a number of projects, initiatives and organizations to improve space exploration.

First, the country established a few research centers to study space. In Abu Dhabi, the Khalifa University Space lab was established as well as the Astronautic and Celestial Emulation lab. This center has unmanned and aerial vehicles that are tested in environments similar to those found in space. There was also a recent announcement of the Space Research Centre that will be built out over the next 5 years at a cost of $100 million dirham. The centre in Al Ain will act as an incubator for all federal research.

The country also established Yahsat to coordinate ongoing satellite missions in space. Similarly, the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre helps to promote and plan satellite launches into space.

In 2014, it established the UAE Space Agency to coordinate all of these efforts and drive the exploration even further. Its goal is to promote research and development of the space sector. It organizes and regulates launches and missions as well. Lastly, it forms partnerships with other organizations to further UAE space organizations.

One of the biggest goals of the agency is to drive the 2020 unmanned mission to Mars. This extremely ambitious effort could help the UAE leap frog other places around the world to become a leading space center. It even gained acceptance into the International Space Exploration Coordination Group with other major countries and is the first Arab country to join.

Overall, the UAE has made tremendous strides into the areas of space exploration and research. Only time will tell if they can reach their ambitious goals. However, the rest of the world has offered support, cooperation and partnership to the UAE in hopes of seeing the nation achieve its goals.

Elon Musk Aims to Shore Up SolarCity by Having Tesla Buy It

Elon Musk has built an ambitious business empire on three pillars: electric cars, solar energy and space travel.

Now, the billionaire entrepreneur is trying to shore up his embattled solar panel provider by merging it with the electric carmaker.

His Tesla Motors said on Tuesday that it had offered to buy SolarCity in an all-stock deal, one that could value the latter at as much as $2.8 billion. The aim, Mr. Musk argues, is to create a renewable-energy giant, collecting clean electricity and putting it to work propelling cars.

But the transaction highlights the unusual moves that Mr. Musk continues to make to support the various arms of his empire, where he is the largest shareholder of each company.

He has taken out loans to buy up shares in Tesla and SolarCity, some backed by his personal stock holdings in both companies — a risky move that leaves him exposed to margin calls if their stock prices slide too far. He has defended the practice as low-risk to other shareholders, given the sheer size of his personal net worth of more than $10 billion.

In Mr. Musk’s view, putting Tesla and SolarCity together is only logical.

“We need to achieve a tight integration of the products,” he told reporters in a conference call on Tuesday. “I think it’s an obvious thing to do.”

An agreement is some time away, if one is ever reached. But shareholders in SolarCity pushed the company’s stock up 19 percent in after-hours trading, to $25.26. Shares of Tesla, however, tumbled more than 13 percent, to $190.59.

Continue to the full article…