Harlan Crow Picked Up the Tab for Uncle Clarence’s Grandnephew’s Private School

Buried in a report that ProPublica recently released, documents show that billionaire, Harlan Crow, picked up the tab for Extreme Court Justice Uncle Clarence’s grandnewphew’s private school tuition. Clarence had taken legal custody of Mark Martin when he was 6 years old and had recently told an interviewer he was “raising him as a son.”

Thomas decided to send his teenage grandnephew to Hidden Lake Academy, a private boarding school where tuition ran more than $6,000 a month. “A bank statement for the school from July 2009, buried in unrelated court filings, shows that Crow’s company paid the July bill.” Christopher Grimwood, a former administrator at the school, said Crow paid Martin’s tuition the entire time he was a student there, which was about a year.

Not only did Crow pick up Martin’s tab at the prestigious Hidden Lake Academy, he also paid his tuition at Randolph-Macon Academy. When asked to comment, Crow’s office responded with a statement that did not dispute the facts presented in this story.

“Harlan Crow has long been passionate about the importance of quality education and giving back to those less fortunate, especially at-risk youth,” the statement said. “It’s disappointing that those with partisan political interests would try to turn helping at-risk youth with tuition assistance into something nefarious or political.” The statement added that Crow and his wife have “supported many young Americans” at a “variety of schools, including his alma mater.” Crow went to Randolph-Macon Academy.

Thomas did not report the tuition payments from Crow on his annual financial disclosures. Several years earlier, Thomas disclosed a gift of $5,000 for Martin’s education from another friend. It is not clear why he reported that payment but not Crow’s.

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