Harold Luhnow (b. 1895, Chicago) was largely responsible for the libertarian direction taken by the influential William Volker Fund during the period 1944 - 1965.
From 1928, Luhnow worked as president for his uncle William Volker in Volker's Kansas City-based wholesale firm. By 1932, Volker had established the William Volker Fund, and in 1944 Luhnow succeeded him as the Fund's president.
Luhnow had been exposed to libertarian thought through Loren Miller. Influenced by F.A. Hayek (whom he met in 1945) and his polemic The Road to Serfdom, Luhnow became a thoroughgoing classical liberal and, as head of the William Volker Fund, was able to contribute financially to the cause.
In particular, Luhnow supported academics of the Austrian school. He brought Hayek to the University of Chicago; paid Ludwig von Mises' salary at New York University; funded lectures that Milton and Rose Friedman turned into Capitalism and Freedom; and he approved the grant that enabled Murray N. Rothbard to write "Man, Economy and State".
- Jim Powell, Why Liberty Flourished in the West, Policy, Centre for Independent Studies, Spring 2001.
- John Blundell, Waging the War of Ideas: Why There Are No Shortcuts, speech to the Heritage Foundation, January 1990.