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The Reason Foundation is a self-described "libertarian"  think tank. The Reason Foundation's projects include NewEnvironmentalism.org and Privatization.org, as well as Reason Magazine It is part of the Atlas Economic Research Foundation network.
According to the Reason Foundation's 2009 Internal Revenue Source 990 return form, it took in $6 million in donation income against $6.7 million in expenses, with only $639,236 in subscription revenue and $113,575 in ad revenue. 
- 1 News and Controversies
- 2 Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council
- 3 Reason Foundation and Tobacco issues
- 4 Corporate Officers
- 5 Board of Trustees
- 6 Funding
- 7 Contact
- 8 Articles and resources
News and Controversies
Reason Foundation Called Out for Blocking Action on Climate Change
In July of 2016, nineteen U.S. Senators delivered a series of speeches denouncing climate change denial from 32 organizations with links to fossil-fuel interests, including the Reason Foundation. Sen. Whitehouse (RI-D), who led the effort to expose "the web of denial" said in his remarks on the floor that the purpose was to,
- "shine a little light on the web of climate denial and spotlight the bad actors in the web, who are polluting our American discourse with phony climate denial. This web of denial, formed over decades, has been built and provisioned by the deep-pocketed Koch brothers, by ExxonMobil, by Peabody coal, and by other fossil fuel interests. It is a grim shadow over our democracy in that it includes an electioneering effort that spends hundreds of millions of dollars in a single election cycle and threatens any Republican who steps up to address the global threat of climate change. . . . [I]t is long past time we shed some light on the perpetrators of this web of denial and expose their filthy grip on our political process. It is a disgrace, and our grandchildren will look back at this as a dirty time in America’s political history because of their work.”
The Koch brothers -- David and Charles -- are the right-wing billionaire co-owners of Koch Industries. As two of the richest people in the world, they are key funders of the right-wing infrastructure, including the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and the State Policy Network (SPN). In SourceWatch, key articles on the Kochs include: Koch Brothers, Koch Industries, Americans for Prosperity, American Encore, and Freedom Partners.
Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council
Dr. Adrian Moore, Vice President of Public Policy of the Reason Foundation, is an Advisor to the American Legislative Exchange Council's Commerce, Insurance & Economic Development Task Force. Reason Foundation representatives have also advised ALEC Task Forces on issues such as state budgets , and health reform. 
ALEC is a corporate bill mill. It is not just a lobby or a front group; it is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, corporations hand state legislators their wishlists to benefit their bottom line. Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations. They pay for a seat on ALEC task forces where corporate lobbyists and special interest reps vote with elected officials to approve “model” bills. Learn more at the Center for Media and Democracy's ALECexposed.org, and check out breaking news on our PRWatch.org site.
The Reason Foundation's Director of Government Affairs, Mike Flynn, was previously policy director for ALEC. 
Reason Foundation and Tobacco issues
Jacob Sullum is the senior editor of Reason,, a monthly magazine published by the Reason Foundation. Sullum's positions on tobacco issues have consistenly been supportive of the tobacco industry. The anti-tobacco Advocacy Institute, in their November, 1994 Directory of Tobacco Industry Spokespersons, Front Groups and their Allies, says,
- The Reason Foundation received at least $10,000 from Philip Morris in 1993. He [Sullum] wrote an article for Forbes Media Critic which was later used in a week-long advertising series by Philip Morris; the report argued that the EPA findings on secondhand smoke were one-sided and represented the "corruption of science by the political crusade against smoking." He also wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal criticizing the EPA, claiming that the agency based its findings on ETS on "several controversial assumptions;" this op-ed was later featured in an RJR advertisement. Both of these articles cited the work of Dr.Gary Huber, a scientist funded by various tobacco companies, who had found the risks of ETS to be only minimal. The Media Critic article also cited the work of Alvan Feinstein, who received at least $700,000 from Brown &Williamson between 1985 and 1990. Sources:Extra, September/October 1994, p.18; Wall Street Journal,3- 24-94, p.A23.at Bates Page --4660]
As of April 2011:
- William A. Dunn, chairman of the board; Dunn Capital Management; director of Cato Institute, Competitive Enterprise Institute, Property and Environment Research Center, etc
- Robert W. Poole, Jr., Founder
- David Nott, President
- Jon Graff, Secretary and Treasurer
- Mike Alissi, Vice President, Operations
- Nick Gillespie, Vice President, Online
- Adrian Moore, Vice President, Research
- Matt Welch, Vice President, Magazine
Board of Trustees
As of April 2011: Dunn and:
- Thomas E. Beach, Beach Investment Counsel, Inc.
- Drew Carey
- Derwood S. Chase, Jr., VA; Virginia Institute for Public Policy, Fraser Institute, and the Chase Foundation of Virginia
- James R. Curley, Financial Consortium International, LLC
- Richard J. Dennis, Dennis Trading Group
- David W. Fleming, Latham & Watkins
- James D. Jameson, Rancho Santa Fe
- Manuel S. Klausner, Law Offices of Manuel S. Klausner (Los Angeles); formerly Institute for Justice
- David H. Koch, Koch Industries
- James Lintott, Sterling Foundation Management, LLC and Institute for Justice
- Stephen Modzelewski, Maple Engine, LLC and Institute for Justice
- David Nott, Reason Foundation
- George F. Ohrstrom, NY (International Policy Network, ACSH, Ohrstrom Foundation)
- Robert W. Poole, Jr., Reason Foundation and Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow
- Carol Sanders
- Vernon L. Smith, Chapman University, George Mason University, Reason Public Policy Institute
- Richard A. Wallace, Freedom Communications, Inc.
- Fred M. Young, Jr., Former Owner, Young Radiator Company
- Pierluigi Zappacosta, co-founder of Logitech; Sierra Sciences, Bruno Leoni Institute (member of Cooler Heads Coalition)
- Frank Bond, Maryland, Trustee Emeritus for Reason and Cato Institute
- Harry E. Teasley Jr., Chairman emeritus; former president and CEO of Coca-Cola Foods
- Walter E. Williams, trustee emeritus; George Mason University professor on board of ~15 kindred groups
Between 1985 and 2009, the Reason Foundation received funding from the following sources, in the following amounts: 
- Armstrong Foundation $35,000
- Brady Education Foundation $1,000
- Carthage Foundation $366,000
- Castle Rock Foundation $160,000
- Koch Family Foundations:
- Earhart Foundation $10,000
- Exxon Mobil $105,000
- Gilder Foundation $22,500
- Gordon and Mary Cain Foundation $20,000
- JM Foundation $95,000
- Jaquelin Hume Foundation $10,000
- John M. Olin Foundation $276,500
- Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation $962,500
- Rodney Fund $135,000
- Roe Foundation $185,000
- Ruth and Lovett Peters Foundation $175,709
- Sarah Scaife Foundation $2,016,000
- Scaife Family Foundation $136,500
- Smith Richardson Foundation $100,000
- William E. Simon Foundation $90,000
- William H. Donner Foundation $10,000
- Chris Mitchell
- Director of Communications
- (310) 367-6109
Government official contact:
- Mike Flynn
- Director of Government Affairs
- (202) 427-2127
- 3415 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite 400
- Los Angeles, CA 90034
- Phone: (310) 391-2245
- Fax: (310) 391-4395
- For any other questions, please call our offices at (310) 391-2245.
- URL: http://www.reason.org
Contact info on Reason.org: http://www.reason.org/contactus.shtml
Articles and resources
Related SourceWatch articles
- "Forging a World of New Choices", Reason Foundation Annual Report, accessed 7/23/03
- , Links to an interactive network of friendsters for the Reason Foundation
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- "Frequently Asked Questions About Reason: Is Reason libertarian?", accessed August 2007.
- , "Reason Magazine: August/September 2011 Edition." Accessed June 25, 2011.
- , "Koch Family Foundations: Organizations Funded." Sourcewatch.org. Accessed June 25, 2011.
- Trustees and Officers, Reason Foundation website, accessed July 10, 2011.
- Reason Foundation IRS Form 990 2009, accessed through Guidestar.org July 10, 2011.
- Sheldon Whitehouse, "Senators Call Out Web of Denial Blocking Action On Climate Change," Office of Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, July 15, 2016.
- American Legislative Exchange Council Inside ALEC May 2011, organization newsletter, May 2011, p. 17
- Tax & Fiscal Policy Task Force archives, ALEC website, accessed July 10, 2011.
- HHS Task Force archives, ALEC website, accessed July 10, 2011.
- Mike Flynn bio, Reason website, accessed July 10, 2011.
- Mission. Virginia Institute for Public Policy. Retrieved on 2011-04-10.
- Manuel S. Klausner. Lawyer Manuel S. Klausner - Los Angeles, California.... Retrieved on 2011-04-10. “Trustee, Reason Foundation, 1978. Director, Institute for Justice, 1991-1998. Chairman, Free Speech and Election Law Practice Group, Federalist Society, 1996-2005. Chairman, Libertarian Law Council, 1974.General Counsel, Individual Rights Ftn., 2000.”
- Media Transparency, Reason Foundation funders, Media Matters, accessed July 10, 2011.