This article is part of the Center for Media & Democracy's spotlight on front groups and corporate spin.
Consumer Alert may have ceased operations. Its former website, www.consumeralert.org, is no longer online. Its website was operational until at least February 2006 (according to the archives at: http://tinyurl.com/2q6soe and http://tinyurl.com/3daeo4, which the owners of the CA domain have blocked).
Consumer Alert, founded in 1977, is a national, non-profit organization concerned with "excessive growth of government regulation at the national and state levels." According to its website, Consumer Alert's mission is to "enhance understanding and appreciation of the consumer benefits of a market economy so that individuals and policymakers rely more on private rather than government approaches to consumer concerns."
Consumer Alert, "formerly headed by John Sununu and funded by such companies as Chevron, Eli Lilly and Phillip Morris, has fought mandatory air bags on the grounds that their expense is a burden to the consumers they claim to represent" (Washington Babylon, 13).
Its website includes articles by the Hoover Institution's Henry Miller, the Hudson Institute's Michael Fumento and Consumer Alert executive director Frances B. Smith. Elizabeth Whelan executive director of American Council on Science and Health is a member of Consumer Alert's advisory council.
Consumer Alert operates the National Consumer Coalition, a collection of front groups and industry friendly organizations that seek to advance "solutions to real consumer problems and seeks the most cost-effective manner in which to achieve desired results." In April 2004, NCC revived the Cooler Heads Coalition.
Consumer Alert published a "declaration of support" for agricultural biotechnology signed by over 600 scientists including signatories from Monsanto (67 individuals), Pioneer Hibred (22 individuals), Dow (21 individuals) and Amercian Council on Science and Health (2 individuals)
In 1998 Philip Morris was canvassing possible organisations that might be an ally in its Youth Smoking Prevention programs. A memo from Roy Marden described Consumer Alert as a "DC free market consumer group, antithesis of the Nader effort. Perhaps we could involve them in an effort re responsible corporate activity w/consumers in mind, etc. Long-term recipient of (modest) PM funding". 
Board of Directors
- William C. MacLeod, Chairman Consumer Alert, senior partner at the law firm 'Collier Shannon Scott', Washington, D.C.
- Carol G. Dawson, Morattico, VA
- Roger Meiners, University of Texas at Arlington, Office of the President, Arlington, TX
- Barbara Keating-Edh, Founder & President Ex-Officio Consumer Alert, Modesto, CA
- Terry Neese, Women Impacting Public Policy, Oklahoma City, OK
- Frances B. Smith, Executive Director, Consumer Alert, Washington, D.C. (wife of Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) founder Fred Smith)
- Thomas J. DiLorenzo, Ph.D., Chairman of Consumer Alert's Advisory Council, Department of Economics Loyola College, Baltimore
- Jonathan H. Adler, J.D., Assist. Professor of Law, Case Western Reserve University School of Law
- Jerry J. Cohen, B.S., M.P.H., C.I.H, Senior Scientist, Science Applications International Corporation
- Philip Dziuk, Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- J. Gordon Edwards, Ph.D., Professor of Entomology San Jose State University
- Hugh W. Ellsaesser, Ph.D., Guest Scientist, Lawrence Livermore Laboratory
- A.C. Lowell Harriss, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Economics Columbia University
- Thomas W. Hazlett, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Agri. Economics, University of California, Davis
- Ernest B. Hueter, President National Legal Center for the Public Interest, Washington, D.C.
- David Janda, M.D., Director of the Institute for Preventative Sports Medicine, Ann Arbor, Michigan
- Arthur Kantrowitz, Ph.D., Physicist/Professor, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire
- David Kleinbaum, Ph.D., Professor of Epidemiology, Emory University School of Pubic Health, Atlanta, Georgia
- Lawrence A. Kudlow, National Review, New York, New York
- Margaret N. Maxey, Ph.D., Clint W. Murchison Senior Chair of Free Enterprise, University of Texas, Austin
- Tex McCrary, President, Texcomm
- John J. McKetta, Ph.D., P.E., Department of Chemical Engineering, The University of Texas, Austin
- Patrick J. Michaels, Ph.D., Department of Environmental Science University of Virginia, Charlottesville
- Henry I. Miller, M.D., Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institute
- James C. Miller III, Ph.D., Counselor Citizens for a Sound Economy
- Tom Miller, Director of Health Policy Studies, Cato Institute
- J.A. Parker, President Lincoln Institute For Research and Education
- Robert W. Poole, Jr., President, The Reason Foundation, Los Angeles, CA
- Charles T. Rombough, Ph.D., President, CTR Technical Services Inc., Arlington, Texas
- Malcolm Ross, Ph.D., Research Scientist (Retired), United States Geological Survey
- Harold Russell, Vice President, FMC Corp. (Retired), Washington, DC
- Terrence Scanlon, President, Capital Research Center, Washington, D.C.
- John A. Sparks, J.D., President, Public Policy Education Fund, Grove City, Pennsylvania
- Glenn Schleede, President Energy Market & Policy Analysis Inc., Vienna, VA
- Lewis K. Uhler, J.D., President National Tax Limitation Committee, Roseville, California
- Elizabeth Whelan, Ph.D., M.P.H., Dr. Sc., Executive Director American Council on Science and Health, New York, New York
- Walter E. Williams, Ph.D., John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia
- Bruce Yandle, Ph.D., Alumni Distinguished Professor of Economics Clemson University
- Benjamin Zycher, Ph.D., M.P.P., A.B., Economist
- Roy Marden, "YSP Ally possibilities", Bates No 2069615360, October 22, 1998.
www.consumeralert.org (now defunct)