Rainey Center

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Rainey Center, also known as Joseph Rainey Center for Public Policy, is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit with deep ties to the climate change denying, pay-to-play group the American Legislative Exchange Council. Rainey Center has been tax-exempt since 2018.

Rainey Center's describes itself as a "public policy research and leadership development community by and for women, minorities, and mavericks, named after Rep. Joseph Rainey, a former slave who was the first African American to serve in the United States House of Representatives."[1]

News and Controversies

Rainey Center's President Attends ALEC 2020 States & Nation Policy Summit

Rainey Center president and CEO Sarah Hunt attended the corporate bill mill American Legislative Exchange Council's 2020 States and Nation Policy Summit. According to a full attendance list obtained and published by the Center for Media and Democracy on Sourcewatch [[1]], Hunt attended the "Energy, Environment and Agriculture Subcommittee Meeting," the "Opening General Session," the "Workshop: Reducing Red Tape: Lessons Learned from Successful State Strategies," the "Communications and Technology Task Force Meeting," the "Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force Meeting," and the "Homeland Security Task Force Meeting."

Leadership Alliance for a More Perfect Union (LAMP)

According to the organization's website, the Leadership Alliance for a More Perfect Union (LAMP) program "is the flagship leadership development program for the Joseph Rainey Center for Public Policy. LAMP programs foster engagement and promote dialogue between state policymakers and a diverse group of experts from a wide variety of disciplines, including private-sector corporate leaders, high-level government officials, and members of the academic community."[2]

Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council

Several employees of the Rainey Center have connections to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).[3]

  • Rainey Center's President, CEO, and Founder, Sarah Hunt, was the director for the Center for Innovation and Technology at ALEC and as of December 2020 still attends ALEC meetings.
  • Jason Saine, the National Chair of Rainey Center's LAMP program, was ALEC's North Carolina State Chair for four years and became National Chair of the organization in 2018.
  • Bartlett Cleland, the Senior Advisor of LAMP, was Chair of ALEC's the Technology and Communications Taskforce for two years.
  • Jonathon Paul Hauenschild, senior advisor of national security & innovation & technology, works for ALEC where he is the Director of the Task Force on Communications and Technology and the Director of the Task Force on Homeland Security
About ALEC
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 ExposedbyCMD.org site.

Employee Ties to Other Politically-Active, Right-wing Nonprofits

Core Financials


  • Total Revenue: $1,588,476
  • Total Expenses: $1,417,321
  • Net Assets: $184,452


  • Total Revenue: $858,041
  • Total Expenses: $865,006
  • Net Assets: $13,297


  • Total Revenue: $705,648
  • Total Expenses: $768,661
  • Net Assets: $20,262


  • Total Revenue: $252,687
  • Total Expenses: $169,412
  • Net Assets: $83,275


Rainey Center is not required to disclose its funders but major foundation supporters can be found through their IRS filings. Here are some known contributors:

  • Arnold Ventures: $20,000 (2019)
  • Breakthrough Energy Foundation: $435,000 (2021)
  • Conservative Energy Network: $135,000 (2018)
  • Deployus: $20,000 (2021)
  • Energy Foundation: $275,000 (2019)
  • National Philanthropic Trust: $100,000 (2019)
  • Schwab Charitable Fund: $940,000 (2018-2021)
  • United States Energy Foundation: $695,500 (2020-2021)


As of July 2023:[8]


  • Sarah Hunt, President
  • Jason Saine, National Chair, LAMP
  • Bartlett Cleland, Senior Advisor, LAMP
  • J.P. Carroll, Director, Communications
  • Kelsey Callahan, Senior Director, projects & energy; deputy finance director for the Pennsylvania Republican Party
  • Ethan Bishop-Henchman, Operations Director
  • Madeline Keeter, Senior Director, LAMP
  • Andy Craig, Director of Election Policy
  • Shannon Callahan, Digital and Information Technology Manager

Former Staff

  • Molly Lynn Westrate, Communications Consultant
  • Mia Heck, Vice President
  • Bishop Garrison, Cofounder and President
  • Sarah Rumph, Communications Director and Fellow, Inclusive Governance


  • Marguerite Benson, policy advisor, national security
  • Aaron Berger, special advisor, innovation and technology
  • Kelsey Callahan, senior director, projects & energy
  • J.P. Carroll, senior fellow, national security & inclusive governance; former deputy director of Hispanic Media for the Republican National Committee
  • Bartlett Cleland, senior fellow, innovation and technology
  • Steven Cobb, senior fellow, inclusive government
  • Robert Dillon, senior fellow, national security & energy; former republican communications director of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
  • Christopher Ede-Calton, senior advisor, national security & energy
  • Jeffrey Edmonds, senior advisor, national security
  • George Ferris III, fellow, economic empowerment
  • Frank Goertner, policy advisor, national security
  • Jonathon Paul Hauenschild, senior advisor, national security & innovation & technology; currently works for the American Legislative Exchange Council where he is the Director of the Task Force on Communications and Technology and the Director of the Task Force on Homeland Security
  • E. Grant Haver, senior fellow, national security
  • Mia Heck, senior fellow, healthcare
  • Sarah Hunt, expert, innovation and technology & energy
  • Jeremy Hurewitz, policy advisor, national security
  • Rina Shah, senior fellow, inclusive governance
  • Veronika Velch, senior fellow, national security & innovation and technology

Former Expert

  • Charles Moran, Fellow, Inclusive Governance
  • Grant Haver, Senior Fellow, National Security

Advisory Board

  • Rina Shah, chairperson
  • Sasha Moss, senior director, InSight DC, and Adjunct Faculty at Georgetown University
  • Pasha Majdi, senior director, U.S. Policy and Government Affairs, Conservation International
  • Charles Hernick, vice president of Policy and Advocacy at Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions
  • Shay Hawkins, president & CEO, Opportunity Funds Association
  • Katie Harbath, founder & CEO, Anchor Change
  • Jeff Burton, president and CEO of Prevail Strategies, and Former Deputy Executive Director of the National Republican Congressional Committee

Board of Directors

  • Joseph Bishop-Henchman, vice president of tax policy & litigation at the National Taxpayers Union Foundation
  • Sarah E. Hunt, CEO and president
  • Sharon Jackson, founder of Republican Women of Anchorage and commissioner for the Anchorage Public Safety Advisory Committee
  • Chet Love, founding partner of the Cornerstone Group
  • Catrina Rorke, vice president for research at the Climate Leadership Council

Former Directors

  • Jamie Barnett
  • Joshua Hone

Contact Information

Rainey Center
317 A Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

EIN: 82-4929758 Website: https://www.raineycenter.org/
Phone: (202) 350-1689
Email: info@raineycenter.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RaineyCenter/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/raineycenter/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RaineyCenter

Articles and Resources

IRS Form 990 Filings





Related SourceWatch


  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named rcgs
  2. Rainey Center, LAMP, organizational website, accessed May 17, 2021.
  3. Rainey Center, Our People, organizational website, accessed May 17, 2021.
  4. Rainey Center, 2021 IRS 990 Filing, The Rainey Center', November 7, 2022.
  5. Rainey Center, 2020 IRS 990 Filing, The Rainey Center', November 8, 2021.
  6. Rainey Center, 2019 IRS 990 Filing, The Rainey Center', November 15, 2020.
  7. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named rc18
  8. Rainey Center, Our People, organizational website, July 14, 2023.