- Assets: $45,213,983 (2009)
- Grants Awarded: $2,585,500 (2009)
Established in 1981 and based in Easton, Maryland, the Town Creek Foundation states that it seeks to use "public education, citizen action, and advocacy" to promote "a healthy environment, an informed society, and a peaceful world." Its funding is directed chiefly toward environmental and anti-war organizations, as well as think tanks and media outlets that promote leftist ideals and worldviews.
In the environmental realm, the Town Creek Foundation states that it "supports programs that engage citizens in challenging the unsustainable use of natural resources and in protecting biological diversity." Town Creek prefers to finance what it calls "grassroots activism, [projects] monitoring the enforcement of environmental laws, public policy advocacy, collaborative opportunities, media outreach, and model or demonstration projects fostering sustainable policies and practices." Reasoning from the axiom that Americans are wasteful people who ravage the natural environment, the Foundation identifies its three-pronged objectives as "modifying patterns of consumption and degradation of our natural resources; addressing the environmental impacts of our personal, institutional and community choices; and building public interest in conservation."
Among the environmentalist groups to receive Town Creek Foundation grants in recent years are: Defenders of Wildlife; Earth Action Network; and Earth Day Network; Earthjustice; Environmental Media Services; Friends of the Earth; Greenpeace; the League of Conservation Voters; the National Wildlife Federation; the Natural Resources Defense Council; the Rainforest Action Network; the Sierra Club; the Tides Foundation & Tides Center (which funds many environmentalist groups); U.S. PIRG Education Fund; and the Wilderness Society.
These donees are largely organizations committed to the anti-capitalist agendas of radical environmentalism, whose ultimate goal, as writer Michael Berliner has explained, is "not clean air and clean water, [but] rather . . . the demolition of technological/industrial civilization."
The Town Creek Foundation's guidelines insist that all grant applicants must submit their proposals "unbound, printed on both sides of recycled paper." The Foundation does not accept faxed or emailed applications.
The Foundation also supports news and commentary programs (on radio and television) dealing with issues directly relevant to its areas of interest -- primarily environmental and anti-war concerns. In addition, the Foundation earmarks numerous grants for organizations (such as think tanks) that seek to persuade Americans to embrace leftwing positions regarding such concerns. Among the media and educational entities the Foundation supports are: Democracy Now!; the Institute for Public Accuracy; and the Institute for Policy Studies.
In the grant-making category called "Promoting Peace," the Foundation supports groups and campaigns that "identify and promote ways to reduce the risk of war and achieve a peaceful society and a government that is responsive and accountable to its citizens." This phrase is clarified by the groups it supports. Among them: the Iraq Peace Fund; Peace Action Education Fund; Physicians for Social Responsibility; the Tides Foundation & Tides Center; the Union of Concerned Scientists; and the Win Without War Coalition.
Among the most notable beneficiaries of Town Creek's philanthropy is the massive anti-war coalition United For Peace and Justice, led by Leslie Cagan, a longtime committed socialist who proudly aligns her politics with those of Fidel Castro's Communist Cuba.
A member organization of the Peace and Security Funders Group, the Town Creek Foundation supports initiatives that "challenge and critique the military budget"; "encourage greater public debate and deliberation about national budget priorities"; and "promote the elimination of nuclear weapons and testing, strengthen arms control programs, or seek responsible weapons disposal programs."
The Executive Director of the Town Creek Foundation is Stuart A. Clarke, who is also a member of the National Board of Directors for Outward Bound USA. In addition to his current role with Town Creek, Clarke has held leadership positions with the Turner Foundation, the Environmental Grantmaker’s Association, and Hands-On Network. Moreover, he has taught political science and American Studies at Yale University, Wesleyan University, and Williams College.
To view a list of additional noteworthy grantees of the Town Creek Foundation, click here.
(Information on grantees and monetary amounts courtesy of The Foundation Center, GuideStar, ActivistCash, the Capital Research Center and Undue Influence)