Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation [Bradley Foundation]

SOURCE:  Wikipedia, 2020-06-09

  • Name: Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation  |  "Bradley Foundation"
  • Founded: 1942
  • Type: Private charitable foundation
  • Headquarters: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States
  • Key people: Art Pope (Chairman) | Richard Graber (President and CEO)
  • Assets: $854 million (2018)
  • Website:

  • The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation  ["Bradley Foundation"], based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is an American charitable foundation with more than $800 million U.S. dollars in assets. It promotes American exceptionalism, the theory that America is qualitatively different from other nations.

    The Bradley Foundation provides between $35 million and $45 million annually to a variety of causes, including cultural institutions, community-based nonprofit organisations in Milwaukee, and conservative groups. It has been particularly active in supporting education reform efforts, including school choice. Approximately 70% of the Bradley Foundation's giving is directed to national groups while 30% of the Bradley Foundation's giving is Wisconsin-based.


    The Bradley Foundation was established in 1942, shortly after the death of Lynde Bradley. The organization was founded in an attempt to preserve and extend the principles and philosophy of the Bradley brothers. According to the organization, "the good society is a free society."

    Twenty years after the death of his brother Harry Lynde Bradley, in 1965, the Bradley Foundation expanded in size and began to concentrate on public policy. The 1985 acquisition of Allen-Bradley by Rockwell International Corporation resulted in a portion of the proceeds going into the expansion of the Bradley foundation, which saw its assets rise from $14 million to over $290 million. In 1986, the Bradley Foundation gave away $23 million, more than it had in the previous four decades.

    The Bradley Foundation's former President, Michael S. Joyce, helped to create the Philanthropy Roundtable, a group of American philanthropists that, as of 2018, has 660 members (consisting of both individuals and organizations).

    Funding areas

    The Bradley foundation describes itself as supporting limited government.

    In a 2018 interview, the Bradley Foundation's CEO Richard Graber described the Bradley Foundation's four major areas of funding as

    In the same interview, Richard Graber said that the Bradley Foundation would deemphasize some topic areas on which it had previously made grants, including national security and foreign policy.

    Between 2008 and 2011, the Bradley Foundation donated millions of dollars to three anti-Muslim groups>:

    The Bradley Foundation's funding was criticized by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which described the grant recipients as an "Islamophobic network."

    Organizations awarded grants by the Bradley Foundation have included:

    A 2013 Smithsonian Magazine article listed the Bradley Foundation as among the largest contributors to the climate change denial movement from 2003 to 2010.

    Financial Snapshot

  • 2014 Annual Report

    Bradley Prize

    The Bradley Prize is a grant to individuals who are "innovative thinkers". According to the Bradley Foundation the Bradley Prize is to "formally recognize individuals of extraordinary talent and dedication who have made contributions of excellence in areas consistent with The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation's mission." As many as four prizes of $250,000 each are awarded annually. Winners have included Leonard A. Leo (2009), Jeb Bush (2011), Roger Ailes (2013), Paul Clement (2013), Mitch Daniels (2013), Yuval Levin (2013), Kimberly Strassel (2014), and Gary Sinise (2016),

    Additional Reading

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  • [2020-10-13] "Must-watch:" Senator Sheldon Whitehouse Schools Amy Coney Barrett on Dark Money. Superb presentation illustrating Republican Party and dark money influencers on vested special interests (abolition of: affordable health care, access to abortions, LGBTQ+ rights, judicial freedom; concentration of obfuscated power; ...).

  • The Bradley Institute is a major funder of "reopen movements"; e.g.:  [2020-07-15]  Bradley Foundation Bankrolled Right-Wing Reopen Effort Despite Rising Coronavirus Cases.  The political pressure generated by the lobbying and litigation efforts of Bradley-funded groups and President Trump led many states to prematurely roll back stay-at-home safety measures and reopen businesses.

  • [[2020-06-09]  Bradley Spent Millions on Voter Suppression, Union Busters, Climate Deniers, and Right-Wing Media in 2019.  As part of Bradley's strategic vision, it invests in groups to defund and dismantle unions, to fuel a web of climate change deniers, and to prop up right-wing media.

  • [2020-08-24]  Federal prosecutors have Steve Bannon's murky nonprofit in their sights.  Tucked at the bottom of the long indictment against Bannon, prosecutors say they want to seize the assets of his nonprofit "Citizens of the American Republic," shedding more light on the secretive political group's finances.

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