2020 Census Project


Pooled Fund

Project of:

New Venture Fund

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The 2020 Census Project is a pooled fund for left-of-center donors and foundations interested in shaping the 2020 Census to favor traditionally Democratic-leaning constituencies, particularly in cities. The project is fiscally sponsored by the left-of-center New Venture Fund, a 501(c)(3) funding and fiscal sponsorship managed by the for-profit consulting firm Arabella Advisors in Washington, DC. 1

Unlike many other Arabella projects, the 2020 Census does not have its own website but has received substantial funding from multiple major left-of-center funders.

Activities and the 2020 Census

The 2020 Census Project is closely related to a donors affinity group, the Democracy Funders Collaborative, which was instrumental in creating the group. The collaborative is composed of many many left-of-center foundations and donors, including the Annie E. Casey FoundationFord FoundationCarnegie Corporation of New YorkJPB FoundationOpen Society FoundationsKresge Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers FundW. K. Kellogg FoundationBauman FoundationJoyce Foundation, Heising-Simons, Unbound Philanthropy, Wallace A. Coulter Foundation, James Irvine FoundationCalifornia Endowment, and the Hewlett Foundation.

For more information, see Democracy Funders Collaborative | 2020 Census Project


The 2020 Census Project is a fiscally sponsored project of the New Venture Fund, a Washington, DC-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit. As such it does not file Form 990 reports with the IRS and all grants to it are paid to the New Venture Fund.

The project received grants (via New Venture Fund) from the Bauman Family Foundation totaling $850,000 between 2015 and 2020. 2

The project received $1,250,000 from eBay founder Pierre Omidyar’s Democracy Fund between 2018 and 2019. 3
The project received $775,000 in 2017 from the Heising-Simons Foundation a California-based private family foundation headed by Mark Heising and Liz Simons that principally awards grants in the areas of climate and environmentalist energy, education, scientific research, and human rights. 4 It also received $25,000 in 2018 and $250,000 in 2019 from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund which labeled the grants as “elections and voting rights.” 5 In 2020, the project received $500,000 from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “to achieve a full and accurate count of the U.S. population.” 6


  1. “2020 Census Funder Toolkit.” Funders Committee for Civic Participation. Accessed Feb. 25, 2021. Original URL: Archived URL:
  2. Grants from Bauman Family Foundation to New Venture Fund. Accessed Feb. 25, 2021. Original URL:

    Archived Part I:

  3. Democracy Fund Grant Database. Accessed Feb. 25, 2021. Original URL: Archived URL:
  4. “2020 Census Project,” Heising-Simons Foundation, April 23, 2019,
  5. “New Venture Fund,” Rockefeller Brothers Fund, May 4, 2020,
  6. Grants from MacArthur Foundation to New Venture Fund. Accessed Feb. 25, 2021. Original URL: Archived URL:
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