ACLU Foundation of Texas




Tax ID:


Tax-Exempt Status:


Budget (2017):

Revenue: $2,536,832
Expenses: $2,750,769
Assets: $1,438,799


Ranjana Natarajan

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The ACLU Foundation of Texas is the educational and litigation arm of the ACLU of Texas, the Texas state-level affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) social-liberal lobbying, litigation, and campaigning group. The ACLU Foundation of Texas supports left-of-center positions through courtroom activism and advocacy efforts geared toward steering the public towards their positions. 1

Positions supported by the ACLU Foundation of Texas include increasing restrictions on campaign-related speech activity, increased limitations on freedom of religion, erosion of voter integrity laws, and the expansion of government support for abortions. 2


In 2017 the ACLU Foundation of Texas generated $3,651,487, of which $3,642,370 came from contributions and grants received by the organization. 3

The ACLU Foundation of Texas spent $2,530,626 on salaries and benefits for its members in 2017 while spending $1,326,648 on all other expenses for a sum total of $3,857,274. 4 Consequently, slightly over 65% of all contributions to the ACLU of Texas are devoted to employee compensation.

In 2017, the organization also possessed total net assets worth $1,058,464 after expending a portion of their assets to cover the balance between the organization’s contributions and expenses for 2017. 5

Notable Donors

In 2018 the Marguerite Casey Foundation contributed  $300,000 to the ACLU Foundation of Texas. 6 The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, a major funder of abortion advocacy,7 provided six-figure contributions to ACLU Foundation of Texas in 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018;8 the Tides Foundation,9 Arca Foundation,10 and Proteus Fund have also supported the group. 11


COVID-19 Pandemic

The ACLU of Texas initiated a class action lawsuit in early April 2020 against the sheriff of Dallas County, Marion Brown, seeking the release of anyone over 50 or generally more susceptible to contracting COVID-19. 12

The ACLU of Texas on April 8, 2020 filed a complaint against the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) after an employee located at an ICE Montgomery Processing Center (MPC) in Conroe, Texas tested positive for COVID-19. The complaint asks that illegal immigrants that are more susceptible to COVID-19 be released. This is part of a national attempt by the ACLU to release illegal immigrants as over twenty similar cases have been filed by the ACLU across the country. 13


The ACLU of Texas, in concert with the Texas Civil Rights Project and the national ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project filed a complaint against seven cities in Texas that issued ordinances stating that the operation of abortion clinics in their town is illegal, as well as questioning the legality of designating abortion clinics as criminal organizations. 14

Objections to PACR and HARP

The ACLU of Texas along with other ACLU affiliates has filed a petition objecting to the Department of Homeland Security’s Prompt Asylum Claim Review (PACR) and the Humanitarian Asylum Review Process (HARP). The ACLU of Texas argues that expedited processes by which Customs and Border Protection (CBP) processes applications violate the law by preventing proper opportunity to provide a defense against a claim an immigrant is unlawfully present or stating reasons why an applicant qualifies as an asylum seeker. 15


Abortion Information

The ACLU Foundation of Texas provides information regarding the scope of abortion rights in Texas including: informing children under 18 that they can receive an abortion (as well as how to get an abortion without parental consent through legal emancipation), instructs women that despite doctors being mandated to display images of a sonogram prior to abortion and to report the results of a sonogram such as identifying a heartbeat that they are entitled to not listen or divert their attention from the communication, and instructs readers who cannot afford an abortion to seek-out clinics or visit the webpage for the National Network of Abortion Funds. 16

Gender and Sexuality Alliance

The ACLU Foundation of Texas provides information on how students can form Gender and Sexuality Alliance organizations as school or university clubs that receive funding from the school or university. 17

The information provided includes instructions on student rights under the federal Equal Access Act to form any non-curricular club they want (so long as the school does not have a general ban on non-curricular clubs) and that they should insist on their right to form a club if confronted with hesitance from the university. 18


Ranjana Natarajan is the president of the ACLU Foundation of Texas and a professor at the University of Texas. 19 In 2015 Natarajan wrote an opinion piece arguing for a federal, top-down, and comprehensive national racial anti-discrimination in policing policy. 20


  1. “The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas and ACLU Foundation of Texas” ACLU of Texas.
  2. “Issues – All issues” ACLU of Texas.
  3. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax” Accessed May 1, Part I, Line 8-12.
  4. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax” Accessed May 1, Part I, Line 13-19.
  5. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax” Accessed May 1, Part XI, Line 4.
  6. “ACLU Foundation of Texas” Casey Grant Foundation.
  7. Ludwig, Hayden. “Warren Buffett’s Foundation Has Poured $4 Billion into Pro-Abortion Advocacy.” Capital Research Center. Capital Research Center, March 11, 2020.
  8. Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, Return of a Private Foundation (Form 990-PF), Part XV Line 3 for each tax year from 2015 through 2018.
  9. Tides Foundation, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2005, Part II Line 22
  10. Arca Foundation, Return of a Private Foundation (Form 990-PF), 2001, Part XV Page 10 Line 3a
  11. Proteus Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2015, Schedule I
  13. “Cases – VAZQUEZ BARRERA ET AL V. WOLF ET AL” ACLU of Texas.
  16. “Abortion in Texas” ACLU of Texas.
  17. “Starting a Gender and Sexuality Alliance at Your School” ACLU of Texas.
  18. “Starting a Gender and Sexuality Alliance at Your School” ACLU of Texas.
  19. “Ranjana Natajan” University of Texas at Austin School of Law.
  20. Natarajan, Ranjana. “Comprehensive National Policy That Outlaws Racial Profiling Should Cover State, Local Police” The Huffington Post. December 9, 2014. Updated February 8, 2015. Accessed May 4, 2020. 
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: March - February
  • Tax Exemption Received: December 1, 1991

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2017 Mar Form 990 $2,536,832 $2,750,769 $1,438,799 $155,734 N $2,523,666 $0 $2,943 $0
    2016 Mar Form 990 $1,889,585 $2,293,822 $1,662,757 $297,385 N $1,891,284 $0 $804 $0 PDF
    2015 Mar Form 990 $3,100,289 $1,763,400 $2,036,049 $266,440 N $3,098,854 $0 $4,822 $0 PDF
    2014 Mar Form 990 $1,755,499 $1,347,526 $740,613 $307,892 N $1,758,394 $0 $332 $0 PDF
    2013 Mar Form 990 $1,292,285 $1,275,561 $402,490 $377,743 N $1,278,058 $0 $158 $0 PDF
    2012 Mar Form 990 $1,141,729 $1,442,488 $172,667 $100,947 N $1,141,134 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2011 Mar Form 990 $1,310,472 $1,232,793 $501,710 $129,231 N $1,081,317 $223,466 $0 $0 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    ACLU Foundation of Texas

    PO BOX 8306
    HOUSTON, TX 77288-8306