Non-profit

Border Angels

Website:

www.borderangels.org

Location:

San Diego, CA

Tax ID:

01-0777554

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2018):

Revenue: $807,628
Expenses: $327,165
Assets: $613,436

Type:

Illegal Immigration Advocacy Group

Formation:

2003

Founder:

Enrique Morones

Interim Executive Director:

Eduardo Orendain

Border Angels (“Angeles de la Frontera”) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that advocates for left-leaning immigration policies. The nonprofit was formed in San Diego, California in 2003 by activist Enrique Morones and provides water and supplies to migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally.[1] It has also performed outreach to day laborers to “provide them with food and information about their rights.”[2]

Border Angels works in conjunction with illegal immigration advocacy groups, most notably Pueblo Sin Fronteras, which has helped organize caravans of migrants to attempt to cross into the U.S. illegally.

Founding

While some sources claim Border Angels was started in 1986, it incorporated in California in 2003. [3] Border Angels supplies water and other goods to migrants attempting to cross into the United States illegally over the U.S.-Mexico border. The group also provides low-cost legal assistance to “assist immigrants on the road to [U.S.] citizenship.” [4]

Support for Migrant Caravans

For more information on the 2018 migrant caravans, see Pueblo Sin Fronteras (Nonprofit)

Border Angels has reportedly aided at least one migrant caravan from Central America partially organized in October 2018 by the illegal immigration activist group Pueblo Sin Fronteras (“People Without Borders”). While Border Angels does not appear to have organized such caravans directly, the group has accepted food and supply donations intended to aid the caravan as it attempted to cross into the United States illegally in November.[5]

Border Angels was listed among the radical groups that marched in San Diego, California, in November 2018 in support of the migrant caravan. Marching groups also included Indivisible, Pueblo Sin Fronteras, the Democratic Socialists of America, International Socialist Organization, Industrial Workers of the World, Party for Socialism and Liberation, Students for Justice in Palestine, Union del Barrio, and Veterans for Peace.[6] According to Socialist Worker, which reported on the demonstration:

All stood united with the caravanistas and against the U.S. empire that drove them from their homes and the militarized Customs and Border Protection (CBP, or Border Patrol) apparatus standing between them and their internationally recognized right to seek asylum.

The group has solicited donations to aid the October 2018 migrant caravan when it reached Tijuana, Mexico in December 2018. [7]

Protests

Operation Gatekeeper

In October 1994, President Bill Clinton implemented Operation Gatekeeper, an attempt by U.S. Border Patrol to halt illegal immigration into the United States through the Mexican border near San Diego, California. The operation was criticized by a number of left-wing activists, including Noam Chomsky, who later accused Clinton of “militariz[ing] the Mexican border.” [8]

Morones criticized the barriers built along the southern border of being “the wall of death and a wall of shame,” and claimed Operation Gatekeeper “has led to the death of more than 11,000 people,” a statistic Morones has cited numerous times without reference to its origin.[9] In a 2006 interview with the far-left website Socialist Worker, Morones blamed then-President George W. Bush for what he deemed “the militarization of the [s]outhern border by expanding Operation Gatekeeper and by having these racist laws” (referring to H.R. 4437, an illegal immigration control law).[10]

Ballot Propositions and Laws

Proposition 187 was a 1994 California ballot initiative that would have prohibited illegal immigrants from using non-emergency healthcare, education, and other state services. The proposition was passed by 58.93 percent of voters but was found unconstitutional by a federal district court.

Morones criticized Prop. 187 in a 2007 interview with the People’s Tribune, a socialist news website that caters to “those who are engaged in the struggle to build a new society” where “the socially necessary means of production are owned by society, not by the corporations.”[11] He noted that Border Angeles “protested Proposition 187” and met with “immigration rights leaders . . . to take a stand against H.R. 4437,” claiming that “over 3.5 million people marched across the U.S. against H.R. 4437.”[12]

H.R. 4437, or the “Border Protection, Anti-terrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005,” was a bill passed in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives in December 2005, largely along partisan lines. The law required the construction of up to 700 miles of fence along the U.S.-Mexico border and strengthened U.S. illegal immigration law enforcement; it was also the subject of large-scale protests in 2006, primarily by left-wing activists seeking legal status for illegal aliens in the country.

In a March 2006 article on the far-left website Socialist Worker, Morones was credited with initiating a “cross-country caravan from the U.S.-Mexico border to Washington, D.C.” in protest of H.R. 4437. Morones accused the bill’s sponsors, Republican Reps. Tom Tancredo (CO-6), James Sensenbrenner (WI-5), and Duncan Hunter (CA-50), of being “evil”: “these people are evil; these people are racists.”[13]

“Door of Hope” Weddings

Border Angels has reportedly organized at least 6 weddings between American and Mexican citizens on the U.S.-Mexico border since 2013. The weddings are overseen by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents, who temporarily “open” the border for the bride and groom to meet briefly. One such wedding organized in November 2017 by Border Angels involved an American who pleaded guilty to smuggling drugs across the border, which was unknown to border agents at the time. Enrique Morones later condemned the drug smuggler.[14]

Criticism of Donald Trump

Border Angels and founder Enrique Morones are critical of President Donald Trump and the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

In a November 5, 2015 television interview with conservative Fox News commentator Sean Hannity, Morones accused then-candidate Trump of “spewing hate,” calling Mexicans “racists” and “criminals,” and getting two supporters “fired up [who then] went and almost killed a homeless man.” When asked if he has “a problem with America building a fence to secure its border,” Morones said, “Yes, absolutely. It’s killed 11,000 people.”[15]

In January 2017, Morones appeared on Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson’s show to call President Trump’s proposal for a U.S.-Mexico border wall “inhumane,” blaming the current U.S. border barrier for leading to “more than 11,000 deaths.” Morones falsely claimed that Mexico has “no deportation laws.”[16] (In May 2018, left-leaning National Public Radio reported that “Mexico has deported more than half a million Central Americans, including almost 82,000 last year [2017]” and that “since 2015, Mexico has deported more Central Americans annually than U.S. authorities have, in some years more than twice as many.)[17]

In a August 2017 op-ed in the Times of San Diego, Morones accused the President of fomenting a “hate campaign” in order “to encourage his base to make America hate again.” Morones claimed that Trump’s supposed “hate words lead to hate actions,” implying the President bore responsibility for the murder of a left-wing protester by an “alt-right” domestic terrorist in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier in August 2017. Morones added that “love overcomes hate and love has no borders.” [18]

Leadership

Founder and Interim Executive Director

Enrique Morones is the founder and former executive director of Border Angels before retiring in 2019. [19] Morones previously worked as vice president of Hispanic and international marketing for the San Diego Padres professional baseball team; after he lost his job in the early 2000s, he started a program called “Water Stations” that eventually became Border Angels.[20]

Morones has described himself as “a proud American, and an even prouder Mexican,” claiming he was “the first person to gain dual United States and Mexican nationality in 1998.”[21] He served on the legal affairs commission for Mexican President Vicente Fox, who formed groups of Latino community leaders around Mexico’s 45 U.S.-based consulates to improve relations between the two countries. [22] Morones is also the author of The Power of One: The Story of Border Angels, a history of his organization. [23]

Morones has appeared in a number of far-left news outlets, including Socialist Workers and the People’s Tribune, where he has offered Marxist-Leninist opinions of U.S. policy and Republican Party politicians. Morones has explicitly compared U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) to the Nazis, telling the People’s Tribune that “we saw this in Nazi Germany” when referring to immigration enforcement raids.[24] In 2006, he told Socialist Worker that: [25]

The United States has 5 percent of the world’s population, yet it consumes over 25 percent of the world’s natural resources. That’s not fair. Five percent of the world’s population, yet it’s responsible for much of the world’s environmental damage. That’s not fair.

Five percent of the world’s population, and it only houses 5 percent of the world’s undocumented migrants. That’s something that’s never spoken about. There are 200 million undocumented people around the world, and the United States only has 5 percent of them.

Morones earned $51,000 as executive director of Border Angels in 2016. [26]

Morones announced his retirement from his position as executive director during a meeting in May 2019 before formally announcing with a joint statement from himself and the board in November 2019. As of November 2022, he leads Gente Unida, a human rights border nonprofit which he founded in 2005. [27] In October 2022, two former female volunteers of Border Angels came forward to San Diego-based Union-Tribune newspaper and claimed that they had made sexual harassment allegations against Morones in April 2019 shortly before he announced his retirement. Morones denied the allegations, saying “I can assure you that I didn’t do anything wrong.”  [28] [29]

Former Border Angels president Eduardo Ordendain is the interim executive director as of December 2022. [30] Being a practicing attorney, Orendain emphasizes immigration law and is the founding attorney of the Border Angels’ free immigration clinic.[31]

Board of Directors

Luis M. Aragon, ESQ is the board president of Border Angels as well as president of the board for San Diego-based theater production company Teatro Mascara Magica (TMM). He previously served as a Deputy District Attorney for the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office for 30 years before retiring in 2016. [32]

Eduardo Ordendain is the former president of Border Angels and is the interim executive director as of December 2022. Ordendain is a practicing attorney and is the founding attorney of the Border Angels’ free immigration clinic.[33]

Luis Osuna, ESQ is a personal injury, workers compensation and medical malpractice attorney with San Diego-based law firm Golper, Sullivan, Rivera & Osuna. He previously served as chair of the Political Affairs Committee for the San Diego-based legal network organization La Raza Lawyers Association and was Vice Chair of the San Diego County Democratic Party’s south area from 2016 to 2018. [34]

Manuel Ramirez is the founder and head of his own law firm, The Ramirez Law Firm and has previously served as president to both the San Diego and California branches of legal network organization La Raza Lawyer Association. [35]

Marco Lizarraga is the director of La Cooperativa Campesina de California, a nonprofit organization that provides funding for California-based Grantees “who deliver employment and training services to farm workers throughout the State.” [36]

Funding

Border Angels has received at least $64,000 in 11 grants from a number of major left-leaning private foundations, including the Bohemian Foundation, Marguerite Casey Foundation, and James Irvine Foundation. The group has received a substantial portion of that sum from the Bravo Foundation, an Encinitas, California-based foundation that primarily funds Roman Catholic and healthcare causes.[37]

Between 2012 and 2015, Border Angels reported revenues of $442,804. [38]

Grants

In 2016, Border Angels reported spending $36,000 in grants for “migrant shelters and outreach” outside the United States. [39]

References

  1. Articles of Incorporation of Border Angels a California Public Benefit Corporation. California Secretary of State. Filed March 23, 2003. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://businesssearch.sos.ca.gov/Document/RetrievePDF?Id=02295216-5800749 ^
  2. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). Border Angels (2016). Part III, Line 4c ^
  3. Articles of Incorporation of Border Angels a California Public Benefit Corporation. California Secretary of State. Filed March 23, 2003. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://businesssearch.sos.ca.gov/Document/RetrievePDF?Id=02295216-5800749 ^
  4. “Immigration Consulting.” Border Angels. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/immigration-consulting/ ^
  5. NBC 7 Staff. “What You Need to Know About the Migrant Caravan’s Arrival to the U.S.-Mexico Border.” NBC 7 San Diego. November 15, 2018. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/What-You-Need-to-Know-About-the-Migrant-Caravans-Arrival-to-the-US-Mexico-Border-500612751.html ^
  6. Alex Wells. “BRINGING OUR SOLIDARITY TO THE BORDER.” Socialist Worker. November 27, 2018. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://socialistworker.org/2018/11/27/bringing-our-solidarity-to-the-border ^
  7. “Caravan Aid Support in Tijuana Baja California.” Border Angels. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/campaigns/support-caravan-tijuana/ ^
  8. Noam Chomsky. “The Unipolar Moment and the Obama Era.” Chomsky.info. September 21, 2009. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://chomsky.info/200909211-2/ ^
  9. Ramon Taylor. “The US-Mexico Border: A Dangerous Place With or Without a Wall.” VOA News. January 25, 2017. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.voanews.com/a/us-mexico-border-wall/3692230.html ^
  10. “We are human beings: Enrique Morones on the new movement to defend immigrants.” Socialist Worker. March 24, 2006. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://socialistworker.org/2006-1/581/581_08_EnriqueMorones.php ^
  11. “People’s Tribune Mission.” People’s Tribune. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://peoplestribune.org/pt-news/about-us/ ^
  12. “An interview with the founder of Border Angels.” People’s Tribune. Nov./Dec, 2007. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://www.peoplestribune.org/PT.2007.11/PT.2007.11.13.html ^
  13. “We are human beings: Enrique Morones on the new movement to defend immigrants.” Socialist Worker. March 24, 2006. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://socialistworker.org/2006-1/581/581_08_EnriqueMorones.php ^
  14. Associated Press. “Groom in rare cross-border wedding is a drug smuggler.” Sonoma County Press Democrat. December 22, 2017. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/7796484-181/groom-in-rare-cross-border-wedding?sba=AAS&artslide=0 ^
  15. “Border Angels Founder Enrique Morones on Hannity Fox News.” YouTube (Border Angels). Aired November 5, 2015. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXuTtd0Ryb0 ^
  16. “Border Angels director: Trump immigration xenophobic, racist.” YouTube (Fox News). January 23, 2017. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsdOsijE8Bg ^
  17. James Fredrick. “Mexico Deploys A Formidable Deportation Force Near Its Own Southern Border.” National Public Radio (NPR). May 7, 2018. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2018/05/07/607700928/mexico-deploys-a-formidable-deportation-force-near-its-own-southern-border ^
  18. Enrique Morones. “Opinion: After Charlottesville, Trump Has Made America Hate Again.” Times of San Diego. August 23, 2017. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://timesofsandiego.com/opinion/2017/08/23/opinion-after-charlottesville-trump-has-made-america-hate-again/ ^
  19. “Enrique Mornoes.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/enrique-morones-phd.html ^
  20. Arthur Jones. “Former Padres executive takes on ‘missionary work.’” National Catholic Reporter. September 19, 2003. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://natcath.org/NCR_Online/archives2/2003c/091903/091903r.htm ^
  21. “Enrique Morones Ph.D.” Border Angels. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/staff-page/enrique-morones/ ^
  22. Arthur Jones. “Former Padres executive takes on ‘missionary work.’” National Catholic Reporter. September 19, 2003. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://natcath.org/NCR_Online/archives2/2003c/091903/091903r.htm ^
  23. “Enrique Morones Ph.D.” Border Angels. Accessed February 5, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/staff-page/enrique-morones/ ^
  24. “An interview with the founder of Border Angels.” People’s Tribune. Nov./Dec, 2007. Accessed February 6, 2019. http://www.peoplestribune.org/PT.2007.11/PT.2007.11.13.html ^
  25. “We are human beings: Enrique Morones on the new movement to defend immigrants.” Socialist Worker. March 24, 2006. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://socialistworker.org/2006-1/581/581_08_EnriqueMorones.php ^
  26. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). Border Angels (2016). Part VII (Officers, Directors, Trustees, etc.), Subsection D (Reportable Compensation) ^
  27. “Enrique Morones.” Gente Unida, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.genteunidasd.net/enrique-morones-2/ ^
  28. Morrissey, Kate, and Wendy Fry. “For Subscribers: Before Border Angels Founder Retired, Two Women Alleged Sexual Harassment.” Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, November 19, 2022. https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-10-24/border-angels-enrique-morones-investigation. ^
  29. Morones, Enrique. “Letter: Border Angels Founder Responds to Critical Local Newspaper Article.” Times of San Diego, November 3, 2022. https://timesofsandiego.com/opinion/2022/11/02/letter-border-angels-founder-responds-to-critical-local-newspaper-article/. ^
  30. “Our Team.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/our-team.html ^
  31. “Eduardo Orenadin Esq.” Border Angels. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/staff-page/eduardo-orendain-esq/ ^
  32. “Luis Aragon.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/luis-aragon.html ^
  33. “Eduardo Orenadin Esq.” Border Angels. Accessed February 6, 2019. https://www.borderangels.org/staff-page/eduardo-orendain-esq/ ^
  34. “Luis Osuna.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/luis-osuna.html ^
  35. “Manuel Ramirez.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/manuel-ramirez.html ^
  36. “Marco Lizarraga.” Border Angels, Accessed December 2, 2022. https://www.borderangels.org/marco-lizarraga.html ^
  37. Border Angels. Foundation Search. Accessed February 5, 2019. FoundationSearch.com ^
  38. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). Border Angels (2015). Schedule A, Part II, Section A (Public Support), Line 1 (Total). ^
  39. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). Border Angels (2016). Schedule F, Part 1, Line 3(1). ^

Directors, Employees & Supporters

  1. Enrique Morones
    Founder and Executive Director
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: December 1, 2003

  • 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
    2018 Dec Form 990 $807,628 $327,165 $613,436 $0 N $735,114 $0 $230 $99,316 PDF
    2017 Dec Form 990 $283,447 $234,068 $155,560 $0 N $217,115 $0 $9 $74,096 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $232,135 $154,029 $109,226 $0 N $226,183 $0 $0 $61,950
    2015 Dec Form 990EZ $97,447 $130,531 $31,120 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $224,440 $175,726 $64,204 $0 N $139,013 $45,427 $0 $69,600 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990EZ $107,092 $121,657 $15,490 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990EZ $121,930 $145,432 $30,055 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Border Angels

    2258 Island Ave
    San Diego, CA 92102