Non-profit

Center for Common Ground

Website:

www.centerforcommonground.org/

Location:

Ruther Glen, VA

Tax ID:

82-4589218

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2020):

Revenue: $7,212,810
Expenses: $6,195,208
Assets: $1,035,150

Type:

Voter Mobilization Group

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Center for Common Ground is a voter mobilization organization focused on minority communities in the U.S. South. 1

Center for Common Ground partners with local organizations on campaigns to mobilize Black voters across the southern states of America. It claims to educate voters on local, state, and national politics and politicians and “what can be done to create needed change.” 2

Activities

Center for Common Ground seeks to win rural elections for left-of-center candidates by mobilizing “communities of color” to vote for little-advertised candidates. It partners with local organizations in Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas to achieve victories in swing districts for liberal politicians and policies. 3

Its partner organizations include American Ethical Union, AMP America, Atlanta NAACP, Black Voters Matter, Criminal Injustice Network, Divine 9, Democracy Labs, Newberry Foundation, New Alpha Community Development Center, Omega Psi Phi of Alabama, Prince Hall Masons, Partnership for Southern Equity, Power to the Polls, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, SCLC Cobb County, S.E.E.D. for All, Students for Justice, The Lighthouse, The People’s Agenda, The Workers Circle, Unitarian Universalists (UU the Vote Campaign), United Church of Christ, and Vote Equality US. 4

In 2021, the group tracked what it labeled as anti-voter and pro-voter legislation in Georgia, Alabama, Texas, and Arizona and created federal and state advocacy campaigns for its partners to educate community leaders. 5

In 2021, Center for Common Ground generated approximately 135,253 calls and emails to elected officials. Its thousands of volunteers made 170,109 calls, mailed 1,008,000 handwritten postcards, and sent 1,017,811 texts for voter mobilization and issue advocacy campaigns. 6

Democracy Centers

Center for Common Ground funds “Democracy Centers,” regional chapters that provide voter education, “training and digital tools” for community activists, and opportunities to participate in local politics. 7

In 2021, Center for Common Ground added “National Democracy Center Leaders” to guide its Democracy Center efforts and a “Democracy Center IT Lead.” 8

Declaration for American Democracy Membership

Center for Common Ground is a member of the Declaration for American Democracy (DFAD), a coalition comprised of over 250 groups that support its proposed “Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act.” The Act, named after deceased congressman John Lewis (D-GA), would federalize elections, strengthen the Federal Election Commission (FEC), and remove many conventional election integrity measures. It would require states to make permanent emergency measures implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic, including, including early voting, vote by mail (not only for absentees), and lenient voter ID laws. It would additionally make election day a federal holiday, introduce automatic same-day voter registration, and establish “federal protections” to prevent state and local election officials from receiving “undue partisan influence and control.” 9

DFAD claims as a “guarantee” that The Freedom to Vote Act would ensure “fair” redistricting nationwide, and promises allegedly nonpartisan election oversight from the FEC. Furthermore, it would require super PACs, 501(c)(4) groups, and other organizations to disclose all donors, and would effectively shut down donor advised funds. It also aims to set up a fund to finance ongoing “innovations” in democracy and election infrastructure. The fund would be replenished by penalty fees paid by states who commit infractions against new election laws. Each state would get a disbursement from the fund to finance “eligible democracy and election-related investments.” 10

Leadership

Center for Common Ground’s board of directors includes Andrea Miller, Gabriela Lemus, Rodney Sadler, Deepak Puri, and Kati Hornung. 11

Andrea Miller is a founding member of the board, executive director of People Demanding Action, the founding president of the National Women’s Political Caucus of Virginia, and a member of the Democracy and Governance working group of Virginia Green New Deal. 12

Gabriela Lemus is the president of Mi Familia Vota Education Fund and CEO of Revolution Strategies US. 13

References

  1.  “About.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/about.
  2. “About.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/about.
  3.  “About.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/about.
  4. “About.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/about
  5. “Annual Report – 2021.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/annual-report.
  6. “Annual Report – 2021.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/annual-report.
  7. “About.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/about
  8. “Annual Report – 2021.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/annual-report.
  9. “Declaration for American Democracy.” DFADCoalition.org. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://dfadcoalition.org/. Archive: https://web.archive.org/web/20230204223830/https://dfadcoalition.org/.
  10. “Declaration for American Democracy.” DFADCoalition.org. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://dfadcoalition.org/. Archive: https://web.archive.org/web/20230204223830/https://dfadcoalition.org/.
  11. “Our Team.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/our-team.
  12. “Our Team.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/our-team.
  13. “Our Team.” Center for Common Ground. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://www.centerforcommonground.org/our-team.
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: September 1, 2018

  • 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
    2020 Dec Form 990 $7,212,810 $6,195,208 $1,035,150 $0 N $3,252,810 $0 $0 $65,000
    2019 Dec Form 990 $256,578 $261,844 $17,448 $0 N $256,578 $0 $0 $20,000 PDF
    2018 Dec Form 990EZ $0 $0 $20,966 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Center for Common Ground

    18459 Patriot Ln
    Ruther Glen, VA 22546