Metropolitan Organizing Strategy for Enabling Strength (MOSES) is a religious-based advocacy organization which trains leaders in churches, synagogues, and mosques to push left-of-center advocacy in Michigan. The organization has participated in and promoted canvassing activities in the state of Michigan advocating for liberal legislation supported by organizations such as Planned Parenthood, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and Color of Change. 1 2
MOSES is a member of the Gamaliel Foundation, a liberal organization based in Chicago which trains other organizations on how to push agendas through grassroots religious-based organizing. The organization advocates for issues such as liberal expansionist immigration, criminal justice reform, and left-of-center education policies. 3 4
MOSES has performed and supported multiple politically motivated studies and research projects in Michigan and the Midwest. Recently, the organization has funded canvassing of Detroit neighborhoods in an effort to reach out to targeted communities of voters in an effort to increase support for liberal policies in the state of Michigan. 5
Ponsella Hardaway is the executive director of MOSES. Hardaway has a long history of working for left-of-center and liberal organizations. She serves as a national trainer with the Gamaliel Foundation working to teach religious leaders how to use their position in communities to push political agendas. Hardaway is also a member of the board of directors for the ACLU Michigan state-level organization. 6
Keith Whitney is the president of the board of directors for MOSES. Whitney is a pastor in the greater Detroit area who actively participates in advocacy activities performed and promoted by MOSES. 7
MOSES received $363,381in grants and contributions in 2017. This number was far less than the $656,906 the organization received in 2016. The organization has received funding from multiple left-of-center organizations. Notable organizations funding MOSES include the Ford Foundation, which has made numerous donations ranging in amount from $100,000 to 350,000 since 2006, and the Kresge Foundation, which made a $300,000 grant to the organization in 2010. 8 9
- “About Us.” MOSES. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://mosesmi.org/about-us/
- “Millions in outside cash, volunteers swarm Michigan to tap voters.” Detroit Free Press, Kathleen Gray. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://www.freep.com/story/news/politics/2018/08/03/campaign-cash-volunteers-michigan-election/893561002/.
- “About Us.” Gamaliel Foundation. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://gamaliel.org/about-us/.
- “What We Do.” MOSES. Accessed September 26, 2019.
- “Michigan went Republican in 2016. Local activists want to make sure that doesn’t happen in 2020.” Think Progress. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://thinkprogress.org/michigan-republican-2016-local-activists-2020-ac8985cdb753/
- “Board of Directors Profiles: Ponsella Hardaway.” ACLU Michigan. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://www.aclumich.org/en/board-directors.
- “Keith L. Whitney.” LinkedIn.com. Accessed September 30, 2019. https://www.linkedin.com/in/keith-l-whitney-07321b19/
- “Grants Database.” Ford Foundation. Accessed September 26, 2019. https://www.fordfoundation.org/work/our-grants/grants-database/grants-all?search=&page=0.
- “Grants Awarded.” Kresge Foundation. Accessed September 26, 2019.