Non-profit

The 85 Fund

Location:

Washington, DC

Tax ID:

20-2466871

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2021):

Revenue: $117,315,050
Expenses: $113,588,711
Assets: $10,278,564

Type:

Nonprofit

Formation:

2011

Board Chair:

Todd Graves

Board Chair Salary (2022):

$0 1

References

  1. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2022, Part VII, Section A, Line 1a.
Board Secretary:

Carrie Severino

Board Secretary's Salary (2021):

$220,000 1

References

  1. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2021, Part VII, Section A, Line 1a.
Budget (2022):

Total Revenue:  $134,753,000

Total Expenses: $138,818,674

Total Assets: $6,212,890 1

References

  1. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2022, Part I.

Contact InfluenceWatch with suggested edits or tips for additional profiles.

The 85 Fund (formerly the Judicial Education Project) is a nonprofit organization that supports largely right-of-center and conservative organizations that educate the public on issues like constitutionalism, limited government, and religious liberty. 1 The 85 Fund aims to support education and activities promoting structural limits on government power as a means to protect individuals’ dignity and freedoms. 2

The New York Times describes the 85 Fund as a “dark money” group and claims that it is lead by allies of right-of-center legal activist Leonard Leo. 3 According to its tax filings, the 85 Fund paid CRC Advisors, a consultancy for which Leonard Leo sits as chair of the board, 4 $21.7 million in 2021 for public affairs consulting. 5

The 85 Fund operates and finances the Honest Elections Project. 6

Grantmaking

The 85 Fund provides grants to organizations that promote and educate the public about constitutionalism, limited government, and religious liberty. In 2021, the 85 Fund made substantial grants to largely conservative organizations like the Federalist Society ($3.55 million) and the Ethics and Public Policy Center ($1.38 million), along with contributions to DonorsTrust ($71.1 million), a donor-advised-fund (DAF) provider that funds right-leaning policy organizations. 7

Funding

The 85 Fund is funded by donations from individuals, foundations, and businesses. While the 85 Fund does not disclose its donors, tax filings confirm donations from DonorsTrust ($10.5 million in 2019), 8  the Bradley Impact Fund ($2.5 million in 2020), 9 and the National Christian Charitable Foundation ($2 million in 2020). 10

Board of Directors

Todd Graves is the chair of the board of the 85 Fund. Graves sits on the board of Ballotpedia, is a founding board member of the Kansas City Missouri Police Foundation, and is the board chair of the Stanley M. Herzog Foundation. Graves is a former U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri. 11

Gary Marx is the treasurer of the board of the 85 Fund and a cofounder and executive director of the Judicial Crisis Network. 12

Carrie Severino is the secretary of the board of the 85 Fund and the president of the Judicial Crisis Network. 13

References

  1. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2019, Part III, Line 4a.
  2. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2019, Part I, Line 1.
  3. Vogel, Kenneth P. “Leonard Leo’s Network Is Increasingly Powerful. But It Is Not Easy to Define.” The New York Times, October 12, 2022. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/12/us/politics/leonard-leo-network.html.
  4.  CRC Advisors, Inc.” Open Corporates. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://opencorporates.com/companies/us_va/03430998.
  5.  The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2021, Schedule O, Statement 1.
  6. “Honest Elections Project.” Ballotpedia. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://ballotpedia.org/Honest_Elections_Project.
  7. The 85 Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2021, Schedule I, Part II.
  8. DonorsTrust, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2019, Schedule I, Part II.
  9. Bradley Impact Fund, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2020, Schedule I, Part II.
  10. National Christian Charitable Foundation, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2020, Schedule I, Part II.
  11. “Todd P. Graves.” Graves Garrett LLC. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://www.gravesgarrett.com/member/todd-p-graves/.
  12. “Gary Marx.” Judicial Crisis Network. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://judicialnetwork.com/in-the-news/gary-marx-2/.
  13. “Carrie Severino.” The Federalist Society. Accessed March 9, 2023. https://fedsoc.org/contributors/carrie-severino.

Donation Recipients

  1. American Conservative Union (ACU) Foundation (Non-profit)
  2. American Juris Link (Non-profit)
  3. American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) (Non-profit)
  4. Americans for Limited Government Foundation (Non-profit)
  5. Americans for Tax Reform (Non-profit)
  6. Becket Fund for Religious Liberty (Non-profit)
  7. Centennial Institute (Non-profit)
  8. Center for Equal Opportunity (Non-profit)
  9. Center for Individual Rights (Non-profit)
  10. Club for Growth Foundation (CFG Foundation) (Non-profit)
  11. Committee to Unleash Prosperity (Non-profit)
  12. Competitive Enterprise Institute (Non-profit)
  13. Cornell University (Non-profit)
  14. DonorsTrust (Non-profit)
  15. Freedom Foundation (Non-profit)
  16. Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies (Non-profit)
  17. Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) (Non-profit)
  18. Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) (Non-profit)
  19. Franklin Club (Other Group)
  20. Free State Foundation (Non-profit)
  21. George Mason University Foundation (Non-profit)
  22. Heritage Action for America (Non-profit)
  23. Heritage Foundation (Non-profit)
  24. Independent Women’s Forum (Non-profit)
  25. Institute for Free Speech (Non-profit)
  26. Job Creators Network Foundation (Non-profit)
  27. Library of Congress (Government Agency)
  28. Lucy Burns Institute (Non-profit)
  29. Manhattan Institute for Policy Research (Non-profit)
  30. March for Life (Non-profit)
  31. Mercatus Center, George Mason University (Non-profit)
  32. National Review Institute (Non-profit)
  33. Network of enlightened Women (NeW) (Non-profit)
  34. Property and Environment Research Center (Non-profit)
  35. Public Interest Legal Foundation (Non-profit)
  36. Speech First (Non-profit)
  37. State Policy Network (SPN) (Non-profit)
  38. Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) (Non-profit)
  39. Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America (Political Party/527)
  40. The CO2 Coalition (Non-profit)
  41. The Ethics and Public Policy Center (EPPC) (Non-profit)
  42. The New Civil Liberties Alliance (Non-profit)
  43. Tholos Foundation (Non-profit)
  44. Turning Point USA (Non-profit)
  45. Vanguard Charitable Endowment Program (Non-profit)
  46. Witherspoon Institute (Non-profit)
  47. Young Americans for Liberty Foundation (YALF) (Non-profit)
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: November 1, 2011

  • 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
    2021 Dec Form 990 $117,315,050 $113,588,711 $10,278,564 $0 N $117,315,050 $0 $0 $220,000
    2020 Dec Form 990 $65,777,856 $59,753,082 $6,552,225 $0 N $65,777,856 $0 $0 $170,734
    2019 Dec Form 990 $13,498,500 $13,033,961 $527,452 $0 N $13,498,500 $0 $0 $170,000 PDF
    2018 Dec Form 990 $7,837,050 $7,945,679 $62,913 $0 N $7,837,050 $0 $0 $170,000 PDF
    2017 Dec Form 990 $9,469,500 $11,525,413 $171,542 $0 N $9,469,500 $0 $0 $160,000 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $12,375,000 $10,208,605 $2,227,455 $0 N $12,375,000 $0 $0 $154,698 PDF
    2015 Dec Form 990 $11,335,700 $11,491,063 $61,060 $0 N $11,335,700 $0 $0 $142,993 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $9,077,000 $9,352,378 $216,423 $0 N $9,077,000 $0 $0 $122,400 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $2,520,110 $2,247,325 $491,801 $0 N $2,520,110 $0 $0 $20,000 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $1,525,000 $1,306,239 $219,015 $0 N $1,525,000 $0 $0 $24,500 PDF

    The 85 Fund

    3220 N ST NW
    Washington, DC 20007-2829