The Randolph Foundation is the philanthropic vehicle of Heather Richardson Higgins, CEO of Independent Women’s Voice and chair of the board of Independent Women’s Forum. The foundation primarily supports center-right advocacy nonprofits.
Heather Richardson Higgins
The Randolph Foundation is the philanthropic vehicle of Heather Richardson Higgins, whose wealth comes from over-the-counter medicines company Richardson-Vicks, notable for creating Vicks VapoRub. 1 Higgins is the daughter of R. Randolph Richardson, who served as president of the Smith Richardson Foundation between 1973-1993. 2
Higgins is CEO of Independent Women’s Voice and chair of the board of Independent Women’s Forum. 3
In January 2017, she predicted that Americans should expect then-President Donald Trump “to act with authority, to be the hero who stands up for Americans, takes on CEOs, builds the wall, and ensures better health-care options.” 4
In February 2018, she said that then-President Trump “is changing America’s course as he puts Americans first and implements many of the major policy reforms he promised during his campaign.” 5
After the Capitol riot in January 2021, Higgins said that “everyone has unambiguously condemned the rioters in the Capitol, as they should. But many have fallen into the trap of accepting that they ought to be embarrassed, as though the rioters represented them or even most Trump supporters, neither of which is the case.” 6
In March 2022, Higgins responded to President Joe Biden’s State of The Union address, saying, “President Biden was elected on the promise of keeping Americans together. But over the last year, Biden bowed to the wishes of the progressive left again and again, rather than the exhausted majority that elected him.” 7
In 2005 the Randolph Foundation supported a survey by professors Robert Lichter of George Mason University, Stanley Rothman of Smith College, and Neil Nevitte of the University of Toronto of 1,543 full-time faculty at 183 colleges and universities. The survey reported that 72 percent of those surveyed said they were liberal, and 15 percent said they were conservative, while 50 percent called themselves Democrats and 11 percent Republicans. “There was no field we studied in which there were more conservatives than liberals or more Republicans than Democrats,” Lichter told the Washington Post. 8
The Randolph Foundation’s three largest grants in 2018 were to Harvard University ($200,000), Independent Women’s Forum ($75,000), and Victory Programs ($58,000). 9
- Paul A. Gigot, “Stop, Thief: Clinton Bids for Newt’s Vision,” Wall Street Journal, January 27, 1995.
- Heather R. Higgins, “Randy Richardson, committed To A free Society,” National Review Online, June 3, 2015, https://www.nationalreview.com/2015/06/randy-richardson-dead-headed-smith-richardson-foundation/ (accessed March 9, 2022).
- “Heather R. Higgins,” Independent Women’s Forum, https://www.iwf.org/people/heather-r-higgins/ (accessed March 9, 2022).
- Heather R. Higgins, “The Promise of President Trump,” Wall Street Journal, January 20, 2017
- “Independent Women’s Voice Issues Statement on State of the Union,” press release from Independent Women’s Voice, February 3, 2018.
- Heather R. Higgins, “Conservatives Should Learn from The Left,” Real Clear Politics, January 16, 2021, https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2021/01/16/conservatives_should_learn_from_the_left_145051.html (accessed March 11, 2022)
- “Thanks To President Biden, The State of The Union Is Weak,” press release from Independent Women’s Voice, March 3, 2922,
- Howard Kurtz, “College Faculties A Most Liberal Lot, Study Finds,” Washington Post, March 29, 2005.
- 2018 Randolph Foundation Form 990