The Themis Fund is a center-left donor collaborative that channels grants from foundations to anti-death penalty litigation nonprofits. The Themis Fund is a project of the Proteus Fund, a major funding and fiscal sponsorship nonprofit.
The Themis Fund provides small grants to support litigation to outlaw capital punishment by judicial decision. Themis has funded litigation demanding better state funding and standards for public defenders, highlighting alleged discrepancies in race and sex on capital prosecutions, showing community opposition to the death penalty to juries, and alleging defendants’ mental illness as a factor in death-penalty cases. 1
8th Amendment Project
Also see 8th Amendment Project (Nonprofit)
In 2014, the Themis Fund established the 8th Amendment Project, headed by Henderson Hill, specifically to establish a foundation for a Supreme Court decision that would declare capital punishment to be unconstitutional based on the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment. The Project supports research on death penalty abolition and aids the defense in capital trials. 2
In January 2018, the 8th Amendment Project was transferred from the Proteus Fund to the Center for Death Penalty Litigation. 3
The Themis Fund is a project of the Proteus Fund, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. As such, grants to and from the Fund are directed through the Proteus Fund and the organization is not required to file annually with the IRS.
The Themis Fund reports its funding partners include Atlantic Philanthropies, the Butler Family Foundation, Tides Foundation, the Fund for Nonviolence, and Voqal Fund. 4
- “Announcing the Themis Litigation Fund.” Proteus Fund, Proteus Fund, 2007, temp-proteusfund.gaiahost.net/themis/news/announcing-themis-litigation-fund.
- Hill, Henderson. “Announcing the 8th Amendment Project.” Announcing the 8th Amendment Project | Themis Fund. May 23, 2014. Accessed January 17, 2018. http://temp-proteusfund.gaiahost.net/themis/news/announcing-8th-amendment-project.
- “8th Amendment Project – The Center For Death Penalty Litigation.” January 1, 2018. The Center For Death Penalty Litigation. Accessed July 1, 2019. http://www.cdpl.org/our-work/8th-amendment-project/.
- “Funding Partners.” Themis Fund. Accessed July 1, 2019. Original URL: http://temp-proteusfund.gaiahost.net/themis/funding-partners. Archived here: https://www.influencewatch.org/app/uploads/2019/07/themis-fund-grantmakers-07.19.pdf