Person

Barbara Sargent

Nationality:

American

Occupation:

Philanthropist

Barbara Sargent is a left-of-center philanthropist living in California. Along with her husband, Tom Sargent, Sargent has formed multiple left-of-center foundations. Most notably, Sargent formed the Kalliopeia Foundation, a left-of-center grantmaking organization that funds environmentalist policies, left-of-center Native American interests, and expanded immigration policies. Sargent has poured over $67,625,194 into the Kalliopeia Foundation. [1] Sargent practices the Sufi tradition of Islamic mysticism, and she has integrated spiritualism into the goals of her foundation. [2] [3]

Barbara and Tom Sargent have donated over $304,827 to Democratic campaigns and left-of-center causes. Notable recipients of the Sargents’ funding include former President Barack Obama and President Joe Biden’s campaigns, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), the Lincoln Project, and Indivisible. [4] [5] [6]

Early and Personal Life

In Sargent’s own words, she grew up “lost and without purpose.” [7] Sargent acquired her wealth from stock gifted to her in her 20s from her family’s business. According to Sargent, as the stock acquired value over time, she became more uncomfortable about what to do with her money. During a meditation retreat in her mid-30s, Sargent claimed she received the impulse to start a foundation. [8]

Sargent had converted to the Naqshbandi Sufi tradition of Islamic mysticism in 1985, and she sought to infuse Muslim spiritualism into her foundation. [9] Sargent practices at the Golden Sufi Center in California. [10] As a practicing Sufi, Sargent follows a mystical form of Islam that focuses on the inward search for God and shuns materialism. [11]

Barbara Sargent resides in California. She is married to David Thompson “Tom” Sargent, and the couple has two adult children. [12] Tom Sargent is the founding principal of Equity Community Builders LLC, a real estate company. [13] Tom Sargent also is the president of Highlands SRI, a “socially responsible” investment company that invests in companies aligned with left-of-center values. [14]

Philanthropy

Kalliopeia Foundation

In 1997, Sargent founded the Kalliopeia Foundation, a left-of-center nonprofit grantmaking organization that funds environmentalist policies, left-of-center Native American interests, and expanded immigration. [15]

According to available tax records, Sargent contributed over $67,625,194 to the Kalliopeia Foundation between 2013 and 2018. [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21]

New Field Foundation

In 2003, Barbara and Tom Sargent formed the New Field Foundation. [22] From 2003 to 2016, this nonprofit organization provided grants to support rural women in West Africa. [23]

Available tax records indicate that Tom and Barbara Sargent contributed over $198,500 to the New Field Foundation from 2014 to 2018. [24] [25] [26] [27]

Tamalpais Trust

In 2012, Tom and Barbara Sargent formed the Tamalpais Trust, a family trust that awards grants to initiatives led by indigenous people in many countries. [28] The grants are awarded through the Rudolf Steiner Foundation (RSF Social Finance), a financial services organization known for issuing grants to left-of-center advocacy groups. [29]

Barbara and Tom Sargent also funded the Standing on Sacred Ground films. [30] The four-part documentary series, released in 2013, supported indigenous land claims and opposed government-supported initiatives related to energy production, mining, and development. [31] [32]

Political Activism

Barbara and Tom Sargent have financially supported Democratic campaigns for decades. Barbara Sargent has given over $40,196 to Democratic campaigns. Recipients of Sargent’s funds include the presidential campaigns of former Secretary of State John Kerry and former President Barack Obama. Sargent also donated to the Democratic Party in eight swing states in 2012. [33]

Many donations are also listed under Tom Sargent’s name. Tom Sargent has given over $264,631 to Democratic campaigns and left-of-center political initiatives. Recipients of Tom Sargent’s funds include President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)’s 2002 campaign, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), the Lincoln Project, and the left-of-center organization Indivisible. [34] [35]

Added together, the Sargents’ political contributions total over $304,827.

References

  1. Kalliopeia Foundation Forms 990, 2013-2018. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  2. “Contributors & Presenters.” Seven Pillars House of Wisdom. Accessed March 14, 2021. http://www.sevenpillarshouse.org/people/. ^
  3. “Money and My Relationship with It.” Works & Conversations. June 30, 2017. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.conversations.org/story.php?sid=522. ^
  4. “Barbara Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Barbara+Sargent&type=donors. ^
  5. “Thompson Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Thomson+Sargent&type=donors. ^
  6. “Tom Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Tom+Sargent&type=donors. ^
  7. Mendenhall, Megan. “Clients in Conversation: Money & Spirit – Part I.” RSF Social Finance. May 12, 2015. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://rsfsocialfinance.org/2015/05/12/clients-in-conversation-money-spirit-part-i/. ^
  8. “Money and My Relationship with It.” Works & Conversations. June 30, 2017. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.conversations.org/story.php?sid=522. ^
  9. “Contributors & Presenters.” Seven Pillars House of Wisdom. Accessed March 14, 2021. http://www.sevenpillarshouse.org/people/. ^
  10. Mendenhall, Megan. “Clients in Conversation: Money & Spirit – Part II.” RSF Social Finance. May 12, 2015. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://rsfsocialfinance.org/2015/05/19/clients-in-conversation-money-spirit-part-ii/. ^
  11. Specia, Megan. “Who Are Sufi Muslims and Why Do Extremists Hate Them?” The New York Times. November 24, 2017. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/24/world/middleeast/sufi-muslim-explainer.html. ^
  12. “Contributors & Presenters.” Seven Pillars House of Wisdom. Accessed March 14, 2021. http://www.sevenpillarshouse.org/people/. ^
  13. “Our Team.” Equity Community Builders. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.ecbsf.com/our-team. ^
  14. “Home.” Highlands SRI. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.highlandssri.com/about-us/. ^
  15. “About Us.” Kalliopeia Foundation. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://kalliopeia.org/about-us/. ^
  16. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2013. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  17. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2014. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials.    ^
  18. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2015. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  19. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2016. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  20. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2017. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  21. Kalliopeia Foundation Form 990, 2018. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/kalliopeia-foundation,943270387/financials. ^
  22. Mendenhall, Megan. “Clients in Conversation: Money & Spirit – Part II.” RSF Social Finance. May 12, 2015. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://rsfsocialfinance.org/2015/05/19/clients-in-conversation-money-spirit-part-ii/. ^
  23. “Grantmaking.” New Field Foundation. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.newfieldfound.org/grants.awarded.php. ^
  24. New Field Foundation Form 990, Schedule B, 2014. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/270029270/201513159349100626/IRS990ScheduleB. ^
  25. New Field Foundation Form 990, Schedule B, 2015. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/270029270/201642309349100104/IRS990ScheduleB. ^
  26. New Field Foundation Form 990, Schedule B, 2016. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/270029270/201723149349101852/IRS990ScheduleB. ^
  27. New Field Foundation Form 990, Schedule B, 2018. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/270029270/201921359349103542/IRS990ScheduleB. ^
  28. “About Us.” Tamalpais Trust. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://www.tamtrust.org/about-us/. ^
  29. “Invest.” RSF Social Finance. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://rsfsocialfinance.org/invest/investing-overview/.    ^
  30. “Funders.” Standing on Sacred Ground. Accessed March 14, 2021. https://standingonsacredground.org/learn-more/about-films/funders.    ^
  31. “Standing on Sacred Ground (2013).” IMDB. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2925992/. ^
  32. McLeond, Christopher. “Why Sacred Places Should Matter, Even to Business Folks.” Triple Pundit. May 19, 2015. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.triplepundit.com/story/2015/why-sacred-places-should-matter-even-business-folks/34631. ^
  33. “Barbara Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. Accessed March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Barbara+Sargent&type=donors. ^
  34. “Thompson Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Thomson+Sargent&type=donors. ^
  35. “Tom Sargent.” OpenSecrets.org. March 15, 2021. https://www.opensecrets.org/search?q=Tom+Sargent&type=donors. ^
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