Since at least 2006, the Koch brothers have hosted semi-annual meetings for wealthy right-wing donors, sometimes referred to as the Koch network. While these gatherings are carefully guarded, occasional leaked documents and recordings have revealed that they include "titans of industry — from health insurance companies, oil executives, Wall Street investors, and real estate tycoons — working together with conservative journalists and Republican operatives," as well as prominent public officials, including members of Congress, state governors, and even Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia. The meetings involve fundraising, reportedly in the millions of dollars, as well as discussions about political strategy.
The known locations, dates, and participants in Koch network meetings are listed below.
The Koch brothers -- David and Charles -- are the right-wing billionaire co-owners of Koch Industries. As two of the richest people in the world, they are key funders of the right-wing infrastructure, including the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and the State Policy Network (SPN). In SourceWatch, key articles on the Kochs include: Koch Brothers, Koch Industries, Americans for Prosperity, American Encore, and Freedom Partners.
- 1 Koch Donor Summits and Known Attendees
- 1.1 January 2019, Indian Wells, California
- 1.2 January 2017, Indian Wells, California
- 1.3 July-August 2016, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- 1.4 "Unprecedented" Spending Plans for 2016 Election Cycle
- 1.5 August 2015, Dana Point, California
- 1.6 January 2015, Palm Springs, California
- 1.7 June 2014, Dana Point, California
- 1.8 February 2014, Palm Springs, California
- 1.9 August 2013, Albuquerque, New Mexico
- 1.10 April 2013, Palm Springs, California
- 1.11 June 2012, San Diego, California
- 1.12 January 2012, Indian Wells, California
- 1.13 June 2011, Vail, Colorado
- 1.14 January 2011, Rancho Mirage, California
- 1.15 June 2010, Aspen, Colorado
- 1.16 Earlier Summits - Politicians, Supreme Court Justices, and Other Attendees
- 2 Articles and Resources
Koch Donor Summits and Known Attendees
January 2019, Indian Wells, California
At a luxury resort in the California desert, 634 donors who are committed to giving $100,000 dollars or more to Koch Network organizations. Of those 634, 181 are new donors this year. Reports from the summit say that the Network decided to take a more "politically muted tone than in years past." Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin, and Senators Ben Sasse and Mike Lee were slated to be in attendance. Divisions between the Koch Network and the GOP were apparent as the Network stated intention to curtail partisan efforts within politics and the RNC stated "it does not plan to renew a data-sharing agreement with the Koch network for the 2020 cycle, after years of working in tandem to enrich voter files for GOP campaigns and state parties."
January 2017, Indian Wells, California
At the 2017 Koch Donor Summit in California, the Koch network announced that they plan to spend between "$300 million and $400 million to influence politics and public policy over the next two years." Most of the money will be used to fund the astroturf efforts of Koch groups like Americans for Prosperity, Generation Opportunity, Libre Initiative, and Concerned Veterans for America. Over 550 donors were in attendance for the summit with each willing to contribute at least $100,000 a year to the network.
Elected officials in attendance at Indian Wells included: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner, Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, Sen. Patrick J. Toomey (PA), Sen. David Perdue (GA), Sen. Ben Sasse (NE), Sen. Mike Lee (UT) and Sen. James Lankford (OK), Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT) and Rep. Marsha Blackburn (TN). Nobody from the Trump administration was reported to be in attendance.
July-August 2016, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Charles Koch and his network will not support Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump in the 2016 US presidential election, he stressed at the Koch donor summit in Colorado Springs, Colorado, July 30-August 1, 2016. Koch Industries general council and senior vice president, Mark Holden said that, "from a values, and beliefs and policy perspective," neither candidate interests the Kochs. Instead, the massive Koch donor network is "focused on the Senate." Americans for Prosperity president Tim Phillips echoed Holden when he was quoted by CBS News as saying, "We're not engaged on the presidential."
The AP reported that,
- "The weekend's agenda for the estimated 400 donors gathered in Colorado Springs featured a series of policy discussions and appearances from several elected officials in addition to (Paul) Ryan: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, Texas Sen. John Cornyn, Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, Utah Sen. Mike Lee, Rep. Mike Pompeo of Kansas. Rep Jason Chaffetz of Utah and Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado."
Koch said at the meeting that the donor network will spend roughly $750 million in the 2016 election cycle. Matea Gold of the Washington Post wrote that roughly $250 million of this will be used to finance "the policy and political campaigns of groups such as Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Partners Action Fund, Concerned Veterans for America, the Libre Initiative and Generation Opportunity.
"Unprecedented" Spending Plans for 2016 Election Cycle
At the January 2015 Koch network meeting, it was revealed that the network planned to spend $889 million on the 2016 election campaign, a goal the New York Times called "unprecedented" and which "would put it on track to spend nearly as much as the campaigns of each party’s presidential nominee."
In October 2015, the network had reportedly "raised and ha[d] commitments for about $600m," and donors associated with the network had contributed at least $20 million to Super PACs supporting Republican candidates, The Guardian reported, including:
- "Arizonan Randy Kendrick, a wealthy conservative who has donated $100,000 to a pro-Rubio Super Pac and is also a leading fundraiser for his campaign committee in her home state of Maryland. Kendrick is a regular attendee at the Kochs’s semiannual retreats.
- "Ken Griffin, who runs Citadel, a large Chicago hedge fund, and has donated to Koch network projects. Griffin also chipped in $100,000 to the pro-Rubio Super Pac, and $100,000 to the pro-Jeb Bush super Pac, Right to Rise USA.
- "Hedge-fund mogul Robert Mercer, a big donor to the Koch network, who poured $11m into the pro-Cruz Pac, Keep the Promise I, of which $500,000 was shipped to the Fiorina-supporting Super Pac, Carly for America.
- "Helen Schwab, the wife of investor Charles Schwab, a longtime donor to the Koch network, who gave $1.5m to the Jeb Bush-supporting Super Pac, Right to Rise USA."
August 2015, Dana Point, California
The Koch network held its 2015 summer meeting July 31-August 2 at the St. Regis Monarch Beach luxury resort in Dana Point, California. According to Politico, about 450 donors attended. Attendees included several Republican candidates for President: former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard Carly Fiorina, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.
Politico also reported that several elected officials in attendance spoke about the influence of the Koch's donor network. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey "recalled that he attended a previous conference as a donor before being elected to his state’s top office last year. 'Every time I’ve been invited to this conference, I’ve benefited from this conference,' he said." Senators Ben Sasse (R-NE), Tim Scott (R-SC), and Dan Sullivan (R-AK), all first elected in 2014, "credited Koch network donors for helping the GOP take control of the Senate that year. 'Your help over the last election cycle produced the numbers that we have today,. Scott said [...] 'The major contributions and investments that you have made have played a major role."
Others reportedly in attendance included:
- Art Pope, "longtime Koch network donor," CEO of Variety Wholesalers, director of the Pope Foundation
- Kellie Peters, "major Ohio donor focused on education reform"
- Nancy Pfotenhauer, board member of Americans for Prosperity
- Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO)
- Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH)
- Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels
Controversy Over "Strings Attached" to Media Access
This was the first summit that allowed major newsmedia to attend, but only after reporters agreed to certain conditions. Nine media organizations reportedly agreed: Associated Press, Bloomberg News, CNN, Politico, Time Magazine, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Washington Times.
Politico reported that it attended the summit "on the condition that donors spotted there not be named unless they agreed to be identified." One of its staff members, Mike Allen, also conducted a set of on-stage interviews with presidential candidates during the summit.
Michael Calderone of The Huffington Post raised concerns about the restrictions: "The problem is that the ground rules could restrict journalists from reporting what's right in front of their eyes... So it’s possible journalists end up reporting largely what the event sponsors want, such as fiery speeches and candidate remarks criticizing Democrats, but less on the power brokers attending who play key behind-the-scenes roles in the 2016 election."
The Undercurrent, which was also at the resort but "was not granted any special access," criticized media for agreeing to the restrictions, writing, "The presence of major media companies at the retreat lends the Koch operation the appearance of transparency, essentially white-washing activities that are corrosive to American democracy."
January 2015, Palm Springs, California
According to Politico, the Koch network planned to hold its winter meeting the weekend of January 23 at a hotel in Palm Springs, California. Sources told Politico that Republican politicians including "Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida, and Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin received coveted invitations to speak to the vaunted network assembled by the billionaire industrialist megadonors Charles and David Koch." Walker's plans to attend were confirmed by a campaign spokesperson.
At the meeting, it was revealed that the network planned to spend $889 million on the 2016 election campaign, a goal the New York Times called "unprecedented" and which "would put it on track to spend nearly as much as the campaigns of each party’s presidential nominee."
- “It’s no wonder the candidates show up when the Koch brothers call,” said David Axelrod, a former senior adviser to Mr. Obama. “That’s exponentially more money than any party organization will spend. In many ways, they have superseded the party.”
June 2014, Dana Point, California
The June 2014 Koch conference appears to have been held at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point, near San Diego, California. The entire hotel was reserved under the name "T&R Sales Meeting" for the weekend of June 14-17, and "guests who weren’t part of the conference [...] were escorted out of the hotel by security on Saturday afternoon." Reporters who were among those escorted out reported that the conference theme was "American Courage, Our Commitment to a Free Society" and attendees appeared to be discussing new Common Core education standards and the IRS investigation of political non-profits. A new super PAC, Freedom Partners Action Fund, was also announced at the summit, according to Politico. It "aims to spend more than $15 million in the 2014 midterm campaigns."
Reportedly present at the summit were "James Davis, former communications director and chief spokesman for the 2012 Republican National Convention" and affiliated with Freedom Partners, "Carl Anderson, former chairman and CEO of Arrow International Inc. and current board member and independent director at Carpenter Technology Corp," David Koch, and Charles Koch. The speaker list was reported to include Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and Dr. Charles Murray, author of The Bell Curve.
Groups reported to be in attendance included:
- Concerned Veterans for America
- Center for Shared Services
- The Libre Initiative
- Americans for Prosperity
- Mercatus Center
- Charles G. Koch Foundation
- Institute for Humane Studies
- i360, owned by Freedom Partners
- Charles Koch Institute
- Generation Opportunity
Audio of Koch Politicians
Audio recordings of some portions of the meeting were obtained by The Undercurrent, Huffington Post, and The Nation. The recordings included speeches by three Republican Senate candidates: Iowa state Sen. Joni Ernst, Arkansas Rep. Tom Cotton, and Colorado Rep. Cory Gardner, and remarks by Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
Ernst credited the Koch network with advancing his career, saying "But the exposure to this group and to this network and the opportunity to meet so many of you, that really started my trajectory." Cotton highlighted the role of Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity: ""Americans for Prosperity in Arkansas has played a critical role in turning our state from a one-party Democratic state [inaudible] building the kind of constant engagement to get people in the state involved in their communities."
McConnell attacked campaign finance limits, saying that "The worst day of my political life was when President George W. Bush signed McCain-Feingold into law in the early part of his first administration." He also described plans to "go after" Democrats by using attaching riders to spending bills. "No money can be spent to do this or to do that. We’re going to go after them on healthcare, on financial services, on the Environmental Protection Agency, across the board [inaudible]. All across the federal government, we’re going to go after it."
List of Attendees
February 2014, Palm Springs, California
This is a list of attendees at the Koch brothers' semiannual conference held in Palm Springs in February of 2014. The list was discovered by a hotel guest who provided it to Mother Jones. The document not only lists prominent attendees of the conference, but also executives of Koch Industries, Americans for Prosperity, and Freedom Partners with whom they were scheduled to meet in one-on-one conversations. According to Mother Jones, "the meeting list illustrates the interwoven nature of the Koch brothers' corporate, political, and philanthropic activities" and "suggests a close collaboration between officials of Koch Industries, AFP, and Freedom Partners, whose staff and board are stacked with numerous current and former Koch Industries employees."
List of Attendees
The February 2014 Koch semiannual conference attendees were:
List of Koch "players"
These are the Koch "players" who were scheduled to meet with the above attendees.
August 2013, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Politico reported that the summer 2013 Koch summit was held just outside Albuquerque "at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort in Bernalillo, N.M., which was completely booked and had its entrances blocked to traffic." Attendees reportedly included Republican House Majority leader Eric Cantor, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, and Arthur Brooks of the American Enterprise Institute.
April 2013, Palm Springs, California
The winter 2013 meeting was held in late April. Politico attributed the schedule change to a need to accommodate an audit of 2012 election spending results. The New York Times reported that attendees included Dr. Ben Carson, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)
June 2012, San Diego, California
According to Politico, the Koch brothers hosted a summit in San Diego, California the weekend of June 23, 2012. However, "[t]he specific location of the San Diego summit could not be determined. And a Koch spokesman declined to comment on details of the summit."
January 2012, Indian Wells, California
The winter 2012 summit was reportedly held at the Renaissance Esmeralda resort in Indian Wells, California. The summit is reported to have raised as much as $150 million in donations from attendees.
June 2011, Vail, Colorado
Politico reported that Texas Governor Rick Perry and Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, both Republicans, attended the June 2011 Koch retreat in Colorado. Also reported to be in attendance were Wisconsin businessman Fred Young, a major donor to Republican Governor Scott Walker, and Andrew P. Napolitano, a Fox News host and former New Jersey Supreme Court judge. A full list of attendees is not available for this meeting.
Donors highlighted at Vail summit
Audio of the 2011 Vail summit leaked to Mother Jones included recordings of speeches in which Charles and David Koch "name some of the "great partners" who have contributed millions of dollars to their causes." As reported by Mother Jones, the following people were acknowledged at the summit for donating at least $1 million to Koch-approved causes:
January 2011, Rancho Mirage, California
According to Politico, the January 2011 summit "raised a reported $49 million in pledged donations" to groups like Americans for Prosperity. A full list of attendees is not available for this meeting. Koch Industries promised to match all attendees' donations at the Rancho Mirage meetings.
June 2010, Aspen, Colorado
The June 2010 meeting of the Koch network was held June 27-28 in Aspen, Colorado. The list of attendees below is based on a memo obtained by ThinkProgress that included a schedule and attendee list for the Aspen summit. Koch Industries promised to match all attendees' donations at the Aspen meetings.
List of Attendees
Note: the geographic locations provided below may contain inaccuracies.
The June 2010 Koch strategy meeting attendees were:
|Jack Anderson and Rose Marie Anderson||Finance||Culver Corporation, Rose-Marie and Jack R. Anderson Foundation - Financial Advisor|
|Neil Anderson and Amy Fisher-Smith||Runs Rose-Marie and Jack R. Anderson Foundation|
|Phil Anschutz and Nancy Anschutz||Investment||Industrialist, Owner, Weekly Standard , Examiner newspapers; Denver, CO|
|Cliff Asness||Investment||AQR Capital Management|
|Nate Bachman and Lynda Bachman||Finance||The Bachman Group, Cincinnati OH - Financial Advisor|
|Whitney Ball||Think Tank||Owner of DonorsTrust, a firm that enables anonymous gifts to front groups|
|Frank Baxter and Kathy Baxter||Banking||Ambassador Frank E. Baxter is Chairman Emeritus of NYC-based Jefferies and Company , Inc., a global investment bank focusing on mid-cap companies. Overseer, Hoover Institution. Los Angeles CA|
|Steve Bechtel and Betty Bechtel||Engineering||Owns the Bechtel Group (Corporation), Largest engineering company in United States|
|E. Bernard Blasingame and Margaret Blasingame||Manufacturing||President and owner of Aqua Dynamics Systems (water purification), Adamsville, TN|
|Alan Boeckmann and Lisa Boeckmann||Oil/Engineering/Construction||CEO Fluor Corporation, Orange County, CA|
|Boysie Bollinger||Shipping/Commerce||Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Bollinger Shipyards in Louisiana and Texas (builds vessels for Coast Guard)|
|Patrick Broe and Paula Broe||Real Estate||Founder and CEO of Denver-based real estate asset management firm, The Broe Group|
|David Brown and Ann Brown||Think Tank, funder||Heritage Foundation, Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation|
|Bob Buford and Martha Buford||Oil||C. Robert Buford has been President and owner of Zenith Drilling Corporation, Wichita, KS|
|Tim Busch||Likely Irvine-based Timothy R. Busch, Pacific Hospitality Group CEO, Catholic University of America trustee, Legatus (Catholic CEOs, Orange County & Napa chapters)|
|Shelby Bush and Nell Bush||Energy||Vice President, Legal and Administration – Hillwood Energy (a Perot company)|
|Charlies Chandler and Marla Chandler||Likely Charles Q. Chandler IV of Wichita KS-based Intrust Bank|
|John Childs||Investment||Chairman and CEO of J.W. Childs and Associates, Boston MA|
|Paul Clifton and Lea Clifton||Runs Robert and Marie Hansen Family Foundation|
|Susie Coelhoe||Media||founder and CEO of Susie Coelho Enterprises Inc.|
|Bill Cooper and Kristin Tollefson||Finance/Banking||CEO of TCF Financial, Wayzata MI|
|Dino Cortopassi and Joan Cortopassi||Stockton businessman|
|Joe Craft||Coal||Joseph W. Craft III is president, chief executive officer and director of Tulsa OK-based Alliance Resource Partners LP|
|Alex Cranberg||Energy||Denver-based Aspect Holdings , LLC – Chairman; University of Texas regent|
|Eric Crown and Isabella King||Finance (venture capital)||Retired CEO, Insight Enterprises, Phoenix AZ|
|Kevin Crutchfield||Coal||Kevin S. Crutchfield serves as Chief Executive Officer of Alpha Coal Sales Co., LLC, Latrobe PA near Pittsburgh|
|Ravenell Curry and Beth Curry||Likely Manhattan Institute trustee Ravenel Curry III.|
|Jim Dannenbaum and Shirley Dannenbaum||Engineering||Mr. Dannenbaum, Chairman of Dannenbaum Engineering Corporation, Houston, TX|
|Rich DeVos and Helen DeVos||Business||Founder and CEO of Amway, near Grand Rapids, Michigan|
|Ned Diefenthal and Nancy Diefenthal||Metairie, LA-based former owner of Southern Recycling|
|Jim Patterson and Dorothy Patterson||Oil||Gulf Stream Petroleum|
|Dan Peters and Kellie Peters||Non-for Profit||Daniel S. Peters is president of the Ruth and Lovett Peters Foundation in Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Tom Petrie||Banking||Co-founder of BofA Merrill Lynch Petrie Divestiture Advisors|
|Dixon Doll and Carol Doll||Technology||Co-Founder and General Partner of Menlo Park CA-based Doll Capital Management(DCM)|
|Karl Eller and Stevie Eller||Advertising||The Eller Company billboards|
|Ron Erickson and Kris Erickson||Retail||Ronald A. Erickson is the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Holiday Companies|
|Melvyn Estrin and Suellen Estrin||Natural Gas||Director of WGL Holdings INC|
|Dick Farmer||Richard T. "Dick" Farmer is chairman of Cintas|
|Peter Farrell||Biomed||Founder of Resmed|
|Jim Ferrell and Zibbie Ferrell||Fuel Oil||Ferrellgas Partners , L.P. engages in the distribution and sale of propane and related equipment primarily in the United States.|
|Dave Fettig||Natural Gas||Tank Craft, Duracraft Fuel energy|
|Bob Fettig||Natural Gas||Tank Craft, Duracraft Fuel energy|
|Steve Fettig||Natural Gas||Tank Craft, Duracraft Fuel energy|
|Jerry Finger and Nanette Finger||Investment management||Managing Partner, Finger Interests LTD, Houston TX|
|Budd Florkiewicz and Lauri Florkiewicz||Manufacturing||Foam Fabricators, Scottsdale, AZ|
|Charlie Fote and Kaye Lynn Fote||Finance||Founder and CEO, Fotec Group LLC, Denver, CO|
|Randy Foutch and Jean Foutch||Oil||Chairman and CEO, Laredo Petroleum , Inc., Tulsa, OK|
|Foster Friess||Investment||Mr. Foster Stephen Friess is the Founder and Chairman of Friess Associates , LLC; was Executive Committee member for the far right Council for National Policy|
|Steve Friess and Polly Friess||Son and daughter-in-law of Foster Friess|
|Jerry Fullinwider and Leah Fullinwider||Energy/Petroleum||Vice Chairman, Hillwood International Energy, a Perot company (Ross Perot Jr. is Chairman) (in Texas, Kurdistan, Moscow, Amman)|
|Richard Gilliam and Leslie Gilliam||Coal||Richard Gilliam has been President of Norton, VA-based Cumberland Resources Corporation since 1993.|
|Susan Gore||Think Tank||Founder, Wyoming Liberty Group; her "multibillion dollar family company W.L. Gore & Associates Inc. developed the high performance fabric Gore-Tex... Her brother, David Gore, co-founded a similar think tank organization in Oregon called the Cascade Policy Institute in 1991"|
|Oliver Jr. and Carolyn Grace Jr.||Med and Telecom||President and chief executive officer of Anderson Group , Inc.,|
|Judson Green and Joyce Green||Energy and Med||Mr. Judson C. Green is the President and Chief Executive Officer of NAVTEQ Corp.|
|Ken Griffin and Anne Griffin||Investment Banking||Founder and CEO of Chicago-based Citadel Investment Group|
|Fred Hamilton and Jane Hamilton||Oil||Mr. Frederic C. Hamilton served as the President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of BHP Petroleum , Hamilton Oil Company and various Hamilton Oil Corporation subsidiaries and affiliates (Denver-based)|
|Bob Hawk and Mary Sue Hawk||Telecommunications, venture capital||President of Hawk Communications (also Venture Partner at Doll Capital Management (DCM); "director of Covad Communications , Centillium Communications, and several private high-technology companies."|
|Dick Haworth and Ethie Haworth||Retail||Head of Holland, MI-based Haworth Furniture , Multi-national corporation, 3rd largest corporate furniture company in US|
|Robin Hayes and Barbara Hayes||Government||Former North Carolina Congressman|
|Dan Heard and Carolyn Heard||Manufacturing||Executive Officer of Louisiana-based John H. Carter Co.,|
|Diane Hendricks||Manufacturing||Husband of the late Ken Hendricks (ABC Supply Co., building materials)|
|Steve Hennessy and Regina Hennessy||Auto Sales||Auto Sales, Atlanta, GA|
|James Higgins and Heather Higgins||Think Tank||James Higgins is a fellow and trustee of the Claremont Institute, and a principal at NY-based investment mgmt firm New Vernon Capital LLC;
Heather Higgins is president and CEO of Independent Women's Voice, the 501(c)(4) sister organization of the Independent Women’s Forum
|Paul Hill||Oil||Paul J. Hill serves as CEO and has been President of Harvard Developments Inc. since 1978; CEO and President of The Hill Companies; Regina, Saskatchewan|
|John Hotchkis and Joan Hotchkis||Education, Finance||Board of Directors for Teach for America UC Berkeley; Ramajal LLC, Hotchkis and Wiley|
|Allan Hubbard and Kathy Hubbard||Chemicals and Manufacturing||Founder and Chief Executive Officer, E & A Industries, Inc., Indianapolis, IN|
|Stan Hubbard and Karen Hubbard||Communications||Executive Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President, St. Paul, MI-based Hubbard Broadcasting , Inc.|
|Ethelmae Humphreys||Think Tank||Cato Institute|
|Manley Johnson and Mary Johnson||Political Consultant||Manuel H. "Manley" Johnson served as the vice chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System in the mid-1980s. Co-chairman and senior partner at DC-based financial market advisory firm Johnson Smick International|
|Gerry O’Shaughnessy and Priscilla O’Shaughnessy||Oil||Gerald Eugene O’Shaughnessy Co-founded Geopark Holding Limited in 2002; Wichita, KS|
|Michael O’Shaughnessy||Technology||Petters Consumer Brands , LLC develops consumer electronics and appliances.|
|Tim O’Shaughnessy||Media||Hungry Machine , Inc., doing business as LivingSocial.com, is a social discovery and cataloging network.|
|Kyle Johnstone and Kirsten Johnstone|
|Mike Kasser and Beth Kasser||Real Estate||President, Holualoa Inc|
|Ken Kendrick and Randy Kendrick||Education/Technology||Chairman, Datatel|
|Phil Kerpen and Joanna Kerpen||Advocacy Group/Think Tank||VP of Policy, Americans for Prosperity|
|Gerry Kingen and Kathryn Kingen||Restauranteur||Red Robin, Happy Guests International, Seattle WA|
|Scott Kirkpatrick||Investor||Owner/Partner of Jackson, WY-based Teton Capital Advisors|
|Charles Koch and Liz Koch||Koch Industries|
|Chase Koch and Annie Koch||Koch Industries|
|David Koch and Julia Koch||Koch Industries|
|Elizabeth Koch||Koch Industries|
|Bob Koch and Cindy Koch||Koch Industries|
|Bob Kohlhepp||Manufacturing/Services||Vice Chairman, Cintas Corp.|
|Dennis Kuester||Banking, Paper||Dennis J. Kuester, retired CEO of Marshall & Ilsley Bank (M&I) in Milwaukee, WI; director of Wausau Paper|
|Andrew Kupersmith||Consultant||MD, Cardiology Consultants|
|Andre Lacy||Investment||Chairman, Lacy Diversified Industries, Indianapolis IN; board member, Patterson Companies(vet,dental,rehab)|
|Ken Langone and Elaine Langone||Retail||Invemed, Home Depot|
|Jay Lapeyre and Sally Lapeyre||Services||Laitram Corp|
|Ken Levy and Frayda Levy||Investment||JLM Investment Mgmt|
|Tom Love||Retail||CEO, President, Love’s Country Stores|
|Bob Luddy||Manufacturing||President, Captive Aire Systems|
|Fred Malek and Marlene Malek||Investment Management||Thayer Capital Partners|
|Pierce Marshall||Administrative Management||MAROPCO|
|Bill Mayer||Health Care||MD, Mayer & Cope Family Practice, NY|
|Glen Meakem and Diane Meakem||Business Solutions||CEO, Freemarkets Inc.|
|Ed Meese||Think Tank||Heritage Foundation|
|Lew Meibergen and Suzy Meibergen||Goods/Services||President, Johnston Enterprises/WG Johnston Grain Co|
|Don Meyers and Deede Meyers||Attorney||Self Employed|
|Jerry Milbank and Caroline Milbank||Investment Management||CEO/Principal, Milbank Winthrop & Co.|
|Jack Miller and Goldie Miller||Retail||CEO/President, Quill Corp.|
|Mark Mix||Advocacy Group||President, National Right to Work Committee|
|Joe Moeller and Mary Moeller||Koch Industries||Vice Chairman|
|David Murfin||Energy||President, Murfin Drilling Co.|
|Walter Negley and Suzette Negley||Director of the Brown Foundation (from George Brown of Houston's Brown & Root construction)|
|Kurt Pfotenhauer and Nancy Pfotenhauer||Media||President of MediaSpeak Strategies/former political commentator on Fox News , CNN and MSNBC and former Senior Policy Advisor and National Spokesperson with the 2008 John McCain presidential campaign|
|Art Pope and Kathy Pope||Goods/Services||Senior Exec, Variety Wholesaler; board member, Americans for Prosperity and John Locke Foundation; Pope Foundation|
|Corbin Robertson and Barbara Robertson||Energy||Coal baron; President, Quintana Minerals Corp and Natural Resource Partners; director of global warming inaction front groups (& media campaign) CO2 Is Green and Plants Need CO2|
|Richard Roder and Karin Hsu||Construction Management||CEO, Cmt-Construction Management, Addison TX|
|Gary Rogers and Kathleen Rogers||Goods||Former CEO, Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream|
|Durk Rorie||Manufacturing||United Air Specialists air purification systems, Cincinnati|
|Chris Rufer||Goods/Manufacturing||Morningstar Company (harvests, processes, cans, and ships most California tomatoes.)|
|Peter Schiff and Martha O’Brien||Investor||Schiff : Euro Pacific Capital Inc. (son of Irwin Schiff of the United States tax protester movement)|
|Steve Schwarzman and Christine Schwarzman||Financial Services||CEO/founder, Blackstone Group|
|Rick Sharp and Sherry Sharp||Retail||Former CEO, Circuit City|
|Mike Simmonds and Lin Simmonds||Services||CEO, Simmonds Restaurant Mgm|
|Peter Smith||Services||CEO, Services Group of America, Scottsdale AZ|
|Dick Strong||Investment Services||Strong/Corneliuson Capital Mgmt|
|Ray Thompson and Ladeline Thompson||Manufacturing||President/CEO, Semitool; Raymon F. Thompson owns the airplane that Tea Party Patriots Jenny-Beth Martin and Mark Meckler flew in to rallies, in 2010|
|Lynn Tilton||Investment Management||CEO, Patriarch Partners LLC|
|Dave True and Melanie True||Oil||Partner, True Oil, LLC|
||VP and General Counsel for Services Group of America, Scottsdale, AZ|
|Jim Ehr and Gayla Von Ehr||Research/Development||CEO, Zyvex Corp|
|Rick Waller and Debra Waller||Manufacturing||Rick Waller owns Rollmeister Inc in Neenah, WI, serving the paper industry;
Debra Waller is CEO of Wisconsin-based underwear maker Jockey International, and spent five years on the Board of Directors for Marshall & Ilsley Bank in Milwaukee, WI
|Bill Walton and Sarah Walton||Real Estate||Allied Capital Corp|
|Lew Ward and Myra Ward||Oil||Ward Petroleum Corporation owns and operates wells. It engages in oil and gas exploration and production. The company was founded in 1963 and is based in Enid, Oklahoma.|
|Dick Weekley||Real Estate||Weekley Properties; chairman, Texans for Lawsuit Reform|
|Fred Wehba and Susie Wehba||Real Estate||LA-based private real estate investment firm BentleyForbes|
|Nestor Weigand and Darcy Buehler||Real Estate||JP Weigand & Sons Real Estate, Wichita, KS|
|Dick Weiss and Mary Beth Weiss||Investment?||Wells Fargo and Hawthorne Ranch, near Chicago IL|
|Howard Wilkins and Rhonda Wilkins||(??) Insurance||C. Howard Wilkins Jr. founded Maverick Development Corporation (restaurant management), Wichita KS ; earlier, Pizza Hut, and ambassador to Netherlands
|Don Wills and Sue Wills||Oil, Banking||Partner in Wills Oil Company and Adams-Wills Oil Company, Texas|
|Larry Winnerman and Lorraine Winnerman||Real Estate||Win Win Enterprises, Aspen CO|
|Joe Woodford||Manufacturing||Woodford Manufacturing, Woodford Foundation, Colorado Springs|
|Earl Wright||Finance||AMG National Trust, Alliance for Choice and Education (ACE) trustee, Colorado|
|Karen Wright and Tom Rastin||Energy/Manufacturing||Tom Rastin, vice president of marketing and engineering, Ariel Corp (natural gas compressors, Ohio) – Karen Wright, Ariel CEO|
|Cliff Yonce and Susan Yonce||Investment Banking||Goldman Sachs|
|Fred Young and Sandra Young||Manufacturing||Fred Young Jr., Former Owner, Young Radiator Company of Racine, WI ; Cato Institute board member, trustee of the Reason Foundation
List of Presenters
The follow participants were listed as presenters in the Aspen program.
|Michael Barone||Media||Fox News|
|Glenn Beck||Media||Fox News|
|Arthur Brooks||Think Tank||President, American Enterprise Institute|
|Tim Carney||Media||Political Columnist, Washington Examiner|
|David Chavern||Lobbyist||Executive Vice President and COO at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce|
|Jeff Crank||Americans For Prosperity / Radio Pundit||AFP State Director|
|Karl Crow||Policy Analyst||Capital Research Center, Washington DC; Themis|
|Veronique de Rugy||Think Tank||Senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center|
|Annie Dickerson||Real Estate/Finance||CB Richard Ellis analyst|
|Richard Fink||Koch Industries||Director of Georgia-Pacific , EVP of Koch Industries|
|Gretchen Hamel||Communications||Head of 501(c)(4) Public Notice, founder of PR firm Endeavour Global Strategies; former press assistant for J.C. Watts of Oklahoma|
|Phil Kerpen||Advocacy Group/Think Tank||VP of Policy, Americans for Prosperity|
|Jerry Milbank||Investment Management||CEO/Principal, Milbank Winthrop & Co.|
|Mark Mix||Advocacy Group||President, National Right to Work Committee|
|Steve Moore||Media||member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board|
|Larry Nichols and Polly Nichols||Energy||Executive Chairman, Devon Energy Corp|
|Sean Noble||Political consulting||Americans for Prosperity
Noble Associates (specializing in Campaign Management, Crisis Communications, Developing the Message, Grassroots Development & Deployment...), Phoenix AZ; Koch-supported Americans for Limited Government
|Tim Oelke and Teresa Oelke||Advocacy Group/Construction||Teresa – State Director of Americans for Prosperity , Tim – Crossland Construction Corp|
|Eric O’Keefe||Front Group||Sam Adams Alliance|
|Nancy Pfotenhauer||Media||President of MediaSpeak Strategies/former political commentator on Fox News , CNN and MSNBC and former Senior Policy Advisor and National Spokesperson with the 2008 John McCain presidential campaign|
|Tim Phillips||Advocacy Group||president, Americans for Prosperity|
|Ramesh Ponnuru||Media||Columnist, National Review (magazine)|
|Russ Roberts||Economist||George Mason University economics professor|
|Peter Schiff||Investor||Schiff : Euro Pacific Capital Inc. (son of Irwin Schiff of the United States tax protester movement)|
|Michael Sullivan||Investment Services (???)||CR Intrinsic Investors or not; since a
"Michael Quinn Sullivan is president and CEO of Empower Texans, and its premier project, Texans for Fiscal Responsibility."
|Peter Wallison||Think Tank||Fellow, American Enterprise Institute|
|Bill Walton||Real Estate||Allied Capital Corp|
Earlier Summits - Politicians, Supreme Court Justices, and Other Attendees
Charles Koch's invitation letter to the January 2011 summit also noted that previous guests have included politicians and Supreme Court justices. The politicians included Governors Haley Barbour and Bobby Jindal; Senators Jim DeMint and Tom Coburn and Representatives Mike Pence, Tom Price and Paul Ryan.
Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas have attended these events. According to Salon, "Thomas claimed he just made "a brief drop-by" at the Koch brothers' January 2008 Palm Springs political retreat to give a talk; in fact he was reimbursed for four days of “transportation, meals and accommodations” by the Federalist Society. The attendance of Thomas and Scalia has sparked debate over judicial ethics and the 2010 Citizens United decision. Common Cause filed a petition with the Justice Department in January 2011 alleging a conflict of interest for these Justices, as David and Charles Koch operate foundations that contribute to political groups, which might benefit from relaxed campaign finance rules. Common Cause has also noted that the Cato Institute, which Charles Koch founded, filed an amicus brief in Citizens United opposing campaign finance. The Center for Competitive Politics also filed a brief in the case; the Center is headed by Bradley Smith, who is affiliated with the Institute for Humane Studies where Charles Koch is Chair of the board and funder.
Ken Yontz, former chair and CEO of Sybron International, wrote that he has attended Koch seminars since 2005 in a 2015 op-ed in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
Articles and Resources
Related SourceWatch Articles
- Koch Brothers
- Koch Family Foundations
- Americans for Prosperity
- Freedom Partners
- Cato Institute
- Heritage Foundation
- Koch Universities
- Koch Network
- Knowledge and Progress Fund
- American Encore
- Donors Capital
- 60 Plus
- Generation Opportunity
- Koch Event 2010-06 Attendees
- Corbin Robertson
- Plants Need CO2
- Natural Resource Partners
- Charles Koch (2010-09-24). Koch letter of invitation to Jan. 2011 meeting in Rancho Mirage, CA. Koch Industries (posted on ThinkProgress). Retrieved on 2010-10-02.
- Lee Fang (2010-10-20). MEMO: Health Insurance, Banking, Oil Industries Met With Koch, Chamber, Glenn Beck To Plot 2010 Election. ThinkProgress. Retrieved on 2010-10-31.
- Stephen Moore, "Private Enterprise," Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2006.
- Lee Fang, "MEMO: Health Insurance, Banking, Oil Industries Met With Koch, Chamber, Glenn Beck To Plot 2010 Election," ThinkProgress, October 20, 2010. Accessed June 30, 2010.
- Lee Fang, "EXCLUSIVE: Koch Brothers Convene Ultra-Secret Billionaires Meeting To Raise Funds, Plot Strategy," Republic Report, February 3, 2012. Accessed June 30, 2014.
- SALLY HO Muted political tone at largest Koch donor network meeting Associated Press January 26, 2019
- Michelle Ye Hee LEE [At Koch gathering, a turn away from partisan politics https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/at-koch-gathering-a-turn-away-from-partisan-politics/2019/01/28/5fcf3dac-22a2-11e9-90cd-dedb0c92dc17_story.html?utm_term=.7278b63e6fc1] Washington Post Jan 28, 2019
- Tina Sfondeles, Rauner attending Koch brothers’ summit in California, Chicago Sun-Times, January 29, 2017.
- Matea Gold and James Hohmann, Scott Walker tells Republicans: ‘It’s put up or shut up time’, Washington Post, January 30, 2017.
- Steve Peoples, Billionaire's aide says no plans to help Trump, Associated Press, July 30, 2016.
- AP, Charles Koch: "I can't support either candidate", CBS News, July 31, 2016.
- Matea Gold, Koch network seeks to defuse donor frustration over Trump rebuff, Washington Post, August 1, 2016.
- Nicholas Confessore, "Koch Brothers’ Budget of $889 Million for 2016 Is on Par With Both Parties’ Spending," New York Times, January 26, 2015. Accessed January 27, 2015.
- Peter Stone, "Koch network donors have already shelled out $20m to GOP Super Pacs," The Guardian, October 6, 2015.
- Kenneth P. Vogel, "Koch love fest in California," Politico, August 3, 2015.
- Kenneth P. Vogel, "Charles Koch: We're warriors 'seeking to right injustices'," Politico, August 1, 2015.
- Julie Bykowicz, "Scott Walker compares Koch donor conference to prior tea party rallies," Associated Press/Wisconsin State Journal, August 2, 2015.
- Lauren Windsor, "Mainstream Media Won't Name Koch Donors, But We Will," The Undercurrent/Huffington Post, August 5, 2015.
- Michael Calderone, "Journalists Attend Private Koch Brothers Gathering, But Agree Not To Name Donors," Huffington Post, August 2, 2015.
- Kenneth P. Vogel, "4 GOP hopefuls expected to attend Koch event," Politico, January 21, 2015. Accessed January 21, 2015.
- Matthew DeFour and Scott Bauer, "Gov. Scott Walker attending private Koch brothers event," LaCrosse Tribune, January 21, 2015. Accessed January 21, 2015.
- Joanne Faryon and Brad Racino, "Secret Summit: 24 Hours With The Koch Brothers," KPBS, June 16, 2014. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- Kenneth P. Vogel and Darren Goode, "Kochs launch new super PAC for midterm fight," Politico, June 16, 2014. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- Peter Stone, "Koch Brothers Unveil New Strategy at Big Donor Retreat," The Daily Beast, June 13, 2014. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- Leo Castaneda, Joanne Faryon, and Brad Racino, "Groups represented at the secret Koch brothers summit," inewsource, June 16, 2014. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- Sam Stein, "At Koch Retreat, Top GOP Senate Candidates Credited Koch Network For Their Rise," Huffington Post, August 26, 2014. Accessed September 2, 2014.
- Lauren Windsor, "Caught on Tape: What Mitch McConnell Complained About to a Roomful of Billionaires (Exclusive)," The Nation, August 26, 2014. Accessed September 2, 2014.
- Lauren Windsor, "Exclusive: Inside the Koch Brothers’ Secret Billionaire Summit," The Nation, June 17, 2014. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- The Nation, "The Koch Brothers' Secret Billionaire Summit," agenda document, accessed June 18, 2014.
- Andy Kroll and Daniel Schulman, "The Koch Brothers Left a Confidential Document at Their Donor Conference," Mother Jones, February 5, 2014.
- Kenneth P. Vogel and Jake Sherman, Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan headlined Koch summit," Politico, August 7, 2013. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Kenneth P. Vogel, "Koch World Reboots," Politico, February 20, 2013. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Nicholas Confessore, "Koch Brothers Plan More Political Involvement for Their Conservative Network," New York Times, April 30, 2014. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Kenneth P. Vogel and Tarini Parti, "Inside Koch world," June 15, 2012. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Amanda Terkel and Ryan Grim, "Koch Brothers, Allies Pledge $100 Million At Private Meeting To Beat Obama," The Huffington Post, Feburary 3, 2012. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Kenneth P. Vogel, "Bob McDonnell, Rick Perry at latest Koch brothers summit," Politico, June 26, 2011. Accessed June 9, 2014.
- Brendan Fischer, "Wealthy Wisconsin Heir Speaks at Koch Brothers Meeting," PR Watch, September 8, 2011. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Brad Friedman, "Exclusive Audio: Inside the Koch Brothers' Secret Seminar," Mother Jones, September 6, 2011. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Gavin Aronsen, "Exclusive: The Koch Brothers' Million-Dollar Donor Club," Mother Jones, September 6, 2011. Accessed June 11, 2014.
- Lee Fang, "Exclusive: Koch Industries Promises To Double Money Raised This Weekend, 40% Of Donors Will Be New," ThinkProgress, January 27, 2011. Accessed June 17, 2014.
- ClimateProgress, "MEMO: Health insurance, banking, oil industries met with Koch, Chamber, Glenn Beck to plot 2010 election," ThinkProgress, October 20, 2010. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Tom Morton (2010-06-20). Beware government growth, liberty group says. Casper Star-Tribune. Retrieved on 2011-03-30.
- Stephanie Mencimer, "A Secret Tea Party Donor Revealed," Mother Jones, October 28, 2010. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Lisa Graves (2011-03-29). Is Your Underwear Undermining Your Values? What Is Jockey's CEO Doing at a Tea Partiers' Convention and with David Koch?. Center for Media and Democracy. Retrieved on 2011-03-30. “underwear executive Debra Waller -- the Chief Executive Officer of Jockey International, Inc. -- revealed a lot about her opinions at the most recent annual convention of "Americans for Prosperity" (AFP) for its chapter in Wisconsin.”
- Kenneth P. Vogel and Ben Smith (2011-02-11). Kochs brothers' plan for 2012: raise $88 million. Politico.com. Retrieved on 2011-03-31. “Sean Noble, another top Koch operative, has been hired by Americans for Limited Government, another group that sources say received donations from Koch conference attendees for its efforts to attack Democrats during the 2010 midterm campaign.”
- Kate Zernike, "Secretive Republican Donors Are Planning Ahead," New York Times, October 19, 2012. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Joan Walsh, "Robber baron justice," Salon, February 15, 2011. Accessed June 10, 2014.
- Sam Stein, Justices Scalia And Thomas's Attendance At Koch Event Sparks Judicial Ethics Debate, HuffPo, October 20, 2010.
- Eric Lichtblau, Advocacy Group Says Justices May Have Conflict in Campaign Finance Cases, NY Times, Jan 19, 2011, accesed July 10, 2011.
- Derek Cressman, Did James Bopp Conspire With Koch Industries, Commonblog.com, Feb 23, 2011, accessed July 11, 2011.
- Brad Smith bio, Institute for Humane Studies, accessed July 10, 2011.
- Ken Yontz, "The Kochs are fighting for your future," Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, May 1, 2015.