Young Voices

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Young Voices is a "nonprofit public relations shop" which says on its website that "aims to promote the perspectives of libertarian writers under 30 in the media." Founded in 2013 as a project of Students for Liberty, became an independent nonprofit based in Washington D.C. in May 2016.[1] Young Voices provides "a range of services for students and young professionals." Those include formal training and "one-on-one mentorship" Young Voices says that it helps "pupils learn the nuts and bolts of advocacy in the internet age."[2] The group caters towards people under the age of 30, frequently those in college.

Articles from Young Voices are regularly published on conservative news sources, such as Town Hall which characterizes its content as "news and opinion from millennial libertarians around the world."[3] which touts it as rewards students with "pro-liberty perspective[s]," which they argue are "underrepresented" on college campuses, "monetary scholarships of up to $1,000" for having their articles published in school newspapers.[4]

Young Voices is an associate member of the State Policy Network (SPN), a web of state pressure groups that drive a right-wing agenda in statehouses nationwide.

News and Controversies

Involvment in "The Right-Wing Millenial Machine"

The Huffington Post mentioned Young Voices in an article about "The Right-Wing Millenial Machine"'s engagement strategy with young people -- paying them. Stephen Kent, a spokesperson for Young Voices Advocates said, “The right is focused on the long game of investing in people when they find them on a college campus ... The left-leaning groups are working on whatever election is facing them in the next 12 months. Then all those connections die.”[5]

Adult Film Actress Association

Miriam Weeks who, according to Business Insider, "found herself at the center of an international controversy last year when she became infamous as the "Duke porn star" in 2014." Weeks in the following year began "remaking herself as a libertarian activist" by joining Students for Liberty[6] and subsequently becoming a Young Voices Advocate.[7].

Such led to unrest by some of the other Young Voices advocates, Pamela j. Hobart a former advocate wrote that they feared professional repercussions due to the organization's association with Weeks. [8]

Ties to State Policy Network

Young Voices is a "proud" [9] associate member of the State Policy Network. [10]

A plurality of the Young Voices board of directors[11] have work experience with other SPN groups including Manhattan Institute, Students for Liberty and the Foundation of Government Accountability

Learn more about how the State Policy Network aids ALEC and spins disinformation in the states.

  1. Young Voices, Casey Given organizational website, accessed June 2018
  2. Young Voices What We Do Young Voices, Accessed June 2018
  3. Town Hall Young Voices Town Hall, accessed June 25, 2018
  4. Young Voices Campus Pundit Program accessed June 2018
  5. Michael Hobbes The Right-Wing Millennial Machine Huffington Post, May 28, 2018
  6. Hunter Walker Porn Star Belle Knox Is Remaking Herself As A Libertarian Activist accessed Jan 28, 2015
  7. Young Voices Miriam Weeks Internet Archive/Wayback Machine, accessed June 2018.
  8. Pamela Hobart Young Voices Resignation Blog, August 7, 2016
  9. Young Voices Donate organizational website, accessed June 2018
  10. SPN directory organization website, accessed June 2018.
  11. YV 2017 board Organizational document, accessed June of 2018

Ties to The Bradley Foundation

Students for Liberty (SFL), Young Voices' parent organization, is funded in part by the Bradley Foundation. Students for Liberty for Liberty's "Young Voices Program that has presented SFL member's views 300 times in electronic print and social media" was cited by Bradley staff as justification for a $10,000 grant to SFL in 2015.[1]

Bradley Files

In 2017, the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), publishers of SourceWatch, launched a series of articles on the Milwaukee-based Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, exposing the inner-workings of one of America's largest right-wing foundations. 56,000 previously undisclosed documents laid bare the Bradley Foundation's highly politicized agenda. CMD detailed Bradley's efforts to map and measure right wing infrastructure nationwide, including by dismantling and defunding unions to impact state elections; bankrolling discredited spin doctor Richard Berman and his many front groups; and more.

Find the series here at ExposedbyCMD.org.

Ties to the Koch Foundation

Young Voices is a "Media and Journalism Fellowship Partner" of the Charles Koch Institute. [2]

Young Voices Executive Director Casey Givens previously was a Policy Analyst for The Koch's Americans for Prosperity Foundation. He "received [a] certificate in Market-Based Management from the Charles Koch Institute upon completing the Koch Associate Program in 2013."[3]

Koch Wiki

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.

Funding

Young Voices's does not make its funders public. The Bradley Foundation expressly contributed to Students for Liberty for the purpose of supporting YV in 2015.

Core Financials

2016[4]

  • Total Revenue: $216,023
  • Total Expenses: $142,291
  • Net Assets: $73,732

Personnel

As of July 2018:

Staff

  • Casey Given, executive director
  • Liz Wolfe, managing editor
  • Stephen Kent, public relations manager

In addition, there are 40-some student advocates listed on their webpage.

Featured Alumnus

Young Voices spotlights the following alumni on its webpage

  • John Dale Grover
  • Nolan Gray
  • Kaylee Moyer
  • Tyler Koteskey
  • Jason Russell

Board of Directors

  • Frederik Roeder
  • Jared Meyer
  • Casey Given
  • Scott Barbee

Contact Information

Young Voices
1342 Florida Ave NW
Washington, DC 20009
Telephone: 347-708-6836
Website: http://youngvoicesadvocates.com//
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/YoungVoicesAdvocates
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/YoungVoicesAdvocates
Twitter: https://twitter.com/yvadv

References

  1. Grant Proposal [On Record with CMD] Bradley Files, dated Feb, 24, 2015
  2. Charles Koch Institute,Partner Organizations," organization website, accessed June, 2018.
  3. Casey Givens Linkedin page accessed June 25, 2018
  4. Young Voices, IRS Form 990, organizational tax filing, Feb 2, 2018.