PragerU

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PragerU, also known as "Prager University", is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that specializes in video production. On their website, they say, "We promote American values through the creative use of educational videos that reach millions of people online. Serving all ages, our content offers a free alternative to the dominant left-wing ideology in culture, media, and education. Whether you're searching for a deeper understanding, a new perspective, or a way to get involved, PragerU helps people think and live better."[1] It is not an accredited university, but a media platform which regularly produces a variety of videos including short informational videos, documentaries, and children's shows that offer "fun, educational content aligned with your values".[2] Some of PragerU's most popular videos include titles "Was the Civil War About Slavery?", "Why I Left the Left", "How Socialism Ruined My Country", and "The Inconvenient Truth About the Democratic Party".

PragerU also hosts PragerFORCE, a network for conservative college and high school students. Its tagline reads, "Are you a free-thinker? Are you tired of the woke mob infiltrating our schools and workplaces? Join our community of free-thinking high school, college students, and young professionals! Together, we use digital media to change minds, promote American values, and build meaningful connections with thousands of other patriots around the world!"[3]

PragerU avoids the news cycle and discussing timely issues, such as the Trump presidency, giving an appearance of measured neutrality, the New York Times reports. "They take old arguments about the threat of immigration but treat them as common sense and almost normative, wrapping them up as a university with a neutral dispassionate voice," doctoral program director of the University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communication told the Times.[4]

PragerU's founder, Dennis Prager, is motivated by a desire to spread Judeo-Christian beliefs. The Times reported that he considers same-sex marriage an attempt to "destroy the foundation of our Judeo-Christian civilization", and the title of one of his videos on "Same-Sex Issues" is called "Love Is Not Enough". PragerU executives believe they are saving Generation Z from the leftist indoctrination that millennials endured.[4] Prager told BuzzFeed News, "I regard Prager University as a university every bit as much as a traditional university. Unless one needs to study any of the natural sciences, or math, or a foreign language, one would learn more about life and gain far more wisdom attending PragerU than attending almost any Western university. Most people who watch all of PragerU's 300-plus videos a few times and do all the suggested readings will probably do better in life than if they had attended an accredited university."[5]

News and Controversies

Prager University v. Google LLC

In February 2020, the Ninth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals dismissed PragerU's claim that Google, which owns YouTube, violated their First Amendment Rights by censoring certain PragerU videos when a user has "Restricted Mode" active on YouTube. PragerU argued that, while a private company, YouTube functions as a public forum and is thus held to the same standards as a public forum. They also argued that YouTube calling itself committed to free speech was false advertising, in violation of the Lanham Act. The Ninth Circuit dismissed both claims.[6] Their channel description on YouTube now reads, "PragerU is experiencing severe censorship on Big Tech platforms. Go to PragerU.com to watch our videos free from censorship!"[7]

$1 Million in PragerU Payments Go to Founder and Son

In 2018, Dennis Prager was listed on the PragerU IRS filings as the organization's president, which meant he had to disclose a personal interest in large payments made to consulting firms, one owned by himself and one by his son, David Prager. Prior to 2018, PragerU had made payments to both firms for three years without disclosing the personal connection.[8] On PragerU's 2020 IRS 990 filing, Prager is listed not as the president but as the VP of development.[9]

Began Producing Content for Children in Grade School and Kindergarten

Between 2020 and 2021, PragerU began fundraising for a program called "PragerU Resources for Educators and Parents (PREP)", which produces videos targeted for kindergarteners and children in grade school. Videos as of April 2021 include a "storytime" that "celebrates American values of freedom, individuality, hard work, equality under God and more" and a history lesson-craft project hybrid centered on a "Military Appreciation Wreath", which "turns out to be a primer on the U.S. military and its various branches."[10]

Trump Social Media Summit

In July 2019 U.S. President Donald Trump hosted a "social media summit", which excluded tech giants Facebook, Google, and Twitter, but included right-wing media outlets and organizations including PragerU, Turning Point USA, and the Heritage Foundation.[11]

Affiliation with former Turning Point USA Employee Candace Owens

PragerU hosts a show by the former Communications Director of Turning Point USA Candace Owens. Owens was let go from the organization after campus chapters of TPUSA called for her resignation due to her statement that Hitler's leadership was okay until he took it outside Germany.[12]

Intra-Conservative Dispute Over Immigration

A Cato Institute piece criticized a PragerU video entitled "A Nation of Immigrants" presented by Michelle Malkin, author of In Defense of Internment: The Case for 'Racial Profiling' in World War II and the War on Terror, claiming, "The video is poorly framed, rife with errors and half-truths, leaves out a lot of relevant information, and comes to an anti-legal immigration conclusion that is unsupported by the evidence presented in the rest of the video."[13] Despite this disagreement, both Prager University and the Cato Institute have financial ties to the State Policy Network as well as the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation.

Closeness to White Nationalists

A Data & Society study raised an issue with PragerU's broad range of conservative collaborations, "Prager’s amplification strategy also regularly promotes the ideas of white nationalist thinkers, such as Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson, and Stefan Molyneux... creating a dense network of extremist thinkers allows for [viewers] who identify as mainline conservatives to gain easy access to white supremacist logic."[14]

Distrust of Mainstream Media

This study also noted the prevalence of PragerU videos which aim to create distrust for mainstream media sources, "Because these videos also stress the connection between mainstream media and liberal logic, the overall take away is that liberal ideology is formed by disputable claims and emotional appeals instead of fact-based evidence."[14]

The study noted the effects of PragerU videos on its viewership, "By the end of the study the positions of PragerU and those I interviewed became indistinguishable. Time and again, I was told that mainstream media are 'fake' because coverage is based on feelings instead of fact-based evidence."[14]

Accusations of Censorship

In October 2017 PragerU filed a lawsuit against Google and Youtube. Dennis Prager claimed, “They are engaging in an arbitrary and capricious use of their ‘restricted mode’ and ‘demonetization’ to restrict non-left political thought. Their censorship is profoundly damaging because Google and YouTube own and control the largest forum for public participation in video-based speech in not only California, but the United States, and the world.” [15]

In August 2018 Facebook censored PragerU posts, prompting a statement from the nonprofit: "Does anyone really think that Facebook censoring our videos was simply a 'mistake?' It was deliberate censorship of conservative ideas."[16]

After Twitter blocked PragerU from running ads on its platform in June 2019, PragerU tweeted "If that's not censorship of conservative speech, what is?"[17] The libertarian publication Reason Magazine published an online rebuttal to this claim, pointing out, "Except that's not actually censorship, as Twitter's advertising policies have nothing to do with free speech. The First Amendment protects PragerU from government action, not from the decisions of a private company."[17]

Video Content

American Pride

Explaining The Mission of PragerU, Prager says "Our kids aren't learning that American is a land of opportunity, a defender of freedom around the world, a source of pride. They're learning that America is a land of inequality and racism, an imperialist power, something to be ashamed of."[18] He wants PragerU to provide students with a counter-narrative to this "politically correct orthodoxy".[18]

Black Conservatism

Derryck Green of Project 21, an organization promoting "the views of African-Americans whose entrepreneurial spirit, dedication to family and commitment to individual responsibility have not traditionally been echoed by the nation’s civil rights establishment" explains conservative opposition to affirmative action in a video entitled Who Are the Racists?. He explains that "Conservatives believe blacks and other minorities are every bit as capable as whites of succeeding as engineers, surgeons, policemen, businessmen, lawyers, and college students. And therefore, lowering standards for blacks is unnecessary as well as insulting."[19]

Antonia Okafor, campus-carry advocate,[20] presents a video entitled "Black, Millennial, Female and… Conservative", where she says the Republican party "...views me as an empowered individual, able to shape my own destiny, not as a member of a victim group."[21]

Candice Owens, who worked as the communication director for Turning Point USA, a group financed by Koch donor[22] Foster Friess, presents a video entitled "Playing the Black Card". In early 2019, Owens left Turning Point USA for her own PragerU show.[23] Owens also founded Blexit, which she describes as "...the black exit from the Democratic Party. It’s the black exit from permanent victimhood, the black exit from the false idea that we are somehow separate from the rest of America.”[24]

Taleeb Starkes, author of "Black Lives Matter: Why Lies Matter to the Race Grievance Industry", lays out what he believes to be The Top 5 Issues Facing Black Americans, including a mentality of victimhood, lack of diversity of thought and diversity of political affiliation, high crime rates, high single motherhood rates and unquestioning allegiance to Progressive/liberal policies.[25]

Diversity of Presenters

There are over 170 different "presenters" who voice PragerU videos.[26]

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, ex-Muslim and vocal critic of Islamic doctrine,[27][28] presents two videos, entitled "Is Islam a Religion of Peace?" and "Why Don't Feminists Fight for Muslim Women?"

Another high-profile PragerU contributor is resident American Enterprise Institute scholar,[29] author, and self-described "Factual Feminist" Christina Hoff Sommers, who presents videos focused on gender such as "The War on Boys" and "There Is No Gender Wage Gap".

Gloria Alvarez, a Guatemalan "political scientist, radio broadcaster, and project director at the National Civic Movement of Guatemala",[30] encourages Hispanic immigrants to advocate for smaller government in a video entitled "Immigrants! Don't Vote for What You Fled".

Mother Jones comments on the advantage of having such a wide variety of presenters, saying "PragerU also finds strength in diversity, racial and otherwise. (Robert Reich)’s videos are typically smarter, the production values every bit as high, but if you can’t relate to a septuagenarian white guy, then they probably aren’t for you."[31]

Environmental Issues and Climate Change Denial

Alex Epstein is a former adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute[32] and the Ayn Rand Institute[33] He has written two books: The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels and Fossil Fuels Improve the Planet.[34] His former website advertised his communications consulting services, saying "As an executive or communications professional in the energy industry, your industry and your company face formidable attacks by so-called environmentalists that can put a halt to your projects and sabotage your bottom line."[35] More info on Epstein can be found here.

In 2011, Epstein founded the Center for Industrial Progress,[36] a for-profit think tank that "makes the moral case for fossil fuels" and help teach "millions of employees in the fossil fuel industry to understand the value of what they do and how to communicate it."[36] He engages in keynotes speeches and workshops designed to improve companies' and organizations' "clarity, persuasion, and inspiration".[37]

In one video called "Fossil Fuels: The Greenest Energy", Epstein makes the claim that fossil fuel is an energy source that can "solve our biggest environmental challenges, purify our water and air, make our cities and homes more sanitary, and keep up safe from potential catastrophic climate change". He shows a graph of the correlation between fossil fuel use and access to clean water, saying "Am I saying the more we have used fossil fuel, the cleaner our water has become? Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying."[38]

In another video, Epstein claims the "97% of scientists" figure "says nothing about the meaning or magnitude" of Climate Change. He also argues the effects of increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere caused by fossil fuels must be weighed against the enormous benefits of these fuels.[39]

Religious Issues

Many PragerU videos stress "Judeo-Christian" values. One playlist entitled "Religion/Philosophy" contains many videos about God and moral questions, including "If There is no God, Murder Isn't Wrong", "The Benefits of Belief", and "The Best Book to Read To Your Kids" (it's the Bible).

In response to the July 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges case which legalized same-sex marriage in every U.S. state, Dennis Prager published a piece entitled "The Formal End to Judeo-Christian America", where he claimed, "Beginning with the Supreme Court’s ban on nondenominational school prayer in 1962, the same-sex marriage decision has essentially completed the state’s secularization of American society." In the same piece, Prager drew a contrast between the heart (secular values) and the mind (Judeo-Christian values) saying "It is the heart, not the mind, that has concluded that gender has no significance... It is the heart, not the mind, that has concluded that all a child needs is love, not a father and mother."[40]

American Identity

In one video, Prager says that his ideal high school would "no longer honor race or ethnicity" and that he would tell students, "if you wish to affirm here an ethnic or racial identity, or a national identity other than American– you will have to attend another school" and "This school will have failed if any of you graduate without considering him or herself inordinately lucky– lucky to be alive, and lucky to be an American."[41]

In another video, Niall Ferguson, husband of fellow PragerU contributor Ayaan Hirsi Ali, shares his experience becoming an American citizen, positively contrasting Trump's recorded welcoming message "You now share the obligation to teach our values to others, to help newcomers assimilate to our way of life" with Obama's message "Together, we are a nation united not by any one culture, or ethnicity, or ideology..."[42]

Strong Pro-Israel Stance

Dennis Prager hopes to use PragerU to garner more support for Israel, stating, “Due to the influence of leftism in high schools and universities, vast numbers of young Jews are alienated from Israel and believe that Israel’s enemies are the moral party in the Arab-Israeli, Muslim-Israeli, and Palestinian-Israeli conflicts.”[43]

PragerU CEO Marissa Streit, an American with Israeli heritage who served in a military intelligence unit of the Israel Defense Forces,[44] echoed Prager's concerns, "As the left takes over the media and Hollywood, it becomes more anti-Israel and you see it even more at the university... Back in the day, the fringe made the effort to be anti-Israel and now it’s the trend to be anti-Israel...If you are pro-American, you are pro-Israel. The more people you bring to American values, the more people you bring to Israel."[43]

PragerU presenter Alan Dershowitz has defended Israel military conduct on multiple occasions, including after the 2006 Lebanon War,[45] which left 4,400 injured and close to 2,000 dead in Lebanon.[46] According to UNICEF, "Most of these casualties are civilians; an estimated 30 per cent are children."[47] For comparison 164 Israelis, largely IDF members, were killed and around 1500 injured.[46] During this conflict, Dershowitz noted the high support of Hezbollah among Lebanese citizens, claiming "It is virtually impossible to distinguish the Hezbollah dead from the truly civilian dead"[48] and shifted blame away from the IDF, saying "The deaths of these “civilians” are the responsibility of Hezbollah and the Lebanese government, which has done very little to protect its civilians."[48]

PragerU contains many pro-Israel videos, including among others "Israel: the World's Most Moral Army", "Israel's Legal Founding", "Why Don't You Support Israel?", "BDS: the Attempt to Strangle Israel".

Ties to the Bradley Foundation

Between 2010 and 2016 Prager University received $465,000 from the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation.

Bradley detailed the most recent grants in internal documents examined by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD). Below is a description of the grants prepared by CMD. The quoted text was written by Bradley staff.

2016: "$175,000 to support general operations. According to the grant proposal record, "At its heart, the purpose of Prager University Foundation is to articulate the meaning of conservatism. Its target audience consists of those who have reflexively dismissed or misunderstood conservatism as well as those "in the choir who have forgotten the melody." Central to the PUF strategy is its work with and to the benefit of a number of conservative organizations. As an example, Aayan [sic] Hirsi A1i's foundation reports a substantial increase in gifts directly attributable to her PUF video, and she has asked to film a second. From its inception, Prager University's online lecture series has represented a leveraging opportunity for Bradley, because it provides a platform for disseminating ideas supportive of our mission that reaches tens of millions of internet users."

2015: "$75,000 for general operations. The Bradley grant proposal notes that PragerU's videos are "taught by public intellectuals and/or Bradley Prize winners, fox example George Will, Robert George, Heather MacDonald, Thomas Sowell, Nicolas Eberstadt, Walter Williams, John Taylor, and Victor Davis Hanson... Other courses feature "visiting faculty" associated with Bradley and/or Encounter Books, for example AEI's Arthur Brooks and Jonah Goldberg; George Gilder; John Eastman; Daniel DiSalvo; and Greg Lukianoff." According to the grant proposal record, PragerU videos "have attracted almost 27 million viewers. Teachers are increasingly using the videos in their classrooms. This year, PUF has been increasing video production to one release per week, reaching three million views each month. Should funding be secured, it will create three new series of courses on radical environmentalism, "left vs. right" and the American heritage... from its inception, the Prager University's online lecture series has represented a leveraging opportunity for Bradley, because it provides a platform for disseminating ideas supportive of our mission that reaches millions of internet users."

2014: "$75,000 for general operations. The Bradley grant proposal notes that PragerU's videos are "taught by public intellectuals and/or Bradley Prize winners, fox example Thomas Sowell, Paul Johnson, Walter Williams, Amity Shlaes, John Taylor, and Victor Davis Hanson... Other courses feature "visiting faculty" associated with Bradley and/or Encounter Books, for example AEI's Arthur Brooks and Jonah Goldberg; George Gilder; Nicholas Eberstadt; and Greg Lukianoff." According to the grant proposal, "The proposed lecture series represents a leveraging opportunity to provide a platform for and promote the ideas of Bradley associates, potentially spreading them to millions of internet users through Prager University."

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.

History

Prager University is named after Dennis Prager, an Orthodox Jewish American conservative political commentator and radio show host. He has a Monday-Friday show owned by the Salem Media Group, which is connected to other religious conservative talk show hosts such as Larry Elder and Sebastian Gorka.[49]

In 2011, Prager condemned Trump's use of profanity in an article called "F-Word Laced Speech Disqualifies Donald Trump from Presidency", claiming "As a father, I even banned use of the word "sucks" in general conversation in my home. I am certain that the use of that word at sporting events such as when thousands of fans scream the word at an opposing player or at the entire opposing team has contributed to— and is a sign of— the coarsening of American life."[50]

By election day 2016, Prager had reversed his position,[51] resulting in criticism of hypocrisy from libertarian The Atlantic columnist Conor Friedersdorf, who wondered "What principles, if any, does he regard as more important than the 'greater principle' of defeating Hillary Clinton?"[52] and stated "So long as Prager supports Trump, he is a member of the Immoral Majority, the newly ascendant coalition on the American right... There are many just like him on the right who’ve compromised their beliefs for Trump. They are now apologists for moral relativism and indecency publicly personified."[53]

In 2014, Prager expressed discontent with the "hubris" of judges who ruled gay marriage bans unconstitutional, claiming, "If American society has a "constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis," then there is no plausible argument for denying polygamous relationships, or brothers and sisters, or parents and adult children, the right to marry."[54] In 2006, Prager wrote that allowing congressman Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to U.S. Congress, to take his oath of office the Koran "undermines American civilization" and that "Insofar as a member of Congress taking an oath to serve America and uphold its values is concerned, America is interested in only one book, the Bible."[55]

In 2011, Prager and Alan Estrin, a TV screenwriter, teamed up to create Prager University, which Dennis Prager views as a "growing alternative to the moral and intellectual wasteland known as the Western university.”[43]

Funding

Prager University is not required to disclose its funders but major foundation supporters can be found through its IRS filings. Here are some known contributors:

  • Abbvie Foundation: $345 (2019)
  • Adolph Coors Foundation: $25,000 (2019)
  • Al Williams Jr. Family Foundation: $30,000 (2019)
  • Alexander Family Foundation: $1,000 (2020)
  • Alice Busch Gronewaldt Foundation: $10,000 (2019)
  • Alon Family Foundation: $6,800 (2017)
  • Alpaugh Foundation: $4,500 (2019)
  • AM Josephs Family Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • American Endowment Foundation: $212,081 (2016-2020)
  • American Online Giving Foundation: $233,675 (2019-2020)
  • American Tower Charitable Foundation: $50 (2020)
  • Anne and Jacob Starr Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Armen and Gloria Hampar Family Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • Arthur G. Jaros and Dawn L. Jaros Charitable Trust: $7,500 (2017-2019)
  • Associated Jewish Charities of Baltimore: $10,000 (2019)
  • Ayco Charitable Foundation: $8,100 (2019)
  • Baird Foundation: $250 (2020)
  • Bank of America Charitable Foundation: $3,150 (2016-2020)
  • Barnes Family Foundation: $88,000 (2013-2020)
  • Bartley J. Madden Foundation: $10,000 (2020)
  • Bearing Fruit Foundation Trust: $10,000 (2020)
  • Berry R. Cox Family Foundation: $55,700 (2017-2019)
  • Bessemer Giving Fund: $1,000 (2020)
  • Bidikov Foundation: $3,000 (2020)
  • Bieber Family Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Blueflash Foundation: $25,000 (2015)
  • Bradley Impact Fund: $149,100 (2016-2020)
  • Bradley Foundation: $1,633,400 (2010-2020)
  • Brannan Family Foundation: $500 (2017)
  • Brian and Joelle Kelly Family Foundation: $26,430 (2016-2017)
  • Cadre Foundation: $600 (2019-2020)
  • California Community Foundation: $33,000 (2017-2019)
  • Caritas Charitable Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Cashion Foundation: $5,600 (2015-2019)
  • Celanese Foundation: $210 (2018-2019)
  • Center of the American Experiment: $100,000 (2019)
  • Chaffee Family Foundation: $2,500 (2020)
  • Chicago Community Trust: $26,000 (2018)
  • Christian Community Foundation: $81,800 (2018-2020)
  • Christian Community Foundation of Memphis and the Mid-South: $10,750 (2019-2020)
  • Christian Foundation of the West: $12,000 (2019)
  • Christopher and Misty Spoelhof Foundation: $6,000 (2017-2020)
  • Clifford and Lavonne Graese Foundation: $25,000 (2019)
  • Comerica Charitable Trust: $80,000 (2014-2015)
  • Cobalt Foundation: $1,500 (2018-2019)
  • Community Foundation of North Florida: $15,051 (2016-2018)
  • Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts: $11,000 (2020)
  • Conrad N. Hitton Foundation: $5,000 (2018)
  • Convention of States Foundation: $20,000 (2021)
  • Cook Family Foundation: $25,000 (2020)
  • Crawford Family Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Crevier Family Foundation: $1,000 (2017)
  • Dallas Jewish Community Foundation: $43,550 (2016-2018)
  • Daniel S. Chillemi Charitable Fund: $316,5000 (2015-2020)
  • David and Natalie Lederman Foundation: $2,000 (2017)
  • David W. Hearst Jr. Foundation: $30,000 (2020)
  • Dayton Foundation Depository: $38,947 (2016-2018)
  • Deramus Foundation: $5,000 (2012)
  • Diana and Michael David Epstein Foundation: $250 (2019)
  • Diana Davis Spencer Foundation: $100,000 (2019)
  • Don and Lorraine Freeberg Foundation: $150,000 (2014-2016)
  • DonorsTrust: $599,140 (2017-2020)
  • Dr. Edward S. Orzac Foundation: $1,000 (2020)
  • Dunn Foundation: $315,000 (2019-2020)
  • EBS Foundation: $250 (2020)
  • Edward A. Stiller and Molly G. Stiller Family Charitable Foundation: $1,500 (2017)
  • Elliot and Harriet Goldstein Private FDNDBA Highland Vineyard Foundation: $2,000 (2017)
  • Elliot and Marlys Radzin Family Foundation: $25,000 (2016-2018)
  • Enough is Enough Initiative: $51 (2020)
  • Fidelity Investments Charitable Gift Fund: $4,292,207 (2016-2020)
  • Foxman Family Foundation: $255 (2017)
  • Frances B. and J. Ronald Terwilliger Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Frank and Fay Katlin Foundation: $100 (2020)
  • Frankel Family Foundation: $6,000 (2017-2019)
  • Fred and Sandy Mesch Foundation: $10,000 (2019)
  • Freeman and Gladys Wilson Family Foundation: $4,000 (2018-2020)
  • Frick Foundation: $11,050 (2017-2020)
  • Garvey Kansas Foundation: $350 (2018-2019)
  • George Clifford Newbold Scholarship Fund for Native Americans: $2,000 (2018)
  • GoGo Foundation: $50,000 (2019-2020)
  • Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund: $10,000 (2019)
  • Good Neighbor Foundation: $2,250 (2019)
  • Grantors Foundation: $5,000 (2017)
  • Greater Houston Community Foundation: $1,057,150 (2019-2020)
  • Greater Kansas City Community Foundation: $8,923 (2018)
  • Gregg W. and Denise E. Steinhafel Family Foundation: $2,500 (2020)
  • Gulf Coast Community Foundation: $25,100 (2020)
  • HD Perry Family Foundation: $28,666 (2018-2019)
  • Heavens Hope Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Henkes Foundation: $500 (2013-2018)
  • High Rock Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Huemme Family Foundation: $600 (2020)
  • Hurst Foundation: $55,000 (2020)
  • Hymowitz Family Foundation: $540 (2016)
  • Israeli-American Council: $30,000 (2014)
  • J5 Martin Family Foundation: $10,600 (2018-2019)
  • Jack A. and Marilyn M. Zuber Charitable Trust: $10,000 (2020)
  • Jackson Howard Foundation: $97,500 (2018-2020)
  • James R. and Electra P. Agras Foundation: $1,500 (2018-2019)
  • Jack Roth Charitable Foundation: $50,000 (2020)
  • Jason Hartman Foundation: $1,000 (2017)
  • Jerome and Toby Rapport Foundation: $34,000 (2014-2019)
  • Jewish Communal Fund: $33,806 (2015-2020)
  • Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco the Peninsula Marin and Sonoma: $201,000 (2017-2018)
  • Jewish Community Foundation Charitable Fund: $31,450 (2018-2019)
  • Jewish Community Foundation of San Diego: $57,530 (2016-2018)
  • Jewish Community Foundation of the Jewish Federation Council of Greater LA: $181,800 (2017-2020)
  • Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta: $5,450 (2018)
  • John P. and Kathryn G. Evans Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • John R. and Maria PV Young Family Foundation: $5,250 (2016-2017)
  • John William Pope Foundation: $15,000 (2018)
  • Kaye Family Foundation: $3,000 (2018-2020)
  • Kenneth Leventhal Foundation: $50,000 (2018)
  • Kercheville Foundation: $1,200 (2017-2019)
  • Kirk and Jolene Jackson Foundation: $30,550 (2019)
  • Kleinschmidt Family Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Kurt Feuerman Foundation: $20,000 (2019)
  • Laba Foundation: $400 (2020)
  • Lavern T. Busse and Audrey Busse Foundation: $15,000 (2020)
  • Leadership Institute: $5,455 (2019)
  • Lebherz Family Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Lee Family Foundation: $100 (2018-2020)
  • Lewis Family Charitable Foundation: $20,000 (2019)
  • Lewis Greenwood Foundation: $3,500 (2017)
  • Lila A. Lilly Foundation: $3,000 (2017-2019)
  • Lincoln Financial Foundation: $250 (2020)
  • LPL Financial Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • M. Holy Massey Charitable Trust: $5,000 (2020)
  • Maccabee Task Force Foundation: $400,000 (2015-2019)
  • Mark and Maureen Miller Family Foundation: $1,000 (2018)
  • Mark H. and Blanche M. Harrington Foundation: $1,000 (2020)
  • Marotta Foundation: $1,500 (2020)
  • Martino Family Foundation: $100,000 (2018)
  • Matthew Six Ten Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • Maury and Nancy Fertig Family Foundation: $100 (2018)
  • Mercury One: $33,319 (2018-2019)
  • Michael and Andrea Leven Family Foundation: $300,000 (2016-2018)
  • Michael and Ericka Hynansky Family Foundation: $5,000 (2017)
  • Michael and Renee Minogue Foundation: $3,020 (2018-2019)
  • Michnal Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Milk Money Foundation: $10,000 (2020)
  • Milstein Family Foundation: $149,000 (2013-2019)
  • Milwaukee Jewish Federation: $6,000 (2012)
  • Mitchell Foundation: $1,200,000 (2017-2019)
  • Monsen Family Foundation: $75 (2020)
  • Morgan Family Foundation: $470,000 (2015-2019)
  • Morgan Stanley Global Impact Funding Trust: $49,050 (2016-2019)
  • MZ Foundation: $100,000 (2016-2019)
  • Nagel Foundation: $10,000 (2019-2020)
  • National Philanthropic Trust: $911,770 (2017-2020)
  • National Christian Foundation: $1,728,183 (2014-2020)
  • Nesta O. Maghuson Foundation: $500 (2018)
  • Newbern Foundation: $1,000 (2019-2020)
  • Nick and Sandy Lee Family Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Norman I. and Sandra Rich Family Charitable Foundation: $100 (2017)
  • OBX: $200,000 (2019)
  • Omega Foundation: $1,500 (2018)
  • Orange County Community Foundation: $7,000 (2019)
  • Otis Booth Foundation: $20,000 (2018)
  • Pajor Family Foundation: $370 (2016-2018)
  • Paslaqua Charitable Foundation: $150 (2019)
  • Philanthropy International: $1,000 (2020)
  • Philippe and Deborah Dauman Foundation: $25,000 (2019)
  • Pierre F. and Enid Goodrich Foundation: $20,000 (2020)
  • Price Blake Family Foundation: $2,000 (2020)
  • Rainold Family Foundation: $2,000 (2020)
  • Ralph and Jeanne Jennings Family Foundation: $2,000 (2019-2020)
  • Ralph L. Smith Foundation: $10,000 (2020)
  • Ralph M. Parsons Foundation: $10,000 (2018-2019)
  • Raymond and Ellen Goldberg Foundation: $250 (2015)
  • Raymond James Charitable Endowment Fund: $146,800 (2017-2020)
  • Rhema Life Foundation: $5,000 (2020)
  • Richter Family Foundation: $35,000 (2015-2020)
  • Riklin Charitable Trust: $250 (2019)
  • Robert and Bernarda Neal Foundation: $255 (2020)
  • Robert and Nina Rosenthal Foundation: $56,000 (2014-2017)
  • Robert S. Block Family Foundation: $25 (2016)
  • Rothkopf Greenberg Family Foundation Trust: $1,000 (2020)
  • Sacremento Region Community Foundation: $10,000 (2019)
  • Salesforce.com Foundation: $50 (2019)
  • Sandra and Lawrence Post Family Foundation: $15,000 (2018-2019)
  • Schmitt Family Charitable Trust: $2,100 (2019-2020)
  • Schmidtt Family Star Foundation: $11,100 (2018-2019)
  • Schwab Charitable Fund: $1,964,859 (2014-2019)
  • Searle Freedom Trust: $300,000 (2018-2019)
  • Servant Foundation: $286,750 (2019-2020)
  • SGT Kay Foundation: 1,000 (2020)
  • Shea Foundation: $43,300 (2014-2018)
  • Shell Oil Company Foundation: $933 (2016-2019)
  • Sid and Carol Verndoorn Family Foundation: $275,000 (2015-2019)
  • Skowronski Family Foundation: $15,000 (2019)
  • Snider Foundation: $15,000 (2019)
  • Steinberg Family Fund: $55,000 (2017-2019)
  • Sterling Donor Advised Fund: $25,000 (2019)
  • Stevan and Cynthia Pearce Charitable Foundation: $2,500 (2019)
  • Steve and Kristin Chapin Family Foundation: $21,620 (2016-2019)
  • Steven G. Mihaylo Foundation: $30,000 (2017-2018)
  • Stratton-Petit Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • SW Friedman Foundation: $100 (2017)
  • Synchrony Foundation: $961 (2020)
  • Tampa Orlando Pinellas Jewish Foundation: $12,600 (2018-2019)
  • Thirteen Foundation: $3,250,000 (2015-2018)
  • Thomas and Annette Dircks Family Foundation: $500 (2019)
  • Thomas W. Smith Foundation: $100,000 (2020)
  • Tom and Lois Longest Charitable Trust: $175 (2018-2020)
  • Tronvoid Foundation: $100 (2019)
  • Turner Foundation: $250 (2020)
  • Turning Point USA: $500,000 (2018-2019)
  • TW Lewis Foundation: $25,000 (2019)
  • TYL Foundation: $225,000 (2016-2018)
  • United Way Worldwide: $5,172 (2018)
  • Vanguard Charitable Endowment Program: $1,234,594 (2014-2020)
  • W. A. Mueller Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • Wagner Descendants Foundation: $10,000 (2019)
  • Waldorf Family Foundation: $27,550 (2014-2019)
  • Weintraub Family Foundation: $1,000 (2017)
  • Weldon Foundation: $400 (2020)
  • Whitecross Foundation: $2,800 (2015-2018)
  • William and Renee Curtis Family Foundation: $500 (2020)
  • William Goldman Foundation: $1,000 (2020)
  • William Howard Flowers Jr. Foundation: $50,000 (2019)
  • William S. and Anne Atherton Foundation: $10,000 (2019)
  • Woodhull Family Foundation: $14,000 (2015-2019)
  • Worldviews Calling and Culture: $40,000 (2017)
  • Yaron Foundation: $50 (2019)
  • Yonge Foundation: $2,000 (2020)
  • Zhangxu Family Foundation: $510 (2019)

Core Financials

2020[9]

  • Total Revenue: $36,188,194
  • Total Expenses: $20,514,077
  • Net Assets: $37,258,679

2019[56]

  • Total Revenue: $23,807,760
  • Total Expenses: $17,066,980
  • Net Assets: $21,389,877

2018[57]

  • Total Revenue: $18,599,542
  • Total Expenses: $12,911,920
  • Net Assets: $14,608,023

2017[58]

  • Total Revenue: $10,383,560
  • Total Expenses: $8,355,612
  • Net Assets: $7,990,826

2016[59]

  • Total Revenue: $5,336,708
  • Total Expenses: $3,318,541
  • Net Assets: $5,679,912

2015[60]

  • Total Revenue: $3,609,499
  • Total Expenses: $2,166,761
  • Net Assets: $3,553,594

Personnel

Staff

As of 2020:[9]

Executive Leadership

  • Marissa Streit, CEO
  • Dennis Prager, VP of Development
  • Craig Strazzeri, Chief Marketing Officer
  • Allen Estrin, Executive Director
  • Layne Thrasher, CFO
  • Jason Bateman, Director of Major Gifts
  • Katherine Patrykus, Director of Portfolio and Foundations
  • Christopher Powell, VP of Production Technology

Former Staff

  • Christopher Bowler, Data Scientist

Notable Presenters

  • Adam Carolla, host of The Adam Carolla Show podcast
  • Alan Dershowitz, lawyer, political commentator, frequent defender of Israeli military action, and author of many books, including "The Case Against BDS: Why Singling Out Israel for Boycott Is Anti-Semitic and Anti-Peace"
  • Allie Stuckey, CRTV host and conservative blogger
  • Ayaan Hirsi Ali, visiting American Enterprise Institute scholar, 2005 Time 100 "Leaders and Revolutionaries", 2015 Bradley Prize winner
  • Ben Shapiro, youngest nationally syndicated U.S. columnist,[61] former Breitbart News Network columnist[62] and founder and current editor in chief of the Daily Wire, a conservative online publication[63]
  • Candace Owens, former communications director of Turning Point USA
  • Carol Swain, former professor of political science and law at Princeton and Vanderbilt Universities
  • Charles Krauthammer (since deceased), Pulitzer Prize winner, 2004 Bradley Prize winner, conservative columnist, Fox News contributor
  • Charlie Kirk, founder of Turning Point USA
  • Christina Hoff Sommers, resident American Enterprise Institute scholar
  • Dave Rubin, host of the Rubin Report, a YouTube channel partially supported and produced by Learn Liberty, a former Institute for Humane Studies project
  • Dinesh D'Souza, right-wing filmmaker, conspiracy theorist
  • Glenn Beck, conservative radio show host and political commentator
  • Greg Gutfeld, Fox News host
  • Heather MacDonald, Manhattan Institute fellow, 2005 Bradley Prize winner
  • Jordan Peterson, psychology professor and vocal critic of social constructionism, college campus activism and the current teaching of sociology and other humanities[64]
  • Larry Elder, former host of "The Larry Elder Show", currently a host on KRLA 870
  • Michael Knowles, managing editor of The Daily Wire
  • Michelle Malkin, author, blogger, and TV commentator
  • Mike Rowe, star of Discovery Channel show "Dirty Jobs"
  • Stephen Harper, former Prime Minister of Canada
  • Steven Crowder, host of Louder with Crowder and former contributor to Fox News
  • Tucker Carlson, Fox News contributor
  • Will Witt, conservative influencer

Board of Directors

As of 2021: [9]

  • Steve Robinson, Chair
  • Dennis Beck, Treasurer
  • Greg Cassileth, Secretary
  • Kim Bengard
  • David Blumberg
  • Bob Hutt
  • Barak Lurie
  • Anne E. Mounsey
  • Marty Watkins

Former Board Members

  • Jon Francis
  • William Herreid III
  • Richard Lederer

Contact Information

Employer Identification Number (EIN): 27-1763901

Prager University Foundation
15021 Ventura Blvd. #552
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

Articles and Resources

IRS Form 990 Filings

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

Articles

References

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