Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy

Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc.

  • Madison, WI
  • http://www.ffrf.org/

Mission Statement

The purposes of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc., as stated in its bylaws, are to promote the constitutional principle of separation of state and church, and to educate the public on matters relating to nontheism.

Incorporated in 1978 in Wisconsin, the Foundation is a national membership association of approximately 20,000 freethinkers: atheists, agnostics and skeptics of any pedigree. The Foundation is a non-profit, tax-exempt, educational organization under Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3). All dues and contributions are deductible for income tax purposes.

Main Programs

  1. FFRF

service areas

National

Self-reported by organization

Areas Served Narrative

The history of Western civilization shows us that most social and moral progress has been brought about by persons free from religion. In modern times the first to speak out for prison reform, for humane treatment of the mentally ill, for abolition of capital punishment, for women's right to vote, for death with dignity for the terminally ill, and for the right to choose contraception, sterilization and abortion have been freethinkers, just as they were the first to call for an end to slavery. FFRF works as an umbrella for those who are free from religion and are committed to separation between state and church.

Self-reported by organization

ruling year

1978

Principal Officer

Dan Barker

Self-reported by organization

Co-President

Annie Laurie Gaylor

Self-reported by organization

Keywords

church state separation, First amendment, Freethought, Atheism, Agnosticism, Religion, atheist, ffrf, agnostic, secular

Self-reported by organization

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EIN

39-1302520

 Number

7961533412

Also Known As

FFRF

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Civil Liberties Advocacy (R60)

Civil Rights, Advocacy for Specific Groups (R20)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Self-reported by organization

Program 1

FFRF

• Publishes the only freethought newspaper in the United States, Freethought Today
• Sponsors annual high school, college and grad student essay competitions with cash awards
• Conducts lively, annual national conventions, honoring state/church, student, and freethought activism
• Sponsors an online forum for members
• Bestows “The Emperor Has No Clothes” Award to public figures for “plain-speaking on religion”
• Promotes freedom from religion with educational books, literature, music CDs
• Provides speakers for events and debates
• Maintains a Web site at www.ffrf.org
• Broadcasts Freethought Radio
• Places freethought billboards and bus signs

Category

Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy, General/Other

Budget

Population Served

Other Minorities

Gays/Lesbians

General Public/Unspecified

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Self-reported by organization

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    First Amendment violations are accelerating. The religious right is campaigning to raid the public till and advance religion at taxpayer expense, attacking our secular public schools, the rights of nonbelievers, and the Establishment Clause.

    The Foundation recognizes that the United States was first among nations to adopt a secular Constitution. The founders who wrote the U.S. Constitution wanted citizens to be free to support the church of their choice, or no religion at all. Our Constitution was very purposefully written as a godless document, whose only references to religion are exclusionary.

    It is vital to buttress the Jeffersonian "wall of separation between church and state" which has served our nation so well.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    The Foundation and its staff attorneys act on countless violations of separation of state and church on behalf of members and the public
    including: Prayers in public schools, payment of funds for religious purposes, government funding of pervasively sectarian institutions, and the ongoing campaign against civil rights for women, gays and lesbians led by churches.

    The Foundation keeps several challenges in the courts at all times, and has ended a variety of violations of the First Amendment including:

    • Winning the first federal case challenging “faith-based funding” of a pervasively sectarian social agency
    • Winning the first court order to a U.S. Cabinet revoking federal funds to a pervasively sectarian agency
    • Halting federal funds to a bible school offering no academic classes
    • Ending “parish nursing” faith/health entanglements at two state universities
    • Halting a government chaplaincy to minister to state workers Other victories include:
    • Winning a legal challenge ending 51 years of illegal bible instruction in Rhea County (Dayton, Tennessee) public schools
    • Winning a federal court decision overturning a law declaring Good Friday a state holiday
    • Barring direct subsidy to religious schools, in a federal lawsuit upheld by an appeals court
    • Declaring unconstitutional the creation of a state post to “assist clergy” to save marriages
    • Stopping public financing of an annual nativity pageant at a state capitol • Ending commencement prayers at a Top Ten University
    • Halting religious postal cancellations
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    What Does the Foundation Do?

    • Publishes the only freethought newspaper in the United States, Freethought Today
    • Sponsors annual high school, college and grad student essay competitions with cash awards
    • Conducts lively, annual national conventions, honoring state/church, student, and freethought activism
    • Sponsors an online forum for members
    • Bestows “The Emperor Has No Clothes” Award to public figures for “plain-speaking on religion”
    • Promotes freedom from religion with educational books, literature, music CDs
    • Provides speakers for events and debates
    • Maintains a Web site at www.ffrf.org
    • Broadcasts Freethought Radio
    • Places freethought billboards and bus signs
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Not available.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Not available.

service areas

National

Self-reported by organization

Areas Served Narrative

The history of Western civilization shows us that most social and moral progress has been brought about by persons free from religion. In modern times the first to speak out for prison reform, for humane treatment of the mentally ill, for abolition of capital punishment, for women's right to vote, for death with dignity for the terminally ill, and for the right to choose contraception, sterilization and abortion have been freethinkers, just as they were the first to call for an end to slavery. FFRF works as an umbrella for those who are free from religion and are committed to separation between state and church.

Self-reported by organization

Blog

The organization's Blog

Social Media

@4ffrf

@ffrf

@FFRFout/videos

External Reviews

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

FREEDOM FROM RELIGION FOUNDATION INC
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc.

Leadership

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  • Board Chair, Board Co-Chair and Board Members
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Principal Officer

Dan Barker

Co-President

Annie Laurie Gaylor

BIO

A former minister and evangelist, Dan became a freethinker in 1983. His books, Just Pretend: A Freethought Book for Children and Losing Faith in Faith: From Preacher To Atheist (1992) are published by the Foundation. His newest book, The Good Atheist: Living a Purpose-Filled Life Without God, was published by Ullysses Press in January, 2011. His previous book, the autobiographical Godless: How An Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists, was published in 2008. A graduate of Azusa Pacific University with a degree in Religion, Dan now puts his knowledge of Christianity to effective freethought use. A professional pianist and composer, Dan performs freethought concerts and is featured in the Foundation's musical cassettes, "My Thoughts Are Free," "Reason's Greetings," "Dan Barker Salutes Freethought Then And Now," a 2-CD album "Friendly Neighborhood Atheist," and the CD "Beware of Dogma." He joined the Foundation staff in 1987 and served as public relations director. He was first elected co-president in November 2004.

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"The nonprofit FFRF works to educate the public on matters relating to nontheism, and to promote the constitutional principle of separation between church and state. FFRF is the nation's largest association of freethinkers (atheists, agnostics and skeptics) with over 20,000 members.

Since 1978, FFRF has acted on countless violations of the separation of state and church, and has won many significant complaints and important lawsuits to end state/church entanglements.

Won’t you join us in our critical work to promote freethought and defend the separation between government and religion?"

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Stephen Hirtle

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?