Federalist Society

Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies


The Federalist Society describes itself as a “a group of conservatives and libertarians interested in the current state of the legal order” and as a counter to law schools that are “dominated by a form of orthodox liberal ideology.” [1]

The Federalist Society was founded in 1982. It maintains a Student Division, Lawyers Division, and Faculty Division. The faculty division was established in 1999 with the goal to “provide events and other tools to help encourage constructive academic discourse.” The Federalist Society also “provides opportunities for effective participation in the public policy process.” [2]

The Federalist Society claims it does not take positions on legal or policy issues: “The Society is about ideas. We do not lobby for legislation, take policy positions, or sponsor or endorse nominees and candidates for public service,” its FAQ page reads. [3]

While claiming a neutral stance, the Society has consistently published articles and hosted debates that frame investigations into ExxonMobil and think tanks that question the existence of man-made climate change as attacks on free speech. For example, Federalist Society member C. Boyden Gray wrote in Forbes that the efforts by attorneys general to investigate ExxonMobil were a misguided “climate change inquisition.” [4]

The group has also regularly hosted talks by individuals who oppose the mainstream consensus on man-made climate change including Willie Soon, Oren Cass, Steven Hayward, and others.

George Mason University Ties

The Federalist Society maintains a George Mason Univeristy Student Chapter, as well as an overwhelming number of contributors and staff members that overlap with positions, studies, or other associations with GMU. Many have direct ties either to the Mercatus Center at GMU, or to the Antonin Scalia Law School. [39]

Documents released in late April 2018 revealed George Mason University gave the Charles Koch Foundation a say in hiring decisions in exchange for donations, The Associated Press reported[37]

GMU president Angel Cabrera said the agreements “fall short of the standards of academic independence I expect any gift to meet.” His admission came three days after a judge began looking into the university’s previous refusal to release documents. [37]

The released donor agreements shed light onto million-dollar deals where the Koch Foundation would endow a fund to pay the salary for professors at the Mercatus Center. As part of the agreement, two members of a five-member committee could be chosen by donors to select the professor for the position. View an example of such an agreement, via The Washington Post[37][38]

While heavily redacted, the documents also revealed some details of a $10 million donation from the Koch Foundation and a $20 million donation from an anonymous donor that occurred in conjunction with GMU renaming its law school after Antonin Scalia. While the donor is not named, Leonard Leo, executive vice president of the conservative Federalist Society, was mentioned as a representative for the donor. [37]

Private donors have been provided influence over faculty affairs at our public university,” Bethany Letiecq, president of the American Association of University Professors at GMU, said. “This is a violation of the public trust.” [37]

Below are some examples of individuals who are contributors at the Federalist Society and also have ties to GMU:

  • Adam White —Director, Center for the Study of the Administrative State and Adjunct Professor of Law, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School.
  • David Wagner — J.D. 1992, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Kyndra Rotunda — Former director,  Clinic for Legal Assistance to Service Members at George Mason School of Law.
  • James Cooper — Associate Professor of Law and Director, Program on Economics, Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.
  • Todd Zywicki — Foundation Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University. 
  • Paolo Saguato — Assistant Professor of Law, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School.
  • Christopher Newman — Assistant Professor, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Craig S. Lerner — Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Sandra Aistars — Clinical Professor and Senior Scholar and Director of Copyright , George Mason University.
  • Ilya Somin — Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.
  • Jamil N. Jaffer — Adjunct Professor, NSI Founder, and Director, National Security Law & Policy Program, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University. 
  • Steven J. Eagle — Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Reginald J. Brown — Has been a member of the Board of Visitors for George Mason University.
  • Gary Leff — Chief Financial Officer, Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
  • Matthew D. Mitchell — Senior Research Fellow and Director of the Project for the Study of American Capitalism, Mercatus Center at George Mason University. 
  • Megan Stevenson — Assistant Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.
  • Jeremy A. Rabkin — Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Christopher L. Koopman — Previously served as a Senior Research Fellow and Director of the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
  • Caroline Cecot — Assistant Professor of Law, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School.
  • Elina Treyger — Assistant Professor, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Adam Thierer — Senior Research Fellow, Mercatus Center, George Mason University.
  • Allison R. Hayward — Assistant Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Susan E. Dudley — Previously directed the Regulatory Studies Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, and taught courses on regulation at the George Mason University School of Law.
  • Colin Dueck — Associate Professor, George Mason University School of Policy, G, and International Affairs.
  • Ronald D. Rotunda — Former Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law.
  • Bryan Caplan — Professor of Economics, George Mason University.
  • Eli Dourado — Director of Technology Policy Program, Research Fellow, Mercatus, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Brenda Leong — 2014 graduate of George Mason University School of Law.
  • Helen Alvare — Associate Professor of Law, George Mason University Law School.
  • John Yun — Associate Professor of Law and Director of Economic Education at the Global Antitrust Institute, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School.
  • Bryan Weir — Former adjunct professor for the Supreme Court Clinic at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.
  • Koren W. Wong-Ervin — Former Adjunct Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law.
  • Nelson Lund — Professor, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.
  • Hester Peirce — Senior Research Fellow and the Director of the Financial Markets, George Mason University.
  • William Kovacic — Global Competition Professor of Law and Policy, The George Washington University Law School.
  • Neomi Rao —  Former professor of structural constitutional law, administrative law, and legislation and statutory interpretation at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.
  • Lisa Ezell (Federalist Society Staff Member) — Holds Master of Public Policy from George Mason University.
  • William S. Consovoy Former co-director of the Supreme Court Clinic at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University.
  • Kenneth T. Cuccinelli — Masters and J.D. degree from George Mason University.
  • Randolph J. May — Adjunct professor of law at George Mason University School of Law.
  • Michael S. Greve — Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School.
  • Jeremy Kidd —  Graduated in 2007 from George Mason University School of Law, where he was Executive Editor for the Journal of Law, Economics & Policy.
  • Daniel Polsby — Dean and Foundation Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Brian Knight — Senior Research Fellow for the Financial Markets Working Group at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
  • Brent Skorup — Senior Research Fellow in the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
  • Stephen Moore — M.A. in economics from George Mason University.
  • Patrick McLaughlin — Director of the Program for Economic Research on Regulation and a Senior Research Fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
  • Eileen J. O’Connor — Former Distinguished Adjunct Professor of Tax Policy at the George Mason University School of Law.
  • Paul D. Kamenar — Clinical Professor of Law at George Mason University Law School from 1999-2005.
  • Joshua D. Wright — Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Steven M. Tepp — Former professor at George Mason University Law School.
  • Henry Manne — Dean Emeritus, George Mason School of Law.
  • Stephen Halbrook — Assistant Professor of Philosophy – George Mason University, 1980-81.
  • Andrea Boyack — Former adjunct professor at George Mason University School of Law.
  • Adam Mossoff — Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University.
  • J.W. Verret — Assistant Professor of Law, George Mason University School of Law.
  • Michael DeBow — Visiting professor of law at George Mason University in 1999.
  • Caleb Watney — Master’s in economics from George Mason University.
  • Maureen K. Ohlhausen — Graduated with distinction from Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University in 1991 .

Stance on Climate Change

March 1, 2013

Speaking at the Federalist Society’s 2013 annual student symposium, Richard Epstein—a regular contributor and speaker at the Federalist Society—made statements counter to the established science regarding climate change: [5], [6], [7]

“They don’t talk about global warming anymore,” Epstein said. “They talk about climate change, and it turns out that carbon dioxide is a very weak driver of climate change. […] There’s so many solar phenomena out there which make a great deal more … remember, Greenland was green when it was taken over. […] It wasn’t global warming that made those places warm and cold. 

What you have to understand is given these huge cycles that we’ve had over the last even 10,000 years, this global warming stuff is, you know, doesn’t matter very much relative to the other forces that we don’t understand them. You could spend fortunes in time wasting your efforts stopping things that may never occur.

It’s very difficult to hit the sweet spot of spending money which isn’t wasted either way. Either, of course you don’t need it, or because even if you do it the Armageddon’s going to happen anyhow.”

May 3, 2010

The Las Vegas chapter president of the Federalist Society spoke on climate change, claiming that while he accepted the premise that humans are contributing to global warming, it doesn’t justify many regulations: [8]

“What we are in the process of doing, I mean doing more of, is embarking on a very ill-conceived, costly, and counter-productive set of policies designed to deal with the threat of climate change. In particular, to regulate emissions of greenhouse gases […]

My talk is operating under the premise that climate change is real, that human activity contributes to it to some degree, and that this could create some problems. I accept that premise, ah, but and certainly there are those that do not. Um.

But my point is that even if we accept that premise, even if we believe that climate change is a very serious problem, even if we accept what Al Gore says about the degree of threat that climate change poses—and you know the house he just bought and its energy consumption—it’s hard to justify the things that we are required to do under current law, or will be required to do under current law, and hard to justify the thing we’re talking about doing. And that taking this issue seriously doesn’t justify those steps.”


According to its website: [3]

“90% of the funding comes from individuals and foundations; the other 10% comes from corporations. The Society does not take money from any political party or group affiliated with a political party or from the federal government.”

The following is based on data compiled by the Conservative Transparency project combined with publicly available 990 forms. Note that not all individual funding values have been verified by DeSmog. View the attached spreadsheet for details on Federalist Society funding by year (.xlsx).

Donors Capital Fund$11,366,368
The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation$7,573,750
Sarah Scaife Foundation$6,805,000
Mercer Family Foundation$6,450,000
John M. Olin Foundation$5,657,000
John Templeton Foundation$5,427,925
Searle Freedom Trust$3,930,500
Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation$2,783,599
National Philanthropic Trust$2,325,000
Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation$1,956,500
Schwab Charitable Fund$1,352,633
Marcus Foundation$1,225,000
Earhart Foundation$1,050,000
E L Craig Foundation$1,010,000
William E. Simon Foundation$880,000
Ed Uihlein Family Foundation$850,000
Dunn’s Foundation for the Advancement of Right Thinking$738,000
F.M. Kirby Foundation$710,000
Hickory Foundation$700,000
Wellspring Committee$610,000
Pierre F. and Enid Goodrich Foundation$465,000
Philip M. McKenna Foundation$462,000
The Shelby Cullom Davis Foundation$450,000
Jaquelin Hume Foundation$425,000
National Christian Charitable Foundation$414,000
Castle Rock Foundation$395,000
William H. Donner Foundation$394,309
John William Pope Foundation$375,000
DeVos Urban Leadership Initiative$360,000
Brady Education Foundation$315,000
The Randolph Foundation$283,500
The Carthage Foundation$275,000
The TWS Foundation$260,000
Exxon Mobil$235,000
Adolph Coors Foundation$220,000
David H Koch Charitable Foundation$200,000
Stuart Family Foundation$184,000
JM Foundation$175,000
Chase Foundation of Virginia$131,760
Hertog Foundation$130,000
Diana Davis Spencer Foundation$126,000
Philanthropy Roundtable$125,000
The Challenge Foundation$115,000
Thomas W Smith Foundation$110,000
Ave Maria Foundation$100,000
Armstrong Foundation$86,000
The Richard and Helen Devos Foundation$75,000
The Roe Foundation$73,000
Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation$56,000
Bradley Impact Fund$50,000
Alan and Hope Winters Family Foundation$46,000
Arthur N. Rupe Foundation$40,000
Friedman Foundation For Educational Choice$40,000
The Vernon K. Krieble Foundation$35,500
Herrick Foundation$35,000
CIGNA Foundation$35,000
The Rodney Fund$34,000
The Robertson-Finley Foundation$29,300
The Whitcomb Charitable Foundation$29,000
Judicial Crisis Network$21,000
Ruth & Lovett Peters Foundation$20,000
Dodge Jones Foundation$12,000
Smith Richardson Foundation$10,000
Richard Seth Staley Educational Foundation$6,950
Charles Koch Institute$6,400
Charles and Ann Johnson Foundation$5,000
Considine Family Foundation$2,000
Lynn & Foster Friess Family Foundation$1,000
Huizenga Foundation$1,000
Grand Total$93,325,094

Koch Funding

In addition to the values charted below, based on data retrieved from public 990 tax forms, the Federalist Society has also listed David Koch and Koch Industries as “Madison Club” donors in its annual reports. A full accounting of these grant estimates, plus other known data, is available at the Federalist Society’s profile on PolluterWatch, and totals at least $6,466,139 from 1997-2017. [46][45]

Precise values from 990 forms alone total $4,894,499 from 1997 to 2017. Including values from earlier tax years, where original 990 forms were no longer available for verification, and that number increases to $4,946,499 from 1988 to 2017.

YearCharles G. Koch Charitable FoundationClaude R. Lambe Charitable FoundationDavid H Koch Charitable FoundationCharles Koch InstituteGrand Total
1988$2,000   $2,000
1991$2,500   $2,500
1992$2,500   $2,500
1993 $10,000  $10,000
1995$10,000   $10,000
1996$25,000   $25,000
1997$108,000   $108,000
1998$130,000$100,000  $230,000
1999$35,000$100,000  $135,000
2001$45,000$100,000  $145,000
2002$50,000$194,000  $244,000
2003$71,200$100,000  $171,200
2004$75,000$100,000  $175,000
2005$75,000$100,000  $175,000
2006$75,000$117,500  $192,500
2007$75,000$100,000  $175,000
2008$75,000   $75,000
2009$6,299$175,000  $181,299
2010 $235,000  $235,000
2011 $260,000  $260,000
2012$4,836$265,000  $269,836
2013$265,000   $265,000
2014$271,312   $271,312
2015$380,076  $6,400$386,476
2016$372,876   $372,876
2017$627,000 $200,000 $827,000
Grand Total$2,783,599$1,956,500$200,000$6,400$4,946,499

990 Forms

Annual Reports

Key People

Board of Directors

Brent O. HatchYYYYYYYTreasurer
David M. McIntoshYYYYYYYVice Chairman
Gary LawsonYYYYYYYSecretary
Steven G. CalabresiYYYYYYYChairman
T. Kenneth Cribb, Jr.YYYYYYYCounselor
Eugene B. Meyer  YYYYYPresident
Lee Liberman OtisY  YYYYSenior Vice President & Director, Faculty Division
C. Boyden Gray   YYYY 
Edwin Meese, III   YYYY 
Leonard A. Leo   YYYYExecutive Vice President
Michael B. Mukasey   YYYY 
Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz      Y 
Peter KeislerYY     Director
E. Spencer AbrahamY      Director

Board of Visitors

Andrew J. RedleafYYYYYYYYY 
Donald Paul HodelYYYYYYYYY 
Lillian BeVierYYYYYYYYY 
Orrin HatchYYYYYYYYYCo-Chairman
Theodore B. OlsonYYYYYYYYY 
Wm. Bradford ReynoldsYYYYYYYYY 
Frank Keating, II YYYYYYYY 
Gale Norton YYYYYYYY 
Lois Haight HerringtonY YYYYYYY 
Christopher DeMuth   YYYYYYCo-Chairman
George T. Conway III    YYYYY 
Diana Davis Spencer     YYYY 
Theodore W. Ullyot      YYY 
Kimberly O. Dennis        Y 
Michael W. Gleba        Y 
Robert A. Levy YYYYYYY  
Gerald WalpinY  YYYYY  
Elaine L. Chao   YYYY   
Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz YYYYY    
Robert H. Bork YYYY    Co-Chairman
Edwin Meese, IIIYYYY      
Harvey C. Koch YYY      
C. Boyden GrayY YY      
Michael B. Mukasey   Y      
Judge Robert H. BorkY         


Lee Liberman Otis    YYYYYYYYYYYSenior Vice President & Director, Faculty Division
Douglas C. UbbenYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYVice President & Director, Finance
Eugene B. MeyerYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYPresident
Leonard A. LeoYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYExecutive Vice President
Lisa Budzynski Ezell  YYYYYYYYYYYYYVice President & Director of Lawyers Chapters
C. David Smith   YYYYYYYYYYYYVice President & Director, Information Technology
Dean Reuter   YYYYYYYYYYYYGeneral Counsel | Vice President & Director, Practice Groups
James P. Kelly, III   YYYYYYYYYYYYDirector (of counsel), International Affairs
Juli Nix   YYYYYYYYYYYYDirector, Conferences
Peter Redpath   YYYYYYYYYYYYVice President & Director, Student Division
Rhonda Moaland   YYYYYYYYYYYYOffice Manager
Jonathan Bunch     YYYYYYYYYYVice President & Director, External Relations
Kate Beer Alcantara     YYYYYYYYYYDeputy Director, Student Division
Paul Zimmerman      YYYYYYYYYDeputy Director, International Affairs
Cynthia Searcy   YY  YYYYYYYYVice President & Director, Development
Anthony Deardurff       YYYYYYYYDeputy Director, Faculty Division
Peter Bisbee        YYYYYYYDirector, State Courts
Maria Marshall         YYYYYYDirector of Operations, Office of the Executive VP
Amy Harper          YYYYYAssistant Director, Finance
Daniel Richards          YYYYYVice President & Director, Digital
Austin Lipari           YYYYDeputy Director, Student Division
Sarah Landeene           YYYYDeputy Director, Lawyers Chapters
Alexander Biermann            YYYAssistant Director, Development
Anna Wunderlich            YYYGrants Administrator, Development
Devon Westhill            YYYDirector, Regulatory Transparency Project
Jennifer DeMarco            YYYAssistant Director, Digital Strategy
Jennifer Weinberg            YYYAssociate Director, Faculty Division
Katie McClendon            YYYDirector, Publications
Matt Wood            YYYDirector, Film & Photography
Curtis Walter             YYProject Coordinator, Regulatory Transparency Project
Kate Fugate             YYAssociate Director, Lawyers Chapters
Laura Flint             YYDeputy Director, Practice Groups
Nathan Kaczmarek             YYDirector, Article I Initiative
Paige Williams             YYDirector, Membership & Alumni Relations
Samantha Schroeder             YYDeputy Director, Digital Production
Samuel Winkler             YYMembership Coordinator, Membership & Alumni Relations
Alex Yershov              YAssistant Director, Digital Production
Brigid C. Flaherty              YAssistant Director, Faculty Division
Colton Graub              YProject Assistant, Regulatory Transparency Project
Elizabeth A. Cirri              YAssistant Director, External Relations
Micah Wallen              YAssistant Director, Practice Groups
Shiza Francis              YAssistant Director, Office of the Executive VP
Wesley G. Hodges              YAssociate Director, Practice Groups
Peggy Little   YYYYYYYYYYY Director, Pro Bono Center
Tyler Lowe       YYYYYYY Director of Digital Production
Christopher Goffos            YY Associate Director, Faculty Division
Jonathan Reich            YY Assistant Director, Office of the Executive VP
Timothy Courtney            YY Assistant Director, Practice Groups
Brent O. Hatch       Y     Y Treasurer
David M. McIntosh       Y     Y Vice Chairman
Gary Lawson       Y     Y Secretary
Steven G. Calabresi       Y     Y Chairman
T. Kenneth Cribb, Jr.       Y     Y Counselor
C. Boyden Gray             Y  
Edwin Meese, III             Y  
George Lane             Y Assistant Director, External Relations
Michael B. Mukasey             Y  
Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz             Y  
Caroline Moore        YYYYY  Associate Director & Director of Alumni Relations, Law & Innovation Project
C. William Courtney         YYYY  Deputy Director, Practice Groups
Gianna Burkhardt           YY  Assistant Director, Lawyers Chapters
Joanmarie Davoli           YY  Digital Education Specialist
Zach Mayo           YY  Deputy Director, External Relations
Jack Neblett            Y  Assistant Director, Practice Groups
Maureen Collins            Y  Membership Coordinator
David C.F. Ray   YYYYYYYYY   Associate Director, Practice Groups
Matt Nix   YYYYYYYYY   Assistant Office Manager & Assistant Membership Director
Christian Corrigan         YYY   Director, Publications
Jandi Heagen         YYY   Assistant Director, Faculty Division
Katelynd Mahoney         YYY   Associate Director, Development
Brigid Hasson          YY   Grants Administrator, Development
Sara Barger          YY   Video Producer
Brandon Smith       YYYY    Deputy Director, Student Division
Jennifer Derleth       YYYY    Deputy Director, Lawyers Chapters
Maureen Wagner       YYYY    Deputy Director, External Relations
Sophia Mason       YYYY    Associate Director, Development
Justin Shubow        YY     Director of Social Media & Alumni Relations
Danielle Savoy         Y     Deputy Director, Development
Emily Kuebler     YYYY      Director, Development
Hannah De Guzman     YYYY      Assistant Director, Practice Groups
Ken Wiltberger      YYY      Deputy Director, International Affairs
Karen Schuberg Bell        Y      Assistant Director, State Courts
Maria Plakoudas        Y      Executive Assistant to the Executive Vice President
Thomas Kraemer     YYY       Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Allison Aldrich      YY       Associate Director, State Courts
Alexandra Bruce       Y       Assistant Director, Student Division
Kendra Kocovsky       Y       Alumni Director
Matthew Daniel       Y       Director of Membership
Patty Price   YYYY        Director, Development
Daniel Suhr     YY        Deputy Director, Student Division
Erin Sheley     YY        Deputy Director, Faculty Division
Sarah Field     YY        Deputy Director, State Courts
Barrett Young      Y        Assistant Director, Faculty Division
Bridget Brophy      Y        Director of Membership 
Caitlin Carroll      Y        Assistant Director, Student Division
Catherine Zanetti      Y        Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Peter Aigner   YYY         Director of Publications
Alicia Luschei    YY         Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Alyssa Luttjohann    YY         Deputy Director of International Affairs, Lawyers Division
Elizabeth LeRoy    YY         Assistant Director, Student Division
Alex Reynolds     Y         Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Andrew Olson     Y         Assistant Director, Faculty Division
Erica Morbeck     Y         Director of Membership
Debbie O’Malley   YY          Assistant Director, State Courts
John Paul Fox   YY          Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Kyle Reini   YY          Associate Director, Student Division
Mia Reynolds   YY          Director, State Courts
Terry Archambeault   YY          Director of Membership
Ellen Fuller    Y          Assistant Director, Development
Flavius Mihaies    Y          Research Associate, Lawyers Division
Marisa Maleck    Y          Assistant Director, Faculty Division
Alyssa Haupt   Y           Assistant Director, Lawyers Division
Lisa Graff   Y           Assistant Director, Student Division
Sarah Roderick   Y           Associate Director, Student Division
David C. Ray YY            Co-Student Division Director
David L. Keller YY            Membership Director
Jan E. Williams YY            Deputy Lawyers Division Director
Matthew Estabrook YY            Development Director
Genevieve Belland  Y            Assistant Development Director
Rhonda Davis  Y            Office Manager
Shara Haden  Y            Student Division Director
Andrew Wisch Y             Deputy Lawyers Division Director
Courtney Egleston Y             Assistant Development Director
Melissa Seckora Y             Assistant Lawyers Division Director
Paul Rourke Y             Student Division Director
Christopher C. GabrielY              Development Director
Courtenay R. WestallY              Office Manager
Cyrenne HubbardY              Legal Studies Assistant
Sara J. GriecoY              Membership Director
Shane DolginY              Student Division Director

Board of Trustees

C. Boyden GrayYY 
Donald Paul HodelYY 
Edwin Meese, IIIYY 
Harvey C. KochYY 
Holland CoorsY  
Hugh OverholtYY 
Lois Haight HerringtonYY 
Orrin HatchYYCo-Chairman
Robert H. BorkYYCo-Chairman
Wm. Bradford ReynoldsYY 

Business Advisory Council

C. Boyden GrayYYY 
John G. Medlin, Jr.YYYChairman of the Board, Wachovia Corporation
John Stewart Bryan, IIIYYYChairman, President, and C.E.O., Media General Cable
Joseph CannonYYYC.E.O. and Chairman of the Board, Geneva Steel
Nicholas John StathisYYYVice President, Orpheon, Inc.
Paul S. StevensYYYGeneral Counsel, Investment Company Institute
R. Crosby Kemper, IIIYYYPresident, United Missouri Bank
Robert L. StricklandYYYChairman, Lowe’s Companies, Inc. 

As of 2006, the Federalist Society also maintained a “Journalist’s Guide to Legal Experts,” a list of approximately 200 individuals “Providing Expertise on Legal Issues from a Conservative and Libertarian Perspective.” See the Federalist Society’s “guide to legal experts” (.xlsx). [9]

George Mason University, the American Enterprise Institute, Cato Institute, Heritage Foundation, and the Institute for Justice are among the groups represented on the list.


June 2018

Within hours of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement announcement, Leonard Leo reportedly took a leave of absense as executive vice president for the Federalist Society in order to personally advise President Donald Trump on supreme court nominations. [44]

“The Gorsuch model works,” Leo said. “The president hit it out of the park by deciding to put out a list and deciding to pick somebody, as he put it, who is extraordinarily well-qualified and not weak and will interpret the Constitution the way the framers intended it to be.” [44]

May 2018

Maria Marshall, Director of Operations at the Office of the Executive Vice President at the Federalist Society was reportedly involved in planning a Rome visit for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to visit Cardinal Pell, a prominent member of the Catholic church and a climate change denier. [40]

Documents released by New York Times reporter Eric Lipton outlined planning for the dinner in May, and the schedule of the dinner. According to an email sent during the dinner, an EPA staff member said that Pruitt and Pell discussed a Wall Street Journal article that had reported on the proposal of a “red team/blue team” debate on climate science.

The Federalist Society’s Leonard Leo also attended the dinner. According to another report in the New York Times, Leo helped organize the June 2017 Vatican trip. [41]

The Washington Post reported Pruitt had earlier dined at one of Rome’s finest restaurants at the expense of The Federalist Society’s Leonard Leo. When asked about the dinner, an EPA spokesman said Pruitt was allowed to accept the gift given the men’s personal relationship, however Leo was subsequently reimbursed for the cost. Leo reportedly arranged private events for Pruitt and his aides in Rome, and Leo was invited to join a meeting between Pruitt and Archbishop Paul Gallagher to discuss environmental policy. [42], [43]

March 1, 2018

The Federalist Society hosted a talk titled “How to Worry About Climate Change” by Oren Cass, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. [10]

October 5, 2017

The Federalist Society held an event on “Free Market Climate Change Solutions” sponsored by their Los Angeles student chapter. Speakers included John Nagle of Notre Dame law and Ann Carlson of UCLA law. [11]

November 17, 2017

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, known for his aggressive rollbacks of environmental regulations including regulations of greenhouse gas emissions, gave an address to the Federalist Society’s 2017 International Lawyer’s Convention. Pruitt was introduced by the Federalist Society’s C. Boyden Gray: [12]

Pruitt similarly introduced the Federalist Society’s January 2016 Annual Western Chapters Conference. [13]

April 20, 2017

The Federalist Society released a video featuring BakerHostetler attorney Mark DeLaquil discussing Clean Power Plan. “What is the origin of the Clean Power Plan, and is it lawful? Mark DeLaquil of BakerHostetler explains how an executive order from President Obama led to the EPA‘s controversial Clean Power Plan and why the Supreme Court looks skeptically on new government powers derived from long-existing statutes,” the description read. [14]

November 29, 2016

Becky Norton Dunlop, the Heritage Foundation‘s Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow, was featured on a “Climate Change Solutions Panel” held by the Federalist Society. Congressman Bob Inglis and Professor David Weisbach were also listed as speakers. [15]

October 19, 2016

The Rice University Federalist Society hosted “A Heated Debate: The Science and Policy of Climate Change” featuring Willie Soon and Ronald Sass. Video below. [16], [17]

August 8, 2016

The Federalist Society held a podcast during a Federalist Society conference all discussing the ExxonMobil climate change investigations. The podcast featured Andrew Grossman, Partner at Baker & Hostetler LLP and an Adjunct Scholar and counsel at The Cato Institute. [18]

As noted in the podcast, Grossman has “been involved in both defending targets of the subpoenas and in challenging the lawfulness of their issuance.” The teleforum took place on August 1, 2016. [19]

April 2016

An article at The Federalist Society decried an investigation by a coalition (AGs United for Clean Power) of Attorneys General into Exxon Mobil knew about climate change (#ExxonKnew) as “an inquisition of those who disseminate opposing views.” According to the Federalist Society article, the state AGs that did not join in the effort “recognize the dangers to the core values of respect for the rule of law and free speech posed by this coalition.” [20]

“They recognize that good science embraces disagreement and the chilling effect on research when the government decides what is ‘truth’ and what is ‘fraud’ in what is in fact an ongoing scientific debate,” The Federalist Society article read. [20]

A follow-up article described the ExxonMobil and climate change denier investigation as “a threat to core constitutional commands of free speech, limited and constitutional government and the rule of law.” [20]

The Federalist Society also released a video of Andrew Grossman, a partner at the law firm BakerHostetler and counsel for the fossil-fuel-funded Competitive Enterprise Institute explaining “Free Speech and Climate Change”: [21]

February 16, 2016

Karen Harned, Executive Director of the National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Legal Center (NFIB), appeared in a Federalist Society video discussing the EPA‘s Clean Power Plan. [22]

Harned said of if the rule had not been stayed, “From an industry standpoint, millions of dollars would have been spent and potentially wasted to comply with a rule that may not even be legal in the first instance.” [22]

February 10, 2015

The Duquesne Student Chapter of the Federalist Society sponsored an event titled “Climategate: The Other Side of Global Climate Change” that featured climate change denier Steven Hayward[23]

Hayward has described climate change as a “secular religion” of “leftists and environmentalists.” [24]

July 28, 2014

A Federalist Society teleforum on “separation of powers” featuring Michael S. Greve of the George Mason University School of Law and Mario Loyola of the Texas Public Policy Foundation discussed the EPA‘s carbon emissions rule. [25]

“Texas’s fight to resist being drawn into implementing EPA‘s greenhouse gas regulations suggests that federal “encouragement” can be deeply coercive, employing penalties against the state’s economy that courts have no doctrine to account for,” the Federalist Society description read. [25]

January 11, 2012

The Federalist Society released a paper by noted climate change denier Marlo Lewis titled “EPA Regulation of Fuel Economy: Congressional Intent or Climate Coup?” The paper criticised EPA rules that would allow the agency to regulate fuel economy standards. “EPA has asserted that it is simply implementing the Clean Air Act. But the Clean Air Act was neither designed nor intended to regulate greenhouse gases, and it provides no authority to regulate fuel economy,” the paper claimed. [26]

February 14, 2012

Federalist Society contributor Richard Epstein spoke on climate change at an event sponsored by the Yale Student Chapter of the Federalist Society. [27]

January 20, 2011

Climate change denier and fossil-fuel-funding recipient Willie Soon spoke at an event hosted by the Western New England Student Chapter of the Federalist Society. The event was titled “Is Climate Change Just Hot Air?” [28]

March 31, 2010

The Federalist Society hosted an event titled “Junk Science and Climate Change” sponsored by the Environmental Law & Property Rights Practice Group. [29] 

February 23, 2010

The Federalist Society held an event featuring fossil-fuel-funded climate change denier Willie Soon titled “Slaying the CO2 Monster: Why Climate Change is NOT Man-Made.” [30]

January 14, 2010

Fossil-fuel-funded climate change denier Willie Soon spoke at a Federalist Society event titled “The View from Galileo’s Window: The Sun, the CO2 Monster and the Earth’s Climate.” Soon gave a same-titled talk to the Federalist Society in November of 2009. [31]

Federalist Society Projects

Contact & Address

As of 2018, the Federalist Society listed the following contact information on its website: [1]

1776 I Street, NW Suite 300 
Washington, DC 20006
Phone(202) 822-8138
Fax(202) 296-8061
[email protected]

Social Media


  1. About Us”, Federalist Society. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/256RR
  2. Our Background,” The Federalist Society. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/Z6BDp
  3. Frequently Asked Questions,” The Federalist Society. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/oPKPH
  4. C. Boyden Gray. “The Misguided ExxonMobil Climate Change Inquisition,” Forbes, February 11, 2016. Archived May 2, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/xRJjC
  5. Richard Epstein educates his co-panelists @ the Federalist Society Symposium,” YouTube video uploaded by user “knaudi” March 5, 2013. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  6. 2013 Annual Student Symposium,” The Federalist Society, March 1, 2013. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/xg4xV
  7. Prof. Richard A. Epstein,” The Federalist Society. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/87B1f
  8. Climate Policy Heats Up: What’s Not Cool About Global Warming Regulations – Event Audio/Video,” The Federalist Society. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  9. “Journalist’s Guide to Legal Experts,” The Federalist Society, Archived February 14, 2006. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/jj2TL
  10. How to Worry About the Climate Change,” The Federalist Society. Archived March 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/2GjU7
  11. Free Market Climate Change Solutions,” The Federalist Society. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/N1wPd
  12. Address by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt,” YouTube video uploaded by user The Federalist Society, November 17, 2017. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  13. Attorney General Scott Pruitt’s Opening Address at the 2016 Annual Western Chapters Conference,” YouTube video uploaded by user “The Federalist Society,” February 17, 2016. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  14. The Clean Power Plan: The EPA & Climate Change Policy,” The Federalist Society, April 20, 2017. Archived April 30, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/mpAI0
  15. Climate Change Solutions Panel,” The Federalist Society, November 29, 2016. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/XXo7Y
  16. A Heated Debate: The Science and Policy of Climate Change,” Facebook, October 19, 2016.
  17. A Heated Debate: The Science and Policy of Climate Change,” YouTube video uploaded by user “Anson Fung,” October 22, 2016.
  18. The Climate Change Investigations – Fair Regulation of Markets or Executive Overreach that Chills Free Speech? – Podcast,” The Federalist Society, August 8, 2016. Archived April 30, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/vpwlB
  19. The Climate Change Investigations – Fair Regulation of Markets or Executive Overreach that Chills Free Speech?The Federalist Society, August 1, 2016. Archived April 30, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/zdUnP
  20. The Climate Change Inquisition,” The Federalist Society, April 4, 2016. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/ZUATA
  21. Free Speech and Climate Change,” The Federalist Society, April 19, 2016. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.li/DK9Y0 
  22. EPA, Climate Change, and the Supreme Court,” YouTube video uploaded by user “The Federalist Society,” February 13, 2016. Archived .mp4 on file at DeSmog.
  23. Climategate: The Other Side of Global Climate Change,” The Federalist Society, February 10, 2015. Archived May 4, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/Wcz1T
  24. Steven F. Hayward. “Why The Left Needs Climate Change,” Forbes, June 9, 2015. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/f2e2e
  25. Cooperation or Coercion on Climate: Is the EPA Trying to Deputize the States?The Federalist Society, July 28, 2014. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/9qGDs
  26. EPA Regulation of Fuel Economy: Congressional Intent or Climate Coup?The Federalist Society, January 11, 2012. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/flOCj
  27. Climate Change,” The Federalist Society, February 14, 2012. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/UGA8g
  28. Is Climate Change Just Hot Air?The Federalist Society, January 20, 2011. Archived May 4, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/sIo1v
  29. Junk Science and Climate Change: Thoughts from the Federalist Society’s 1997 Colloquium on ‘Junk Science, the Courts, and the Regulatory State,’” The Federalist Society, March 31, 2010. Archived May 1, 2018.
  30. Slaying the CO2 Monster: Why Climate Change is NOT Man-Made,” The Federalist Society, February 23, 2010. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/6uHXl
  31. The View from Galileo’s Window: The Sun, the CO2 Monster and the Earth’s Climate,” The Federalist Society, January 14, 2010. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/wXEnR
  32. “Federalist Society,” State Policy Network. Archived May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/I83Q3
  33. Student Organizations,” The University of Iowa College of Law. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL:https://archive.li/QcgA2
  34. About NGO Watch,” NGO Watch. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/aJgBQ
  35. About Global Governance Watch®Global Governance Watch. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/WTF7K
  36. About the Project,” Regulatory Transparency Project. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/nH9lq
  37. Documents show ties between university, conservative donors,” Associated Press, February 13, 2018. Archived April 30, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/2u0g0
  38. Donor agreement between the Mercatus Center and George Mason University to fund a faculty position,” The Washington Post, April 30, 2018.
  39. GEORGE MASON STUDENT CHAPTER,” The Federalist Society. Archived May 5, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/Su1hu
  40. Graham Readfearn. “EPA‘s Scott Pruitt Dined With Fellow Climate Science Denier and Vatican Treasurer Cardinal George Pell, Documents Show,” DeSmog, May 10, 2018.
  41. Eric Lipton, Lisa Friedman and Kenneth P. Vogel. “A Lobbyist Helped Scott Pruitt Plan a Morocco Trip. Then Morocco Hired the Lobbyist,The New York Times, May 1, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/0yPSI
  42. Top Federalist Society official initially paid for Scott Pruitt’s costly dinner in Rome, EPA officials confirm,” The Washington Post, May 7, 2018. Archived May 14, 2018. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.li/YMCdm
  43. Influential outsiders have played a key role in Scott Pruitt’s foreign travel,” The Washington Post, May 3, 2018. Archived May 14, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.li/0zdao
  44. The White House Will Start Interviewing Supreme Court Candidates Next Week, A Key Adviser Says,” BuzzFeed News, June 29, 2018. Archived September 21, 2018. Archive.fo URL: https://archive.fo/Nipx3
  45. The Federalist Society,” Polluterwatch. Accessed November 2018.
  46. Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies,” Greenpeace. Accessed April 4, 2019.

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