The Overbrook Foundation's support for media is long-standing in recognition of the importance of diverse and informed media to a thriving democracy. Over the past several years and in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, the Foundation has transitioned its media portfolio towards a portfolio that supports organizations seeking to reform the undue influence of big money in our democracy. This evolution means that the Foundation only considers grants to organizations advancing media reform or using non-profit/independent media to strengthen democratic participation when the funded project is directly linked to efforts to get money out of politics.
Grants made through this portfolio in 2015 are found below.
General Operating Support For Books On Money in Politics - $35,000 (second payment of a three-year grant)
The New Press is a not-for-profit publishing house operated editorially in the public interest and committed to publishing works of educational, cultural, and community value that, despite their intellectual merits, may be deemed insufficiently profitable by commercial publishers. The Press publishes well-written, coherently-argued books that wage “hearts and minds” campaigns, especially impactful in the field of human rights. Books are developed with an eye to their potential impact on policy and other public debates, their ability to play a communications role for the nonprofit sector, and their potential role as tools for educators, activists, and policymakers. Over the next three years, The New Press will continue its important work at the nexus of media, arts and human rights, in particular publishing books that address issues of money in politics.
On the Media - $50,000
Each week, On the Media co-hosts Brooke Gladstone and Bob Garfield explore the economic, political, and cultural contexts of the information the public receives about the world – whether it be from the mainstream media, the internet, social networks, advertisements, or elected officials. By doing so the show provides audiences with the critical and analytic tools they need to become more discerning news consumers and demand greater transparency from powerful interests. Illuminating the role of money in politics – and how politicians and political parties communicate with the public – has been a consistent focus of On the Media over the years, and as the 2016 presidential campaign season begins, the radio program will give even greater attention to that critical issue.