Southern Poverty Law Center
Southern Poverty Law Center
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was founded in 1971 by "Morris Dees, a direct mail marketer who served as National Finance Director for George McGovern's 1972 Presidential campaign." Organized as a 501(c) non-profit, SPLC claims that it is "dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society..."
The Nation's Richest "Civil Rights" Organization
Far from poor, SPLC raises tens of millions of dollars annually, and has grown an endowment of over $200 million.
A 1996 USA Today article called the Southern Poverty Law Center "the nation's richest civil rights organization" with $68 million in assets. According to a 2007 Harper's Magazine article, SPLC listed assets totaling $168 million, and pointed out that the sum was more than the annual GDP of the Marshall Islands at the time. Line 20 on the 2008 IRS form 990 for the Southern Poverty Law Center lists total assets of $221,434,949.00.
Defaming Christian Ministries
In November of 2010, SPLC added several mainstream evangelical organizations to their list of "hate" groups in response to those groups' public support for Biblical teaching on the subject of homosexuality.
- "This is a deliberately timed smear campaign by the SPLC. The Left is losing the debate over ideas and the direction of public policy, so all that is left for them is character assassination. It’s a sad day in America when we cannot, with integrity, have a legitimate discussion over policy issues that are being considered by Congress, legislatures and the courts without resorting to juvenile tactics of name calling."
- SPLC’s 10-page attack was distributed to 55,000 police officers in America. Called 18 Anti-Gay Groups and Their Propaganda, it encourages police to especially watch the hateful, violence-inciting propaganda from Christian/conservative "watchdog" organizations. These include the American Family Association, Concerned Women for America, Family Research Council, Coral Ridge Ministries, Liberty Council, and Traditional Values Coalition.
According to Dr. Gary Cass, who is affiliated with the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, "To say that anybody who has a principled objection to homosexuality [and warns of] the impact that that sinful lifestyle has on individuals and on society is somehow morally equivalent to overt racism and violence is absolutely defamatory." 
Senior Program Staff, 2010;
- Richard Cohen, President
- Morris Dees, Founder, Chief Trial Attorney
- Mary Bauer, Legal Director
- Mark Potok, Director, Intelligence Project
- Lecia Brooks, Director, Civil Rights Memorial Center
- Maureen Costello, Teaching Tolerance Director
Hate and Extremism
- Dan Werner , Deputy Legal Director
- Mónica Ramírez, Director, Esperanza: The Immigrant Women’s Legal Initiative
- Kristi Graunke, Senior Staff Attorney
- Andrew Turner, Senior Staff Attorney
- Jim Knoepp, Senior Staff Attorney
Children at Risk
- Sheila Bedi, Deputy Legal Director
- Ron Lospennato, Litigation Director, School-to-Prison Reform Project
- David J. Utter, Director, Florida Initiatives
- Danielle Lipow, Director, Juvenile Justice Policy Group
- Marion Chartoff, Director, Alabama Education Project
- Courtney Bowie,Director, Mississippi Youth Justice Project
Board of Directors
Board of Directors, 2010
- Howard Mandell
- Lloyd V. Hackley
- Julian Bond
- Patricia Clark
- Alan B. Howard
- Marsha Levick
- Joseph J. Levin, Jr.
- James McElroy
- Vanzetta McPherson
- James Rucker
- David Wang
- 1996, Derek A. Wilcox (Ed.) The Left Guide: A Guide to Left-of-Center Organizations, Ann Arbor, MI, Economics America, Inc. p. 355
- Andrea Stone, "Morris Dees: At the Center of the Radical Storm," USA Today, August 3, 1996, A-7