The Tides Foundation is a politically progressive donor-directed philanthropy, established in 1976 by Drummond Pike with Jane Bagley Lehman, heir to the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company fortune. In 1996, Pike established the Tides Center, an offshoot of the Tides Foundation. The Tides Center provides grants management, administrative, financial and human resources services to charitable initiatives not yet incorporated as 501(c)(3)s.
With an annual budget near $300 million, the foundation is one of the largest political donors in the United States, and funds a variety of environmentalist causes, including anti-GMO and anti-pesticide advocacy. The Tides foundation has given at least $100,000 each to several prominent anti-crop biotechnology NGOs, including the Sierra Club, Greenpeace and Natural Resources Defense Council. This money finances efforts to destroy field trials of genetically modified crops, lobby governments for GMO labeling legislation and spread misinformation about agriculture.
- Annual Revenue: $285,614,910 (2016)
- Total Assets: $190, 603, 953 (2016)
Major Donors (total contributions 2012-present)
- NoVo Foundation $54,418,085
- New Field Foundation: $8,227,958
- David and Lucile Packard Foundation: $4,089,000
- Foundation For A Just Society $600,000
Major Grant Recipients (total contributions 2012-present)
- Natural Resources Defense Council: $178,417
- Greenpeace Canada: $137,013
- Sierra Club Foundation: $100,000
- Friends of the Earth Australia $100,000
Contribution totals only reflect publicly reported donors and may not include significant contributions from corporations, litigators and governments, domestic and foreign, through percent of sales agreements and allocations through various arrangements such as state lotteries and aid programs. Many claims by nonprofit organizations that they receive no contributions from governments or corporations are misleading or false.