National Immigration Forum

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National Immigration Forum
NIFlogo2.JPG
Website www.immigrationforum.org
Founded 1982
Headquarters 50 F Street NW
Washington, DC , United States

The National Immigration Forum (NIF) was formed in 1982 as an advocacy group for immigrants, based on the assumption that immigrants are valuable for America. As an interest group, it conducts research and lobbying to help policy makers create well-informed conclusions about immigration policy. The Forum is run by an Executive Director and a Board of Directors; the Board created strategic goals of: [1]

  1. Develop relationships and an understanding of disparate views and, taking those views into account, craft a cohesive strategy across a range of issues
  2. Provide trusted information, analysis and advocacy strategy to key audiences shaping immigration policy and regulation across a range of immigration issues
  3. Engage a wider set of pro-immigration voices across constituencies, regions and ethnicities
  4. Implement targeted campaigns, based on the guidance of our Immigration Policy Council, to advance the overall strategy of the pro-immigration alliance
  5. Develop the institutional capacities and structures of the Forum needed to achieve its mission.

Organizations involved in its founding included the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild.

Current objectives and activities

In 2008 the forum authored and released several reports and analysis available to download at www.immigrationforum.org/publications. The National Immigration Forum’s 2008 impact report states that in this year it was able to react swiftly with information, expertise, and assistance to inquiries from Congressional offices, advocates, and the public on recent immigration issues. The forum also helped co-convene a group of over 200 national and local advocates to monitor the Department of Homeland security. In addition, the Forum lead efforts to defeat a number of anti-immigration measures filed in Congress.

Financial

The following is break down of the Forum’s expenses in 2007: 85% is from program expenses, 10.7% is administrative expenses, and 4.1% is fund raising expenses. Revenue growth is 11% where as program expenses growth is 3.3%. It received the four-star rating from Charity Navigator, which is superior to the anti-immigration Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) although not to some research organizations sharing origins with FAIR. [2] The most highly compensated employee was the former executive director, Francis Sharry, at $147,643.

In 2007 the Forum’s total was revenue was $2,763,311 with $2,681,802 being from primary revenue and $81,509 coming from other sources. In this same year $1,723,279 was program expenses, $217,268 were administrative expenses, and $84,726 were fund raising expenses. The Executive Director at the time, Francis Sharry Jr., was compensated $147,643 or 7.29% of all expenses.

The total spent on lobbying for 2008 was $160,000 and for 2007 was $100,000. The total yearly lobbying expenses for 2009, as of December, are $206,000.

In the past, it received funding from Macarthur Foundation, the Ford Foundation; George Soros's Open Society Institute; the Carnegie Corporation of New York; and the Fannie Mae Foundation. As of 2004, NIF's net assets were $3,160,924. That year, it received grants totaling $3,386,615.[3]

Organizational structure

Since 1982 there have only been three Executive Directors. The Executive Director oversees the whole operation of the National Immigration Forum. In March of 2008 the board of Board of Directors elected Ali Noorani as the new Executive Director. The National immigration forum is run by a Board of Directors and its Executive Director, Ali Noonrani.

Achievements

In 2008 the National Immigration Forum became the home of the centrally-coordinated Reform Immigration for America which is a campaign for immigration reform. The forum also coordinated business leaders, labor groups, immigrant, non-immigrant, and faith communities to develop a strong local/national legislative strategy.

The forum has been quoted more than 200 times from publications such as the Associated Press, Reuters, Congressional Quarterly, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, EFE, Rolling Stone, and The Economist. The Forum has been featured in MSNBC, FOX News, CBS Evening News, Syrus Radio, Public Radio, International, Hispanic News Links, Univision, Telemundo, TV Azteca América, CNN en Español, Radio América, and Que Pasa.

Criticism

In 2002, its founder, Rick Swartz, told the Southern Poverty Law Center that John Tanton "is the puppeteer behind this entire movement [of anti-immigration groups]. He is the organizer of a significant amount of its financing, and is both the major recruiter of key personnel and the intellectual leader of the whole network of groups."[4]

DiscoverTheNetworks, a division of the David Horowitz Freedom Center describes NIF as: [3]

  • an Open Borders group that seeks to legalize all illegal aliens currently in the U.S., which
  • Objected to the creation of a National Security Entry-Exit Registration System, which monitored individuals from countries with known terrorist links
  • Opposed the Clear Law Enforcement for Criminal Alien Removal, which sought to empower state and local police to enforce Federal immigration laws

References

  1. About the Forum, National Immigration Forum
  2. National Immigration Forum: Immigrants are America, Charity Navigator
  3. 3.0 3.1 National Immigration Forum, DiscoverTheNetworks, a Guide to the Political Left, 2004 (?)
  4. "The Puppeteer", Intelligence Report, Southern Poverty Law Center, Summer 2002