PLATINUM2024

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Fighting the radical right since 1995

Austin, TX   |  www.tfn.org
GuideStar Charity Check

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

EIN: 74-2736849


Mission

The Texas Freedom Network is a grassroots organization of more than 150,000 strong supporting religious freedom, individual liberties and public education. TFN is committed to building an informed and effective movement working toward equality and social justice.

Ruling year info

1996

President

Ms. Valerie Benavidez

Main address

Po Box 1624

Austin, TX 78767 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

74-2736849

Subject area info

Public affairs

Individual liberties

Social rights

Population served info

Young adults

LGBTQ people

Interfaith groups

NTEE code info

Civil Liberties Advocacy (R60)

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Founded in 1995, the Texas Freedom Network is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization of more than 150,000 community and faith leaders who support religious freedom, individual liberties and public education. Based in Austin, TFN acts as the state’s watchdog for monitoring far-right issues, organizations, money and leaders. The organization has been instrumental in defeating initiatives backed by the religious right in Texas, including private school vouchers and textbook censorship at the State Board of Education. As the resource of record on the religious right in Texas, TFN has become a trusted source for a wide range of news outlets in the state and across the country, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, National Journal, TIME, Los Angeles Times and Huffington Post. TFN spokespeople have been featured on news programs from all major broadcast and cable television networks as well as National Public Radio (NPR) and popular public radio programs. I

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Teach The Truth

TFN is leading the #TeachTheTruth campaign because we believe that students across the state of Texas deserve an accurate, honest, and quality education that allows them to learn from our past to build a better future for themselves and our country. Together, we will ensure that the voices of our communities and not politicians drive education policy.

Population(s) Served

Through our hard-hitting political activism, TFN engages in political advocacy, electoral and voter engagement, voter registration and GOTV mobilization to grow the electorate in the Lone Star State.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total dollars received in contributions

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of coalition members

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

TFN leads and anchors multiple coalitions on state and local policy and civic engagement initiatives, including Texas For All, Texas Youth Power Action Network, and Coalition for Public Schools.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Through grassroots organizing of Texans, especially youth and faith communities, and data-driven advocacy, TFN is building an informed and effective movement working toward equality and social justice for those who will inherit Texas.

TFN is building a progressive movement and making a lasting impact in Texas. Our strategic plans include:

• grassroots organizing at the state and local levels
• civic engagement -- voter education, voter registration and GOTV mobilization
• issue advocacy in support of: voting rights, reproductive freedom, LGBTQ equality, religious freedom, public education, climate justice, immigrant justice, criminal justice reform, and more
• leadership development -- extensive training programs for clergy and young leaders
• digital engagement through communications and social media campaigns

For almost three decades, TFNEF has built a strong reputation as the state’s watchdog for monitoring far-right issues, organizations, money and leaders. The organization has been instrumental in defeating initiatives backed by the religious right in Texas, including private school vouchers and textbook censorship at the State Board of Education.

In recent years, our long-term vision and programmatic work has expanded significantly with a growing focus on civic education and leadership development for people under 30 through our Texas Rising program.

TFNEF has a successful track record:

• Organizing Grassroots Leaders – TFNEF has a proven reputation of building broad-based coalitions that effectively advocate for sound policy on a range of issues, including religious freedom, civil liberties and public education.

• Conducting Original Social Policy Research – TFNEF is an influential, data-driven think tank on social policy issues. Our groundbreaking research has established us as a respected resource for policy-makers and the media.

• Providing Advocacy Training and Educational Resources – TFNEF has produced and published a library of training materials for community leaders and hosts numerous advocacy trainings, conferences and speaker events that educate, motivate and equip our advocates around the state.

• Building Young Leaders – Our Texas Rising program has become Texas’ leading progressive organization investing in the development of the next generation of leaders.

TFN has been a champion for progressive values in the state for 25 years. Since its founding in 1995, TFN has fought efforts to censor and politicize textbooks, has opposed private school vouchers and other schemes to undermine public education, and has defended church-state separation from constant attack. Over the years the organization’s work has greatly expanded to include the fight for LGBTQ equality, access to abortion and other reproductive health care, criminal justice reform and voting rights. And TFN has become a leading grassroots organizer of progressive faith communities and a rising generation of young Texans.

Key accomplishments:

• Statewide youth voter turnout in Texas was up almost 500% in the 2018 elections. This is due in no small part to the massive increase in youth civic education and engagement work undertaken by TFN and our partners over the preceding year.

• Public education is the target of politicians seeking to privatize our neighborhood schools and push a culture war agenda in the classroom. TFNEF has been the state watchdog on education issues and principle convener working to ensure accurate and unbiased textbooks. In 2017, our Stand Up for Science campaign at the State Board of Education resulted in a huge victory for science – for the first time in 30 years, Texas science TEKS are free from anti-evolution language. In 2016, we exposed a highly offensive textbook under consideration by the SBOE for Mexican American Studies. Following pressure by our coalition, the SBOE voted 14-0 to reject that book. Two years later the board voted to create the course as an elective.

• TFN's Just Texas program brings faith leaders together in support of reproductive freedom, LGBTQ equality and other progressive values to speak truth to power. More details about this project can be found at www.justtx.org

• Widely recognized as an influential think tank on a number of critical social policy issues, TFN's growing library of original research has become invaluable to policy-makers on a wide range of church-state and education issues, such as the faith-based initiative, public school Bible courses and sex education. Resources available at www.tfn.org/publications

• TFN's Texas Rising program is building the power of young people in our communities and at the ballot box. Our program organizes and builds power with young people of color in a multi-issue, intersectional social justice framework. More details at www.txrising.org.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31
Financial documents
2022 FY2022 Audited Financials 2021 2020 FY2020 Audited Financials 2019
done  Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant. info

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
NET GAIN/LOSS:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

32.89

Average of 18.07 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

10.3

Average of 12.4 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

18%

Average of 15% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $282,274 $372,139 $79,002 $208,454 $444,264
As % of expenses 46.4% 64.7% 4.0% 19.4% 20.6%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $276,487 $366,352 $73,215 $202,667 $438,477
As % of expenses 45.1% 63.0% 3.7% 18.8% 20.2%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $890,134 $1,050,606 $2,014,567 $1,269,508 $2,547,368
Total revenue, % change over prior year 64.3% 18.0% 91.8% -37.0% 100.7%
Program services revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.3% 0.6% 0.1% 0.0% 0.6%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 99.7% 99.4% 99.9% 100.0% 99.4%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $607,860 $575,471 $1,952,338 $1,074,007 $2,161,286
Total expenses, % change over prior year 15.9% -5.3% 239.3% -45.0% 101.2%
Personnel 48.5% 68.2% 57.1% 52.1% 59.6%
Professional fees 2.7% 4.8% 9.7% 15.0% 17.7%
Occupancy 2.4% 1.8% 1.8% 1.9% 2.1%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 27.3% 2.1% 9.2% 15.0% 0.7%
All other expenses 19.1% 23.2% 22.1% 15.9% 19.9%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $613,647 $581,258 $1,958,125 $1,079,794 $2,167,073
One month of savings $50,655 $47,956 $162,695 $89,501 $180,107
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $664,302 $629,214 $2,120,820 $1,169,295 $2,347,180

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 14.2 25.6 8.1 16.4 10.3
Months of cash and investments 14.2 25.6 8.1 16.4 10.3
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 13.6 22.2 7.0 15.1 10.0
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $718,603 $1,226,288 $1,324,540 $1,469,900 $1,858,636
Investments $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $1,528 $0 $0 $0 $3,152
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $407,442 $407,442 $407,442 $407,442 $407,442
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 18.6% 20.0% 21.4% 22.8% 24.3%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 2.7% 3.9% 5.8% 2.6% 2.6%
Unrestricted net assets $1,023,049 $1,389,401 $1,462,616 $1,665,283 $2,103,760
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $102,996 $86,223 $73,270 $10,000
Total net assets $1,023,049 $1,492,397 $1,548,839 $1,738,553 $2,113,760

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Documents
Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

President

Ms. Valerie Benavidez

Val Benavidez is the President and Executive Director for the Texas Freedom Network, a statewide social justice organization. She is the chief spokesperson for the organization in all public matters. She is responsible for the development, planning, staffing and implementation of all programs. Val became TFN President in November 2020 and was previously the Texas Freedom Network’s chief program officer. Val has a passion and commitment to center programs around building power and leadership with young people of color to create a truly representational democracy in our state. At Texas Freedom Network, she proudly founded Texas Rising and was a co-founder of the Texas Youth Power Alliance. She is the proud daughter and granddaughter of Mexican immigrants, farmworkers, railroad builders and all around rabble rousers.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
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Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Highest paid employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
Related
Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of highest paid employee data for this organization

TEXAS FREEDOM NETWORK

Board of directors
as of 02/29/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board co-chair

Katrina Mendiola


Board co-chair

Emma Brockway

James Aldrete

Rabbi Neil Blumofe

Stephanie Chiarello

Joni Cohan

Odus Evbagharu

Olac Fuentes

Rabbi Neal Katz

Nicole LeFave

Dr. Annie Linebarger

Colleen Loper

Cecile Richards

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/29/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Hispanic/Latino/Latina/Latinx
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 03/08/2022

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.