The Heartland Institute is a 33-year-old national nonprofit research and education organization headquartered in Arlington Heights, Illinois, about 30 minutes from O’Hare International Airport and downtown Chicago. It has a full-time staff of 39, our 2017 annual budget is about $6 million, and we have a nationwide donor base of approximately 5,000 supporters.
Heartland is a libertarian “think tank” whose mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. Specifically, it hopes to encourage more legislators to embrace the following five free-market ideas:
■ Tax and expenditure limitation, either by constitutional or statutory law, including welfare reform at the state level and Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare reforms at the national level.
■ Expansion of school choice programs, in particular school vouchers, so every child can attend a high-quality school regardless of his or her parents’ wealth, race, or creed.
■ Expansion of consumer-directed health care reforms, such as health savings accounts, and opposition to heavy-handed state regulation and single-payer proposals.
■ Reform of environmental regulations, especially those addressing the possibility of man-made climate change, based on sound economics and science.
■ Promoting constitutional reform, especially efforts to support a convention of the states to amend the U.S. Constitution, so that the size and power of the national government can be more easily reined in.
Thanks to its monthly publications, marketing, communications, and government relations programs, The Heartland Institute is among the best known and most respected think tanks in the world. It is especially well-known among state elected officials and increasingly among national and local officials; 82 percent of state elected officials say they read at least one Heartland publication “sometimes” or “always,” and more than 200 legislators have joined Heartland’s Legislative Forum, an advisory board.
Heartland is the only free-market think tank that targets the nation’s 7,300 state elected officials and 535 national elected officials as its principal audience, sending them a publication on average once every week. It is also the only free-market think tank that focuses on effectively marketing the work of other free-market groups (not only its own research) through publications, a website tailored for elected officials, and a staff of legislative specialists who work directly with elected officials.