WASHINGTON—The Heritage Foundation today announced its latest round of Innovation Prize winners. These recipients include Communio, the National Association of Scholars, the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, Speech First, and the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.
Winners of the Innovation Prize will be honored Thursday at Heritage’s two-day Leadership Summit, celebrating the organization’s 50th anniversary and taking place April 20-21 at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland.
Heritage’s Innovation Prize recognizes and provides substantive financial awards totaling up to $1 million annually to results-oriented nonprofits for projects involving research, litigation, education, outreach, or communications. Heritage is particularly focused on seven priority issues: empowering parents in education, holding Big Tech accountable, countering the threat of the Chinese Communist Party, securing America’s borders and reducing crime, ensuring free and fair elections, reducing the growth of spending and inflation, and promoting life and family formation.
Heritage Foundation President Dr. Kevin Roberts released the following statement about the new awards:
“The Heritage Innovation Prize is a crucial tool in our mission to take America back from the grips of the Left. We are proud to recognize organizations like Communio, the National Association of Scholars, the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, Speech First, and the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation. Each of these organizations is committed to results-oriented projects that align with our vision of empowering parents in education, countering threats from Big Tech and the Chinese Communist Party, securing America’s borders, and promoting life and family formation.
“The Innovation Prize is made possible by The Heritage Foundation’s robust endowment for bold conservative projects, and we are committed to supporting those who are making a real impact in advancing our conservative principles."
Communio will receive a $100,000 award in support of the organization’s National Center for Black Family Life and its efforts to encourage and reinforce strong and stable marriages among African Americans. Communio launched the center in January 2023 on the campus of, and in partnership with, Hampton University, a historically black university in Hampton, Virginia.
Communio, in its partnership with Hampton University, will use the Innovation Prize to refine the center’s strategy of reaching black communities through the black church.
For more on Communio’s award, click here.
The National Association of Scholars will receive a $100,000 award in support of its project to study Confucius Classrooms—a 12-month strategy that will uncover and detail the Chinese Communist Party’s infiltration of and influence in American K-12 education.
For more on National Association of Scholars’ award, click here.
The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs will receive a $250,000 award over two years in support of its Preserve and Empower Oklahoma Families Initiative, the organization’s strategy to reposition the nuclear family in Oklahoma as the most powerful and active force in Oklahoma culture and the public-policy making process.
For more on the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs’ award, click here.
Speech First will receive a $100,000 award in support of its work to defend students’ constitutional rights—specifically its efforts to dismantle threats to free speech in universities across the country through its Strategic Litigation Free Speech Project.
For more on Speech First’s award, click here.
And the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation’s grant of $150,000 supports its efforts to expose the devastating effects of communism, advancing the work accomplished through the foundation’s China Studies Program. Through this program, the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation works to expose the Chinese Communist Party’s human rights atrocities and counters the CCP’s global efforts to undermine freedom and the rule of law.
Heritage’s award will help the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation expand its China Studies Program by funding high-impact research on the CCP’s human rights abuses and security threats, promotional efforts through major media campaigns, advocacy engagement with partner network, and their annual China Forum conference.
For more on the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation’s award, click here.
This is the third round of Heritage Innovation Prizes to be awarded. In 2022, winners of the Prize included the Alliance Defending Freedom, Alliance for Opportunity, Americans United for Life, Charlotte Lozier Institute, Defense of Freedom Institute, Forge Leadership Network, Independent Women’s Forum, State Financial Officers Foundation, and Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy. Each organization was awarded a grant ranging from $60,000 to $500,000, some of which will be received over several years. These awards are sponsored by The Heritage Foundation’s robust endowment for innovative conservative projects.
For more information on the most recent Innovation Prize awards, read here, or for information on the inaugural awards, read here. For more information about the prize itself, read here.