About Us

About This Resource

This project is led by Lisa Graves, an expert on the history of the Independent Women’s Forum and the Independent Women’s Voice, who has been writing about IWF/V since 2016. Here are some of her articles about IWF/V:

This clearinghouse for information about IWF/V draws its content primarily from Graves’ ongoing research and her prior work at the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD).

This website project will be updated regularly with new analysis, plus excerpts from key reporting.

Project Team

Graves leads this project. She is the co-founder of Documented Investigations, a watchdog group that investigates corporate influence on our democracy, economy, and environment.

She worked for eight years as the Executive Director of CMD, where she launched the award-winning ALECexposed project and conceived of and conducted other investigations. She was the editor-in-chief of all of its publications: PRWatch, SourceWatch, ExposedbyCMD, and more.

Among her other prior leadership roles, Graves led a team of attorneys and aides as Chief Counsel for Nominations for the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. She also served as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Policy Development at the U.S. Department of Justice, where she worked on judicial nominations and handled an array of legal policy issues, such as the Violence Against Women Act. She also served as the Deputy Chief of the Article III Judges Division of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts and as an adjunct law professor. Graves was also the senior legislative strategist for the ACLU on national security issues.

In law school at Cornell, she was chosen to co-lead the Women’s Law Coalition, and she worked on the Cornell Legal Aid Clinic’s Women and Law project.

Her research and analysis on corporate influence, dark money in elections, the activities of Charles Koch and his network, and more are featured in major films, books, news shows, newspapers, and news magazines. To arrange an interview, please contact this project’s communications team here.

Research and Outreach Team

The principle researcher on this website project alongside Lisa is Evan Vorpahl, with support from Kim Haddow, founder of the Legal Solutions Support Center; Max Abbott, a senior research fellow with CMD; Elizabeth Buchanan; and Valerie Holford. Taryn Tuss and Niketa Kumar have also helped this project. Other women and men have also worked to provide other support.

Other Key Research

Others whose research has helped inform some of the findings here include: Calvin Sloan, a freelance writer working on his first book; Arn Pearson, the Executive Director of CMD; David Armiak, CMD’s Research Director; and R.J. Eskow, the writer who created The Zero Hour.


Please note: this site, www.independentwomensforum.org, is a forum for the voices of independent women who are not beholden to corporate agendas or Charles Koch. It is certainly not affiliated with the organizations calling themselves Independent Women’s Forum and Independent Women’s Voice or with the websites IWF.org and IWV.org.

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