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Past Event

Anne Nelson: Inside the Radical Right's Shadow Network

Established in 1981, the Council for National Policy has been the leading organization for wealthy, conservative decision makers to consolidate their power. This little-known coalition of elites is the strategic nerve center for fundraising money and mobilizing voters behind the scenes. Critics say that with its membership private and meetings held at an undisclosed location, the Council for National Policy has successfully made game plans and decisions steering the Republican Party in a process virtually unknown to the public. Award-winning author and media analyst Anne Nelson, however, is looking to demystify the elaborate organization.

In her new book Shadow Network, Nelson uncovers the key fundamentalists, oligarchs and allies that comprise the powerhouse of the Council for National Policy. She reveals stories about the Koch brothers, radical right-wing organizations, the decline of local journalism, the race for digital engagement, and the fight over the information war. As a research scholar at Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs, Nelson has focused her work on the role of digital media in aiding underserved populations through health, education and culture. Now, in a time of stark and growing threats to our most valued institutions and democratic freedoms, Nelson looks to illuminate the clouded history behind the political coalition.

Join us as Anne Nelson uncovers the conservative process that plays a significant role in shaping political outcomes today.


This is a free-for-members program. Members: Click on the "Buy Tickets" button above to order your tickets, and select the members link on the left side of the page. Your username is the email you used to sign up as a member. You can also request a password reset if needed. Discount will automatically be applied at checkout.

This is an online-only program; please pre-register to receive a link to the live-stream event. We welcome donations made during registration to support the production of our online programming. 

Copies of Shadow Network are available for purchase during checkout. Purchased books will be sent to the address provided at checkout (domestic U.S. addresses only).

May 26, 2021

United States

Image - Anne Nelson

Anne Nelson

Journalist, Author, Shadow Network: Media, Money, and the Secret Hub of the Radical Right

Image - Kirk Hanson

In Conversation with Kirk Hanson

Senior Fellow and Former Executive Director, Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, Santa Clara University


3–4 p.m. (Pacific Time) program