Genetic Literacy Project Mission Statement
The mission of The Genetic Literacy Project (GLP) is to aid the public, media and policymakers in understanding the science and societal implications of human and agricultural genetic and biotechnology research and to promote science literacy. Our goal, through our website and outreach efforts, including the compiling and dissemination of educational materials, organizing public and private conferences and initiating briefings with policy influencers, is to help the public disentangle science from ideology, prevent legislative over-reach, promote cooperation among public, academic and corporate science researchers, and encourage an ethically and scientifically sound development of breakthrough genetic technologies.
What benefits do advances in genetics and biotechnology offer? What are the potential pitfalls in manipulating the animal and human genome? Agricultural and human genetic engineering is reshaping farming, food and medicine, and genetic research is providing new insights into our understanding of evolution and human history. Biotechnology research can improve food security, the environment and public health. Yet, dramatic innovations, when misapplied, can also lead to unintended health and environmental consequences and present ethical and religious challenges. We examine these often-profound issues on a daily basis.
Research into genetics and related sciences is widely embraced. But in practice, “gene”, “genetic engineering”, “biotechnology”, “GMO”, “synthetic biology”, “gene editing” and similar concepts often stir concern and misunderstanding when applied to biomedicine, disease amelioration, evolution, ancestral and race research, and food and farming. That often leads to confusion and even resistance among the public and policy makers. In many cases, special interest groups misrepresent ideology as empirical science to block many biotechnology advances. We respect the uncertainties inherent in science but the GLP is grounded in the conviction that genomic research is an engine of innovation and job creation if applied wisely.
GLP History and Governance
The GLP is part of the Science Literacy Project (SLP), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit funded by grants from independent foundations and charities. The GLP also accepts tax-deductible donations from individuals, but not from corporations. To the SLP’s knowledge, none of the foundations that has donated money to the GLP has financial ties to companies linked to human or agricultural genetics.
The SLP also includes the Epigenetics Literacy Project and the Genetic Expert News Service (GENeS), which was run with no editorial oversight from the GLP from 2012-14; both are on hiatus. The SLP and its various subdivisions have no formal affiliation with and receive no funding from any other institutions or private individuals other than those listed below and in our 990 government filings.
Executive director Jon Entine was a senior fellow (unpaid) at the Institute for Food and Agricultural Literacy at the University of California-Davis’ World Food Institute from 2014-2016 and was previously a senior fellow (unpaid) at George Mason University’s Center for Health and Risk Communication from 2011-2104.
The GLP began in 2011 as an independently operated division of the Statistical Assessment Service housed at GMU. Jon Entine served as a senior fellow (unpaid) at STATS to which he contributed articles. STATS provided accounting services and administrative support to the independently operated GLP from its inception until 2014, when STATS folded, ceased its affiliation with GMU and became a project of Science About Science US. In 2015, the Sense About Science board decided the Genetic Literacy Project should inherit the 501(c)(3) nonprofit legal status of STATS/Sense About Science and registered as an independent 501(c)(3) under the name Science Literacy Project.
- Drew Kershen, professor emeritus University of Oklahoma College of Law, agricultural biotechnology
- Nina Fedoroff, emeritus professor in molecular biology, Penn State University, former president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science
- Mary Boote (Roth), CEO of Global Farmer Network (formerly Truth About Trade and Technology)
- Ben Locwin, president Healthcare Science Advisors, PhD in behavioral neuroscience, MBA, MS; former director of Biogen
- Matt Winkler, chairman and founder of Asuragen and Ambion; chairman of the Winkler Family Foundation
- Geoffrey Kabat, cancer epidemiologist and author, formerly on the faculty of the Stony Brook University School of Medicine and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine
- Jon Entine, GLP founder and executive director
- Phyllis A. Ludwig, GLP CFO, Ludwig Business Consultants
- Ann Fitzgerald, Founder A.C. Fitzgerald
GLP Financial Transparency
- John Templeton Foundation: $267,687
- Searle Freedom Trust: $75,000
- Winkler Family Foundation: $165,000
- Center for Food Integrity: $50,000
- Phil Harvey, DKT Liberty Project: $65,000
- Triad Foundation: $5,000
- Individual donations: $7,723.43
GLP 2017-2018 Annual Report
The GLP is committed to full transparency.
Download and review our Annual Report.
To Contact Us:
Science Literacy Project/Genetic Literacy Project
c/o Phyllis Ludwig, CFO
1120 Welsh Road, Suite 250
North Wales, PA 19454