45 Years of Empowering Citizens

Common Cause 45th Anniversary Banner

Common Cause and Common Cause New York hosted a special 45th Anniversary Awards Dinner.

Three visionary leaders were honored for the roles they play in empowering citizens in New York and throughout the country, and we highlighted the pivotal role that Common Cause has played over the years.



Jim Sinegal
Co-Founder and Former President & CEO, Costco



Zephyr Teachout
Author "Corruption in America: From Benjamin Franklin's Snuffbox to Citizens United"

2014 Candidate for NY State Governor
Associate Professor of Law, Fordham University


Cornell W. Brooks
President & CEO, NAACP
Past President & CEO, New Jersey Institute for Social Justice

Host and Presenters

Laura Flanders, Host of The Laura Flanders Show

Best-selling author and broadcaster Laura Flanders hosts The Laura Flanders Show on GRITtv, an online channel for in-depth interviews with forward-thinking people which she founded in 2008. Flanders is also the Strong Local Economies Fellow at Yes! Magazine and a contributing writer to The Nation. She is the author of several books including The New York Times best-seller, BUSHWOMEN: Tales of a Cynical Species and Blue GRIT: True Democrats Take Back Politics from the Politicians as well as the editor of At the Tea Party…, and The W. Effect. Flanders is a popular public speaker, a producer and host of live events (including the arts-and-politics series Risky Talking and the State of Female Justice. She appears regularly on MSNBC, onReal Time with Bill Maher and has served as a substitute host for PBS veteran, Bill Moyers. Before joining Air America when it launched in March 2004, Laura was the founding host of the award-winning “Your Call,” Monday-Friday, on public radio, KALW, 91.7 fm in San Francisco. She also directed the Women’s Desk at the media watch group, FAIR and for more than ten years she produced and hosted CounterSpin, FAIR’s nationally syndicated radio program.

Leo Hindery, Jr., Managing Partner of InterMedia Partners

In 1997, was elected President of Tele-Communications, Inc. (TCI), then the world’s largest cable television system operator and programming entity. In 1999, Mr. Hindery became President and Chief Executive Officer of AT&T Broadband, which was formed out of the March 1999 merger of Tele-Communications, Inc. From 2001 until October 2004, he was the founding Chairman and CEO of The YES Network, the regional television home of the New York Yankees, where he won five executive producer Emmys for outstanding programming. Mr. Hindery has in the past been recognized as International Cable Executive of the Year, Cable Television Operator of the Year, one of Business Week’s “Top 25 Executives of the Year”, and one of the cable industry’s “25 Most Influential Executives Over the Past 25 Years”.

Miles Rapoport, President of Common Cause

Miles Rapoport has been President of Demos since 2001. Prior to joining Demos, Miles spent 15 years in Connecticut politics. In 1994, he was elected as Secretary of the State of Connecticut, serving from 1995-1998. As Secretary, he was an energetic advocate for a democracy with high levels of voting and engagement. His office led efforts for voter registration, youth civic engagement, and campaign finance reform. He served for ten years in the Connecticut legislature, from 1985-1994. He chaired the Government Administration and Elections Committee, and was a leading member of the Finance Committee. He is now the incoming President of Common Cause.

Michael Klein, Chairman of the Sunlight Foundation

Michael is the co-founder and Chairman of the Sunlight Foundation. Mike resigned as a partner of the law firm Wilmer Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale) on January 1, 2006 to devote all of his time to the array of business and non-profit activities that had and have increasingly engaged him over the past decade. Principal among these are: Chairman of the Board of Directors of CoStar Group, Inc. of which he was a co-founder; Chairman of the Board of the Shakespeare Theatre Company; Vice Chairman of the Board and Lead Director of Tutor Perini Corporation; director of the privately held cargo carrier ASTAR Air Cargo, Inc., of which he is a co-owner; and director of ThinkFood Group, LLC. Mike also serves as a trustee of The American Himalayan Foundation, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and

Common Cause Host Committee

Benefit Chairs

  • Leo Hindery, Jr.
  • Susan and Frederic Rubinstein
  • Anne and Sean Coffey
  • Chang Park
  • Ruth Zinar


  • PepsiCo


  • Robin and William Hubbard
  • Benjamin and Donna Rosen


  • CWA District 1
  • Anna Carlson 
  • Polly Cleveland 
  • Tom Cramer 
  • Lewis Cullman  
  • Russ & Rita Hauser 
  • Michael Klein
  • Robert Newman 
  • Benjamin & Janet Shute 
  • Fr. Stephen Sundborg 
  • Bill Vanden Heuvel 
  • Rachel Whiting
  • Mimi and Barry Alperin
  • Howard Shultz
  • Michael Klein


  • Global Strategy Group
  • Adelaide Gomer
  • International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers
  • Christy Pennoyer
  • Keith Mestrich
  • Microsoft
  • Jonathan Soros
  • Catherine Woodard
  • Alfred Goldstein
  • Michele Hertz
  • Frederick A.O. Schwarz, Jr.
  • Colin Underwood
  • Maria Vullo


  • Betsy Cohn
  • Tom Bergdall
  • Former Congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman
  • Lawrence Hui
  • Stephanie Low
  • Susan and Joel Mindel
  • Craig Newmark
  • Christy Pennoyer
  • Robert Pennoyer
  • Allison Porter
  • Nancy Wender & Steven Rand
  • Bradley Tilden
  • John Wilcox
  • Tim Wu
  • Rita and Gus Hauser
  • Peter Stamos
  • Art Chang
  • Gregory Diskant
  • Feinstein LLP
  • Rosemary Faulkner
  • William Gannett
  • Counsel Herrick
  • Rob Lehman
  • Jack McGrory
  • Marilyn Melkonian
  • Eleanor Moretta
  • Caroline Nimeczyk
  • Allison and Robert Price

497- Miles Rapoport, Susan Rubinstein, Jim Sinegal, Zephyr Teachout, Cornell Brooks & Susan Lerner

(Left to Right: Miles Rapoport, Susan Rubinstein, Jim Sinegal, Zephyr Teachout, Cornell Brooks, Susan Lerner)

235- Dave Spaulding, Bill Hubbard, Susan Rubinstein, Sean Coffey, Susan Lerner, Ben Shuldiner, Maria Vullo, Eleanor Moretta & Leo Hindery

(Left to Right: Dave Spaulding, Bill Hubbard, Susan Rubinstein, Sean Coffey, Susan Lerner, Ben Shuldiner, Maria Vullo, Eleanor Moretta & Leo Hindery)

175- Gus & Rita Hauser, Elizabeth Holtzman

(Left to Right: Gus & Rita Hauser, Elizabeth Holtzman)

Videos of Speeches & More Photos here

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