Ron Arnold's Left Tracking Library


Drummond Pike

Former master of a vast and intricate Empire of the Left: the mature Tides Network, product of a talented, intelligent, and cunning fundraising wizard. Pike has mentored, guided, or directed grants to more tax exempt organizations than anyone else in the world. His career parallels that of Joshua Mailman, wealthy heir who has personally founded or funded more social-responsibility business initiatives and left-wing grantmaking foundations than anyone else in the world.

See the Tides Network profile for details.

Drummond Pike:
Resigned September 2010 from Tides, hired April 2011 by Equilibrium Capital Group as Principal.
His history and connections:
Tides Inc

CEO   2007 Salary $212,974, benefits $33,097

Tides Center
President  2002 Salary  $78,200, benefits $13,294
2007 salary $0.
Tides Foundation
President and Director  2002 Salary $78,200, benefits $13,294  2007 salary $0

Democracy Alliance Treasurer

Institute for New Economic Thinking

Governing Board Member (with five others)
Working Assets, Inc - board member
Compensation for board director fee $4,500, Internet fundraising group

President  2002 Salary $8,500, benefits $1,445
Environmental Working Group
Solidago Foundation, former Director


This Muckety Map is interactive. Click on the small x box to expand.




Drummond Pike's connections to George Soros are mapped on our Library.

Drummond's philanthropy:

Pike is co-founder and president of the
Tides Foundation (1976) and Tides Center (1992).

  • The Tides Foundation is a pass-through for other foundations’ money. Tides Foundation is a public charity, not a private foundation. Tides Foundation passes other foundations' money to a spectrum of left-wing organizations which the original donors would not or could not support on their own.

  • The Tides Center shelters a wide variety of leftist “social change” groups under its legal and tax-exempt status, providing management and payroll services, fundraising assistance, and legal counsel for an 8% fee, while the groups themselves operate their own projects and programs. Because none of the more than 260 projects under the Tides umbrella files its own Form 990 with the IRS, their finances are totally secret and not available for public inspection, an issue that requires congressional remedy.

Drummond's power connections as of 2009:

  • Co-founder, National Network of Grantmakers (1980), which remains an important source of funding for left wing political activism.
  • President and Director, Tsunami Fund, a 501(c)(4) lobbying organization funded by individuals and foundations to influence legislators in passing anti-capitalist laws.
  • President,,  created by Tides Foundation, “a nonprofit focused on Internet fundraising” (only for left-wing anti-capitalist groups).
  • President, Highwater, Inc., a private corporation wholly owned by Tides Foundation. Highwater was a general partner in Thoreau Center Partners, LP, which leased office space to the Tides Center at $219,202 annually.
  • Co-founder (with John Harrington), director and shareholder of Working Assets, a left-wing telephone and credit card firm that sells its services to the Tides Center.
  • Director, Environmental Working Group.
  • Former director, Solidago Foundation, created by Pike to fund the Tides Foundation.
  • America's Charities - Board Member

  • Burt Foundation - Director

  • Charity Projects Entertainment Fund (CPEF) - Treasurer / Director

  • Democracy Alliance - Treasurer / Director

  • Endswell Foundation (Canada) - Chairman

  • Environmental Working Group - Treasurer

  • Farallon Fund - President

  • Global Environment Project Institute Inc (GEPI) - Director

  • - Secretary / Board Member

  • Harding Rock Fund - President

  • Heller Family Foundation Inc - Director

  • Island Press - Center forResource Economics - Board of Directors

  • League of Young Voters - Director

  • Livingry Foundation - Treasurer

  • Nathan M. Ohrbach Foundation Inc - Assistant Secretary and Assistant Treasurer

  • Network for Good Inc - Board Member

  • Rouhana Family Foundation Inc. - Vice President

  • Sage Center - President

  • Threshold Foundation - Director

  • Tides Advocacy Fund - CEO / Ex officio

  • Tides Canada Foundation - Founding Chair

  • Tides Center - CEO / Ex officio

  • Tides Center (PA) - CEO

  • Tides Foundation - Director / CEO

  • Tides Network = CEO / Ex Offico

  • Tides Two Rivers Fund - CEO / Ex Officio

  • Tides, Inc - CEO / Ex Officio

  • Underdog Foundation - Trustee

  • Welthorn and Ehrmann Families Foundations - Director

Drummond MacGavin Pike

Drummond Pike was born in San Rafael, California in 1948, the third of four brothers. His father, Peter Pike, was an investment banker. His mother, Catherine Cline Pike, was Marin County’s first female pediatrician.

Although Drummond Pike came from a well-off family, he was not the heir of a great fortune, as were so many other leftist philanthropists of his generation, such as Joshua Mailman and his secretive "Doughnuts" group of wealthy heirs, which included Jeffrey Bronfman of the Seagram's whiskey fortune, and Harriett McKnight Crosby from two fortunes, the McKnight timber, real estate and skyscraper money and the Crosby General Mills money. The Doughnuts took over the U.K.-based Threshold Foundation in 1981 and in 1984 made it a project of Tides Foundation to pool their inherited wealth and fund leftist groups that could do a lot with a little. Pike remained a Director of Threshold Foundation when it incorporated independently in 1986, and remains today. He is now a millionaire himself.

Pike's leadership talent showed early. He majored in political science at the University of California at Santa Cruz and gained note as an anti-Viet Nam War protester. He was selected as campus representative to the Board of Regents during his senior year in 1969, where he was known as an aggressive student-power advocate.

In 1970, activists from the Ford Foundation-created Center for Community Change set up The Youth Project in Washington, D.C. with Pike as associate director. It was a pass-through funding group (which would plant the seeds of later tactics in Pike's mind) of rich young heirs who financed poor young activists in anti-business community organizing.

The Center for Community Change itself was funded by early progressive foundations: the Stern Family Fund, Needmor Fund, Abelard Foundation, DJB Foundation, J.M. Kaplan Fund, Helen Lehman Buttenwieser’s Joint Foundation Support, and Stewart R. Mott Charitable Trust, giving Pike his first big-money connections.

Pike earned a master’s degree in political science at Rutgers University while with the Project, then returned West to open its San Francisco office, but was soon hired away by Youth Project funder Alan Stephen Davis, son of insurance mogul (and AARP co-founder) Leonard Davis, to lead his Shalan Foundation, which was incorporated in New York (in 1969, from the Chittenango Trust and the Charitable Lead Trust), but housed in San Francisco. "Shalan" was a compressed portmanteau of his wife Shane's first name and his own - ShAlan.

In 1976, when Pike had just joined Shalan (or so the official story goes), a young couple from New Mexico approached him with a problem: they wanted to donate anonymously and needed a public foundation to handle their grants. Shalan couldn’t accommodate them, so Pike and Jane Bagley Lehman, Reynolds tobacco heiress and president of Arca Foundation (1970-1980), co-founded the Tides Foundation as a public charity to help them. That may be true, but it hardly seems a credible reason for a savvy and seasoned person of exceptional wealth such as Jane Bagley Lehman to fund and lead a substantial startup foundation.

The more likely story is that Lehman, who had just moved to California from New York, thought up the foundation idea herself after meeting Pike and seeing his talent in action. The Tides name evidently came from Pike, for a Sausalito bookstore where leftist readers and writers mixed. Lehman completely controlled the Tides Foundation, serving as its board chair until her death in 1988. Her daughter Susan Lehman Carmichael served as a member of the board of directors of both the Tides Foundation and the Tides Center until 2000.

Other donors came, and Pike ran Tides "out of his desk drawer at Shalan" for several years - another unlikely story. If it was run out of anybody's desk drawer, it was more likely Lehman's nearby facilities. Pike's first big coup was helping Norman Lear create People for the American Way in 1980, when he also helped establish the National Network of Grantmakers, today the premier self-described "progressive" donor association for the far left.

In 1981 Davis gave Pike a year to separate. At year end, Pike and Tides went independent and rented offices with Lyman Casey’s Bothin Helping Fund.

Pike's empire has grown into what is being called the "Tides Family of Organizations," run by the Tides Network, a sort of tax-exempt holding company that rules many non-profit subsidiaries.

Wade Rathke, controversial ACORN co-founder, was a Tides director from the start and chaired Tides, Inc. until 2010, when he was forced to resign in a money scandal..

Pike married Elizabeth "Liza" Cohen in 1982, a Berkeley grad who helped create Resource Media for environmental group outreach.

They have two children, Rachel Catherine (1984), a Gates Scholar at Cambridge in chemistry (she spent her junior year in Tanzania), and Maxwell MacGavin (1987), who graduated from Marin Academy prep school in 2005 and volunteered with ACORN Relief’s Hurricane Katrina project in Houston, Texas.

Pike and his wife live in an ocean-view home in Mill Valley, an upscale suburb north of San Francisco, just across the Golden Gate. They also own a million-dollar chalet near Donner Summit in Truckee, California. We do not disclose personal locations.