If you want to make a difference in American culture, you are most likely to do it in conjunction with a non-profit organization. That’s one of the striking conclusions from a national survey among Christian conservatives conducted by the American Culture & Faith Institute (ACFI). The survey asked people to identify the organizations, of any type, that they believe made the most positive impact on American society during 2016.

Christian Non-Profits Got It Done

The survey respondents overwhelmingly identified non-profit organizations as the entities making the greatest positive difference in American society last year. Of the five dozen organizations specified by survey respondents, only one of them – Fox News – was a for-profit organization.

The survey among SAGE Cons – an acronym for Spiritually Active, Governance Engaged Conservatives – also found that eight out of every ten of the culture-influencing organizations were Christian non-profits.

Most Effective Change Agents

The ACFI survey asked SAGE Cons to identify the organizations they believed to have been most effective at leading positive cultural change in the U.S. during 2016.

Topping the list were the American Center for Law & Justice (chosen by 35%) and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (named by 33%). Samaritan’s Purse (29%), American Family Association (27%), Focus on the Family (23%), and the Family Research Council (22%) were the next most recognized organizations.

Both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse are currently under the leadership of Franklin Graham, son of the famous evangelist Billy Graham.

A bit farther down the list were Fox News (listed by 19%), Heritage Foundation (17%), National Right to Life (16%), Judicial Watch (14%), and Hillsdale College (13%).

Other organizations named by at least 5% of SAGE Cons were Liberty Counsel (9%), Wikileaks (9%), Tea Party (9%), Salvation Army (8%), Colson Center (7%), Ravi Zacharias Ministries (7%), and Susan B. Anthony List (5%).


About the Research

The research described in this report is drawn from a nationwide online survey that is part of the RightView™ longitudinal research project, a national study undertaken among spiritually active, governance engaged conservatives – a segment known as SAGE Cons. This wave of the survey had a sample size of 700 qualified adults and was conducted by the American Culture & Faith Institute during January of 2017.

In RightView™ studies SAGE Cons are identified as adults who are registered voters; conservative on political matters; have accepted Jesus Christ as their savior; are active in pursuing their Christian faith; and are actively engaged in politics and government. They represent about 8% to 10% of the national adult population, which constitutes a segment of some 20 to 25 million individuals.

The American Culture & Faith Institute is a division of United in Purpose, a non-partisan, non-profit organization. The mission of United in Purpose is to educate, motivate and activate conservative Christians to engage in cultural transformation in ways that are consistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The organization does not support or promote individual political candidates or parties.

Additional information about this study and related research is accessible on the American Culture & Faith Institute website, located at To receive a free copy of the weekly research reports produced by ACFI, visit the website and register for the American Culture Review newsletter.