The Pioneer Fund was instrumental in the formation of the Third Reich’s “racial hygiene” policies, and it is still very active, covertly, in the US. Many of the ballot measures around the country turning back affirmative action, welfare and racial “entitlements” were quietly financed by the Pioneer Fund. So was The Bell Curve, the notorious, discredited “study” that maintained African-Americans are inherently less intelligent than white people (a best-seller at the Neo-Nazi National Vanguard book shop).
For historical background, see: “Pioneer’s big lie.(Pioneer Fund, Nazi eugenics) – (response to article by J. Philippe Rushton, Albany Law Review, vol. 66, p. 207, 2002 ).
The Pioneer Fund is a U.S. non-profit foundation established in 1937 “to advance the scientific study of heredity and human differences.” Currently headed by psychology professor J. Philippe Rushton, the fund focuses on projects it perceives will not be easily funded due to controversial subject matter.
Two of the most notable studies funded by the Pioneer Fund are the Minnesota Study of Twins Reared Apart and the Texas Adoption Project, which studied the similarities and differences of identical twins and other children adopted into non-biological families. The Pioneer Fund has been the main source of funding for the partly-genetic hypothesis of IQ variation among races. The fund’s grantees and publications have generated controversy since the 1994 publication of The Bell Curve, which drew heavily from Pioneer-funded research. The fund has also been criticized for its perceived stance on eugenics.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a civil rights advocacy organization, has characterized the Pioneer Fund as a hate group. In support of this, the SPLC cites the Pioneer Fund’s funding of organizations and individuals which the SPLC considers racist. It has also been criticized by some scientists and journalists, and in various peer-reviewed academic articles. Critics of the fund include the SPLC, IQ critic William H. Tucker, and historian Barry Mehler and his Institute for the Study of Academic Racism.
Researchers who have been criticized for accepting grants from the fund have argued that the public debates have been disconnected from the expert debates. Robert A. Gordon, for example, replied to media criticisms of grant-recipients: “Politically correct disinformation about science appears to spread like wildfire among literary intellectuals and other nonspecialists, who have few disciplinary constraints on what they say about science and about particular scientists and on what they allow themselves to believe.” …
Pioneer Fund Founders and Former Directors
Wickliffe Preston Draper (1891-1972), Pioneer’s main benefactor, served on its five-person Board of Directors from 1937 until 1972. Draper was born in 1891 to a distinguished New England family, distant kin to three American presidents. He graduated summa cum laude from Harvard in 1913.
When World War I broke out in 1914, Draper enlisted as a lieutenant in the British Army and saw action on the western front and then in Greece. Returning to the western front, he fought at Messines and Ypres, where he was seriously wounded, and was later awarded the British Star Medal and the Belgian Croix de Guerre. When the U.S. entered the war in 1917, Draper transferred to the U.S. Army. In 1919, he was discharged with the rank of major. Promoted to Colonel in the Cavalry Reserve, a title by which many people addressed him, he continued to take officers’ courses until the outbreak of World War II.
When Draper’s father died in 1923, he inherited the family’s wealth earned from a textile machine manufacturing company. Dedicating his life to intellectual pursuits and philanthropy, as well as to adventuring, Draper studied archaeology and anthropology at the University of London, and genetics with private tutors. In 1927, he joined the French Mission led by Captain Augiéras to the southern Sahara and helped discover the remains of “Asselar Man,” some 400 kilometers north of Timbuktu. For this, the French Societé de Geographie awarded him their 1928 Gold Medal, and in Britain he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.
When the United States entered World War II, Draper, now 51 years old, returned to active service. Assigned to military intelligence, he joined British headquarters in India. Later, he was made responsible for internal security for the Alcan (Alaska-Canadian) Highway.
By nature introverted, shy, and modest, Draper refused honorary doctorates or having university buildings named in his honor. The only distinctions he accepted were for his role in the discovery of Asselar Man and his military decorations. Draper insisted that his role as benefactor to many charitable causes (including military history, archaeology, conservation, and population problems) remain anonymous. He never married and when he died in 1972, he left a significant portion of his assets to the Pioneer Fund to continue its scientific philanthropy.
Harry Hamilton Laughlin (1880-1943), the first president of the Pioneer Fund (1937–1941), was a life-long scientist. Laughlin served as long-time director of the Eugenics Record Office at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on Long Island, New York, funded by the Carnegie Institute of Washington. Among his duties was the editing of the Eugenical News, which reported on scientific research and eugenic issues from around the world. Born in Oskaloosa, Iowa, in 1880, the son of a minister and academic, Laughlin grew up in Kirksville, Missouri. He first taught school for ten years before developing an interest in agriculture and plant and animal breeding. In 1910 Laughlin moved to Cold Spring Harbor. In 1917 he received a Doctorate of Science from Princeton for his work in genetics. During the 1920s and 1930s Laughlin served as an advisor to several Congressional Committees. He retired in 1941 and died in 1943.
Frederick Henry Osborn (1890-1981), the second president of the Pioneer Fund (1941–1958), was born into a wealthy New York business and banking family, and was the nephew of Henry Fairfield Osborn, president of the American Museum of Natural History. After undergraduate and graduate work in geology, human evolution, and eugenics—at Princeton and Cambridge—he abandoned business and banking to devote himself to genetic science. The books he wrote in 1934, 1940, and 1951 described the scientific evidence for the heritability of intelligence and mental disorder based on family, twin, and adoption studies. During World War I, Osborn served with the American Red Cross in France, and in World War II, he served as Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Selective Service as a Major General. Osborn continued his public service after war’s end by serving on the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission from 1947 to 1950 as Deputy U.S. Representative.
John Marshall Harlan (1899-1971), the highly respected U.S. Supreme Court Justice, was a director of the Pioneer Fund from 1937 to 1954. During World War II Harlan led the Operational Analysis Section of the U.S. Eighth Air Force, for which the U.S. awarded him the Legion of Merit, and France and Belgium each awarded him their Croix de Guerre. In 1955, President Eisenhower appointed Harlan to the U.S. Supreme Court. He voted with his fellow Justices in the second of the two historic Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas decisions, which first outlawed school segregation between Blacks and Whites and then set forth the means of relief.
Malcolm Donald (1877–1949), another of the initial directors, was a graduate of Harvard Law School and editor of the Harvard Law Review. He worked in the War Department during the First World War and in the Pentagon during the Second World War, with a rank equivalent to Brigadier General. Donald served as a director of the Pioneer Fund from its inception in 1937 until his death in 1949.
Subsequent Board Members have included John M. Woolsey, Jr. (1954–1959), whose distinguished legal career included serving as a staff attorney at the Nuremberg Tribunal prosecuting Nazi war criminals, for which he received the Order of the White Lion from the Czechoslovakian Government. Another director was war hero Marion A. Parrott (1973–2000), who served during World War II with the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne Division. He took part in the D-Day landings at Normandy and was wounded and captured in northern France. He escaped from a prison camp in occupied Poland during 1945 and made his way to Russia. From there he returned to his unit in France and took part in the final advance into Germany at war’s end, at which point he was discharged as a Major.
Another eminent member of the Board was Charles Codman Cabot who served from 1950 until 1973. His renowned Boston family gave rise to the quip, “the Lowells talk only to the Cabots, and the Cabots talk only to God.” Cabot served as a Justice of the Superior Court of Massachusetts during the 1940s. He also served as Chief of the Secretariat of the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey during World War II. Still another director was Henry E. Garrett (1972–1973), Chair of the Psychology Department at Columbia University from 1941 to 1956, and president of the American Psychological Association in 1946. During World War II he was a member of the Adjutant General’s committee, responsible for the classification and selection of military personnel.
Complete Listings of the Past Directors of the Pioneer Fund and Years Served
Wickliffe P. Draper [1937-1972]
Harvard College (cum laude); volunteer British Army WWI, wounded, decorated; volunteer Lt Col US Army Intell, India, Alaska WWII; member of Mission Augieras, co-discoverer of Asselar Man.
Harry Hamilton Laughlin [1937-1941]
ScD, Princeton; director Cold Spring Harbor Eugenics Record Office (Carnegie Institution); numerous publications.
Frederick Henry Osborn [1937-1958]
Princeton (Phi Beta Kappa); Trinity (Cambridge); LLD, Washington & Lee; SD, Norwich; Litt D, NYU; several Pentagon committees; Maj Gen USA; UN Atomic Energy Commission; trustee Population Council; trustee Carnegie Corp; trustee Milbank Fund; co-author Dynamics of Population (1934); Preface to Eugenics (1940, 1951); editor Heredity and Environment; contributor articles on population.
John M. Harlan [1937-1954]
Princeton; Balliol (Oxford); Root Ballantine Harlan Bushby & Palmer; Judge 2d Cir Ct/App; Justice US Supreme Court.
Malcolm Donald [1937-1949]
Harvard college (cum laude, football 4 years, Phi Beta Kappa) and Law (cum laude); editor Harvard Law Review; Gaston Snow, Boston; Herrick, Smith, & Donald, Boston; War Department, Washington WWI; trustee Roxbury Latin School.
John H. Slate, Jr. [1941-1946]
Columbia college and Law; editor Columbia Law Review; co-founder Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom; contributor to Fortune, Saturday Evening Post, Atlantic Monthly, and others.
James P. Kranz, Jr. 
U of the South; Harvard Law; Root, Clark.
Henry Rice Guild [1948-1974]
Harvard College and Law; Lt (JG) US Navy WWI; Herrick Smith, Boston; trustee Mass General Hospital; director Audubon Society; chmn Greater Boston Community Fund; chm, Mass Department of Public Welfare.
Charles Codman Cabot [1950-1973]
Harvard College and Law; Choate Hall, Boston; Ropes Gray, Boston; associate justice Mass Superior Court; chmn, Mass Crime Commission; chmn Mass Bay Transportation Authority; OSS in WWII; Chief of Secretariat, US Strategic Bombing Survey WWII; pres United Community Service of Boston; overseer Harvard College; pres Boston Bar Assn; chmn/trustees Wellesley College; pres/trustees Milton Academy.
John M. Woolsey, Jr. [1954-1959]
Yale College (Phi Beta Kappa) and Law; note editor Yale LJ; Lt US Navy WWII; staff attorney for US Nuremberg War Trials; Debevoise Plimpton; Herrick Smith, Boston; trustee Society for Preservation of N Eng Antiquities; vice pres Trustees of Reservations.
Harry F. Weyher, Jr. [1958-2002]
UNC (Phi Beta Kappa); Harvard Law (magna cum laude); note editor Harvard Law Review; sr ass’t counsel New York State Crime Commission; adj assoc prof NYU Law School; Olwine, Connelly, Chase, O’Donnell, & Weyher; author legal articles, books.
John B. Trevor, Jr. [1959-2000]
Columbia College and Engineering Sch; WW II Project Engineer in charge of developing and evaluating Shipborne Anti-Aircraft Control Systems at Naval Research Lab; author of several classified books and manuals for armed forces; decorated by Navy, investment management.
John F. Walsh, Jr. [1971-1973]
Harvard College, Yale Law; Whitman Breed Abbott & Morgan.
Henry E. Garrett [1972-1973]
U of Richmond; Columbia U; prof, chmn Dept of Psychology, Columbia U; pres American Psychological Association (1946); author Great Experiments in Psychology, Psychology and Life, other books, numerous articles.
Marion A. Parrott [1973-2002]
The Citadel; UNC Law; Major US Army (377th Parachute F A Bn, 101st Airborne Division, wounded, captured, escaped and rejoined unit); representative and chmn of Com on Constitutional Amendments, NC Gen Assembly.
Thomas F. Ellis [1973-1977]
UNC College, Virginia Law; Lt (JG) US Navy WWII; ass’t US attorney; Co-founder Maupin, Taylor & Ellis, Raleigh; special counsel Governor’s Advisory Com on Education; NC State Chairman 1976 Ronald Reagan presidential campaign, National Co-Chairman 1988 Jack Kemp presidential campaign; advisor 1996 Steve Forbes presidential campaign.
Eugenie Mary Ladenburg Davie (Mrs. Preston) [1974-1975]
Westover School; Republican Nat Finance Com; Executive Com and Finance chmn, NY Rep State Com; regent Nat Lib of Medicine; trustee LIU; trustee Adelphi College; chairwoman Robert A. Taft Institute of Gov’t.
Randolph L. Speight [1975-1999]
UNC College; partner, Shearson Hamill.
William Dawes Miller [1983-1993]
Carnegie Inst Tech; engineer and operations officer, Oak Ridge AEC (Manhattan Project); chief engineer Continental Copper & Steel (“Texas Towers” radar project), pres and CEO Consolidated Aluminum, sr vice pres The Anaconda Company.
Karl Schakel [1993-2002]
Purdue U; founder of weapons systems and aeronautical engineering company; founder of ranching-farming company operating in 12 countries on five continents.
Edwin D. Morgan [2000-2001]
Morgan served with the 1st Marine Division in Guadalcanal, New Guinea, New Britain and Peleliu; he founded Holographics, Inc., which developed useful laser technologies.
R. Travis Osborne [2000-present]
Osborne earned his first degree from the University of Florida (1935) and later a M.Ed. (1938) and a Ph.D. (1950) from the University of Georgia. Commissioned in the U.S. Navy during World War II, he taught air navigation at the Navy Pre-flight School in Memphis, Tennessee. Professor of Psychology at the University of Georgia, he organized and directed the Student Guidance Center, which later became the Counseling and Testing Service. He became Emeritus Professor (1980). He is the author of numerous articles and books including Twins: Black and White (1980), and with F. C. J. McGurk, The Testing of Negro Intelligence, Vol. 2 (1982).
The Current Board
The late Harry F. Weyher, Jr. (1921-2002) served as the third president of the Pioneer Fund for 44 years (1958-2002). He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After serving in World War II, Weyher entered Harvard Law School, where he was note editor of the Harvard Law Review and graduated magna cum laude. In addition to his private practice, Weyher also taught law at New York University. Along with two books and a number of articles on law, he also wrote two major articles on the The Pioneer Fund (“Contributions to the history of psychology: CXII. Intelligence, behavior genetics, and the Pioneer Fund,” Psychological Reports, 1998, 82, 1347-1374; “The Pioneer Fund, the behavioral sciences, and the media’s false stories,” Intelligence, 1999, 26, 319-335), as well as contributing a lengthy preface to The Science of Human Diversity, by Richard Lynn, which gave an inside view of his over four decades at the helm.
J. Philippe Rushton, B.Sc., Ph.D., D.Sc., F.B.Ps.S., the fourth and current president of the Pioneer Fund, was born in 1943 in Bournemouth, England. He received all his degrees from the University of London, including a Ph.D. in social psychology from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is the author of 5 books and over 200 scholarly articles published in peer-reviewed journals. Rushton is a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American, British, and Canadian Psychological Associations. He is also a member of the Behavioral Genetics Association and the Society for Neuroscience. Rushton has summarized his research for journals of opinion such as Liberty, the National Review, and the Washington Times’s Insight on the News, and discussed it on TV talk shows such as Donahue, Geraldo Live, and Connie Chung. His major published work is Race, Evolution, and Behavior, which was favorably reviewed in The New York Times Book Review of October 16, 1994, translated into Japanese, and is now in its 3rd unabridged edition, as well as in an abridged edition and an audio book.
Professor Rushton began his career by researching the basis of altruism. The question of why one individual aids another, thereby exposing himself to risk, has long posed a challenge to evolutionary theories of human development. Rushton’s early work focused on the social learning of generosity in 7- to 11-year-old children. After writing a book, Altruism, Socialization, and Society (1980), which examined the influence of the family, the educational system, and the mass media, he broadened his perspective to include sociobiological and behavioral genetic factors. He then analyzed the University of London Twin Register and found that individual differences in empathy and nurturance are about 50% heritable, as were individual differences in aggression and crime, some of which he found to be mediated by testosterone.
Studying behavioral genetics and sociobiology led Rushton to explore the dilemma of why, throughout the natural world, “birds of a feather flock together.” He found that genes incline people to marry, befriend, associate with, and help others like themselves. Typically, individuals learn to identify and prefer their own ethnic group, rather than others, for largely genetic reasons. Rushton’s Genetic Similarity Theory expanded the kin-selection theory of altruism (a fundamental theorem of sociobiology) to explain why the pull of that factor is so powerful across human relationships and how it provides an explanation for ethnocentrism and ethnic competition. Altruism follows lines of genetic similarity in order to replicate genes more effectively; xenophobia emerges as the dark side of human altruism.
It also led Rushton to examine race differences. In new studies and reviews of the world literature, he has documented that East Asians and their descendants consistently average a larger brain size, greater intelligence, more sexual restraint, a slower rate of maturation, and greater levels of law abidingness and social organization than do Europeans and their descendants. Europeans, in turn, average higher on these dimensions than do Africans and their descendants. To explain this pattern he proposed a gene-based evolutionary theory in his book, Race, Evolution, and Behavior (1995).
The Current Board of Directors
When Harry Weyher died on March 27, 2002, J. Philippe Rushton, Professor of Psychology at the University of Western Ontario in Canada, a long-time Pioneer grant recipient, was appointed the new president. At the same time, Weyher’s widow, Mrs. Michelle Weyher, was appointed a Director, as was Richard Lynn, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Ulster, also a long-time grantee. They joined existing Board members R. Travis Osborne, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Georgia, and Karl Schakel, an engineer and businessman-rancher from Colorado.
Qualifications of Scientists
(From the PF weibsite)
In considering grant proposals, the Fund has always sought excellence in the researchers. We review the scholastic background, extent of field research, published writings and citations of those writings, and reputation among peers of all applicants. Two of our grantees are among the most cited psychologists of all time (Hans J. Eysenck, Arthur R. Jensen). One won a Nobel Prize (William B. Shockley). Three are Guggenheim Fellows (Arthur R. Jensen, Ernest van den Haag, and J. Philippe Rushton). Pioneer grantees have been elected as the presidents of the American Psychological Association, the American Educational Research Association, the British Psychological Society, the Behavior Genetics Association, the Psychometric Society, the Society for Psychophysiological Research, the Society of Multivariate Experimental Psychology, and the International Society for the Study of Individual Differences. Grantees currently serve on the editorial boards of major academic journals, including three on the board of Personality and Individual Differences, and three on the editorial board of the journal Intelligence. The Galton Society of the United Kingdom has selected three Pioneer Fund grantees to give the annual Galton Lectures (Hans J. Eysenck, Thomas J. Bouchard, and Arthur R. Jensen). The collected works of grantees total over 200 scholarly books and 2,000 scholarly articles.