Checks & Balances Project,® founder, former television reporter Andrew Schenkel, started C&BP after a chance conversation at COP 15 in Copenhagen, Denmark, with Tigercomm President Mike Casey. Their idea: Address the decline of the media’s investigative reporting capacity and the growth of the influence peddling industry through an online watchdog effort. Hold government officials and lobbyists accountable on energy, good government, and public policy.
In June 2011, Gabe Elsner joined Andrew. With a long history of clean energy activism, Gabe had seen C&BP in action in his capacity as a social media associate at Tigercomm, which was working on behalf of C&BP. The project began aggressively investigating the fossil fuel-funded disinformation infrastructure by ALEC, TransCanada, and API. The work captured the interest not only from media outlets, but also several people who formed Renew American Prosperity, a 501(c)(4), to raise funds for C&BP and efforts like it.
Andrew Schenkel left C&BP in 2012 to start his own environmental communications business. His vision and success continues to this date.
After two years with C&BP, Gabe realized the need for more capacity to debunk misinformation by fossil fuel-backed front groups and to promote the positive benefits of clean energy. He left C&BP to found the Energy & Policy Institute, a pro-clean energy website.
Former NYSE and NASDAQ spokesman Scott Peterson took over as executive director of C&BP in 2014.
Funding for C&BP is provided by Renew American Prosperity and individual donors. C&BP receives strategic support from Tigercomm LLC, a Virginia-based public relations firm.