Ed Crane (political activist)

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Edward H. Crane III
Born (1944-08-15) August 15, 1944 (age 71)
Los Angeles, California
Nationality United States
Institution Cato Institute (1977–2012)
Field Economics, Politics, Social Science, Culture
School or tradition
Libertarian economics
Alma mater University of California, Berkeley
University of Southern California (MBA)
Influences Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Milton Friedman

Edward Harrison Crane (born August 15, 1944)[1] is an American libertarian, a co-founder of the Cato Institute. He served as its President until October 1, 2012.[2]

In the 1970s, he was one of the most active leaders of the Libertarian Party.[citation needed] He was the Party's national chairman from 1974 to 1977,[3] worked on John Hospers's Presidential bid[4] and managed Ed Clark's 1978 campaign to be Governor of California. In 1980, Crane served as Communications Director to the Libertarian Party presidential ticket of Clark and Vice Presidential candidate David Koch.[5][6]

Crane sits on the boards of various political organizations, including Americans for Limited Government, a group that assists grassroots efforts throughout the country.[citation needed] Crane is also a member of the Mont Pelerin Society.

Tenure at Cato Institute[edit]

In 1977, with the funding of Charles Koch and the assistance of Murray Rothbard, Crane established the Cato Institute, a libertarian think-tank.

While at Cato, Crane grew the organization: from a staff of 10 and a budget of $800,000 when it first opened in San Francisco, to a staff of 127 and a $21 million budget in a newly renovated building in Washington, DC.[7] He retired from Cato in 2012.[8]


  1. ^ http://www.freedomcircle.com/topic/Crane_Edward
  2. ^ "Cato Institute Welcomes New CEO, Announces Changes to Board". Cato Institute. 
  3. ^ Morin, Richard (May 9, 2002). "Free Radical; Libertarian—and Contrarian—Ed Crane Has Run the Cato Institute for 25 Years. His Way.". Washington Post. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ David Henderson (September 29, 2012). "Ed Crane: An Appreciation". EconLog. Liberty Fund, Inc. Retrieved October 11, 2012. 
  5. ^ Edward H. Crane III and Chris Hocker (December 1980). "A Report on the 1980 Libertarian Presidential Campaign". Libertarian Strategy Monthly. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 
  6. ^ Jackovich, Karen G. (September 22, 1980). "Ed Clark Is the Libertarian Party's Headstrong Candidate for the White House". People. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 
  7. ^ Staff Editorial (October 23, 2012). "Ed Crane's Freedom Legacy". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 
  8. ^ In 2012, a shareholder dispute arose between Crane and Charles and David Koch. Crane accused the Kochs of trying to take control of the organization. The Kochs contended that the shares of deceased shareholder William Niskanen should have been offered to the Institute first, and not passed to his widow. Crane later said that he spoke to New Yorker reporter Jane Meyer that he was a source on her article condemning the Koch brothers. Weigel, David (March 22, 2012). ""Who the Hell is Going to Take a Think Tank Seriously If It's Controlled by Billionaire Oil Guys?" Cato's President Speaks.". Slate. Retrieved December 10, 2012.  As part of the dispute settlement, the Cato shareholder agreement was dissolved and Crane agreed to retire. Vogel, Kenneth P. (June 26, 1980). "Cato, Koch brothers settle ownership fight". Politico. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Susan Nolan
U.S. Libertarian Party Executive Committee Chair
1974 – 1977
Succeeded by
David Bergland