Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Elias Sacks

Second Advisor

Scott Skinner-Thompson

Third Advisor

Greg Johnson


This thesis begins by recognizing that outsized corporate influence on public policy is a problem which must be fixed. I then propose that Religion-Affiliated Activist Organizations (“RAAOs”) are suited to reintroduce non-corporate agendas to the policy arena because of their metaphysically-grounded motivations, existing leadership structures, and community ties. As support, I cite scholarship in religious studies and my interviews with RAAO leaders to demonstrate how these characteristics have led to the reintroduction of non-corporate voices into policy debates generally and in the context of immigration. I conclude by addressing counterarguments and reflecting on the analysis’s implications.