The American Action Forum is a 21st Century center-right policy institute providing actionable research and analysis to solve America’s most pressing policy challenges.

Led by Douglas Holtz-Eakin, former Director of the Congressional Budget Office, AAF injects forward-thinking ideas into the public debate that will build a better economic future, promoting innovative, free-market solutions to create a smaller, smarter government.

AAF provides data-driven insight to today’s defining domestic policy challenges, utilizes both in-house policy experts and a broad network of outside experts, and deploys modern communications approaches to express ideas and effectively engage policymakers, thought leaders, academics, media, and the general public. 

In just the few years since its 2009 founding, AAF has proudly led the center-right policy debate on issues ranging from debt, health care, taxes, immigration, and more. Its work is routinely utilized by center-right leaders who understand that government has an important, but limited role in protecting freedoms, promoting a vibrant private sector, and serving US citizens more effectively.

The American Action Forum is an independent, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, and it is not affiliated with or controlled by any political group. Its focus is to educate the public about the complex policy choices now facing the country, and explain as cogently and forcefully as possible why solutions grounded in the center-right values that have guided the country thus far still represent the best way forward for America's future. It will stay neutral in elections, and by and large will leave its sister organization, the American Action Network, to engage in any appropriate direct legislative advocacy in support of the policy proposals it discusses. Like the Network, the Forum welcomes policy ideas consistent with its center-right values from any source, regardless of party affiliation, and aims to make its educational materials available to members of the public of all political stripes.

The American Action Forum does not take policy positions. The views expressed on this site are those of its scholars alone.


  • Douglas Holtz-Eakin President
  • Fred Malek Chairman, American Action Forum
  • Senator Norm Coleman Of Counsel, Hogan Lovells US LLP
  • Elaine Chao 24th Secretary of Labor
  • James Barksdale Chairman and President, Barksdale Management Corporation
  • Peter Bell Former Chairman, Metropolitan Council
  • Wendy Grubbs Former Special Assistant, President George W. Bush
  • Bobbie Kilberg President, Northern Virginia Technology Council
  • Lauren Maddox Education Expert
  • Governor John R. McKernan, Jr. Chairman and CEO, McKernan Enterprises, Inc.
  • Billy Pitts President, Capitol BrainTrust
  • The Honorable Michael Chertoff Co-Founder and Chairman, The Chertoff Group
  • Ambassador Boyden Gray Founding Partner, Boyden Gray & Associates