This past year has been a special one for the Center for Economic and Policy Research. CEPR was founded in 1999, so 2009 marked our 10th anniversary. Over the course of the year, we’ve had some time to reflect on how far we’ve come, and how much we’ve accomplished.

From our humble beginnings just ten years ago, CEPR has grown into a force to be reckoned with. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) named us the 15th most-cited think tank in the US in their annual study – up from #25 just last year. We’ve been cited over 7,750 times in various media so far this year – an increase of 1,100 over all of last year. We know that we couldn’t have survived - let alone thrived - without the help of friends like you: the thousands of people who believe in our mission, who help to spread CEPR’s message, and who support us financially.

We are most grateful for that support, for it has enabled us to consistently "speak truth to power"…Or, as the editors of The Guardian (UK) put it:

“Set up in 1999 with a total budget smaller than some other thinktanks' entertainment funds, CEPR has been a professional thorn in the side of orthodoxy…In a world of Goliaths, CEPR makes a rather effective David.”

We are proud of the fact that we have accomplished so much given our small size and lean budget, and given our influence-free funding structure. Throughout our 10-year history, we have relied solely on the financial support of foundations and individuals. We take no corporate funding, no union funding, and no government funding. In these times of revolving door lobbying and billion dollar bank bailouts, we steadfastly maintain our independence. And CEPR was the most cost-effective think tank in 2008 measured by media citations and web traffic, ranking first in media citations per budget dollar for the fifth consecutive year, and first in web traffic per budget dollar for the second consecutive year. In other words, we aced our own “stress test”.

As the end of our 10-year anniversary celebration draws near, we ask that you please help us to continue our fight into the next decade and beyond. We’ve had many successes over the course of the past year, but there is still much more to do. The recession drags on both here and abroad. Too many people are still unemployed and at risk of losing their homes. The “Washington Consensus” still influences much of our foreign policy. We need your financial and moral support – now, perhaps more than ever. We still have many more battles to fight. And we are committed to using your gift wisely and effectively.

From all of us at CEPR, best wishes for a safe and healthy holiday season, and a happy New Year.

Warm Regards,

Dean Baker, Mark Weisbrot, and the staff of CEPR