Chad Wilcox

Chief Operating Officer

Chad Wilcox is Pacific Legal Foundation’s chief operating officer, fighting for freedom by ensuring all aspects of PLF are prepared and motivated to advance the cause of individual liberty.

Chad oversees all of PLF’s non-litigation efforts, including external-facing communications and public outreach, as well as general operations and administration. As a member of the executive leadership team, he helps set and promote PLF’s short- and long-range vision, strategy, objectives, culture, and values. He also serves as the organization’s chief financial officer. Since joining PLF in 2017, Chad counts among his successes: upgrading PLF’s communications team, radically streamlining operational bureaucracy, implementing a distributed work infrastructure that allows employees to work seamlessly from anywhere in the country, and embedding new core values within PLF’s culture.

Chad is a lifelong lover of liberty with an aptitude for strategy, operations, and talent development, and a passion for changing the world. Prior to joining PLF, he spent three years as COO with the London-based Institute of Economic Affairs, the premier free-market think tank in the United Kingdom. Before that, he spent nine years with the DC-area based Institute for Humane Studies, where he mentored freedom-friendly young people and built programs to connect them to liberty-oriented careers. He holds an M.Ed. in organizational leadership and a B.A. in political science and economics, both from Vanderbilt University.

Apart from fighting for freedom, Chad enjoys craft beer and cocktails, Tennessee Titans football, and, lockdown permitting, traveling the country and world.

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August 02, 2021

The Hill: Pulling back the curtain on DC’s rulemakers?

For all matters of government policy, there's usually someone to praise or blame. When it comes to agency rulemaking, however, it is not often so clear who's responsible. A new bipartisan bill in front of Congress could fix that. With federal regulation, all executive action should, in theory, be consistent with law and reflect the ...

July 29, 2021

Still no place to live: The local barriers to the accessory dwelling unit revolution

ADUs are small homes located on the same lot as an existing single- or multi-family home, such as a garage apartment, a basement unit, or a backyard cottage. While ADUs can't solve the country's housing crisis, they are an important piece of a property rights and free market-based solution.   ...

July 29, 2021

Texas Bureaucrats Cannot Reclassify Private Properties as Public Beach

Private property rights are one of America's core founding principles. As John Adams astutely noted, "Property must be secured, or liberty cannot exist." But even in states that pride themselves for upholding such principles, private property rights are often challenged by bureaucrats. The Texas General Land Office (GLO) recently has threatened the ...

July 27, 2021

As pandemic subsides, why are governors still exercising “emergency powers”?

As the COVID-19 pandemic gradually recedes from the highs we saw in 2020, we should carefully reflect on what the past 15 months of a public health emergency have taught us. As a longtime advocate for individual liberty and limited government, here's the principal lesson I take from our pandemic experience: The separation of governmental ...

July 26, 2021

The Hill: COVID-19 eviction bans expose deeper hostility toward property ownership

What would you think if the government dictated that you won't be paid for more than a year but you must keep working? As unlikely as you might consider such a scenario, this hypothetical is Howard Iten's reality. Iten, a commercial landlord in Los Angeles, is under Los Angeles County's pandemic-driven mandate to continue running ...

July 21, 2021

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s gun violence emergency order shows why unchecked executive powers are so dangerous

During the COVID-19 pandemic, governors across the country claimed extraordinary emergency power. For weeks and then for months and then for over a year, they used this purported authority to unilaterally shut down businesses, enact health and safety measures, and issue sweeping emergency orders. Such broad emergency power may have made sense in th ...

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