Shameful Nuisance

We're working to make Chapel Hill and Carrboro more vibrant, accessible, fun, and sustainable. 


Where we are now: A daily group blog covering civics and news in Chapel Hill and Carrboro that reaches thousands of people across our region.

Reckoning with our past: A crowdsourced project researching and reporting out the history of Chapel Hill's exclusionary covenants.

A hopeful future: A campaign to support progressive candidates and politics that expand equitable access to housing, green space, and economic opportunity in Chapel Hill.

Why are you called Shameful Nuisance?

Working to change a community to make it more inclusive and accessible is hard and there will always be people who fight against these changes. One of our most vocal detractors called us a "shameful nuisance" on social media, and we thought the name fit us: We know this work makes people uncomfortable, and that won't stop us from pushing forward and advocating for a more inclusive, kind and sustainable community. Shameful nuisance, to us, means causing the good trouble that pushes Chapel Hill and Carrboro forward.

Who is on your board?

Five people serve on the Shameful Nuisance board of directors. They are:

Geoff Green, Chapel Hill

Melody Kramer, Carrboro

Louie Rivers III, Chapel Hill

Julian Taylor, Chapel Hill (attends college) and Carrboro (grew up)

Stephen Whitlow, Chapel Hill

Why do you protect the privacy of your donors?

We’re a 501c4, like the AARP, the ACLU, and March for Our Lives. Planned Parenthood and the Sierra Club both have 501c4s. It’s really common. 

We formed as a 501c4 because we felt that structure was best aligned with the work we were already doing – we have clear progressive policy positions and wanted to be able to advocate for abundant housing and walkable neighborhoods and a government that listens to those who have historically been left out of local decision-making.  (This is all on our about page.)

We also wanted to protect our donors. In 2023, our board was doxxed on NextDoor by a leader in CHALT, the group backing Adam Searing — our addresses were posted, along with our names. You can read more about the incident here. It was an invitation to harass us and it was really scary.

We maintain a strict firewall between our finances and our writers so that donations do not influence what we write about. But we know from our treasurer that many of our donors are graduate students and faculty at the earliest stages of their career. Doing this work in a college town where many people work at the same institution is hard, particularly when it may affect career trajectories. We keep our donors private to protect them and to ensure that they are not harassed. 

What we can tell you is this: the vast majority of our donors give in the $20-50 range. All but two of our donors live in Chapel Hill or Carrboro – the other two live in Durham and Raleigh (places we occasionally write about). A lot of people seem to really like what we are doing, which is amazing. We hope they continue to do so, but if they are trying to buy influence they will be sorely disappointed: we A) don’t know who they are, and B) write what we want. 

We also believe in transparency. If we launch a specific project supported by an organizational or individual funder, we’ll let you know.We will err on the side of too much, not too little, disclosure. (We are following the same guidelines NPR follows.)

We appreciate you contributing so that we can continue to expand these efforts to make our community more inclusive and vibrant.

More about donating to us

We focus on education and advocacy. We do not contribute to candidates or other campaign entities. Contributions are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.

We spent 699.79 in the 2023 municipal election cycle and filed an independent expenditure with the Orange County Board of Elections.