Tim Ballard Out as CEO at Glenn Beck-Backed Nazarene Fund

The news follows his mysterious departure from Operation Underground Railroad, the other anti-trafficking organization of which he was the most recognizable face.
Tim Baklla
Tim Ballard poses with friends and family during the premiere of "Sound of Freedom" on June 28, 2023 in Vineyard, Utah. (Photo by Fred Hayes/Getty Images for Angel Studios)

Tim Ballard, the celebrity anti-trafficking activist whose heavily fictionalized exploits served as the inspiration for the surprise box-office hit Sound of Freedom, is no longer CEO of the Nazarene Fund, the Glenn Beck-backed anti-trafficking organization. The organization confirmed Ballard’s departure as CEO exclusively to Motherboard in a statement on Wednesday afternoon. 

“Tim Ballard is no longer the CEO of the Nazarene Fund,” said the statement. “The Nazarene Fund continues to be focused on our mission to Rescue, Rebuild and Restore.  There are so many people around the world who are in need of our unique services and we are grateful for the support we receive to help us accomplish our mission.” 


The Nazarene Fund did not answer follow-up questions about the circumstances or timing of Ballard’s departure, or his current relationship to the organization. A representative for Ballard did not immediately respond to a request for comment; he also did not immediately respond to a message sent through the contact form on his personal website.

Ballard’s no longer being CEO of the Nazarene Fund—which, as Motherboard has previously reported, appears to have at times exaggerated its role in exfiltrating the Afghan girls' national soccer team from the country, according to people who were directly involved—ties in with a larger pattern of abrupt and surprising change for him. Last week, Operation Underground Railroad, the anti-trafficking organization where he was the founder and most recognizable face, confirmed to Motherboard that Ballard had “stepped away” from the group. OUR declined to answer follow-up questions about the timing and reason for Ballard’s departure, and a representative for Ballard has not responded to multiple requests for comment. 

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A source conveyed to Motherboard this week that a letter is circulating in Utah’s philanthropic community, which claims that Ballard left OUR following an internal investigation. The letter further states that an employee filed an HR complaint after returning from a mission with Ballard, which sparked the investigation and his subsequent departure.

This is at least the second time Ballard has departed as CEO from the Nazarene Fund. In 2021, as Motherboard previously reported, Ballard was deposed as CEO by the group’s board, which consisted of Ballard, Glenn Beck, and David Barton, who has been described as a "fake historian" who's "received little formal historical training" and is dedicated to promoting the idea that America was founded on Christian ideals.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated.