Sarasota Audubon Society Inc
PO Box 52132
Sarasota FL 34232
Dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of birds, wildlife and the environment.
CEO/Executive Director Ms Jeanne Dubi
Board Chair Ms Jeanne Dubi
Board Chair Affiliation none
General Info
Organization DBA
Supported Organization
Former Names
Sarasota Bird Club
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1989
Awarded competitive grant from Community Foundation in the last 5 years? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes May 2016
State Registration Yes 0
IRS Letter of Determination
Financial Summary
Projected Revenue $72,530.00
Projected Expenses $72,530.00
Other Documents
Impact Statement
1. In the final stages of a capital campaign to build a nature center at the Celery Fields. The nature center will provide environmental education programming for children and adults; act as a destination for eco-tourists; and be a base for habitat management.
2. Spring/Summer 2015: Our ongoing Beach Nesting Bird Protection Program (which incorporates the Bird Steward Program) is one of the most successful in the state. 
3. In 2014-2015, Sarasota Audubon was featured in the local press and on TV, as well as in more targeted publications, e-sites and e-lists on numerous occasions. This increased publicity is an effort to engage the Sarasota community which will benefit most from a nature center.
1. The financial aim for this year was to complete phase 1 of our capital campaign to build a nature center. The building is scheduled to open in October 2015.
2. To increase fledgling rate of Snowy Plovers. Working in conjunction with Audubon Florida and Florida Fish & Wildlife, we hope to increase the survival rate.
3. To increase our volunteer base. The work of conservation is difficult and time-consuming and we need more help.
CITIZEN SCIENCE: Sarasota Audubon is heavily engaged in all major bird surveys sponsored by various agencies: Florida Fish & Wildlife, Audubon of Florida, Eckerd College, Cornell University, National Audubon.
In January 2015, we began the third year of our Celery Fields Explorers programs. By the end of March 2015, we had provided 3,400 Sarasota schoolchildren and 500 adults (teachers, parents and assistants) with free transportation and environmental education at the Fields.
We completed our third year of this program whereby an expert birder and Audubon volunteer is positioned at the Palmer Blvd boardwalk each day for 2 hours. During the third season (Nov 2014-April 2015), we  greeted close to 9,000 visitors from all over the world.
Needs Statement
  1. To complete the goal of $1.4 million for a nature center (building) and to increase our endowment to allow for maintenance and operatitions. At year end 5/15, we are proud of the fact that we have raised over $1.2 million from our members and friends--enough for the building. Further funding will be needed to equip the building with an AV system, display panels for information displays, computers, kitchen equipment, and furniture. Donations will be gratefully received.
  2. Engage more volunteers from admin help to bird surveyors.
  3. To continue to protect our beach nesting birds, our most pressing conservation effort.
  4. Re-fund our extremely successful Celery Fields Explorers ($20,000 per year). In Jan-Mar 2015,with matching funds from the Community Foundation of the Gulf Coast we were able to provide 3 hours of environmental study for each of 1,150 Sarasota County schoolchildren FREE OF CHARGE.
Background Statement
Sarasota Audubon Society began in 1952 and was known as the Sarasota Bird Club. It was incorporated as a 501c3 in 1989. SAS is one of 465 chapters of the National Audubon Society, and one of 45 in Florida. As an education organization, SAS offers a monthly speaker series (Oct - May); local, statewide, national and international field trips; local and state legislative monitoring as it relates to the environment; children's environmental education programs; meaningful participation in numerous citizen science projects, such as all major bird surveys sponsored by various agencies: Florida Fish & Wildlife, Audubon of Florida, Eckerd College, Cornell University, National Audubon. These volunteer surveys include: Breeding Bird Atlas, Christmas Bird Count, Migratory Bird Survey, Winter Shorebird Survey. Data collected from these surveys are enterd in national databases and provide information about bird movements, habitat losss, etc to scientists. In addition, we mentor high school and college students in the study of birds and habitat.
Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Sarasota
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Environment
Secondary Org Type Youth Development
Tertiary Org Type Recreation & Sports
Nature, environment, birds, conservation, Audubon, wildlife, preservation, tourism, birding, environmental education, beach, habitat
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President
There are many challenges facing an all-volunteer organization, but Sarasota Audubon continues to rise to those challenges. A dedicated board of directors consisting of 15 members works tirelessly to fulfill our mission of protecting birds and their habitat.
As president for the last 9 years, I have seen the organization grow by leaps and bounds as we move to a higher profile organization within the County. We expect more from ourselves and more from the community. We have embraced the concept of building a nature center at a cost of $1.4 million. Why? Because we can do it. Since over 50% of the Audubon chapters across the country manage or own public or private property, we asked ourselves: Why can't the members of Sarasota Audubon and the citizens of Sarasota County do the same? The answer is: We can.
The nature center at the Celery Fields will benefit children, the community, and nature-based tourists the most. The members of Sarasota Audubon are in the midst of raising the funds from its members and the community at large. The 5-year campaign has already raised over  $1.2 million as of May 31, 2015. The building will be open for use in October 2015.
Watch us--you will see that yet another non-profit organization in Sarasota County is proudly serving the community to benefit our magnificent environment.
Statement from the CEO/Executive Director
The all-volunteer Sarasota Audubon Society is the "go to" organization within Sarasota County for environmental issues relating to birds. Several current board members serve on county and regional advisory panels: Environmental Policy Task Force, Science & Environmental Council, Environmentally Sensitive Lands Oversight Committee, Regional Conservation Committee, Southwest Florida Water Management District Citizens' Advisory Committee, Sarasota Bay Estuary Program's advisory council. Current and past board members have served on the Audubon of Florida board. SAS works closely with various Sarasota County departments in improving bird habitat.
SAS and Sarasota County have entered into a partnership to increase nature-based tourism to Sarasota. The culmination of this partnership will be a nature center at the Celery Fields. The county-owned stormwater collection area of 440 acres does double duty as a public utility and an area for passive recreation, such as birdwatching, hiking, nature photography and more. Sarasota County is providing an acre of land and utilities hook up; SAS is raising the funds for the building and will run the nature center.
The BNB season is from Feb 1 until August 31 each year and entails heavy volunteer effort, managed by a volunteer coordinator. This conservation program is dedicated to helping beach-nesting birds raise their young to flight stage. At least 30 volunteers monitor the adults and chicks through a 10-12 week cycle by trailing them on the beach and intercepting disturbances. In addition these volunteers engage the public by providing information about the birds and their nesting habits.
Budget $1,000
Category Environment, General/Other Environment, General/Other
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Adolescents Only (13-19 years) Families
Short Term Success
For 2012 and 2013, we saw the success rate increase 7-fold and 6-fold respectively. For 2014, we saw 5 chicks and one fledgling. In 2015, we have had a second successful colony of Black Skimmers on Lido Beach. This site has been monitored by 12+ volunteers. There was concern that the July 4-Boat Race weekend would be harmful, but we are glad to say that due to the public outreach of our volunteers, the birds made it through that weekend safely.
Long Term Success
Success is measured each year in the number of beach-nesting birds (Snowy Plovers) reaching flight stage. Before we began this program intensively in the spring/summer of 2010, the average success rate was less than 1. After the program began, the success was immediate: 7 fledglings in 2010 and 6 in 2011. During to continued vandalism of the nesting sites on Siesta Key, the plovers had trouble in 2013 and again in spring/summer of 2014. Law enforcement has been engaged, as well as the Florida Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Program Success Monitoring
We use survey protocols for bird monitoring developed by Eckerd College and work under rthe supervision of scientists from Audubon of Florida and Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission. We document every instance of scrapes (nest cups in the sand), egg laying, egg predation, chick hatching, and chick survival through to flight stage.This date is submitted to several scientific databases. In addition ageny representatives visit 2 or 3 times a season to monitor our work.
Program Success Examples
Before 2009, our volunteer base for beach nesting birds was informal and loosley managed. In 2010, we modeled our effort on the Beach Steward program developed by St Petersburg Audubon in which volunteers interact with the public on the beaches, providing information and brochures on the nesting activities on the beach. In addition, beachfront homeowners were engaaged. That first year saw a success rate of 7 fledglings, a 7-fold increase over the year before. The effort is still under way as of soring/summer 2014.
This program has been in effect for many years and is under the aegus and supervision of scientists at Audubon Florida--the state organization of National Audubon.
Our Eagle Watch coordinator manages 30-40 monitors in Sarasota County, southern Manatee County and northern Charlotte County; they in turn monitor 60+ nests (2015). The nesting season is from October through March. The program arose out of the need to protect the federally endangered Bald Eagle. Sarasota County has one of the densest concentrations of Bald Eagles in Florida.
In addition to managing volunteers, the coordinator also represents Bald Eagles at legislative hearings, as well as interacting on behalf of Sarasota Audubon with the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the US Wildlife Service.
Budget $0
Category Environment, General/Other Environment, General/Other
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Children and Youth (0 - 19 years) Families
Short Term Success
Every year, volunteers step up to the plate to help in this wildlife protection effort. Because this is the symbol of America, the Bald Eagle, volunteers are eager to help in this project.
Long Term Success
Protection of the Bald Eagle leading to more nesting success.
Program Success Monitoring
Surveys of nests:
Numbers of chicks raised are steady or increase each year--no significant declines. Audubon Florida's Birds of Prey Center supervise this project and report that it is among one of the most successful in the state.
Program Success Examples
Will provide annual figures for the past 3 years.
By May 2015, we had completed our third year of our Celery Fields Explorers program for Sarasota County schoolchildren. Again in Jan and Feb, 1,150+ schoolchildren came to the Fields for environmental education. There were 28 trips FREE OF CHARGE. The cost of the program is $20,000; the Gulf Coast Community Foundation provided matching funds for half of this cost--Sarasota Audubon members came up with the rest. We also received a generous grant of $3,000 from The Natural Heritage Fund; Sarasota Audubon members have made up the difference.
Budget $20,000
Category Environment, General/Other Land Conservation
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served K-12 (5-19 years) Blacks, African Heritage Latin America & the Caribbean
Short Term Success
Over 3,600 children and 350 adults have benefited from expert leadership in this standards-based environmental education program.
Long Term Success
This program introduces thousands of children to the environment and helps to instill a love for nurturing and protecting it.
Program Success Monitoring
The program is taught and monitored by experts in the field of environmental science and conservation.
Program Success Examples
Happy children with a respect for the environment! Evident in post-test results and feedback from the children and teachers. Available upon request.

Experienced birders and Audubon members volunteer to be on the Palmer Blvd boardwalk for 2 hours each day to meet and greet visitors to help them to ID birds and plants of the Celery Fields.

The docents engage the public, welcome them to Sarasota and the Celery Fields and provide any information needed for other parks and natural areas of Sarasota, restaurants, hotels, and beaches. This is all part of our role in helping Sarasota County increase its eco-tourism base.

Budget $1,000
Category Environment, General/Other Environment, General/Other
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults General/Unspecified Families
Short Term Success Increased members and donations.
Long Term Success To make visitors to Sarasota County aware of its natural benefits. To make them aware of the environment and the need to protect it.
Program Success Monitoring Board of Sarasota Audubon and Bird Naturalists.
Program Success Examples Increased membership. Repeat visitors. Word of mouth recommendations to visit the Celery Fields.
Program Comments by Organization
Getting reliable volunteers is the main challenge. Most of our members leave Sarasota in April or May, so summer programs, such as the Beach Nesting Bird project are especially hard hit. The need for continuous management and volunteer recruitment is crucial. This ensures that the imperiled species that rely on our help are not neglected.
Program Comments by Foundation
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Ms Jeanne Dubi
CEO Term Start June 2015
CEO/Executive Director Email
Jeanne Dubi, MBA
Formerly member of the board of Sarasota Audubon (2000-2006)
Past board member, Crowley Museum and Nature Center (2000-2001)
VP/General Manager, Harper's Magazine (1990-1997)
Business Manager, Octopus Books (1984-1990)
Board Member, Roxbury Run Association (1990-1994)
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Ms Julie Byrne June 2002 - May 2004
Ms Betty Matthews June 2004 - May 2006
Senior Staff
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 0
Part Time Staff 0
Staff Retention Rate % N/A
Professional Development No
Contractors 0
Volunteers 65
Management Reports to Board N/A
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation N/A
Senior Management Formal Evaluation N/A
Non-Management Formal Evaluation No
Sarasota Audubon Society is partnering with Sarasota County to build a nature center at the Celery Fields.
Sarasota Audubon works with other environmental agencies on projects within our county: FWC, USFWS, Audubon of Florida, Eckerd College, Cornell University/National Audubon, Sarasota Bay Estuary Program, Florida House Institute, Science and Environmental Council.
In addition, Sarasota Audubon has worked with various schools in Sarasota County on environmental projects: Sarasota HS, Venice HS, Riverview HS, and Laurel-Nokomis School. Sarasota Audubon has worked with young people's organizations, such as Girl Scouts, Girls Inc., Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and Boy Scouts. 
Affiliate/Chapter of National Organization
External Assessments and Accreditations
Awards & Recognition
Conservation Chapter of the YearAudubon of Florida2002
Risk Management Provisions
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government No
Fundraising Plan No
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan No
Strategic Plan Years
Strategic Plan Adopted 0
Management Succession Plan No
Continuity of Operations Plan
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures No
Management Comments by Organization
Our current challenge is to raise $1.4 million for a nature center. This center will allow Sarasota Audubon to expand its programs for children and adults and provide eco-tourist information to visitors to Sarasota County.
Sarasota County is collaborating on this project by providing one acre of land at the Celery Fields. The location of the center could not be more appropriate. It is next to a 100-acre restored wetland so will provide a great opportunity for children and visitors to learn more about birds, wildlife and native habitat.
We believe that our center will help increase visitation to Sarasota County. The Celery Fields are already designated as a site on the Great Florida Birding Trail and birdwatchers come from all over the country and beyond to view Florida's unique wildlife.
In addition raising funds for construction and operation of the building, a long-term goal of SAS is to build our endowment. Currently it stands at $200,000, but our goal is to increase it to $1 million. We will focus on raising these funds after the center is completed and in operation.
Management Comments by Foundation
Planning & Policies Comments by Organization
Planning & Policies Comments by Foundation
Multi-Media Comments by Organization
In January 2012, the Celery Fields and Jeanne Dubi were featured on Gulf Coast Journal with Jack Perkins.
Due to a generous donor underwriting a PR campaign in the summer/fall 2013, Sarasota Audubon was featured on TV, radio, and in print culminating in a lead article in the Sarasota Herald Tribune of January 27, 2014. This has resulted in more visitors at the Celery Fields, an area of passive recreation for residents and citizens alike. It has also resulted in more members and additional donations.
Annual ongoing TV and print coverage during the beach bird nesting season (Feb thru August) helps Audubon volunteers educate the general public, and especially beachgoers, about the birds that allow us to share their beaches. Hundreds of birds nest on our busiest beaches and an annual education campaign helps the beach stewards and volunteers protect the young as they strive to flourish. During the 2014 nesting season, Audubon representatives were interviewed by ABC, SNN, The Observer, Herald Tribune, and Sarasota News Leader, in some cases, several times.
Board Chair
Board Chair Ms Jeanne Dubi
Company Affiliation none
Board Term June 2015 to May 2016
Board Chair Email
Board Members
Board Members
Ms Julie Byrne Community Volunteer
Ms Naomi Deutsch Community Volunteer
Ms Jeanne Dubi Community Volunteer
Ms Mary Heinlen Community Volunteer
Ms Lynn Jakubowicz Community Volunteer
Ms Karen Jensen Community Volunteer
Ms Sara King Community Volunteer
Mr Wade Matthews Community Volunteer
Ms Betty Neupert Community Volunteer
Ms Marcy Packer Community Volunteer
Ms Valeri Ponzo Sarasota Memorial Hospital
Ms Pat Sharp Community Volunteer
Ms Martha Straub Community Volunteer
Ms Kathryn Young Community Volunteer
Student serving on the board through Community Youth Development? No
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 14
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 1
Female 13
Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits 6
Board Orientation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 10
Board Meeting Attendance % 84
Board Self-Evaluation No
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Board Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 3
Standing Committees
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
Governance Comments by Organization
The main challenge currently is completion of the campaign to raise $1.4 million to build and operate a nature center at the Celery Fields. We have raised the construction costs so far but still need funds for furnishings and equipment and for operating the building for the next year ending 5/16. The building will open in October 2015.
The second most important challenge is an ongoing one: getting volunteers. In FY 2011 we  installed a Volunteer Coordinator who signs up volunteers for various tasks. This success points to the fact that any volunteer engaged in a dedicated position (in this case a Volunteer Coordinator!) can make a difference.
The third challenge we face right now (and every year) is raising funds to continue our highly successful beach nesting bird program. We need $15,000 per season to hire a coordinator who will manage volunteers and interact with beach goers and residents to educate them on our program. The program, adopted by us from a similar program in St Petersburg, has been so successful, that National Audubon is rolling out the protocols nationwide.
Governance Comments by Foundation
Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Begins 2015
Fiscal Year Ends 2016
Projected Revenue $72,530.00
Projected Expenses $72,530.00
Total Projected Revenue includes "in-kind" contributions/ donations
Endowment Value $198,000.00
Endowment Spending Policy Income Only
Endowment Spending Policy %
Capital Campaign
In a Capital Campaign Yes
Campaign Purpose To build and operate a nature center at the Celery Fields for the general public.
Campaign Goal $1,200,000.00
Campaign Dates Dec 2010 to Nov 2016
Amount Raised To Date 1250000 as of July 2015
Anticipate Campaign within 5 years? Yes
Historical Financial Review
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201420132012
Program Expense$47,573$20,304$23,760
Administration Expense$4,771$4,256$4,389
Fundraising Expense$25,598$4,766$26,619
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses4.615.605.02
Program Expense/Total Expenses61%69%43%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue9%4%11%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201420132012
Total Assets$933,452$652,263$517,945
Current Assets$933,452$652,263$516,939
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$21$525
Total Net Assets$933,452$652,242$517,420
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201420132012
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $287,708Contributions, gifts, grants $123,887Contributions, gifts, grants $252,399
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountProgram Service Revenue $34,484Program Service Revenue $8,322Membership Dues $7,685
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountMembership Dues $8,925Membership Dues $8,135Program Service Revenue $6,708
CEO/Executive Director Compensation N/A
Co-CEO/Executive Director Compensation
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201420132012
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities--31060.14984.65
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201420132012
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization
Sarasota Audubon Society operates a zero-based budget. Our annual budget includes programming expenses.  Any funds left over are added to the capital campaign fund or to another dedicated fund. We solicit funds from our members annually. We also seek out grants. Our normal fundraising activities include income derived from our field trips, especially our national and international field trips.
Our campaign to build a nature center has been wholeheartedly endorsed by the Board of County Commissioners and Visit Sarasota County. The future center is viewed as a magnet for attracting nature-based tourists to Sarasota County.
Sarasota County has invested dollars to build public restrooms at the Celery Fields (completion July 2014) and to expand the current parking lot. These enhancements will enable Sarasota Audubon to link into the utilities systems, and indeed were planned by the County because of Audubon's willingness to raise funds for building and operating a nature center.
Of the 465 or so Audubon chapters throughout the nation, more than 50% own or manage private or public lands for wildlife. Some of these structures range from small cottages on a plot of land (deeded by the owner) to a state of the art green building over a restored dump site (Trinity River Audubon near Dallas).
Audubon centers around the country are sought out by nature-based visitors and provide a plethora of information on local birding, local parks, where to eat, where to stay, etc. We expect to provide that same kind of information to visitors to Sarasota County so that they can experience everything that this wonderful county has to offer.
Financial Comments by Foundation
Financial figures based on IRS Form 990s. Professional audits are not performed. Individual contributions include foundation and corporate support, as listed on Form 990s.
Nonprofit Sarasota Audubon Society Inc
Address PO Box 52132
Sarasota, FL 34232
Phone 941 724-1709