Denise Amber Lee Foundation Inc
PO Box 781
Englewood FL 34295
To promote and support public safety through uniform training, standardized protocols, defined measurable outcomes, and technological advances to the 9-1-1system.
CEO/Executive Director Mark Lee
Board Chair Mr. David Dignam
Board Chair Company Affiliation Key Agency
History and Background
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Supported Organization Denise Amber Lee Foundation
Awarded a competitive grant from Community Foundation in the last 5 years?
Incorporation Year 2010
Financial Summary
Projected Revenue $402,302.00
Projected Expenses $215,357.00
Additional Documents
IRS Letter of Determination
DALF Letter of Determination
State Info
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes May 2015
State Registration Yes Apr 2014
Impact Due to popular demand from the 9-1-1 community, we have developed an 8 hour training presentation that goes in depth about the details of the day Denise was abducted and what went wrong.  We have conducted these regional trainings for the 9-1-1 community in over 15 locations nationwide and in Canada.  It has been a source of much needed mission revenue.  We have also recruited a former 9-1-1 Director to consult for the foundation in helping 9-1-1 agencies set up their own Quality Assurance/Quality Improvement processes.  This will also provide much needed revenue and provide a valuable public service to communities across the US.  We have been involved in a 9-1-1 industry wide workgroup and produced a 1st ever, Quality Assurance National Standard for agencies looking to install a QA process.  Our president, Nathan Lee, was asked to speak before the FCC on the need to tighten rules on cell phone location accuracy.  Wireless phones do not report an exact location of calls and 9-1-1 centers lack the equipment to process this information as well.  We lent our story of Denise's futile 6 minute call to 9-1-1as stark proof that carriers need to be held to higher standard.  Finally, we are currently part of a national workgroup to identify the training components that should be part of any state's mandated training requirements for 9-1-1.  All states have training requirements and certifications for hairstylists, but less than half require training for those taking your desperate call for help when you dial 9-1-1.  We are using the emotional power of our tragedy to change this fact. 

In January of 2008, Denise Amber Lee was kidnapped in broad daylight and struggled for her life for several hours. During that time, five 9-1-1 calls were placed, including one from Denise herself, and one from a courageous bystander, Jane Kowalski, who provided Denise’s exact location to authorities while she was on the phone for over 9 minutes shadowing the abduction in the car behind her. Because those 9-1-1 calls were not all handled properly, it was possible for Denise's kidnapper, rapist and murderer to commit his crimes. She left behind two small boys, a husband, and a loving family. Inspired by the outpouring of support from the public and the     9-1-1 community, Denise’s husband, Nathan Lee, founded the Denise Amber Lee Foundation in June, 2008. While obviously the 9-1-1 center did not intend for this to happen, or actually "pull the trigger", evidence from the Internal Affairs Investigation shows that there were available resources that were not utilized that could have saved her life.  Determined not to have Denise die in vain, the Denise Amber Lee Foundation is partnering with the 9-1-1 community and using the powerful emotional ammunition of these tragic events to drive change in public policy. We hope public awareness and its reaction that these tragedies have occurred, if channeled and focused in a responsible way, will lead to legislative changes in funding, training, certification, quality assurance and technology, so that no other family has to endure this type of pain and suffering again. The Denise Amber Lee Foundation has attained national prominence and respect for its efforts to improve public safety communications.

We are looking to update and upgrade our marketing/outreach materials away from the tragedy and moving more towards our programs and initiatives to improve 9-1-1 agencies across North America.  We need donations to help with the design and printing expenses of $6245.00.
One of our more popular and successful fundraising mechanisms is raffling off an IPAD Mini at each of our training presentations and conference appearances.  These typically will bring in an additional $1000 of revenue at each event.  We are looking for a sponsor/donor to sponsor the purchase of 5 Apple IPADs at a cost of $1535.00.  This investment will allow the foundation to raise $6000 of passive fundraising revenue. 
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

“My wife, Denise, Should Be Alive Today”. 

Consider these facts about state licensing requirements in our State of Florida:

  • Hairdressers-1200 hours of education before testing
  • Nail Technicians-240 hours of education before testing
  • Hair Braiders-16 hours of education before testing  
  • First Person to take a frantic citizen’s call for help, the 9-1-1 Call Taker-Zero hours of education and Zero testing requirements.
It took Denise Lee to lose her life and the bright lights of national media scrutiny, to correct this unbelievable fact that the first link in the chain of citizen’s plea for help may be the weakest link. It is unfathomable that state lawmakers have overlooked this fact for this long but due to the efforts of the our foundation and dedicated professionals in the 9-1-1 industry who predicted this kind of tragedy, a new mandatory training requirement for 9-1-1 Call Takers and Dispatchers takes effect on October 1stof 2012. Now a 9-1-1 call in Pensacola should be handled the same as a 9-1-1 call in Miami. 

There is no reason a citizen should be risking their life just because they
crossed into a new jurisdiction. The air traffic control industry figured this one out years ago and mandated rigorous uniform training standards so that air travel and communications from one air traffic control zone to the other would be seamless.

Florida is now being looked at as a model for other states to follow in correcting their lack of training standards. Why should this matter to you here in Southwest Florida? It matters because we all travel and have families that travel throughout this nation. We are a mobile society and we may have an emergency requiring a public safety response while visiting or traveling through these other states. Your life or
family member’s life could be in jeopardy with the lack of training and uneven level of services provided by the nation’s 9-1-1 system today. A 9-1-1 Call Taker in Seattle needs to have the same skills to handle a screaming mother’s plea for help as a 9-1-1 Call Taker in Sarasota, Fl.

Join us on our quest for a 9-1-1 system that meets every
citizen’s expectations so no other families are torn apart by senseless,
preventable tragedies. A hairdresser should not be held to a higher standard of excellence and professionalism than a Public Safety Telecommunicator!      

Areas Served
Areas Served
Throughout the United States
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Public Safety, Disaster Preparedness and Relief
Secondary Org Type Public Safety, Disaster Preparedness and Relief

This fund will allow members of the foundation to reach out to the public about the importance of a well trained, well managed 9-1-1 center and the horrifying consequences of 9-1-1 system failure.  This fund will allow members of the foundation to reach out to the public through printed publications, speaking engagements, educational seminars, video productions, Public Service Announcements, and cover travel expenses to regional, state and national conferences.

Budget $86,450
Category Public Safety, Disaster Services, General/Other Safety Education
Program linked to organizational strategy? Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified General/Unspecified General/Unspecified
Short Term Success
We have been asked to speak in over 20 states currently and have consistently received praise, thanks, and standing ovations for enlightening and inspiring audiences to get more involved in their own safety of others.
Long Term Success
Reach as many people as possible about the limitations and inefficiencies of the 9-1-1 system so that they may be better prepared to utilize the system when necessary.  We also hope that by being a tragic example of the system not working as perceived by most that the public will support the system with the necessary funding to save lives. 
How Program is Monitored
Success is monitored by number of donations received after a presentation as well as the number of hits on our website, facebook page, and new Twitter followers.  We also monitor success by the number of new invitations to share our story after a presentation.
Examples of Program Success
We had a gentleman approach us and say that because of Denise's story he called 9-1-1 when he witnessed a screaming woman in a car with a man.  Normally he said he would not get involved because it is probably a domestic dispute, but this time he did and the man was jailed on attempted murder.  Denise and our story being told saved this young ladies life! 
Description Quality Assurance/Quality Improvement Consulting:  Utilizing the best and brightest Quality Assurance talent in the country who have offered their services to our foundation, we will help 9-1-1 agencies set up their own in-house QA/QI Program. 
Budget $80,000
Category Education, General/Other
Program linked to organizational strategy? Yes
Population Served US At-Risk Populations Victims
Short Term Success Since this is a start up program this year, we hope to hit our budgeted revenue which would calculate to helping 40, 9-1-1 agencies with this process.
Long Term Success Oddly enough, one of the only industries in the country that doesn't randomly review their calls is the 9-1-1 industry.  How calls are handled from distressed citizens would seem to be more critical than calls you make to your insurance company.  But for some reason most 9-1-1 agencies never review a random sample of their calls to make sure they are being processed in a friendly, timely manner and dispatched to the appropriate responding personnel.  Only when calls go wrong are they reviewed to see what went wrong.  Our philosophy is that if calls were continuously being monitored for quality, tragic outcomes can be avoided at a far greater rate.  Rural community 9-1-1 agencies have long suffered from lack of funding for these type of processes and lack the knowledge of where to begin.  We hope to help and educate these agencies on what is needed in their quality assurance policies and protocols and hope to see this mindset be a priority instead of an afterthought in the business plans of public safety agencies. 
How Program is Monitored How close we are to budgeted figures at year's end and how many agencies we have worked with.  We also hope to have a quarter of our overall revenue be from referrals that we have previously helped.
Examples of Program Success Since we have just launched this initiative, we have little data of success other than a positive response of people who have learned of the initiative.  We currently are working on assessing the policies and procedures of several agencies in order to provide estimated costs.
CEO/Executive Director
Executive Director Mark Lee
CEO Term Start Jan 2012
Full Time Staff 1
Part Time Staff 2
Volunteers 18
Contractors 0
Staff Retention Rate % 100
Professional Development Yes
Management Reports to Board Yes
Organization Plans
Fundraising Plan No
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan No
Strategic Plan Years N/A
Strategic Plan Adopted 0
Management Succession Plan No
Policies and Procedures No
Continuity of Operations Plan No
Senior Staff
Mark Lee CEO
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation No
NonManagement Formal Evaluation No
The Denise Amber Lee Foundation has worked alongside national and international organizations whose goals are to see uniform, mandatory training and certification standards adopted nationwide for 9-1-1 personnel. These organizations include; the National Emergency Number Association (NENA), the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International (APCO), the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED), the National Center For Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and the NG 9-1-1 Institute along with the Congressional NG 9-1-1 Caucus.
Advocate of the YearE9-1-1 Institute and E9-1-1 Congressional Caucus2010
Risk Management Provisions
Commercial General Liability
Government Licenses
Is your organization licensed by the Government? No
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Board Chair
Board Chair Mr. David Dignam
Company Affiliation Key Agency
Board Term Jan 2014 to Dec 2014
Board Members
Board Members
Ronald Bonneau National Emergency Number Association
David Dignam Key Agency Insurance
Cindra Dunaway Lee County Sheriff's Office
Richard Goff Charlotte County Sheriffs Office
Susan Goff Charlotte County Tax Collector
Christine Hodges Lee County Sheriff's Office
Nathan Lee Best Buy
Mark Lee Community Volunteer
Sherrill Ornberg North Suburban Emergency Communications Center
Kevin Willett Public Safety Training Consultants
Student serving on the board through Community Youth Development? No
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 10
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 6
Female 4
Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits 0
Board Orientation Yes
Board Meeting Attendance % 100
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 1
Board Self-Evaluation Yes
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Written Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
Percentage of Board Making In-Kind Contributions
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Standing Committees
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
Governance Comments by Foundation
Organization's board attendance rate includes 2 board meetings, both in September 2011.
Financial Info
Fiscal Year 2014
Projected Revenue $402,302.00
Projected Expenses $215,357.00
Spending Policy N/A
Historical Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201320122011
Program Expense$32,680$21,929$5,181
Administration Expense$5,078$18,043$11,855
Fundraising Expense$0$5,921$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.610.882.50
Program Expense/Total Expenses87%52%30%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%18%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Assets$6,278$20,906$25,779
Current Assets$6,278$20,906$25,779
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$37$37$37
Total Net Assets$6,241$20,869$25,742
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201320122011
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountSpeakers' Fees $14,597Contributions, gifts, grants $33,149Contributions, gifts, grants $43,693
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $8,199Speaking Fees $4,8800 $0
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountMiscellaneous $315Fundraising $1250 $0
CEO Compensation
Co-CEO Compensation
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities169.68565.03696.73
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Foundation
Organization received 501(c)(3) status in April 2010 and files IRS Form 990-N, which does not provide revenue & expense details.  Financial information taken from 2010 review and 2011 - 2013 compilations.
Nonprofit Denise Amber Lee Foundation Inc
Address PO Box 781
Englewood, FL 34295
Primary Phone 941 830-2035
CEO/Executive Director Mark Lee
Board Chair Mr. David Dignam
Board Chair Company Affiliation Key Agency
Year of Incorporation 2010