Lemon Bay Conservancy, Inc.
150 S McCall Rd, Suite 2
Englewood FL 34223

Our long-range vision is: “To forever protect and preserve the natural features of Lemon Bay, Charlotte Harbor, their surrounding waters and uplands, and vital fish and wildlife habitat, through property preservation, environmental education and advocacy for sustainable land and water conservation policies and practices.”

To support that long-range vision, we focus our mission in three areas:

  • Saving land;
  • Environmental education; and
  • Advocacy for sustainable environmental policies.



CEO/Executive Director No Executive Director
Board Chair James Cooper
Board Chair Affiliation Retired
General Info
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1979
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes Sept 2018
State Registration Yes 0
Financial Summary
Note: Revenue includes the value of in-kind contributions/donations
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS letter PDF 501c3View
Other Documents
Audubon Article SeptemberView
Impact Statement

Saving land: Over the years, the Lemon Bay Conservancy has been involved in saving hundreds of acres of land from development. We work with individuals, businesses, government agencies, and other environmental groups to create conservation corridors for the protection of our water supply, to deter storm surge, to provide critical habitat for wildlife, and to sustain the quality of life enjoyed by residents and visitors to our communities. Often, the land we help to protect, is placed into public ownership. In other cases, private land owners choose to forever preserve the natural resources on their properties through conservation easements. And, in some situations, Lemon Bay Conservancy becomes the land owner. In 2010, Lemon Bay Conservancy purchased the 80-acre Wildflower Preserve property and initiated restoration efforts. More recently, we acquired 10-acres of wetlands on Thornton Key.

Environmental education: Lemon Bay Conservancy periodically hosts programs and events designed to enhance public understanding of environmental topics. In 2011, we began hosting a series of educational nature walks and open house events at Wildflower Preserve. In 2014, we launched a new series of Environmental Safari Walks that focus on the terrestrial, freshwater wetland, and estuarine areas of the preserve. In 2015, we initiated a partnership with the Charlotte County School Board to host an annual STEM camp at Wildflower Preserve. We also publish brochures and newsletters on a variety of environmental topics. We are expanding scientific knowledge with the first ever study of juvenile tarpon in Lemon Creek at Wildflower Preserve.

Advocacy for sustainable environmental policies: The Lemon Bay Conservancy board regularly reviews environmental issues that may impact the Lemon Bay and Charlotte Harbor areas and advocates for appropriate decisions. Alone and hand-in-hand with other organizations we seek to serve as a voice for the people.

Needs Statement

Lemon Bay Conservancy needs are as follows:

  • Sufficient endowment funds to support our ongoing $30,000  to $50,000 annual maintenance costs at Wildflower Preserve.
  • Funds to construct raised boardwalks over the restored wetlands at Wildflower Preserve to provide improved wildlife viewing and educational programs.  Funding requirements are $30,000 per boardwalk with three potential boardwalk locations identified.
  • Raise $30,000 to cover other elements of the Wildflower Preserve Habitat Restoration Project that will not be covered by grant funding. Projects include:  fencing, benches, parking lot restoration, educational signs, meadow plantings, and additional upland plantings to improve diversity.


Background Statement

Lemon Bay Conservancy (LBC) was formed in 1971 in response to the growing need for land preservation and conservation in and around Stump Pass, just north of Charlotte Harbor. A year after its founding, LBC made its first acquisition of Buttonwood and Rookery Islands. This was at the urging of the Sarasota County Commission, and those Islands are now held in their natural state in perpetuity.

Throughout the 1970’s, LBC completed numerous reports on sensitive environmental habitats, highlighting concerns over raw sewage disposal into Lemon Bay and Charlotte harbor and the resulting damage. LBC pressed the state to preserve these wetlands and end the sewage disposal.

By 1979, LBC had attained its tax free status enabling it to increase its funding opportunities. During the 1980’s, LBC made public education regarding the loss of mangrove habitat its primary goal after 3 acres of sea grass were killed in Stump Pass due to unregulated dredging. LBC also opposed a 31 acre residential development adjacent to Stump Pass and the project was ultimately denied by Sarasota County. Due in large measure to the urging of LBC, Sarasota County has purchased many acres of land which are essential to preserving the health of the waters and fish and wildlife surrounding our communities. The county purchased 23 acres on Manasota Key which boarders Lemon Bay just north of Blind Pass. The property provides access to both gulf and bay waters. LBC has worked hand in hand with Sarasota County commissioners to begin the process for designating county bays as “Outstanding Florida Waters”. LBC proposed a resolution to Sarasota County, which was adopted that no permits be granted for commercial or residential development, be granted until after a full environmental impact study had been completed and released to the general public for their understanding and comment.

During the 1990’s, LBC pledged funds to improve Cedar Parks nature trails, for a study of Cedar Points wildlife inventory and for an environmental impact effort to monitor water quality which was distributed to state agencies, schools and libraries. Sarasota County purchased France property, incorporating it into Lemon Bay Park and purchased adjacent land which was added to Don Pedro Park. Both are supported by LBC.

In 2000, LBC hosted an environmental networking luncheon at Lemon Bay Park. LBC was one of thirty area environmental organizations to attend. It was the same year in which LBC joined the Land Trust Alliance. The following year, the LBC website was created and the first Executive Director was hired. In 2010, the LBC board of directors raised the necessary funds to purchase the Wildflower Golf Course in Placida. The fundraising effort was helped greatly by a significant donation from the estate of Verna Patricia Rogers. Currently, Wildflower Preserve is being returned to its natural state. (Please refer to the Wildflower Preserve section of the website.) After the purchase, it was discovered that a number of the ponds on the preserve are home to juvenile Tarpon and Snook due to the ponds’ connection with the Charlotte Harbor estuary. LBC is working with Florida Fish & Wildlife to preserve and study those fish habitats.

The LBC office is staffed by a paid, part time employee while all other operations and special events are supported by volunteers.

Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Charlotte
FL- Sarasota
FL- Lee
Areas Served Comments

Our Vision:

To forever protect and preserve the natural features of Lemon Bay, Charlotte Harbor, their surrounding waters, uplands, vital fish and wildlife habitat through property preservation, acquisitions and management, environmental education, and advocacy of sustainable land and water conservation policies, and practices.

Service Categories
Primary Org Type Environment
Secondary Org Type Education
Tertiary Org Type Animal Related
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

As an LBC contributor, you can be proud to be a part of the LBC legacy – making permanent positive differences right here in our backyard. Through your support, you enable LBC to instill conservation values by educating adults and children; protect endangered game fish, tarpon and snook; create new STEM programs for our local school children; and sustain Wildflower Preserve’s incredible natural resources.

LBC directly improves the quality of our lives here in paradise. That is why I gladly volunteer my time as President of Lemon Bay Conservancy to help “Make a Difference.”

We have many more wonderful projects on the horizon involving Wildflower and Charlotte Harbor coastal lands and a new fish sampling project at Hidden Lake on Thornton Key. All these projects will require planning, hard work and the commitment of caring members and friends. There will be plenty of opportunity for volunteer involvement and donations in order to continue this important work!


In conjunction with the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, Lemon Bay Conservancy is participating in pioneer research of juvenile tarpon. Never before has there been any data on juvenile tarpon. This research is needed to understand juvenile tarpon and preserve their habitat. Tarpon fishing contributes in excess of 110 million dollars to the local business community directly and indirectly. Over 25 volunteers are actively involved and helping with this research.

Budget $5,000
Category Animal-Related, General/Other Marine Animals Preservation & Protection
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified General/Unspecified General/Unspecified
Short Term Success
Educating the general population through exposure. The tarpon Team consists of over 25 volunteers and with every monthly sampling new interested parties and volunteers gather.
Long Term Success

Mangroves are essential habitats for tarpon, whose juvenile life stage depends upon healthy, shallow mangrove and marsh habitats. Since healthy fisheries depend upon healthy juvenile habitats, there is an urgent need to protect and restore juvenile tarpon and snook mangrove nursery habitats.

Unfortunately, mangroves are under threat worldwide: globally, approximately 35% of mangroves have been lost, and continue to be lost at a rate of 2% per year; in Florida, nearly 50% of mangroves have already been lost, and degradation of these habitats continues. Less juvenile habitat means fewer juvenile tarpon grow to become adults, so protection and restoration of these critical habitats is a priority
Program Success Monitoring

FWC scientists are sampling the estuarine creek in the preserve to evaluate the growth and survival of the few juvenile tarpon that use this location now, and will continue to sample the area after restoration. This type of pre- and post-restoration study is very rare, but is necessary to document the value of habitat restoration.

Program Success Examples
In excess of 250 individuals have visited Wildflower Preserve and observed the tarpon tagging process while be exposed to the importance of preserving natural habitats.

When LBC took over Wildflower, the land had become overgrown with dense vegetation. With the help of community organizations and grants, our volunteers have now converted Wildflower into a wildlife preserve complete with over four miles of trails, educational signage, an extensive butterfly habitat, and a bird observation area. Volunteers are continuing to work on removing invasive vegetation, planting native plants, water quality improvement programs, and a variety of other initiatives.

We have received two grants from the Southwest Florida Water Management District to plan for and implement restoration of the uplands and wetlands at Wildflower. In January 2016, Lemon Bay Conservancy became one of only six organizations nationwide to receive funding under the NOAA Coastal Ecosystem Resiliency Grant program.  Together the SWFWMD and NOAA funds will provide $1.17 million for habitat restoration.  The project is underway with scheduled completion by year-end 2018.

Budget $155,000
Category Environment, General/Other Natural Resources Conservation & Protection
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Adolescents Only (13-19 years) Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)
Short Term Success

Preserve trails and special interest areas are open and continue to be enhanced.

Long Term Success

Preserve uplands and wetlands will be restored to natural state with trails and boardwalks constructed to allow ongoing educational opportunities.

Program Success Monitoring

The Wildflower Preserve planning committee pursues grants, reports on the success of those grants to the funding organizations, and helps establish the long-term goals for the preserve.

Program Success Examples

Four miles of trails established, butterfly habitat developed, bird observation area developed, informational signs placed along trails, various water quality programs initiated including installation of artificial floating islands.


Since the beginning of 2011, Lemon Bay Conservancy has hosted a series of trail walks and open house events at Wildflower Preserve that are aimed at educating the public about the natural habitats in our “backyard”. Each year over 600 adults and children have taken advantage of these programs.

Periodically, the Conservancy also hosts lecture series to educate the public on important environmental topics.

In 2015, we initiated a partnership with the Charlotte County School Board to conduct an annual STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) camp.  During the camp, the students use Wildflower Preserve as their outdoor learning laboratory for experiments and special projects.
Budget $2,000
Category Education, General/Other Extracurricular Math & Science
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Adolescents Only (13-19 years) K-12 (5-19 years)
Short Term Success

Each year for the past three years over 600 adults and children have taken advantage of these educational programs.   

Long Term Success

The community's continued support and involvement.

Program Success Monitoring

Feedback from program participants, input from educational liaisons.

Program Success Examples
The increasing involvement in local schools and support from the Gasparilla Kid's  Fishing Tournament.
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director No Executive Director
CEO Term Start 0
CEO/Executive Director Email n/a

Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Senior Staff
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 0
Part Time Staff 1
Staff Retention Rate % N/A
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 0
Volunteers 90
Management Reports to Board No
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation N/A
Senior Management Formal Evaluation No
Non-Management Formal Evaluation N/A
  • The Charlotte Harbor National Estuary Program has awarded three major grants and several smaller grants to LBC. The most recent being for safari educational field trips and tours to be conducted at Wildflower Preserve. The preserve is owned, maintained and protected by Lemon Bay Conservancy
  • The Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD) is engaged with LBC in a $825,000 Cooperative Funding Initiative to design and implement restoration of natural systems at Wildflower Preserve. The planning phase is complete and restoration is scheduled to be completed by year-end 2018.
  • In January 2016, Lemon Bay Conservancy became one of only six organizations nationwide to receive funding through the NOAA Coastal Ecosystem Resiliency Grant program.  With this $420,000 grant, NOAA joins SWFWMD as our partner in restoring Wildflower Preserve. 
  • For our juvenile tarpon research initiative, LBC is in a long-term partnership with Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission.
  • For our education programs, LBC is partnering with the Charlotte County School Board on an annual STEM camp and on planning for future educational initiatives.


External Assessments and Accreditations
Awards & Recognition
Not For Profit Organization of the YearEnglewood Florida Chamber of Commerce2013
Hero for a DayField & Stream Magazine2014
Risk Management Provisions
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government No
Fundraising Plan No
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan Yes
Strategic Plan Years 3
Strategic Plan Adopted Mar 2016
Management Succession Plan No
Continuity of Operations Plan No
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures Yes
Management Comments by Organization

Multi-Media Comments by Organization Lemon Bay Conservancy has a variety of videos available on our YouTube channel at:
www.youtube.com/user/lemonbayconservancy.  Other videos and photos are available on our website at www.lemonbayconservancy.org.
Other Documents
Board Chair
Board Chair James Cooper
Company Affiliation Retired
Board Term Jan 2017 to Jan 2019
Board Chair Email jcoop43@comcast.net
Board Members
Board Members
President Stanley James Cooper Retired
Ms. Buffy Crampton Community volunteer
Mr. Adam Cummings Edward Jones Investments
Secretary Hilary Dahms Community volunteer
Ms. Eva Furner Community Volunteer
Vie President John McCurley Community Volunteer
Vice President Irene Slattery Stonegate Bank
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 3
Female 4
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 3
Board Orientation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 11
Board Meeting Attendance % 81
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 70
Standing Committees
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Special Events (Golf Tournament, Walk / Run, Silent Auction, Dinner / Gala)
Strategic Planning / Strategic Direction
Human Resources / Personnel
Program / Program Planning
Current Year Projections
Tax Year Start Month Jan
Tax Year Start Day 01
Tax Year Begins 2018
Tax Year End Month Dec
Tax Year End Day 31
Tax Year Ends 2018
Projected Revenue $95,000.00
Projected Expenses $90,000.00
Total Projected Revenue includes "in-kind" contributions/ donations No
Organization has Endowment Yes
Endowment Value $16,000.00
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Endowment Spending Policy % 0
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Anticipate Campaign within 5 years? Yes
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
Financial Review
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$147,968$53,312$67,569
Administration Expense$26,568$24,573$23,501
Fundraising Expense$13,821$17,372$20,001
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.211.731.14
Program Expense/Total Expenses79%56%61%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue7%17%44%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$1,976,692$1,937,605$1,869,109
Current Assets$193,498$155,095$101,396
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$229$2,463$910
Total Net Assets$1,976,463$1,935,142$1,868,199
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $193,573Contributions, gifts, grants $99,774Contributions, gifts, grants $45,251
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountMembership Dues $31,605Toast to Toast Coast $38,111Membership Dues $42,415
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountBoat Trips & Eco Cruises $2,240Membership Dues $25,066Toast to Toast Coast $36,104
CEO/Executive Director Compensation
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities844.9762.97111.42
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization

Lemon Bay Conservancy board is very proud of the fact that through community's contributions and involvement Wildflower Preserve, which was purchased in September 2010 for $750,000, was owned free and clear by September 2012. It was truly a challenge put forth to the community and was met with great enthusiasm.

Financial Comments by Foundation
As of November 12 2015, the organization reports that the 2014 Audit/Review has not been completed. 
Financial information taken from IRS Form 990 and audited reviews.  Individual contributions include foundation and corporate support.
Nonprofit Lemon Bay Conservancy, Inc.
Address 150 S McCall Rd, Suite 2
Englewood, FL
Phone 941 830-8922