Lutheran Services Florida, Inc.
1748 Independence Blvd Building E
Sarasota FL 34234-2783
Lutheran Services Florida serves to bring God’s healing, hope, and help to people in need in the name of Jesus Christ; LSF Guardianship Program protects, coordinate care & safety, and advocates for vulnerable citizens of Sarasota.
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Kathleen J. Houseweart MBA
Board Chair Mr Bill Haueisen
Board Chair Affiliation retired
General Info
Organization DBA
LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program
Former Names
Lutheran Ministries of Florida
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1982
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes Dec 2017
State Registration Yes 0
Financial Summary
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Letter of DeterminationView
Impact Statement

LSF Guardianship Program has provided advocacy, care management, assistance to obtain public benefits, coordination of services, and financial management, to vulnerable individuals in Sarasota for over 20 years.   The Case managers and Finance staff at LSF carry the largest caseload of indigent guardianship cases in the county. 

LSF Clients are individuals, over the age of 18, with developmental or physical disabilities, mental illness, traumatic brain injury, or Alzheimer’s disease or related dementias, etc.. These individuals are often the marginalized, isolated, and invisible citizens who repeatedly show up in emergency rooms, receiving facilities, police reports and/or homeless shelters. Without a guardian to investigate options and apply & advocate for services, they exist in the revolving door of crisis management – without dignity – often creating unnecessary expense to the community programs that try to serve them. Referrals to LSF Guardianship Program come from, hospitals, jails, mental health programs, group homes, assisted living and nursing facilities and from the Department of Children & Families’ Adult Protective Services staff when abuse, neglect or exploitation are identified. For many of these individuals Guardianship the last resort to protect a client’s rights, property, safety and dignity.

Clients are often in the most complicated situations, facing dire circumstances which are complicated by lack of resources. Trained LSF Guardianship Program staff step in to assess the situation/crisis, protect the ward and their assets, coordinate services, and create short and long-term care plans. This is completed by visiting the client, wherever they are, and assessing their physical, psychological, financial, and spiritual needs. Staff is always required to take into account the ward’s wishes, work with family and other interested parties, and provide care in the least restrictive environment possible, given the ward’s needs, abilities and resources. Staff must often work with families who have already been deemed unwilling, unable or unreliable in managing these important basic needs. Clients are visited monthly to reevaluate and coordinate ongoing care.

In our local community, guardians make arrangements for housing and supportive services, including finding safe accommodations in the community, or in local facilities and finding options to pay for those accommodations through application to public benefits. Staff members assure the health and safety of each ward through finding appropriate medical care and access to necessary prescription medication. Staff manages income, protects assets, and pays bills, while assuring ongoing eligibility for public benefits. In most cases, guardians must oversee every aspect of the ward’s health and safety.

Needs Statement

LSF Guardianship program serves a varied caseload of elderly and disabled individual who are unable to care and advocate for themselves.  Presently approximately 85% of the clients are indigent.

CLIENT SUPPORT: GOAL $3500/per client provides annual service to one indigent client. This includes the professional staff services of the case managers and financial specialist. It includes monthly visits, coordination of care, paying of monthly bills, application and recertification for public benefits costs, coordination of medical care and housing needs. Any donation in that amount would provide service to one indigent client for one year.

VOLUNTEER GOAL: A small group of volunteers to function as ‘case aides’ by making friendly visits, completing errands, and providing general office support. The job of a guardian, by law, requires hours of documentation and report preparation, in addition to the direct client contact. This support will allow professional guardians the time to provide direct client contact, coordination of care and oversight to clients in need.

OFFICE FURNITURE GOAL: Professional matching office furniture. The current office furniture is a hodge-podge of greatly appreciated donations and hand-me-downs. While staff is grateful for all we have, a donation of professional office furniture or funds to purchase would be of great benefit.

Background Statement

Since 1990 LSF has provided Guardianship services to individuals who are unable to care for, or advocate for themselves in Sarasota County and beyond.  As a mission driven organization Lutheran Services Florida has supported the guardianship program at a financial loss over most of those years.  With a belief that every life should have value and dignity, LSF has remained committed to serving the communities most vulnerable citizens regardless of their ability to pay.  More recently the LSF Guardianship Program was recognized as the State designated Office of Public Guardian for the 12th Circuit providing court appointed services to indigent adults.  Throughout the past 25 + years, LSF Guardianship Program has provided professional advocacy, oversight and protection to the area’s most vulnerable citizens. 

Areas Served
Areas Served
In a specific U.S. city, cities, state(s) and/or region.
FL- Sarasota
FL- Manatee
FL- DeSoto
Areas Served Comments

The LSF guardianship program provides services in Sarasota and throughout Sarasota County.

Service Categories
Primary Org Type Human Services
Secondary Org Type Human Services
Tertiary Org Type Human Services
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

The Lutheran Services Florida (LSF) Board of Directors is dedicated to strategically positioning one of Florida’s largest and most prominent nonprofit and human services agencies so that LSF can help transform the lives of as many people as possible. What this means from the vantage point of an individual board member, and as Board Chair in particular, is that our LSF board leadership must include more than mere risk and compliance oversight of LSF’s 60 plus programs. As board chair, it has been my pleasure and honor to challenge LSF to manage its incredible growth curve while continuing to maintain its impeccable service record. With a footprint of over two-thirds of Florida’s counties, serving nearly 900,000 children and families, this is no small task. But the Board is a professional one and has risen to the task in some rather astounding ways.

Even though inspiring, the variety within the LSF service portfolio alone – from Guardianship to Head Start to youth shelters, foster care, adoption, not to mention immigration and refugee services, disaster relief and mental health services – might seem overwhelming; but the Board of Directors ably and quickly redesigned and redeveloped LSF’s strategic management approach. Fostered by its commitment to learning and good governance, the redesign and redevelopment allowed for us to mitigate the more critical challenges that come with rapid growth, no matter how well planned that growth may be, and capitalize on the inherent opportunities that growth brings. Ensuring that LSF remains a premier organization with services that transform lives and, thereby, communities, has been key in my tenure as Board Chair.

Statement from the CEO/Executive Director

When people ask me about Guardianship and our essential work in Sarasota, I first share with them the story of Lois and Frank, two people we served through Guardianship:  

What the Sarasota police learned when they escorted Fred home after finding him disoriented and confused, broke the hearts of well-meaning neighbors who hadn’t wanted to intrude. Fred and Lois had lived an uppermiddle class life in a beautiful neighborhood. But what the police found was a couple in dire need. Immobile, Lois had been stranded in an armchair for days. Dehydrated and unable to move, Lois was sick and afraid. The house, once so well known for its beauty and cleanliness, was designated a health hazard by the police, it was in such a state of disarray and filth. With no family and no one else to turn to, Lutheran Services Florida (LSF) stepped in and became their guardian. Now in a nursing home, receiving appropriate care, Lois credits LSF for saving her life and keeping Fred, now diagnosed with dementia, safe.

That story is one of thousands, but it highlights how essential a service guardianship is not only to the individuals we directly serve, but to the community as a whole. Most people are amazed at the quality of intensive case management services we provide with rather nominal resources. We are only able to do so in partnership with individuals from within and around Sarasota.
However, the guardianship program is at a critical juncture. Without increased support from Sarasota's civic-minded citizenry, LSF will not be able to continue to serve under-served, indigent people. I am hopeful that Sarasotans will begin to see just how essential guardianship is to all who live in Sarasota and will increase its support of this often quiet, but essential community service.

LSF Sarasota Guardianship Services protect vulnerable adults from abuse, neglect and exploitation. Guardians are appointed by the courts to act on behalf of those who cannot handle their own affairs because of physical injuries, mental illness, developmental disabilities, Alzheimer’s disease or other age-related dementia. The LSF Guardianship program serves clients in Sarasota, Manatee and Desoto Counties. LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program serves incapacitated elderly and disabled adults without regard to income, age, residence, race or religion.

Budget $1,100,000
Category Human Services, General/Other Human Services, General/Other
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Adults Adults
Short Term Success

LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program sets high goals for service for our clients.  Presently, 95% of guardianship clients receive visits monthly from trained staff to assess needs, coordinate services and assure safety.  Of those clients identified as "Community High Risk" (those with repeated hospitalizations, baker acts or court appearances) 90% receive stabilizing services within 30 days.  Staff works to maintain all clients in safe and appropriate living situations, deemed to be the least restrictive to meet their needs.  For those clients with a history of being abused, neglected or exploited, LSF Guardianship Program staff work to immediately protect them, and their assets. Staff work calmly and consistently in the face of crisis in order to assure the safety of all clients,

Long Term Success

LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program has had over 25 years of service to the Sarasota community through its guardianship program.  The program maintains support from several partner community organizations and from the 12th Circuit Court.  The program also is designated by the Florida Department of Elder Affairs as the Office of Public Guardian for Sarasota, Manatee and Desoto Counties.  Through these partnerships, LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program is able to continue to serve difficult clients regardless of ability to pay.

Program Success Monitoring

LSF Guardianship services consistently exceed state standards.  The staff monitor success factors and quality indicators monthly and meet to address any issues that arise.  Lutheran Services Florida, including the LSF Sarasota Guardianship Program recently received COA accreditation.  

Program Success Examples

When their parents died, John’s brothers didn’t know what to do. At thirty-three, John had always lived with mom and dad. His brothers knew that John, diagnosed with Down Syndrome at birth, couldn’t live on his own. They also knew that neither of them could take care of him full-time. One of the brothers had heard about a Lutheran services organization at church, so they decided to give them a call; after all, they had no one else to turn to. When they called Lutheran Services Florida, they were relieved to hear that they could get help for themselves and, most importantly, for John, who they loved and wanted the best for. Through LSF’s guardianship program, John’s future is attended to and his day-to-day needs met. His brothers visit John and are connected to him as brothers should be, but only with help from Lutheran Services Florida. Had it not been for LSF, John’s brothers aren’t sure what they would have done.

Program Comments by Organization

Approximately 80% of the clients currently served by the LSF Guardianship Program are indigent.  These include those with severe and persistent mental illness, traumatic brain injury, developmental disabilities and older adults with dementia.  Our staff regularly provide oversight of health, housing, safety and care, along with application for public benefits and financial management and protection of assets for the most vulnerable in the community.

CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Ms. Kathleen J. Houseweart MBA
CEO Term Start Apr 2017
CEO/Executive Director Email
Experience Kathleen Houseweart has over 30 years' experience in the field of aging and has provided training and education on aging issues at local, regional and national forums.  She retired from Sarasota Memorial Health Care System in 2016, where she served as Manager of Geriatric Programs and the Alzheimer's Disease Initiative (ADI) designated, grant funded, Memory Disorder Clinic for 16 years. She has experience in marketing, grant writing and grant managements and has worked with Area Agencies on Aging in 3 states.
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Anne Ridings Dec 1990 - Nov 2016
Senior Staff
Dr Chris Card President, Chief Operating Officer
Dr Christine Caufield Executive Director LSF Health Systems
Mr. Louis A Finney Jr.Executive Vice President of Children and Head Start Services
Ms. Amelia Fox Chief Strategy Officer
Kathleen Houseweart Director, Guardianship Services, Sarasota
Mr. Phil Hubbell EVP Human Resources
Ms. Stacy Martin Executive Vice President of Programs
Mr. Matthew Rosen Vice President, General Counsel
Mr. Bob Wydra Chief Financial Officer
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 12
Part Time Staff 1
Staff Retention Rate % 74
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 0
Volunteers 2
Management Reports to Board Yes
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and ELCA Florida-Bahamas Synod

Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod and LCMS Florida-Georgia District

Lutheran Disaster Response

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service

Lutheran Services in America

Thrivent Financial for Lutherans

Central Florida Behavioral Health Network

ChildNet Inc.

Children’s Network of Southwest Florida

Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County

City of Pensacola

Eckerd Community Alternatives

Escambia County

Florida Department of Children and Families

Florida Department of Health

Florida Department of Juvenile Justice

Florida Network of Youth and Family Services

Hillsborough Co.Board of County Commissioners, Head Start/Early Head tart

Lakeview Center

Lee County


Office of the Attorney General, State of Florida(Victims of Crime Act rants)

Okaloosa County

Our Kids

Santa Rosa County

Sarasota County

South Florida Workforce Investment Board

Tampa Bay Work Force Alliance, Inc.

United Way

United Way South County 

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

WorkNet Pinellas

Youth and Family Services Network

External Assessments and Accreditations
Council on Accreditation (COA) [for Children and Family Services] - Accreditation2017
Awards & Recognition
Finalist, Top Non-Profit of the YearTampa Bay Business Journal2007
Non-Profit Organization of the YearTampa Bay Hispanic Chamber of Commerce2006
Commendable PerformanceU.S. Department of Health & Human Services2002
Deemed Status RatingFlorida Department of Juvenile Justice2002
1. Most Meals Served & 2. Excellent Nutrition Practices, Child Food CareFlorida Department of Health2007
Finalist, Non-profit of the YearTampa Bay Business Journal2016
Outstanding Board of Directors (Large Non-Profit Board Category)Tampa Bay Business Journal2015
Risk Management Provisions
Automobile Insurance
Workers Compensation and Employers' Liability
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government No
Fundraising Plan Yes
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan Yes
Strategic Plan Years 3
Strategic Plan Adopted Jan 2017
Management Succession Plan Yes
Continuity of Operations Plan Yes
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

Board Chair
Board Chair Mr Bill Haueisen
Company Affiliation retired
Board Term Oct 2010 to Oct 2019
Board Chair Email
Board Members
Board Members
Mr John Bauder Treasurer
Ms. Linda Gray Retired
Ms Zina Hamilton homemaker
Mr William Haueisen N/A
Mr William Horne City of Clearwater
Mr. Fred Kraegel Volunteer
Mrs Laurel Marc-Charles Richard & Richard, P.A.
Mr Scott Morris N/A
The Rev James Rockey Amazing Grace Lutheran Church
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 6
Female 3
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 3
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 4
Board Meeting Attendance % 89
Board Self-Evaluation Yes
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Board Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 100
Standing Committees
Board Governance
Governance Comments by Organization
The Board adheres to a Carver model of governance. Each board member receives intensive training through the Carver institute prior to commencing with board service.
Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Start Month July
Fiscal Year Start Day 01
Fiscal Year Begins 2017
Fiscal Year End Month June
Fiscal Year End Day 30
Fiscal Year Ends 2018
Projected Revenue $990,008.00
Projected Expenses $1,008,356.00
Total Projected Revenue includes "in-kind" contributions/ donations No
Organization has Endowment No
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Anticipate Campaign within 5 years? No
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Campaign Dates 0 to 0
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
IRS Form 990s
Historical Financial Review
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201620152014
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$181,868,346$175,555,955$127,982,027
Individual Contributions$21,519,641$21,571,887$21,105,483
Investment Income, Net of Losses($7,139)$105,689$48,114
Membership Dues$0$0$0
Special Events$49,599$9,094$47,965
Revenue In-Kind$2,808,660$9,192,235$8,808,948
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$198,629,093$191,167,472$141,201,561
Administration Expense$9,466,333$8,326,804$6,464,170
Fundraising Expense$512,181$358,477$211,689
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.991.001.02
Program Expense/Total Expenses95%96%95%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$39,337,816$39,269,227$30,044,106
Current Assets$24,148,698$22,677,410$17,636,652
Long-Term Liabilities$6,597,979$2,175,783$3,519,673
Current Liabilities$21,500,611$22,008,270$15,075,667
Total Net Assets$11,239,216$15,085,184$11,448,766
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountGovernment Grants - State $117,325,631Government Grants - State $108,146,070Government Grants - Unspecified $127,982,027
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountGovernment Grants - Federal $49,406,226Government Grants - Federal $52,501,035Contributions, gifts, grants $21,105,483
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $21,519,641Contributions, gifts, grants $21,571,887Guardianship Services $1,135,521
CEO/Executive Director Compensation $75,001 - $100,000
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities1.121.031.17
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets17%6%12%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization

LSF faces significant challenges in helping potential donors understand the critical need for private resources to help the people we serve. One of the challenges is helping potential donors understand that an organization as large as LSF relies on donor engagement and charitable generosity. At first glance the budget appears large enough to manage all expenses to provide world-class services to people in most need. If only that were the case. Without private funding partnerships and donor generosity, LSF is unable to serve as many people as are in need nor are we able to serve in ways that fully exhibit our mission.

A second challenge is the confusion associated with the “Lutheran” in our name. LSF serves anyone in need, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, gender, or age. Often people are hesitant to reach out to LSF because they are concerned we serve only Lutherans.

Financial Comments by Foundation Foundation and corporations are included with individual contributions as they are not separated in the 990s or audited financial statements.  Financial figures were taken from the 990s.
Nonprofit Lutheran Services Florida, Inc.
Address 1748 Independence Blvd Building E
Sarasota, FL 34234 2783
Phone 941 358-6330 25001