Coastal Conservation Association
4061 Forrestal Ave
Suite 8
Orlando FL 32806-6151

The purpose of CCA is to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. The objective of CCA is to conserve, promote, and enhance the present and future availability of those coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public.

CEO/Executive Director Mr. Brian Gorski
Board Chair Mr Ron Crowder
Board Chair Affiliation Volunteer
General Info
Organization DBA
Coastal Conservation Association of Florida
CCA Florida
Former Names
Florida Conservation Association (FCA)
Gulf Coast Conservation Foundation
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1978
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes June 2018
State Registration Yes 0
Financial Summary
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Letter of DeterminationView
Other Documents
Board Members listView
Impact Statement

CCA Florida and the Building Conservation Trust (BCT) contributed $25,000 to Volusia County for the upcoming deployment of the “Lady Philomena” cargo ship, to be deployed in early 2018 on Volusia County Reef Site 12.

CCA Florida created and launched the highly successful 2017 Trash Tour. Through five events around the state, over 300 volunteers participated in removing more than five tons of trash and debris from coastal waterways.

CCA Florida applied and won a grant in the amount of $82,770 to continue highly successful oyster reef restoration and living shoreline stabilization in Mosquito Lagoon.

CCA Florida worked with Congress to help develop the Modern Fish Act.

CCA Florida worked to stop an exempted fishing permit that would initiate a commercial privatization program for at least six species of fish. Additionally, CCA Florida stopped the Pelagic Longline Exempted Fishing Permit, which was issued for the closed conservation one off the East Coast of Florida.

CCA Florida fought against the three-day Gulf red snapper season and continues to work on other long-term solutions to address the mismanaged Gulf fishery.

2018 Goals:

CCA Florida will work with the Florida Legislature to create a CCA Florida License plate. This initiative is House Bill 983 by Rep. Latvala and Senate Bill 1248 by Sen. Gainer.

CCA Florida will continue working with the guides and the FWC to implement a provision stating that no guides shall possess a limit of trout or redfish while guiding.

CCA Florida will work with the FWC and DEP to help stop closures off SE Florida’s coast.

CCA Florida is working closely with the Gucken family and General Motors in planning a memorial reef for CCA member Sean Gucken.

Needs Statement

1. Habitat projects from oyster rehabilitation to offshore artificial reefs are being proposed across the state. Funding is required to sustain the demand for habitat restoration and improvement. Requested Donation: $5,000

2. At the forefront of CCA Florida’s interests are the rights of recreational anglers. There is a never ending battle with groups whose interests may be to limit our resource availability and access to waterways. Additional funding is always needed to continue CCA’s fight to protect the recreational angler. Requested Donation: $10,000

3. As a grassroots organization, CCA Florida’s membership is the lifeblood of who we are and what we do. Standard Membership $35, Life Membership $1,000, Heritage Membership $5,000, Legacy Membership $10,000

4. CCA Florida is very proud to have two fundraising seasons. These seasons can be very straining financially. We are required to maintain equipment and banquet supplies. Additional funding helps to keep the wheels turning and the lights on. Requested Donation: $500

5. We are fortunate to have corporate sponsors at the majority of our events. Often times our banquet ticket prices barely cover our costs. Sponsor tables help maximize our profitability margin. Please contact for local sponsorship pricing.

Background Statement
Coastal Conservation Association is a non-profit organization with 19 state chapters spanning the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic seaboard, and the Pacific Northwest.
CCA began in 1977 after drastic commercial overfishing along the Texas coast decimated redfish and speckled trout populations. 14 concerned recreational anglers created the Gulf Coast Conservation Association to combat commercial overfishing.
The stewardship started with the "Save the Redfish" campaign, and by 1985, chapters had formed along the Gulf Coast. By the early ‘90s, the mid-Atlantic region and the New England had chapters. Washington and Oregon opened CCA chapters in 2007.
CCA has participated productively in virtually every national fisheries debate since 1984. In the federal court system, CCA’s legal defense fund has been used to defend net bans; fight for the implementation of bycatch reduction devices; support pro-fisheries legislation; and battle arbitrary no-fishing zones.
The CCA network is engaged in hundreds of local, state, and national projects that initiate scientific studies; fund marine-science scholarships; build artificial reefs; create finfish hatcheries; initiate hydrologic and contaminant studies; monitor freshwater inflows; support local marine law enforcement; and more.
Through broad-based recreational angler support; a strong legal and legislative presence; decades of experience; and an unwavering vision for the future of U.S. and global marine resources, CCA battles for the sustainable health of our coastal fisheries and for recreational anglers’ interests.
Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Sarasota
FL- Manatee
FL- Lee
FL- Hillsborough
FL- DeSoto
FL- Charlotte
State Wide
Areas Served Comments CCA Florida has a chapter in almost every county in the State of Florida. Each Chapter hosts at least one fundraising event locally. Most host secondary and even tertiary events to improve the local community. Secondary events range from kids fishing clinics to habitat projects. 
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Environment
Secondary Org Type Recreation & Sports
Tertiary Org Type Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

CCA Florida was organized as a grassroots charitable entity at its inception over 30 years ago. This structure required the active involvement of volunteers who were collectively charged with overseeing the operations of CCA, and its advocacy efforts. Although CCA has paid staff members, all staff members report directly to CCA’s Management Committee, which continues to be comprised exclusively of volunteers.   This structure has proven to be successful over the years. Like other charitable organizations, CCA has finite resources as it attempts to fulfill its mission. Still, this foundational organizational structure has allowed CCA to enjoy many advocacy successes over the years as a voice for Florida’s marine resources and as a representative of the interests of salt water recreational fisherman.

Challenges that have come with CCA’s organizational structure from a governance standpoint relate to the eventual turnover in volunteers who serve on the Management Committee (and other committees) over time. Still, CCA’s volunteer leadership has done a remarkable job focusing on continuity in its leadership ranks, and has increasingly focused on leadership succession. CCA does this, in part, by drafting new members for the Management Committee each year, some of whom matriculate further into higher level leadership roles within the committee.

As CCA Florida’s current Chairman, I still serve as a member of the Management Committee, and have been on the committee for several years. These roles have been incredibly rewarding and fulfilling, primarily because CCA has increased its regular membership to record levels, and we have also enjoyed all-time highs in our Life, Heritage, and Legacy membership categories. The Rising Tide Membership category, which is our membership level for children, has also reached unprecedented levels. Consistent with our membership and chapter successes, CCA Florida is on sound financial footing, which has permitted us to expand our advocacy efforts in fisheries management and oversight, become increasingly engaged in vital water quality issues, and allowed us to vastly expand our habitat restoration and artificial reef efforts.

As an outdoorsman, recreational fisherman, and conservationist, I have observed first-hand the significant role CCA Florida plays in the management of our marine resources. CCA’s partnerships with state and federal fishery regulators continue to be productive and effective. Although some of our fishery resources continue to be stressed, I am convinced they would be in worse shape without CCA’s vigilance. I firmly believe CCA’s efforts not only help to conserve our marine resources, but also contribute to broader efforts preserving a unique way of life in our state. Please let us not forget we are merely borrowing our marine resources from our children and grandchildren. 

Ron Crowder - Chairman, CCA Florida
Statement from the CEO/Executive Director

Offshore, nearshore and inshore, CCA Florida stands for angler access and rights, and a sustainable use of our saltwater marine resources. The purpose of the Coastal Conservation Association Florida is to protect our state’s marine resources and the interests of the anglers who enjoy them. We’re making sure the Florida we grew up with, will be there for our children and grandchildren. As Executive Director, I cannot not be more proud of everything our organization has accomplished. From being on the front lines of advocacy issues, to our numerous habitat restoration projects, CCA has proven our relevance to the state of Florida and it’s residents time and time again.


For more than a decade, CCA Florida’s Habitat Restoration Program along with hundreds of local CCA chapter members have contributed thousands of volunteer hours help restore Florida's fragile marine habitat. Volunteers have contributed to offshore and nearshore reef development, oyster bar restoration, shoreline stabilization, and planted literally hundreds of acres of saltmarsh, seagrass beds and mangroves. Because of the importance of habitat and water quality to our fisheries, CCA Florida continues to substantially increase its role in their habitat restoration program. The organization’s commitment is apparent with recent hiring of Frank Gidus, CCA’s new Director of Habitat and Environmental Restoration, as well as several new habitat projects for 2017 and 2018! 

Budget $77,000
Category Environment, General/Other Marine Conservation
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified General/Unspecified General/Unspecified
Short Term Success

The short-term benefits of CCA Florida’s habitat restoration program include direct and rapid benefits to marine life and water quality. The majority of coastal and marine species respond very quickly to habitat improvements and many species populations can rebound within months following the restoration. Restoring habitat results in increased fish populations, which have a positive economic and social impact on the local communities and the industries that depend on sustainable fisheries. Projects such as oyster restorations not only provide habitat, shelter and food sources, but a single oyster can filter as much as 50 gallons of water per day. CCA measures each of our habitat project benefits and successes individually, as no two projects are identical or have the same environmental influences. However, every habitat restoration project constructed to date has shown successful short-term benefits to the habitat, the various species, and to the general public. 

Long Term Success

The long-term benefits of CCA Florida’s habitat restoration program include restoring and protecting our marine resources for future generations. This is directly in line with CCA’s mission statement purpose and objectives:  The purpose of CCA is to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. The objective of CCA is to conserve, promote, and enhance the present and future availability of those coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public. CCA’s habitat restoration program fosters long-term stewardship of our coastal habitats while continually boosting the local communities in the vicinity of the habitat projects. A healthy marine environment directly contributes to human health and enjoyment, both in the short-term and long-term.  Successful habitat restoration projects create jobs, maintain ecological balance and biodiversity within natural systems, and preserve a way of life for coastal residents for the benefit of future generations.

Program Success Monitoring This may be best exemplified by our success in habitat restoration and creation. These results are tangible and quite evident. Many of the reefs, oyster bars, and mangroves that we have helped restore and build are now living, thriving ecosystems. 
Program Success Examples

One example of the impact CCA FL has is on October 22, 2013, Judge Jackie Fulford ruled on behalf of the commercial netters and ignored 18 years of legal precedent on the issue. The 2 inch mesh size used by the FWC to define and clarify the difference between illegal gill nets and legal seine nets has resolved previous enforcement issues and successfully maintained the full intent of the Constitutional Amendment. CCA Florida has intervened on behalf of the FWC in the net limitation law suit. One year later the First District Court of Appeal issued an opinion upholding the net ban amendment. CCA and their legal counsel worked closely with FWC to overturn the ruling from a lower court. Today, gill nets are once again considered an illegal method of harvesting seafood. If it weren’t for the funding and backing of CCA Florida things could have turned out dramatically different for Florida’s Marine Life. For a full list of our accomplishments please visit

CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Brian Gorski
CEO Term Start Jan 2012
CEO/Executive Director Email

Executive Director

Coastal Conservation Association Florida
– Present (14 years 3 months)Orlando, Florida Area

Director of Marketing

Brown Schools of Florida
(1 year 8 months)Hollywood, FL

Director Of Needs Assessment

Charter Behavioral Health Systems
(2 years 2 months)Bradenton, FL
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Mr. Ted Forsgren Jan 1985 - Jan 2012
Senior Staff
Mr. Dan Askin Chief Operating Officer
Frank J. Gidus IIDirector of Habitat and Environmental Restoration
Mr. Adam H Miller Senior Regional Director
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 12
Part Time Staff 4
Staff Retention Rate % 69
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 9
Volunteers 420
Management Reports to Board Yes
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
CCA Florida has worked together with hundreds of various sponsors over the years in fundraising events and banquets.  CCA Florida has also teamed with various local, state and federal agencies and private entities on habitat projects and grants throughout Florida and the country.
External Assessments and Accreditations
Risk Management Provisions
Commercial General Insurance
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 No
Nondiscrimination Policy No
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures No
Management Comments by Organization

The purpose of CCA is to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. The objective of CCA is to conserve, promote, and enhance the present and future availability of those coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public. Based on this, our primary challenge is the growth of membership. CCA is always working towards increasing membership through traditional methods that have a proven track record, and through new initiatives. CCA is also challenged with increasing the focus on habitat and water quality projects when the primary focus of our group has historically been on fisheries advocacy. 

Board Chair
Board Chair Mr Ron Crowder
Company Affiliation Volunteer
Board Term Dec 2016 to Dec 2018
Board Chair Email
Board Members
Board Members
Mr. Bruce Aebel Banker, Lopez, Gassler Law
Mr. Bill Camp Northern Trust
Mr. Ron Crowder Crowder Bros. Ace Hardware
Mr. J.D Dickenson Cozen O'Connor Law
Mr. David Ellrich Volunteer
Mr. Paul Giordano Roetzel & Andress Law
Mr. John Pinder Volunteer
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 7
Female 0
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits 2
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 23
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 100
Governance Comments by Organization

Just as any governing body our board faces many challenges. Amongst these are simple disagreements on advocacy stances, difficulty in committing time and travel to the organization, and electing incoming officials. During our meetings many disagreements have arisen in regards to differing opinions on issues at hand. These disagreements range in pertinence from simple allocation laws of resources, to complete opposite positions on advocacy fronts. Our board is strong though, and these disagreements often time lead to more in depth conversation at the issue at hand. This allows us to take a tedious look into all sides of the issue and find the best solution. Our organization is statewide, we are based in Orlando, but have chapters throughout the state. Some board members travel from as far as Pensacola and the Keys to attend annual board meetings. The distance and time traveled often times impedes board members from attending meetings. Many call in via conference call. Unfortunately though, sometimes some of our members cannot find the time to make this happen either. The fact that our membership base is so spread out does create a great opportunity. During our meetings members from every part of the state have the opportunity to discuss specific issues they are facing in their areas. Often times we find that different parts of the state are facing similar issues. Through geological diversity we are able to compare what works well and what doesn’t to find the best solutions. Good volunteers are hard to find, good volunteers in leadership positions are even harder to find. A definite challenge we face is acquiring the right person for the job. Fortunately with our passionate and dedicated membership we never have to look too far to fill a position.

Governance Comments by Foundation
The board listed is the management committee. The full state board is 149 members (see Other Documents section for list; there are 152 names listed because of duplication in officers and chapters).
Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Start Month Jan
Fiscal Year Start Day 01
Fiscal Year Begins 2018
Fiscal Year End Month Dec
Fiscal Year End Day 31
Fiscal Year Ends 2018
Projected Revenue $1,920,126.00
Projected Expenses $2,162,938.00
Organization has Endowment Yes
Endowment Value $230,000.00
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Campaign Dates 0 to 0
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
Audit/Financial Documents
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$0$0$0
Individual Contributions$1,754,984$2,750,413$1,728,166
Investment Income, Net of Losses$68,747$64,374$66,436
Membership Dues$2,937,161$2,927,421$2,165,292
Special Events$9,645,651$9,222,966$8,611,909
Revenue In-Kind$0$0$0
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$11,571,483$11,396,038$11,234,914
Administration Expense$2,236,163$2,153,783$1,961,348
Fundraising Expense$306,394$355,509$243,526
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$58,500
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.081.111.06
Program Expense/Total Expenses82%82%84%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue3%3%2%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$17,597,756$17,593,829$16,453,582
Current Assets$12,156,539$12,100,727$11,195,298
Long-Term Liabilities$1,127,803$1,115,924$910,650
Current Liabilities$7,280,214$7,872,152$7,711,778
Total Net Assets$9,189,739$8,605,753$7,831,154
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountFundraising $9,645,651Fundraising $9,222,966Fundraising $8,611,909
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountMembership Dues $2,937,161Membership Dues $2,927,421Membership Dues $2,165,292
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $1,754,984Contributions, gifts, grants $2,750,413Contributions, gifts, grants $1,728,166
CEO/Executive Director Compensation $125,001 - $150,000
Co-CEO/Executive Director Compensation $75,001 - $100,000
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities1.671.541.45
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets6%6%6%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization The purpose of CCA is to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. The objective of CCA is to conserve, promote, and enhance the present and future availability of those coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public. Based on this, our financial challenges stem directly from the number of members in the organization in any given year. CCA continues to work on increasing membership to assist with meeting our financial obligations. CCA’s new initiative is to increase our focus on habitat projects and water quality issues, thereby gaining new members whose interests are tied to these specific areas. 
Financial Comments by Foundation Financial information taken from the Federal 990.  Contributions include foundation and corporate support.
Nonprofit Coastal Conservation Association
Address 4061 Forrestal Ave
Suite 8
Orlando, FL 32856 6151
Phone 941 270-0895