Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation


Mailing Address:

PO Box 82151

Mobile, AL  36689


Office Located at 4513 Old Shell Road Suite 2


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Annual Report 2018-2019

Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation

Annual Overview



This has been quite an eventful year for the DISLF.  Guided by our consultant, Joe Busta, there have been many firsts.  DISL created a Development Department and hired Helene Hassell Executive Director of the DISLF to also serve as the Director of the new department.

The Foundation moved into the newly opened Development Office at 4513 Old Shell Road.  Two employees were hired into the Development Office, Assistant Director, Angie Gaillard and Assistant to the Director, Daphne Marcum.  While funded by the DISL both these positions perform tasks for both the Development Dept and the DISLF.


As is evidenced by the list below the expansion of the department has resulted in a banner inaugural year.  I want to thank the Board of Directors and Advisory Committee for all they have done to promote the DISLF. 


Projects Funded at the Sea Lab through funds raised by DISLF

Capital Needs

Pool Outdoor and Classroom (Ongoing)


Vessels and Equipment

22’ Catalina Cruiser (New)

31’ Bertram

17’ Inshore Research Vessel

Handheld Castaway CTD     

Spectrophotometer water testing unit



Sea Stars Camp         

ROV Comp

Two DHP Internships

Jenny Cook Marine Biology Class Scholarship

Mike DuGruy Scholarship    

Projects Funded Directly by DISLF


Capital Needs

Campus Master Plan

Gateway Sign to the Estuarium

Funds for the Pool and Outdoor Classroom



DHP Marine Biology Class Scholarship (2020)

Three Undergraduate Partial Scholarships (2020)



Financial Information:

DISLF began 2018-2019 with Total Checking of $502,339.87  (This includes the Middleton Home Sale) and a savings balance of $150,219.73. The Community Foundation of South Alabama had the  DISLF Fund at $1,342, 584.57 and the George Crozier Fund at $273,912.19, for total assets of $2,269,056.36

FY 2019-2020 ended with total Checking of $80,955.83 and Savings of $100, 413.47.   The Community Foundation of South Alabama had the DISLF Fund at $1,882,419.00 and the George Crozier Fund at $253,201.39, for total assets of $2, 316, 989.69.



Fundraising goals were established at the beginning of the fiscal year.  These goals were based on a three-year rolling average of DISLF donors, gifts and dollars.


Total active donors:               Goal: 488                    Actual: 732

New donors:                           Goal: 80                      Actual: 342

Total gifts:                              Goal: 834                    Actual: 1075                                                 

Total Giving:              Goal: $134,167                        Actual: $319,907.87

                                                                                    Outstanding Pledges $2,346

                                                                                    In-kind               $    94,860



TOTAL GIVING Cash + Outstanding Pledges+ In-kind =$417, 113.87




The Foundation has two funds at the CFSA; The George Crozier Endowment Fund which was established with a matching grant from the Kresge Foundation, which is governed by the restrictive rules, established by Kresge.  The second fund is the DISLF Endowment Fund, which has been funded through the fundraising efforts of the Foundation and is a donor directed fund.


Grants 2018-2019:

The Daniel Foundation

BCBS Caring Foundation

Bedsole Foundation

Ben May Foundation

Regions Bank Foundation

Rotary Club of Mobile

Thompson Engineering Foundation

The Jenny Cook Scholarship Fund

Private Donors

 The DISLF Friends of the Sea Lab

 Alabama Power


Special Events and Outreach:

The DISLF hosted two special events; The MEAL and the Alabama Premier of the film Diving Deep the life and Times of Mike DeGruy.  MEAL is an annual event to recognize people and organizations who have exhibited exemplary work concerning the Coastal Marine Environment.  Hosting the film premier was an honor and a privilege for the DISLF.  Mobile native Mike deGruy had a special relationship with the Sea Lab during his lifetime.


Marine Environmental Awards Luncheon (MEAL) 2018

The seventh annual Environmental Awards Luncheon was held on Tuesday, November 6, 2018 at the Battlehouse Hotel.  The event was a wonderful success.  

215 Reservations with 26 Tables

Regions Bank sponsored the luncheon at the $5,000 level.

Keynote Speaker:  Dr. Steve Murawski Former NOAA Director and renowned Fisheries Scientist

Gulf Coast Marine Environmental Excellence Award-Recognizes an individual who has made outstanding contributions to marine environmental sustainability in the Alabama Gulf Coast Region.  Winner: Ben Raines

Gulf Coast Marine Environmental Leadership Award-Recognizes a business or organization whose efforts have resulted in the improvement of marine environmental sustainability in the Alabama Gulf Coast Region. Winner: Leave Only Footprints


The Film: -Diving Deep Mobile native filmmaker and explorer Mike deGruy is remembered in the film Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruy.   His wife and filmmaking partner, Mimi Armstrong deGruy, wrote, directed and produced this award-winning feature length documentary about the irrepressible biologist turned filmmaker. 

Approximately 300 people attended the event. Entrance was $35 for the movie and $50 to attend the reception and movie.  There were 10 special sponsors.  The sponsor group was chaired by Matt Mosteller.  Proceeds from the film will be used to fund the Mike deGruy Scholarship.



Brad Beard

Buddy Brown

Burton Clark

Russ Cunningham

Michael Damrich

Joy Grodnick

Zeb Hargett

Jay Ison

Matt Mosteller

Greer Radcliff

Foress Rayford

Mitch Shackleford

Sam St John

Horace Thurber

Bud Urquhart




Friends of the Sea Lab:           























1200 invitations were mailed in June.  Letters are mailed monthly to remind “Friends” that their memberships are about to expire.





Christmas Appeal:

The holiday appeal grossed $9,662.10 with expenses of $767.58 for a net profit of $8,894.52.  1000 letters were mailed.








Gross Income












$ 666.12




Net income



























Cocktails with the Critters:

This was the sixth year at The Blue Gill.  Our attendance was over 450 this year.  It was beautiful night.


Sponsors:  244 sponsor letters were mailed. The number of corporate sponsors went up to 50 up from last years 43.  The number of individual sponsors was about the same this year at 19. Sponsorships account for 57% of total income.


Ticket Sales-Actual ticket pre-sales was $6400.00 - $600 higher than 2018.  Ticket sales account for 9% of total income.


Donations: Totaled $1,025


In-kind sponsors

  1. WKRG
  2. Gwins
  3. PMT Publishing
  4. Lagniappe


Silent Auction This year’s auction generated a gross revenue of $27,805 from 158 items. The FMV of the items this year totaled $60,420.  Silent auction accounts for 27.4%of total income. 


Trustee Sponsorship-Trustee sponsorships totaled $7200 for a total of 90% of the directors participating.  This sponsorship shared by all the trustees underwrites some of the expenses, which allows the ticket price of the event to remain at a reasonable rate.  Without this support we would have to raise the ticket price.


Actual 2019

Actual 2018

Actual 2017

Actual 2016

Total Income










Total Expenses


Net Income






Employee Campaign:


A new employee campaign was undertaken this year and was well received.   The duration of the campaign was two weeks.  The kickoff was an ice cream social and the celebration at the conclusion was Smokin’ Gringos Taco Truck.    The campaign was well received by the employees with every department having 100% participation which was the ultimate goal.




George Davis, Chair
Bob Collins, Vice Chair

Scott Browning, Treasurer

Fred Hardman, Secretary


Walsh Arendall

Bart Briggs

Cele Cameron

Karlos Finley

John Goodloe

Bill Haffner

Fred Hardman

Scott Heggeman

Dr. John B. Howell, IV

Alvin Hope

Charlie Jackson

Neil Kennedy

Dr. Ben King

Ernest Ladd

Haley Landers

Mark Langan

Jimbo Meador

Eliska Morgan

Dr. Raoul Richardson

Jeff Schock

Marc Whitehead

Wes Williams

Bill Zundel



Honorary Trustees

Dr. George Crozier
Dr. E.O. Wilson

DISL Representatives

Dr. John Valentine
Dr. John Dindo

David England

Advisory Committee


Lisa Goodloe, Chair

Melissa Baker

Kinley Bell

Fred Brock

Goldie Burkholder

Dr. Joe Busta

Suzanne Damrich

Mary Ellingwood

Tom Gaillard

Dr. Robert Harlin

Jimmy Hartman

Luella Hunt

Russell Ladd

Austill Lott

Tomi Sue Mayer

Jocko Potts

Julie Sirmon

Chuck Stapleton

Marty Stapleton

Bryan Thames

Amy Thompson

Alan Tolson

Richard Tremayne

Bud Urquhart

Margaret VanLoock

Erin Wheeler

Garrett Williamson

Patrick Wilson





New this year:


  • Development Policies and Procedures Finalized
  • DISLF Committees were formed and activated:
    • Grants Committee
    • Finance Committee
    • Nominating Committee
    • MEAL Selection Committee
    • Corporate Committee
  • A Prioritized Needs List was compiled by the Department Heads and approved by Dr. Valentine
  • An Honor Roll of Donors was published recognizing donors from years 2010-2017
  • Prospect Lists was compiled consisting of individuals, Corporations and Foundations
  • Fundraising Goals have been established
  • The DISLF held a Board retreat in May at the Sea Lab
  • An Employee Campaign was successfully undertaken


Tours have been given for:

Nick Sellers, AL Power

Beth Thomas, AL Power

Sharon Merle, AL Power

Craig Savage, Austal

 Jeff Schock

Joe Busta

Suzanne Damrich

Cele Cameron

Scott Heggeman

Jay Ison

Charlie Jackson

Mark Langan

Angela Dunn

George Davis

Bob Collins

John Baker, Thompson engineering





Respectively Submitted,

Helene Hassell

Executive Director


Angie Gaillard

Assistant Director

DISL Development Department