Florida Disabled Outdoors Association, Inc.
2475 Apalachee Parkway
Suite 205
Tallahassee FL 32301-4946
Contact Information
Address 2475 Apalachee Parkway
Suite 205
Tallahassee, FL 32301
Telephone (850) 2012944
Fax 850 2012945
E-mail info@fdoa.org
Web and Social Media
Donate Directly to this Organization http://www.fdoa.org/donate
Active Leisure for Life!
At A Glance
Organization DBA
Florida Disabled Outdoors Association
Organization's type of tax exempt status Public Supported Charity
EIN Number 59-3051552
Year of Incorporation 1991
Financial Summary
Projected Revenue $251,395.00
Projected Expenses $251,935.00
Mission Statement
Florida Disabled Outdoors Association enriches lives through accessible inclusive recreation for all.
• Advocate for accessible and inclusive recreation.
• Promote the importance of active leisure for health and wellness and the value of therapeutic recreation.
• Educate and disseminate information on accessible inclusive products, programs, events, and destinations.
• Provide opportunities to enhance employability.
• Partner with recreation, health, disability, and civic organizations.
• Assist in universal design for recreation.
• Promote accessibility and inclusive use of public and private lands.
• Promote high standards of sportsmanship, ethics, and conservation.
Needs Statement

Current FDOA needs include:
1. Funding to increase hours of part-time staff  – Staff has already been cut, but with only 1.4 staff members, the programs need additional staff to manage them effectively.  At previous staffing levels, additional services were able to be offered.
2. Business Sponsorships to support program delivery – Currently, program elements are at risk of being reduced.
3. In-kind Audit Services
4. In-kind Administrative Support to work 10-20 hours in the FDOA office per week – having one dedicated person that staff could train would greatly facilitate operations.
5. In-kind Donation of Newsletter/Brochure Printing

Impact Statement


1. FDOA increased capacity of the on-line Recreation Resource Referral Network where people are able to search for accessible inclusive recreation and leisure

(A) Products,

(B) Programs and Services, and

(C) Events and Destinations.

2. More than 1,000 people attended SportsAbility, which provides first hand access to resources and demonstrations of activities designed to encourage participation in active living and wellness activities, regardless of age or ability level. Over 40 vendors and community partners participated at the SportsAbility Expo.

3. The Miracle Sports program delivered the benefits of teams sports to child and adult leagues, with different sports played in each of the four seasons. The sports are played on the Miracle Field of Tallahassee, which has a rubberized surface that allows people of all abilities to play.



1. Deliver “Active Leisure for Life” and wellness message through the SportsAbility program to at least 1,000 participants, school children and groups.

·      Increase participation of people of Hispanic heritage, people of low income, African American persons and persons of Asian heritage.

·      Increase volunteer hours and in-kind contributions during the months preceding SportsAbility.

2. Deliver the Miracle Sports Program to at least 70 children and adults with disabilities in the Big Bend and at least 30 children and adults without disabilities.

·      Continue Miracle Sports baseball, soccer, flag football and basketball programs in Big Bend area.

·      Increase team sport recreation hours to over 4,000 for people of all abilities at the Miracle Sports.

·      Increase participation of area schools and community groups.

3. Continue to improve and update the Recreation Resource Referral Network. 

·      Objectives include increasing the database to include: 200 destinations, 320 events, 400 programs and services, and 150 products.

Background Statement
It is rare that someone can take a “tragedy” as an opportunity to change their life and help others. That is exactly what David Jones did. His injury became a personal commitment to help others. In 1988, David Jones was shot in a hunting accident resulting in a serious head injury that left him with permanent paralyses of his left leg, limiting mobility and no use of his left hand. David utilized a wheelchair for one year, then gradually increased mobility to the point where he could walk with a walker and now walks with a slight limp without any device. He remains paralyzed in one arm.
In the process of his rehabilitation, he became aware of the importance of recreation for rehabilitation – not only to improve mobility, but to improve mental well-being. David saw this event in his life as a challenge and an opportunity to assist others. This life changing event developed into his personal crusade.
David Jones overcame the challenge of his disability, utilizing sports for himself and others by forming the Florida Disabled Outdoors Association in 1990. In 2002, David Jones hired Laurie LoRe-Gussak as the Executive Director. The Florida Disabled Oudoors Association has grown since that point to have multiple programs including: the Recreation Activity Program for Adults with Disabilities, ALLOUT Adventure Program, Miracle Sports, Community-Based Therapeutic Recreation and SportsAbility.
Service Categories
Alliances & Advocacy
Areas of Service
Areas Served
State of Florida
Board Chair Statement
The Florida Disabled Outdoors Association (FDOA) was created as a direct result of my own personal life-changing experience as a TBI survivor.  The three major lessons learned from the many challenges to a successful rehabilitation were also the inspiration to create an organized effort to affect the quality of life for many individuals, families and society.
The understanding and recognition of the value and the need for inclusion of people with disabilities into our communities is lesson one.  Secondly, the importance and role that active living plays in our lives, not only as a valuable rehabilitation tool, but also as a necessity of normal human development.  The third and most important lesson learned, and why the FDOA exists today, is the need and benefit of helping others.  These major truths really define who we are and what we do.  These personal actualizations are what drive me and are the guiding principles of my leadership and life-long quest.
I have found much personal success and the FDOA will continue to succeed and grow with our organization’s culture of enthusiasm, dedication and determination.  We will continue to change the world by our path of health, happiness and productivity.  Active Leisure for Life!
CEO Statement/Executive Director Statement

I came to the Florida Disabled Outdoors Association (FDOA) as a volunteer 14 years ago.  I was supposed to volunteer for an hour.  I was so amazed at the program that I stayed all day, came the next day and found myself driving hours to volunteer at other events.  I started working for FDOA 11 years ago.  Each year is a financial struggle and I never know from year to year whether my job will continue, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Having a family see for the first time what IS possible, instead of what can’t be done, brings such joy.  Families learn how everyone can participate and enjoy life together.  One member may need assistive technology to participate, but there is a way.  You can see the way this empowers people to believe in themselves and visualize the possibilities in all avenues of their lives.  I have cried tears of happiness with parents when they see a future where their child is PART of the community, not just an observer. 

Our son has gone to FDOA programs since he was a baby.  To him all people are the same.  That is what this organization brings to people’s lives. 

Laurie LoRe-Gussak

SportsAbility provides opportunity for people of all ages and abilities, along with their families or friends, to participate in a variety of recreational pursuits. SportsAbility features a Resource Expo, indoor and outdoor sports, leisure activities and clinics. Activities may include golf, tennis, martial arts, horseback riding, basketball, pontoon boat rides, sit water skiing, sailing, kayaking, target sports, personal water craft rides, fishing, and many more.
The goal of SportsAbility is to show people what they can do, and to introduce activities that can be pursued to live a healthier lifestyle. SportsAbility is sponsored by community partners and activity providers, and there is no charge to participants.
Budget $61,240.00
Category Recreation & Sports, General/Other Leisure & Recreational Activities
Population Served People/Families with of People with Disabilities, Families,
Short Term Success SportsAbility showcases the opportunities available and encourages participants to engage actively in the myriad options. By trying a variety of active leisure pursuits, the probability is increased that each participant will find the recreational pursuit that personally motivates them to pursue it on a regular basis. The regular exercise that follows will then lead to increased wellness, reduced risk of secondary health issues, reduced risk of substance abuse, reduced depression, and increased participation in the community.
Long term Success
Participants are exposed to myriad recreation and leisure pursuits. They are inspired through demonstrations of people with disabilities participating in active leisure, and motivated through their own hands-on participation. In so doing, they come to appreciate the many health benefits that result- improvements in their physical, emotional and spiritual well-being as well as reduced probability of secondary health issues such as Type II Diabetes and obesity.

Networking has proven to create mentoring opportunities between persons with disabilities, create learning opportunities between providers of recreation and people with disabilities and between organizations that serve people with disabilities. The relationships that are formed go well beyond the initial program and serve to spark friendships, job leads, and learning opportunities. FDOA continues to communicate with participants providing information on health and wellness and also information on available programs.

Program Success Monitored By

Goal: At least 750 persons with disabilities, their families and friends will attend the Sports Ability program. This is monitored through attendance records which are collected with the daily registration/sign-in forms for each participant.

Goal: At least 750 persons with disabilities, their families and friends will participate in the various leisure and recreational activities facilitated by SportsAbility. This is monitored through attendance records and the list of leisure and recreational activities provided, including the different types of recreation assistive technology designed for persons with disabilities.

Goal: At least 30% of 750 participants indicate that they have or will pursue leisure and recreation activities beyond the SportsAbility program. This is monitored through a post event survey of participants.

Examples of Program Success

Over 1,000 persons with disabilities, their families and service and support providers received services at SportsAbility 2012. The EXPO provided information on the latest in inclusive recreation and leisure products, programs and services with over 40 exhibits. Participants were able to try a wide range of recreation options including over 25 hands-on active leisure options. 100% of the survey respondents indicated that they would continue to pursue active leisure.

“Never having been to SportsAbility before, I was a little hesitant to participate. I tried the sports that I have never tried before: kayaking, catamaran, bocce ball, archery, and target shooting. I did very well doing them all which gave me a lot of confidence and therefore greater self-esteem.  Dealing every day with miscommunication and discrimination due to a profound hearing loss does wear me down. SportsAbility was definitely the booster I needed that day and still lasts to this day!” Carlos Monserrate

Miracle Sports is an inclusive program where everyone is welcome to participate in team sports such as baseball, basketball and flag football. There are no try-outs and no one is turned away. Siblings and friends play team sports together at their ability level! With teamwork and cooperation, athletes learn lessons from team sports that are transferred to future educational and vocational pursuits.

People with disabilities are often excluded from recreational pursuits and active leisure for a number of reasons: lack of barrier-free facilities and equipment, a deficiency of inclusive recreation programs, staff is not trained, a general lack of awareness of people with disabilities and about the importance of physical activity, and lack of motivation due to prior poor experiences or lack of confidence. The Miracle Field and the Miracle Sports program were built and designed specifically to address these concerns.

Budget $27,500.00
Category Recreation & Sports, General/Other Athletics & Sports
Population Served People/Families with of People with Disabilities, Families,
Short Term Success Participants will be introduced to, and become familiar with, basic skills needed for participation in the sport they will play, as well as what it means to be a member of a team. Miracle Sports athletes have increased participation in regular physical activity. In addition, people with disabilities have an opportunity to observe other people with disabilities actively participate in leisure and recreational activities and be in an environment that normalizes their disability, and also celebrates their accomplishments.
Long term Success
Miracle Sports has enhanced the lives of those with disabilities by promoting active living through team sports since 2008. The number affected by this program is much greater that the individuals with disabilities that participate, since each athlete represents an extended network of family and friends that are inspired to recreate together. They learn about the possibilities for the person’s future, and how to concentrate on their ABILITIES rather than their disability.

The majority of Miracle Sports athletes continues to pursue leisure and recreation activities beyond their initial season, and will report an improvement in their level of self-confidence and feelings of wellness. Miracle Sports athletes will report that they are decreasing the risk factors associated with a sedentary lifestyle, such as Type II Diabetes, obesity and heart disease.

Program Success Monitored By

Benefit:  Participants will become familiar with basic skills needed for participation in the sport they will play.
Measurable Goal:  At least 70 persons with disabilities will participate in Miracle Sports. This is monitored through attendance records, the list of leisure and recreational activities provided and the different types of recreation assistive technology used.

Benefit:  Miracle Sports athletes will increase regular physical activity.
Measurable Goal:  At least 70 persons with disabilities will participate in Miracle team sports. This is monitored through attendance records.

Benefit:  Miracle Sports athletes will receive the health, wellness and social benefits of continuing to pursue team athletics beyond their initial season.
Measurable Goal: At least 50% of the registrants will have previously participated in the Miracle Sports program with a different sport. This is monitored through attendance records from prior seasons compared to current season registrations. 

Examples of Program Success
Over 1,750 individuals have utilized the field since its dedication through many FDOA programs.

Over 850 persons with disabilities, through the Special Olympics and the Gretchen Everhart CLAY Program, have utilized the Miracle Field since its dedication.

Over 1730 volunteer hours were logged in the 2011 calendar year.
Persons with some type of disability represent approximately 18% of the population. This is a significant portion of our population alone, but if we include their families and friends who are also inspired and motivated to benefit from active leisure based on the outreach, marketing, and participation in Miracle Sports; the effect on the community is immense.

“Miracle Sports, has been a fantastic experience all around. Not only for my seven-year-old son, Mason, but for myself as well. To see how well my son has adapted with the helpers/volunteers takes my breath away at times. He's become very independent with this program. I've seen Mason gain new interests with the sports each season. All of the volunteers know my son and he recognizes each of them. This is not just an after-school event or extra-curricular activity, it's like a family out there. I've never had a bad experience and neither has my son. I have personally seen the achievements with my son, but I also know the other parents/guardians see the same in their children. We couldn't ask for a more warm, caring, and inviting environment for our children.”
Tracy L. Brown

Program Comments
CEO Statement/Executive Director/Board Comments
Board Chair
Board Chair David Cecil Jones
Company Affiliation Jonesco, Inc.
Term July 1991 to June 2015
Email davidjones@fdoa.org
Board Members
Kristy Carter Tallahassee Senior Center
Thomas Wheeler Clemmons Division of Vocational Rehabilitation
David Damon JP Roberts and Co., Inc.
Mark Hardy Pyramid Studios
Michael Isaacson Florida Department of Natural Resources
David Cecil Jones Jonesco
David Lowe Disability Advocate
Hersch Minnis Florida Department of Children and Families
Gordon Palmer Unemployment Appeals Commission
Curtis Richardson Director of School Improvement, Gadsden County
Pernille Urban Consultant
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 2
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 9
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 9
Female 2
Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits 0
Board Meeting Attendance % 60%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Yes
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 36%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 88%
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 6
Standing Committees
Executive Director/CEO
Executive Director Laurie Ann LoRe-Gussak MBA, IOM, CAE
Term Start July 2002
Email lgussak@fdoa.org
Laurie LoRe-Gussak, FDOA Executive Director, has over 20 years of experience in the not-for-profit/association management field. She has worked for the Florida Disabled Outdoors Association since 2002, and volunteered with them prior to that time. Her experience includes serving as Executive Director for ITFlorida and Executive Director of the TalTech Alliance, as well as tenure at the Florida Institute of CPAs and the Florida Association of Court Clerks. She has a Master of Business Administration in Marketing from Rochester Institute of Technology and Bachelor of Science in Management Science from the State University of New York at Geneseo. Laurie also graduated from the Institute of Organization Management, which is a prominent training program for association executives. She obtained her certification as a Certified Association Executive through the American Society of Association Executives.
She has been active in her professional community. She served on the Diversity Committee for the American Society of Association Executives. She has served on the National Marketing Committee for the United States Chamber of Commerce Institute of Organization Management. She has also been an active member of the Tallahassee Society of Association Executives chairing various committees, and served on the Board of Directors of the Apalachee Blues Society.
Senior Staff
Title Marketing and Communications Manager
Experience/Biography Lesa Evans, Communications Specialist, has over ten years experience working for associations. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Florida State University. She brings a wide range of talents to FDOA including promoting, planning, soliciting, and executing events. Lesa’s experience includes producing and overseeing integrated marketing campaigns. Also, Lesa serves as liaison to many of the SportsAbility partners. She has experience in strategic planning, behavior management, and overseeing logistics for transportation. She has effectively led community projects and events and held various positions on elected boards. In addition, Lesa has worked with people with disabilities at the FDOA and through numerous volunteer opportunities.
Full Time Staff 1
Part Time Staff 1
Volunteers 246
Contractors 1
Retention Rate 100%
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
NonManagement Formal Evaluation N/A
Non Management Formal Evaluation Frequency N/A
Plans & Policies
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 5
Date Strategic Plan Adopted Aug 2014
Management Succession Plan? Yes
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No

Tallahassee Orthopedic Clinic staff have provided fundraising efforts, marketing assistance, and on-site support.

Tallahassee Community College hosts the indoor portion of SportsAbility, where students learn first-hand the issues involved in planning activities for people of all abilities. TCC students have also developed a web site for FDOA.

The Florida Park Department staff consult with FDOA on a regular basis to determine the best ways to be inclusive. The outdoor portion of SportsAbility is hosted at the Ochlockonee River State Park.

The Florida Department of Health Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Program (BSCIP) work with FDOA to promote the SportsAbility event to people with brain and spinal cord injuries, and deliver community-based accessible inclusive recreation and wellness opportunities.

• FL Association of Rehabilitative Facilities
• FL Centers for Independent Living
• FL Developmental Disabilities Council
• The Able Trust
• FL Department of Health
• FL Department of Education
• Heath Care and Rehabilitation Providers
• FL Greenways and Trails
• FL Fish and Wildlife Commission
• City of Tallahassee Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Affairs
• Leon County Tourist Development Council
• Not-for-Profit and Volunteer Recreation Resource Providers
• others

Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2014
Fiscal Year End June 30 2015
Projected Revenue $251,395.00
Projected Expenses $251,935.00
Spending Policy N/A
Form 990s
Audit or In-House Financial Documents
IRS Letter of Dtermination
Detailed Financials
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 Year201320122011
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$112,500$189,755$363,789
Individual Contributions------
Investment Income, Net of Losses$62$61$39
Membership Dues--$49$1,750
Special Events--$3,328$1,132
Revenue In-Kind$122,508$116,088$109,475
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201320122011
Program Expense$308,389$312,898$453,911
Administration Expense$7,573$13,799$8,944
Fundraising Expense$3,807$7,758$5,328
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.950.931.02
Program Expense/Total Expenses96%94%97%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue3%4%1%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Assets$23,412$47,792$60,559
Current Assets$19,004$42,027$52,697
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0--
Current Liabilities$10,314$20,175$9,654
Total Net Assets$13,098$27,617$50,905
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities1.842.085.46
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? Yes
Foundation Comments
  • Financial figures were taken from the Audits and Form 990's.
  • Top 3 funding sources are not reflected above as they are not indicated in a 990.
Nonprofit Florida Disabled Outdoors Association, Inc.
Address 2475 Apalachee Parkway
Suite 205
Tallahassee, FL 323014946
Primary Phone 850 2012944
Donate with a credit card http://www.fdoa.org/donate
Contact Email info@fdoa.org
CEO/Executive Director Laurie Ann LoRe-Gussak MBA, IOM, CAE
Board Chair David Cecil Jones
Board Chair Company Affiliation Jonesco, Inc.
Year of Incorporation 1991