Rick and Sue are Denise’s parents.
Nathan is the widowed husband of Denise. Inspired by the outpouring of community support in the aftermath of his wife’s murder in 2008, Nathan launched the Denise Amber Lee Foundation in June of 2008. He has made it his life’s work to honor his courageous wife by promoting better training, standardized protocols, and technological advances for 9-1-1 so that it meets the expectations of all citizens. Upon graduation from high school, Nathan was honored with a Congressional nomination to the United States Naval Academy but was unable to attend. An accomplished musician Nathan attended Jacksonville University on a music and Naval ROTC scholarships. He later attended the University of South Florida.
Nathan and the work of the foundation were recently honored by five national public safety organizations and the Congressional E9-1-1 Caucus as a testament to his determination to be a positive force for change. He has traveled to 47 states telling Denise's story.
Nathan currently resides in Englewood, Florida with his two sons Noah and Adam, and daughter Avery.
David brings a lifelong passion for community service to the foundation. Currently David serves as President of Key Agency, Inc. in Englewood, Florida; a three generation family owned insurance agency. He is also a banker and founded Florida Shores Bank with several other business leaders. David’s community service includes founding board member of the Community Caring Council, the Englewood YMCA, the Charlotte County Police Athletic League, and the Charlotte County Boys and Girls Club. He has served two terms as Chairman of the largest community foundation in Florida, the Gulf Coast Community Foundation of Venice and was on the Board for six years. His visionary leadership took him to a national level when he served on the Community Foundations of America national board of directors.
After graduating from the University of South Florida, David was asked to serve as Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff for Florida Governor Bob Martinez. His success led to his appointment as the Legislative Director of the Florida Department of Professional Regulation. He also served a term on the Charlotte County Development Authority and the Charlotte County School Board. As his continuing commitment to his university, David is currently a member of the University of South Florida Community Leadership Council for the Sarasota/Manatee Campus and is a Director of the USF Bull’s Club Athletic Dept. Board. His lifelong interest in scouting has David as the current Vice President of the Southwest Florida Council of the Boy Scouts of America and he is a founding and current Director of the South County Tiger Bay and Englewood Community Care Clinic.
David and his wife, Laurie, currently live in Englewood, Florida.
Ron is a recognized voice among public safety professionals on a national and international level. His passion and dedication is demonstrated in over 40 years of public service beginning as an Air Marshall with the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury. This led to 27 years of service with the Village of Riverdale, Illinois Police Dept. beginning as a Police Officer and retiring with the rank of Captain.
Ron was invited to oversee the planning and implementation of consolidating four individual 9-1-1 dispatch centers into South Com Dispatch. He then served as Executive Director of this multi-jurisdictional dispatch center for 9 years managing 24 dispatchers and 2 support staff.
On a national level, Ron is honored as the longest serving Executive Board member of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) as well as serving as the National President of NENA in 2009. He has also served as the National Chairman of the joint NENA and APCO Telecommunicator Emergency Response Team initiative. This commitment to public safety led to his induction into the NENA Hall of Fame in 2007.
A resident of Riverdale Illinois, Ron holds a Masters Degree from Western Illinois University and completed his undergraduate studies at Northern Illinois University.
Sherrill is the Quality Assurance Director of the Denise Amber Lee Foundation where she manages the foundation's Quality Assurance Initiatives to assist agencies development of QA programs. She has recently retired as the Executive Director of the North Suburban Emergency Communications Center in Illinois, where she was responsible for the administration of the Agency’s 9-1-1, CAD, and radio communications systems. She provided general management, overall policy and direction, and fiscal control of the $5 million budget for a staff of 50.
Sherrill began her emergency communications career in 1970 as a police department dispatcher. She has also been a fire dispatcher, supervisor, and 9-1-1 coordinator, and most recently, as Executive Director, which she held for more than 20 years.
She is the past president of Illinois APCO and has served on the Board in various elected positions since 1985. She was the chairman of the Illinois APCO Legislative Committee from 2006 to 2011. Currently, she is the chairman of the joint Illinois APCO/NENA Public Safety Telecommunicator Training Standards and Certification Initiative. Sherrill frequently lectures locally and nationally on quality assurance, performance standards, as well as employee evaluations for line level and supervisory personnel.
Kevin Willett has been a public safety dispatcher for over 25 years. Kevin started his public safety dispatch career with the Redwood City Police 9-1-1 center in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. Kevin is a POST certified instructor, an APCO Master Instructor, and teaches at two different California POST certified Police Academies in addition to his responsibilities as CEO and Instructor with PSTC and 911 CARES. Kevin is a co-founder of 911 CARES, an organization committed to supporting and appreciating the work of dedicated 911 professionals. 911 CARES and Kevin received the Congressional E911 Caucus “Community Service Award” for their work in Louisville and Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina.
Kevin has served on various curriculum review committees that have developed call taking and dispatch curriculum that is used nationally. Kevin is known for his humor and passion for instruction. He is one of Redwood City’s most awarded and complimented dispatchers. He has also served on various associations, committees and awards selection boards that enhance the 9-1-1 profession.
Mr. Parry spent 23 years as a police officer in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. He has published a book titled “Managing the 9-1-1 Center” and designed a course for 9-1-1 managers based on this publication. For eight years, Mr. Parry was the main Police Consultant to Priority Dispatch Corp where he was involved in the design and implementation of Emergency Police call taking and dispatch protocols and inter-related systems. He has been a member of APCO and NENA since 1993, and has served as the chair of the NENA Education Advisory Committee for over 14 years.Eric was instrumental in developing NENA’s Center Manager Certification Program, and in June 2009 was presented with the William E. Stanton Award recognizing his contributions to public safety com
Lt. Haight (Kevin) joined the Idaho State Police (ISP) in October of 1999 after moving from Florida, where he was the contracts administrator for a road construction firm. During his ISP career, he has served in the following areas: Recruiter, Field Training Officer, Honor Guard member, Commercial Vehicle Safety Level III inspector, Crash and Crime Scene Reconstructionist, Patrol Sergeant, Lieutenant over the patrol division of ISP’s District 4, and is now the Lieutenant over Statewide Communications. He has also served as: Law Enforcement Liaison for the Idaho Department of Transportation's Office of Highway Safety in District 4; was a member of their Strategic Highway Safety Plan's Aggressive Driving Committee; was a member of the Twin Falls Traffic Safety Commission, an Idaho Emergency Communications Commission commissioner; and serves as the chairman of Idaho’s PSAP Standards & Training Committee. He completed the Northwestern University's School of Police Staff and Command college in 2011 and is currently working towards his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management (Organizational Leadership). Kevin and his wife, Anita, have three beautiful daughters. They have owned an Assisted Living facility in southern Idaho since 2005, and prior to that, Kevin also owned and operated a successful painting business. He loves the beautiful mountains of the western Rocky Mountains, where hunting and camping is his passion.
Currently Nancy is a senior consultant in the network/ 9-1-1 practice at Mission Critical Partners, Inc., focusing on governance and policy issues in 911 agencies. She has in-depth knowledge of public safety communications, operations and technology developed over her 30+ year career in the industry. Nancy has coordinated, executed, and managed the enhanced 9-1-1 systems, 800 MHz interoperable regional radio system, and regional EMS Programs in the Mid-West. She has assisted clients in analyzing their existing voice and data systems, strategic planning, policy development, exploration of stakeholder service expectations, networks, governance, political implications of consolidation, transitioning to new network technologies and infrastructure to achieve credible solutions for improved emergency services to their communities. She is experience with and knowledge of the management aspects of PSAP operations policy and systems and has assisted customers in finding turn-key solutions to shared PSAP governance, operations, systems, and facilities.
Kyle brings to the Foundation a diverse background in communications, government service, international relations, media relations, advertising and political consulting. Currently, he serves as a vice president for Comerica Bank, the largest U.S. bank headquartered in Texas and among the 25 largest U.S. holding companies.
His professional career has included working on political campaigns –from presidential races down to municipal elections, service at the U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in the White House and for one of Dallas’ premier public relations and advertising agencies.
Kyle graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Affairs and Corporate Communications with an emphasis in Non-Profit Management and a minor in Spanish. In addition, he studied Spanish at the Forester International Institute in San Jose, Costa Rica.
Kyle and his wife, Darla, and son Luke currently live in Dallas, Texas.
Paul is the Director of Business Development for Cassidian Communications, an EADS North America Company. He has over a decade of experience in public safety emergency communications in both the private and public sectors, including five years as Executive Director of the Massachusetts 9-1-1 Department and service as Executive Director and Secretary of the Board of the 9-1-1 Industry Alliance. Prior to joining the Board of Directors of the Denise Amber Lee Foundation, Paul served in leadership in APCO, NENA, NASSNA, and the E9-1-1 Institute.
Paul has extensive experience in state and local government in his home state of Massachusetts, including five years as a senior advisor in the Massachusetts Legislature and terms of service on the Watertown Town Council, School Committee, Planning Board, and Town Meeting. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Massachusetts Boston, a Master of Public Administration degree from Suffolk University, and is a candidate for a Doctor of Business Administration degree from Golden Gate University.
Paul lives in his hometown of Watertown, Massachusetts.
David brings a unique perspective and passion to the Foundation as a former City Commissioner of North Port, Florida, where Denise was murdered. He also has been on the front lines of public safety for 16 years as a Florida State Certified Fire Fighter serving as Fire Captain and Paramedic for the Pasco County, Florida Fire Department. David’s commitment to public service is further demonstrated in his current position as Chairman of the Metropolitan Planning Organization for Sarasota/Manatee Counties Florida, board member for the Tourist Development Council as well as the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority.
As a member of the Public Safety and Crime Prevention Board of the National League of Cities, David intends to be a national voice for the foundation and their mission of promoting standardized training and certification for all 9-1-1 telecommunicators. Garofalo adds, “I can’t think of a more important cause to be part of than assuring that all persons in that first link of the Chain of Survival are properly trained and certified and that sufficient funding is provided for this purpose. Denise’s life was taken way too early in my city and I can’t allow her death to be in vain”.
Captain Mark Adamshick, USN (ret), Ph.D. is the Class of 1969 Chair for the Study of Officership at the Simon Center for the Professional Military Ethic, United States Military Academy, West Point, NY. From 2007 to 2011 he was the Director, Division of Leadership Education and Development and senior military professor of leadership and ethics at the United States Naval Academy. A graduate of the Naval Academy class of 1981, he was a commissioned officer in the United States Navy for thirty years.
He is a resident of Cornwall-On-Hudson, NY along with his wife and three children.
Captain Adamshick is a Naval Flight Officer and Naval Test Pilot School graduate (Class 93) and has accumulated over 3000 flight hours in over 25 different aircraft. A “TOPGUN” graduate, he has over 1000 carrier arrested landings in fighter aircraft and has flown over 100 combat missions over Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan and the former Yugoslavia. He has commanded an F-14D “Tomcat” squadron (VF-213) and an F-18E/F “Super Hornet” squadron (VFA-122) and was the operations officer of the nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt CVN-70.
He has served in a variety of high level staff positions including the deputy flag officer assignment officer to the Chief of Naval Personnel and the head aviation warfare policy officer to the Chief of Naval Operations in the Pentagon. Captain Adamshick has a Masters degree in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and earned his Ph.D. in policy studies, specializing in management, finance and leadership, from the University of Maryland, School of Public Policy.
Over 20 years experience in public safety, Cindy is a member of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) and the Association of Public Safety Communications Official International (APCO). Cindy started her career at the Ft Myers Police Department as a 911 call taker. She trained as a 911 telecommunicator and eventually became a trainer herself. She is currently employed by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office as a State Certified Telecommunicator and APCO Certified Communication Training Officer where she assists as an instructor for the newly formed Lee County Sheriff’s Office 911 Training Academy. She has presented her own training sessions at state and regional APCO conferences and is a monthly contributor to APCO’s Public Safety Communications and Law Officer Magazines.
Cindy also served as a panel member for APCO’s Public Safety Communications Training Officer Occupational Analysis for the Call Center Standards Committee in 2010. She currently serves on the Florida Chapter of APCO’s Training Committee, ProCHRT Committee and Social Media Committee. In 2012 she served on the board of the Florida APCO Legislative Oversight Committee. She is proud to be a team member on the Tri-County Critical Incident Stress Management Team and acts as a peer counselor for the group.
Her dedication to the 9-1-1 industry is demonstrated by her certificates in specialized training such as; Florida Telecommunicator Emergency Response Team Leader, Limited Agency Instructor for the Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement, International Crisis Incident Stress Foundation/Critical Incident Stress Mgmt Certification, and FEMA National Incident Management System. Cindy finds time and enjoys volunteering for several organizations in her community.
Chris has been a member of the Lee County Sheriff’s Office Communications Division since 1993. During that time she has been a 911 operator, dispatcher, trainer and shift supervisor. In 2004 she became the communications training coordinator where she set out to redevelop the agency’s 911 and dispatch training program. Chris became involved with members of Florida APCO in their efforts to bring standardized training and certification for public safety telecommunicators to Tallahassee.
With passage of the Denise Amber Lee Act in Florida, she has worked with the Florida Department of Health on the creation of the 911 Public Safety Telecommunications training curriculum and the development of their state certification exam. Chris has also worked with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in developing their communications training for certified law enforcement officers who work temporarily in their agency’s communications divisions. She remains committed to the state’s 911 public safety telecommunications training program and working with the Florida Department of Health and the Florida Department of Education in the continuous efforts to update educational frameworks and curriculum as the industry continues to evolve in to Next Generation technology.
In November, 2012, Chris was promoted to Communications Manager at the Lee County Sheriff’s Office where she will assist in overseeing the daily operations of the 911 Center. Chris continues to oversee the communications training program and leads the Communications Training Team in the development of the agency’s training program, leadership development and providing a training academy for six public safety agencies in Lee County. In 2012 she became the President-Elect of Florida APCO.
Jeffrey Vannais has served as the Communications Supervisor for the Town of East Hartford Police Dept. for over 25 years. In 1989, shortly after the introduction of Enhanced 91 1 to the Town of East Hartford, a decision was made to consolidate all of the communications for the Town's emergency services at the Police Department. As a part of this consolidation, it was further decided that a civilian supervisor would supplant the supervisory role, previously filled by a Police Sergeant. Mr. Vannais was hired in May of 1989, with the task of managing the transition, which was slated to occur July of 1989. Due in large part to the excellent planning efforts of the Assistant Police Chief and Assistant Fire Chief, the transition was relatively troublefree, and the center is operating smoothly today.
Mr. Vannais’ duties at East Hartford include: management of the Police and Fire Department radio systems; assisting in the training of all new telecommunications employees; assisting in the scheduling for twenty (20) employees; oversight of the Police and Fire ComputerAided Dispatch programs used for realtime dispatch of emergency units; management of the Department's Nortel Succession digital and VoIP telephone system (which includes all computer interface and programming for the system); management of the Department voice mail system; management of a capital improvements project that replaced and upgraded our antenna tower at the repeater site, consolidating all of the Town's communications in the process. He is currently the Computer Aided Dispatch administrator; coordinated the complete upgrade and move to a new Public Safety complex of all of the communications-related items (dispatch center, radio system, enhanced 9-1- 1, telephone system) in September, 2004. He is also served as the TAC officer for the COLLECT system, and is the COLLECT instructor for all of our sworn personnel.
Mr. Vannais has been very active in national 9-1-1 issues as a member of NENA, APCO, NG911 Institute and others.