PLATINUM2024

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Remember, Honor, Teach

Columbia Falls, ME   |  http://wreathsacrossamerica.org
GuideStar Charity Check

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

EIN: 20-8362270


Mission

The year long mission of Wreaths Across America is to Remember the fallen, Honor those that serve and Teach the next generation the value of freedom.

Ruling year info

2018

Executive Director

Mrs. Karen Worcester

Main address

PO Box 249 4 Point Street

Columbia Falls, ME 04623 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

20-8362270

Subject area info

History museums

Historic preservation

Education

Radio

Youth services

Show more subject areas

Population served info

Children and youth

Adults

Families

Parents

Widows and widowers

Show more populations served

NTEE code info

Military/Veterans' Organizations (W30)

Citizenship Programs, Youth Development (O54)

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (S12)

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Nationwide Remembrance Ceremonies

Wreaths Across America coordinates grassroots efforts to organize, sponsor, and participate in simultaneous ceremonies all over the United States and beyond on one day each December. Many ceremonies include placing sponsored veterans' wreaths on the headstones of our nation's servicemembers. Each participating location through the Wreaths ACross America program - currently more than 3,700 -- receives 8 ceremonial veterans' wreaths to use during this program. One representing each branch of the military and a POW/MIA wreath. Volunteers are encouraged to include local veterans and military families in this free, open to ALL event designed to Remember, Honor and Teach.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Adults
Veterans
Emergency responders

The TEACH program, which both shares established curriculum from like-minded organizations, and introduces new educational materials, focuses on character development and service projects for young people of all ages.

The TEACH program serves as a conduit to share the established curriculum materials from partner organizations like The Unites States of America Vietnam War Commemoration, the American Rosie MovementTM, Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, The Congressional Medal of Honor Society, and IKEducation at the Eisenhower Foundation. Additionally, WAA has developed a Veterans’ Oral History Project for youth from 4th -12th grades that encourages young people to interview a veteran, service member, or Gold Star Family member to learn about the sacrifices our military make on behalf of our country.

To learn more and download WAA’s TEACH materials, please visit www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/teach

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Wreaths Across America believes in supporting the capacity of local organizations who do good work in their communities, including boy scouts, military organizations, church groups and others.  Our local group sponsorship program helps groups earn money based on the numbers of wreaths they are able to sponsor.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of wreaths placed at veteran's gravestones

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults, Children and youth

Related Program

Nationwide Remembrance Ceremonies

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Each year in December wreaths are placed on veteran's gravestones. This is done to remember and honor our fallen heroes. Our goal is to cover as many gravestones as possible as it grows every year.

Number of new cemetery locations each year

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults, Children and youth, Families

Related Program

Nationwide Remembrance Ceremonies

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

2015: 1108 total locations - of that 219 were new / 2014: 1000 total locations - of that 160 were new / 2013: 914 total locations - of that 168 were new.

Number of new Sponsorship Groups each year

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults

Related Program

Local Sponsorship Groups

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We invite your group or organization to help us remember and honor our American heroes and teach the next generation, through raising funds to sponsor veterans wreaths.

Number of participants reporting greater issue awareness

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

The metric shared here is the total number of media articles published in that year about Wreaths Across America's program. This metric include local, state and national media outlets and all mediums.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Wreaths Across America’s yearlong mission is to Remember the fallen, Honor those that serve, and Teach the next generation the value of freedom. The organization’s primary goal is to share the stories of service, sacrifice, success, and courage of our nation’s active-duty military, veterans, Gold and Blue Star Families, and all those who have served. Through the sharing of these stories, all aspects of the mission are fulfilled.

Another goal of the mission to Remember, Honor, and Teach is to raise awareness and funds to support the sponsorship and placement of live, balsam veterans’ wreaths on the headstones of all U.S. servicemembers laid to rest at home and abroad.

Wreaths Across America (WAA) utilizes a network of tens of thousands of dedicated volunteers across the country to share the mission within new communities and bring together people to share stories and learn how they too can participate on the local level.

Through a hyper-local approach to media outreach and connecting with volunteers, WAA has established strong relationships in small towns and communities across the country and worked diligently to provide resources and template materials for volunteers to share the mission locally and help get new people engaged.

In 2019 WAA launched the Mobile Education Exhibit (MEE), a museum on wheels that travels the country sharing the mission, collecting stories of service and success, and supporting the volunteers supporting the program in their local communities. This exhibit is also an official “Welcome Home” unit for our nation’s Vietnam War Veterans. Since hitting the road four years ago, WAA has welcomed home more than 3,000 veterans.

Additionally, through a focused-owned media strategy, WAA has honed it’s owned channels over the last 5+ years. This includes 24/7 internet radio station Wreaths Across America Radio, A Voice for America’s Veterans, which airs veteran-centric shows and content important to military familied, while highlighting the good work of the organization’s volunteers and partners. The monthly subscription-based newsletters and all the organization’s social media channels are curated to share stories focus on the mission and the people around the country making an impact. The reach and engaged communities across all these platforms has consistently grown more than 10% YoY.

Through our network of dedicated volunteers who step forward to coordinate participating locations and raise funds and awareness for the program, we have tapped an incredible resource for the organization’s growth and success.

WAA has developed a team of experienced, passionate staff who work year-round to provide the resources and creative ideas to keep volunteers engaged and enthusiastic from January to December!

Starting in 2008, Congress regularly declares a Saturday in December as National Wreaths Across America Day. This year, it will be Saturday, Dec. 16, 2023.

Since 2007, Wreaths Across America has grown from 100 participating locations that placed 17,000 veterans’ wreaths to the following in 2022:
-2.7million veterans’ wreaths sponsored and placed
-3,7002 participating location
-More than 6,000 Sponsorship Groups
-More than two million volunteers nationwide, a third of whom are children.

Also, in 2007, WAA established its Group Sponsorship to support like-minded organizations who wanted to support the mission and raise funds for their own initiatives. The Group payback program allows other nonprofits to earn $5 back on every sponsorship received for the locations they support. Through this program, WAA has given back more than $20 million over the last 15 years.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals, To review policies and determine areas for improvement.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
NET GAIN/LOSS:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

0.61

Average of 0.35 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

1.8

Average of 0.9 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

31%

Average of 19% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

* This organization changed its fiscal year accounting period in 2022. Please refer to its 2022 990s for more information.

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 *
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $729,179 $451,096 -$97,094 $445,100 -$46,825
As % of expenses 4.0% 2.1% -0.4% 2.0% -0.2%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $148,776 -$396,448 -$1,051,079 -$222,996 -$667,170
As % of expenses 0.8% -1.8% -3.9% -1.0% -2.1%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $18,899,312 $22,176,874 $26,119,594 $22,281,063 $30,867,081
Total revenue, % change over prior year 29.2% 17.3% 17.8% -14.7% 38.5%
Program services revenue 96.9% 97.2% 95.6% 98.0% 97.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 2.6% 2.7% 2.9% 1.6% 2.8%
Other revenue 0.5% 0.1% 1.4% 0.3% 0.2%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $18,184,783 $21,687,323 $26,249,618 $21,824,224 $30,655,250
Total expenses, % change over prior year 31.9% 19.3% 21.0% -16.9% 40.5%
Personnel 5.8% 7.0% 7.2% 10.1% 8.8%
Professional fees 2.1% 1.7% 1.2% 2.2% 1.5%
Occupancy 0.3% 0.4% 0.3% 0.3% 0.3%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.1% 0.1% 0.1%
Pass-through 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 91.7% 90.9% 91.3% 87.3% 89.3%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $18,765,186 $22,534,867 $27,203,603 $22,492,320 $31,275,595
One month of savings $1,515,399 $1,807,277 $2,187,468 $1,818,685 $2,554,604
Debt principal payment $47,481 $0 $86,078 $0 $97,827
Fixed asset additions $1,299,695 $1,087,681 $0 $989,869 $1,230,395
Total full costs (estimated) $21,627,761 $25,429,825 $29,477,149 $25,300,874 $35,158,421

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 1.0 1.2 0.4 1.2 0.5
Months of cash and investments 1.0 1.2 0.4 1.2 0.5
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets -0.7 -0.8 -1.1 -1.6 -1.6
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $1,580,948 $2,236,608 $902,746 $2,251,711 $1,289,367
Investments $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $71,000 $0 $30,380 $29,330 $11,442
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $2,364,731 $3,425,300 $4,262,986 $5,252,854 $1,330,669
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 39.0% 50.9% 63.3% 64.1% 134.2%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 95.5% 104.0% 130.1% 126.1% 132.4%
Unrestricted net assets $173,538 -$222,910 -$1,273,989 -$1,496,985 -$2,164,155
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 $15,000 N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 $0 N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $15,000 $0 $0 $249,000
Total net assets $173,538 -$207,910 -$1,273,989 -$1,496,985 -$1,915,155

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Executive Director

Mrs. Karen Worcester

Karen Worcester, Executive Director Immediately upon the creation of Wreaths Across America™ (501c3 status – EIN 20-8362270) in 2007, Karen Dow Worcester was chosen for the position of Executive Director by the Board of Directors. Karen serves in this role as a volunteer. With over 40 years' of experience in the administrative stewardship of the various family enterprises, Karen is well known as a passionate champion and spokesperson. As a co-founder of Wreaths Across America, Karen tenaciously works on ways the organization can best Remember the fallen; Honor those who serve; and Teach the next generation the value of freedom. Equally passionate about her family, Karen is mother to six children and nine grandchildren. Her favorite hobby is participating in and preparing for equestrian events, and tending to the family farm.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
Related
Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Highest paid employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
Related
Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of highest paid employee data for this organization

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Board of directors
as of 03/07/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board co-chair

Wayne Hanson

Maine State Society

Term: 2023 - 2024


Board co-chair

Michael Edgecomb

Wayne Hanson

Maine State Society, Washington DC

Ron Sailor

Veteran, Former Commander Maine State American Legion

Dan M. Leclair

Veteran, Former Commander, Maine Wing Civil Air Patrol

Patrick Simmons

Veteran, Tyson Foods

Pamela W. Slaven-Lee

Founder family

Sarah Worcester

Founder family

Lorna Harris

Gold Star Mother

Kevin Haley

Portland Maine Police Department

David Russen

Veteran, Location Coordinator

Dan Mead

Veteran, Location Coordinator, Hardrock Charlie Foundation and Irish Charities

Karen Worcester

Executive Director

Randy Lewer

Veteran, Location Coordinator

Nathan Lewis

Tyson Foods

Debbie Ruane Sparks

Executive Director, National Motor Freight Traffic Association, Inc.

Karen Diefendorf

Retired U.S. Army Chaplain

Michael Edgecomb

Vice-Chair, Veteran

Renee Saunders Worcester

Secretary/Founder Family

Charemon A Davis

CPA/CFO/Director of Finance

Jenny Lovering

Wal-Mart

Graig Morin

Brown Dog Carriers

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/31/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

Transgender Identity

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Contractors

Fiscal year ending
There are no fundraisers recorded for this organization.