PO BOX 1005
BEAUFORT SC 29901-1005
Contact Information
Organization DBA (Doing Business As)
Organization DBA
Santa Elena Foundation
Address PO BOX 1005
BEAUFORT, SC 299011005
Telephone (843) 379-1550
Projected Annual Revenue $364,000.00 (2015)
Mission Statement The purpose of the Santa Elena Foundation is to discover, preserve, and share the untold story of America's first - and lost - century through the rise and fall of Santa Elena.
CEO/Executive Director Megan T. Meyer
Board Chair Dr. Andy Beall
Board Chair Company Affiliation Retired
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 2014
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expenses Bar Graph - All Years
Graph: Expense Breakdown Graph - All Years
Revenue vs Expenses Area Graph - All Years

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Mission The purpose of the Santa Elena Foundation is to discover, preserve, and share the untold story of America's first - and lost - century through the rise and fall of Santa Elena.
The Santa Elena Foundation was established in 2014 by a diverse and passionate group of business leaders, community leaders, and historians with a goal of telling the exciting, and relatively unknown, story of Santa Elena. While the educational element of this part of American History - and the continued research and discoveries -- are the core of the Foundation's efforts, the Board and supporters also view the Organization's efforts as Economic Development. 
In mid-2014, the Foundation named Dr. Andy Beall as Executive Director, then in early 2015 named Director of Development Megan Meyer. In April 2016, the Santa Elena History Center held its grand opening with the inaugural exhibit "Santa Elena: America's Untold Story," ongoing lecture series and school programs, and a branch of the Heritage Library. In June 2016, Dr. Beall was named Chairman of the Board of Directors, Megan Meyer was named Executive Director, and Dwayne Pickett was hired part-time as the Program Coordinator. A very dedicated Board of Directors and family of committed volunteers help lead the History Center and have it open to the public six days a week. By end of 2016, the History Center has accommodated almost 8,500 visitors and 900 students, held 150 programs and events, and is planning for phase two of the exhibit.
1. Established the Santa Elena History Center in historic county building at 1501 Bay Street to provide a cultural destination for all residents and visitors.
2. Unveiled inaugural exhibit, "Santa Elena: America's Untold Story" in tandem with a full month of activities commemorating the 450th anniversary of the settlement.
3. Supported non-invasive archaeology at the Santa Elena site on Parris Island, which led to the discovery of Fort San Marcos.
4. Built a strong, well-rounded Board of Trustees, assembled a strong network of committees and volunteers, named an Executive Director and Program Coordinator -- with extensive experience and passion for bringing the Santa Elena story to life!
5. Collaborated with dozens of institutions to build a network of cultural and heritage tourism activities. Hosted more than 8,000 visitors and almost 1,000 students at the History Center. 
1. Enhance the main exhibit to appeal to visitors of all ages and share the full story of 16th century colonization - much of which occurred here in the lowcountry!
2. Expand programs, lectures, and educational opportunities for the public to learn more about the variety of perspectives and notable figures that shaped the earliest part of American History.
3. Support ongoing research in Spanish Archives and Archaeology at the 16th century site on Parris Island to make new discoveries and better understand the scope of Santa Elena's 21 year existence.
4. Establish Historian role at University of South Carolina Beaufort that focuses on Santa Elena related history. Engage deeply with students to utilize the History Center and related projects as learning experiences.
5. Gain international attention and press for Beaufort County by building a local and regional network of Heritage/Cultural destinations.activities. Build strong ties with Spain.
1. Expand inaugural exhibit to better tell the story of Santa Elena through a variety of perspectives, key figures' personal stories, artifacts/reproductions, and living history elements. 
2. Continue archaeology at the site and create an archaeological lab in the Santa Elena History Center for the initial processing and sharing of artifacts. This facility would be available for any local archaeology project.
3. Grow the number and scope of programs, lectures and educational opportunities for all ages, and having subject-matter experts share their knowledge and perspective. Host local and regional field trips for students of all ages.
4. Funding for marketing within the Southeast to promote the Santa Elena History Center as a must-see attraction. Then work collaboratively with many other organizations, including Chambers, USCB, Heritage Library, other cultural/historical venues and regional partners, to promote Beaufort County as a unique, culture-rich destination.
5. Establish a part-time staff position to oversee the "front of house" operations and work with our dedicated volunteer force to improve the visitor experience.
CEO/Executive Director Statement
Dr. Andy Beall, Chairman and CEO
Board Chair Statement

In 2013, while researching tourism assets in Beaufort County, I stumbled across a rarely known archaeological discovery on Parris Island. In 1979 Dr. Stanley South discovered what was thinly broadcast as the discovery of the past capital of La Florida. To most of the reading public it drew very little attention. To most the term “la Florida” meant the state of Florida, but to historians it meant the entire lower 48 states. With a lack of funding at the time, there was very little archaeological work to continue or promote the project.

However, I became enthralled with the story and along with Stu Rodman and Larry Rowland continued the research. What was discovered shocked us. La Florida was the first European colony in the United States. Spain’s landing at Parris Island was a result of knowing that Port Royal Sound was the best known harbor on the Atlantic. The harbor was known as Punta de Santa Elena as early as 1526. Santa Elena was capital of the colony and the first governor was Pedro Menendez de Aviles. By putting Santa Elena under the microscope we realized we now live where America began. Thus, the Santa Elena Foundation was established and is keeping the discovery of this story alive… and planning to share it with the world.


Daryl Ferguson, Founder and Chairman Emeritus

Areas of Service
Beaufort County
Colleton County
Hampton County
Jasper County
Specifically, the Santa Elena Foundation serves Beaufort County - both the residents and students who live and learn in the county and the visitors and tourists who travel to the county for vacation.
Board Chair
Board Chair Dr. Andy Beall
Company Affiliation Retired
Term Jan 2016 to Jan 2018
Board of Directors
Col. Chris Allen Community Volunteer
Dr. Andy Beall Executive Director
Col (Ret.) Gregory Dyson Community Leader
Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jack Klimp Retired General
Mrs. Megan Thibault Meyer Executive Director
Dr. Martha Moriarty USCB Liaison
Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Garry Parks Military Liaison
Mr. Stu Rodman County Council
Dr. Larry Rowland Historian and Professor
Mr. Richard Thomas Community Leader
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 10
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 8
Female 2
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 2
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 100%
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 12
Standing Committees
Communications / Promotion / Publicity / Public Relations
Advisory Board / Advisory Council
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Special Events (Golf Tournament, Walk / Run, Silent Auction, Dinner / Gala)
Additional Board Members
Count Alvaro Armada Barcaiztegui Spanish Count
Dr. Chester DePratter Archaeologist
Dr. Walter Edgar Historian
Dr. Eric Emerson SC Dept. Archives & History
Dr. Daryl Ferguson Founder, Chairman Emeritus
Dr. Michael Francis Historian
Dr. Rex Garniewicz Director of Coastal Discovery Museum
Dr. Paul Hoffman Historian
Dr. Bill Kelso Historian
Dr. Eugene Lyon Historian
Dr. David Moore Historian
Mr. Dick Stewart Community Leader
Other Boards
The tables below contain information about other groups that advise this nonprofit on operations and projects.
Executive Director
Executive Director/CEO Megan T. Meyer
Experience The Santa Elena Foundation Board of Directors named Andrew J. Beall as executive director July 10, 2014. In addition to his duties as a member of the Board of Directors, Beall had responsibility for operational leadership and administration of the foundation while the History Center plans were in development. In 2016, with the opening of the History Center, Megan Meyer was moved from Director of Development to the Executive Director role, an Dr. Beall maintained his position on the Board of Directors as the Chairman.
Co-CEO Dr. Andy Beall
Full Time Staff 1
Part Time Staff 1
Volunteers 50
Contractors 10
Retention Rate 100%
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 3
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Diversity Policy No
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
Description The Santa Elena History Center schedules multiple lectures, educational opportunities each week. An online calendar shows all programs open to the public.
Short Term Success A short-term goal of the programs offered to the general public and student population is to provide educational information related to the 16th century exploration and colonization of America. There are a wide variety of perspectives from which to learn this story. The programs will explain the Spanish, French, English and Native American perspectives. Programs will also offer insight into daily life at Santa Elena.
Long Term Success A long-term goal of the Santa Elena Center programs will be to re-write history and the way we think of the beginning of America.
Strategy Yes
Program Success Monitored BY Success of the programs will be tracked by attendance and surveys by participants.
Description The premier interpretive exhibit telling the story of Santa Elena and the Lost Century, aptly named "America's Untold Story," opened to the public in Spring 2016.
Short Term Success Short-term success will include opening the exhibit to the public after many months of planning, design, and construction. 
Long Term Success Long-term success of the interpretive exhibit will bring notable increases in the understanding of early American history and a significant upswing in benefits to the county through this premier attraction.
Strategy Yes
Program Success Monitored BY The Santa Elena Foundation Board and staff will monitor this project.
Description Less than 10% of the 15+ acre Santa Elena site on Parris Island has been researched through archaeology. Historians and scientists agree that there is much to uncover and learn through future digs. An archaeological lab will be included in the Santa Elena Center to provide a local processing facility for artifacts to be cleaned, processed and documented once found.
Short Term Success Compile results from non-invasive sited scans conducted in summer 2015 to support proposal to Parris Island Marine Recruit Depot.
Long Term Success Approval by Parris Island Marine Recruit Depot and sufficient funds from public and private supporters to continue many phases of archaeological digs to discover new artifacts, forts, and structures. Produce map of Santa Elena town to share in exhibit along with key artifacts. Announce discoveries to an international audience.
Strategy Yes
Description School programs at the Santa Elena History Center are a great way to extend learning outside the classroom and ensure that students learn the history of the area in which they live. Many programs are also a great introduction into the field of archaeology. All are associated with specific curriculum standards.
Short Term Success The History Center will strive to create a variety of standards-based school group programs to meet our local and nearby students' needs for out-of-the-classroom educational experiences.
Long Term Success
Santa Elena History Center plans to become a premier education destination in the region. 
Strategy Yes
Program Success Monitored BY Great need to increase awareness of the options for school groups. Already in 6 months, 900 students from 14 schools have visited. We have exemplary feedback on programs given thus far.
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year 2015
Projected Revenue $364,000.00
Projected Expenses $244,000.00
Audit Documents
IRS Letter of Exemption
Detailed Financials
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$87,398----
Administration Expense$46,085$83,481--
Fundraising Expense$41,983----
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses2.431.83--
Program Expense/Total Expenses50%0%--
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue10%0%--
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$357,698$68,948--
Current Assets$237,489$68,948--
Long-Term Liabilities$37,141----
Current Liabilities$1,496----
Total Net Assets$319,061$68,948--
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities158.75----
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets10%0%--
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- ----
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- ----
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- ----
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
Registration Yes Jan 2016
Organization Comments 2014 was first year of operations for the Santa Elena Foundation. It was also a partial year with limited financial activity. 
Address PO BOX 1005
BEAUFORT, SC 299011005
Primary Phone (843) 379-1550
CEO/Executive Director Megan T. Meyer
Board Chair Dr. Andy Beall
Board Chair Company Affiliation Retired
Year of Incorporation 2014