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INNOCENCE MATTERS Organization Name provided in the GuideStar Exchange* as of 10/12/2014: INNOCENCE MATTERS

Organization Name as listed in the IRS Business Master File as of 12/08/2014: INNOCENCE MATTERS

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Torrance, CA
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GuideStar Summary

&1002; GuideStar Exchange Committed to transparency ?
This organization is a Bronze-level GuideStar Exchange participant, demonstrating its commitment to transparency.

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&1002; Registered with IRS Legitimacy information is available
&1002; Financial Data Annual Revenue and Expense data reported
&1002; Mission Objectives Mission Statement is available
&1002; Impact Summary Impact Summary from the nonprofit is available
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Basic Organization Information

INNOCENCE MATTERS Organization Name provided in the GuideStar Exchange* as of 10/12/2014: INNOCENCE MATTERS

Organization Name as listed in the IRS Business Master File as of 12/08/2014: INNOCENCE MATTERS

* The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
Physical Address: Torrance, CA 90505 9050
EIN: 27-0840481
Web URL: www.innocencematters.org 
Blog URL: innocencemattersblog.wordpress.com/ 
NTEE Category: I Crime, Legal Related
I80 Legal Services
R Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy
R60 Civil Liberties Advocacy
Ruling Year: 2010 
Top Funders: Private Donations - $15,173


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Mission Statement

Innocence Matters is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing wrongful convictions.  We provide direct representation for innocent people but our work is primarily focused on the broader goals of education, prevention and reform, especially through our new I Am Innocent program.  Wrongful convictions are all the more tragic because they are often completely preventable.   Our I Am Innocent mentoring program will enable us to protect countless innocent people by providing the falsely accused with a broad toolkit for protecting their innocence.   An important component of Innocence Matters' work is to ensure that the lessons of our past mistakes are not lost on those in a position to reform our justice system.

Legitimacy Information

This organization is registered with the IRS.

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990-N.

Institutional funders should note that an organization’s inclusion on GuideStar.org does not satisfy IRS Rev. Proc. 2011-33 for identifying supporting organizations.

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Annual Revenue & Expenses

(GuideStar Exchange,
The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
October 2014)

Fiscal Year Starting: March 29, 2010
Fiscal Year Ending: December 31, 2010

Total Revenue $15,173
Total Expenses --

Revenue & Expenses

(GuideStar Exchange,
The GuideStar Exchange allows nonprofits to regularly update key information directly to GuideStar. It provides richer and broader information about their programs, impact, finances, people and more.
October 2014)

Fiscal Year Starting: March 29, 2010
Fiscal Year Ending: December 31, 2010

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Balance Sheet

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Forms 990 Received from the IRS Additional Information
IRS Form 990 is an annual document used by approximately one-third of all public charities to report information about their finances and operations to the federal government. GuideStar uses data from Form 990 to populate its database with financial information about nonprofit organizations. Posting Form 990 images on the GuideStar website is an ongoing process.

Forms 990 documents are not available for this organization.

Forms 990 Provided by the Nonprofit

Financial Statements

Audited Financial Statement is not available for this organization.

Annual Reports

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Leadership

(GuideStar Exchange,
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October 2014)

Ms. Deirdre O'Connor

Term:

Since Mar 2010

Profile:

The Executive Director is an experience and successful criminal defense trial lawyer who has devoted the past 17 years protecting the rights of indigent criminal defendants.  She also has prior experience as a law school clinician where she supervised 6-8 third-year law students as they investigated and tried their first criminal case.

Board Chair (GuideStar Exchange,
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October 2014)

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Board Co-Chair

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Board of Directors (GuideStar Exchange,
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October 2014)

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Board Leadership Practices (GuideStar Exchange,
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October 2014)
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GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

Board Orientation & Education ?
Why does this matter? Without clarity around their responsibilities and expectations, board members are not positioned to succeed. They may find themselves challenged to fulfill their governance responsibilities or frustrated by the expectations that the organization has set for them. BoardSource recommends that every new board member participate in a formal orientation process, and that all board members sign a pledge or agreement committing to their board service and to all of the responsibilities and expectations that come with service. Ideally, board members also should participate in a formal governance training program prior to serving on a board.

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?
Response Not Provided
CEO Oversight ?
Why does this matter? Oversight and management of the chief executive is one of the board’s most important legal responsibilities. The CEO or executive director is the board's single employee, and - just like any other employer/employee relationship - regular and written assessment is critical to ensuring that the chief executive and board are communicating openly about goals and performance. BoardSource recommends that boards conduct formal, written reviews of their chief executives on an annual basis, which should include an in-person discussion with the chief executive and distribution of the written evaluation to the full board.

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?
Response Not Provided
Ethics & Transparency ?
Why does this matter? A commitment to handling conflicts of interests is essential to creating an organizational culture of transparency. Boards should create and follow a policy for identifying and handling conflicts of interest, whether real or perceived. BoardSource recommends that organizations review the conflict-of-interest statement and require signed disclosures from all board members and senior staff on an annual basis.

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements within the past year?
Response Not Provided
Board Composition ?
Why does this matter? The best boards are composed of individuals who bring a variety of skills, perspectives, backgrounds, and resources to tackle the complex and strategic challenges confronting their organizations. BoardSource recommends that boards commit to diversity and inclusion by establishing written policies and practices, which include strategic and intentional recruitment of diverse board members, continual commitment to inclusivity, and equal access to board leadership opportunities.

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?
Response Not Provided
Board Performance ?
Why does this matter? Boards need to regularly assess their own performance. Doing so ensures that they are being intentional about how they govern their organization, which is a critical component of effective board leadership. BoardSource recommends that a board conduct a self-assessment of its performance a minimum of once every three years to ensure that it is staying on track with its roles and responsibilities.

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?
Response Not Provided

Officers for Fiscal Year (IRS Form 990)

Officers information is not available for this organization.

Highest Paid Employees & Their Compensation (IRS Form 990)

Highest Paid Employee data is not available for this organization.

People information was last updated by the nonprofit in October 2014

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Programs

Program: I Am Innocent (GuideStar Exchange,
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October 2014)

Budget:
$175,000
Category:
Crime & Legal
Population Served:
Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Program Description:

When the innocent have an inattentive or ineffective lawyer, they are far more likely to be wrongfully convicted.  Once convicted, it can take decades to correct the injustice.  More often than not, claims of ineffective assistance of counsel are hampered by a silent record and a lawyer more skilled at defending himself than his clients.  The 18-month I Am Innocent mentoring program will teach the innocent how to get needed attention and create a record of innocence before trial. I Am Innocent will protect 100 probable innocent people in Los Angeles County while collecting data regarding the quality of representation that will be used to create Informed Innocence a free national resource.  Informed Innocence will teach the innocent how to: get the most from their court-appointed lawyers, develop a strong working relationship with their lawyer, identify signs of an ineffective lawyer, document and preserve evidence of their innocence, and, if needed, replace an ineffective lawyer.

Program Long-Term Success:

Program Short-Term Success:

Program Success Monitored by:

Program Success Examples:

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Impact Summary from the Nonprofit

We officially opened our doors on June 7, 2010, and, thus far, have been staffed entirely by volunteers.  We are on the verge of securing our first exoneration for a man who has spent half his life in prison for a crime he did not commit.   In the process, we have exposed a dozen law students to the importance of zealous advocacy and trained them how to be the very best advocate for their client.  As we end our first fiscal year and move to the next, we are busy finalizing an exciting new preventative program that will innocent people and enable us to create a national resource for all those falsely accused.
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Reviews

Organization Data Available

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