Accident Victims Pledge $25,000 to Nonprofit Nine13sports to Kickoff Fundraising Challenge

Indianapolis, IN ─ July 31, 2012 ─ Today Lauren and Tom Hanley announced their fundraising challenge to Foundations, Grant Organizations and other Benefactors, here in Central Indiana and throughout the country.  The Hanley couple has pledged to donate $25,000 to Nine13sports if nine other organizations or private donors will do the same.  Their matching gift challenge will support Nine13sports and the goal to raise a total of $250,000 this year.  Nine13sports has proven to be a quickly growing and successful nonprofit since its inception in 2009.

The organization provides unique exercise programs for thousands of Central Indiana youth by partnering with a variety of youth-focused organizations.  During the 2012 calendar year, Nine13sports is on track to provide over 7,500 youth interactions while operating on a $125,000 annual budget.

Tom is one of the three co-founders of Nine13sports and is the Director of Business Development.  Lauren is employed as a civilian by the City of Indianapolis, working as a Crime Analyst and Supervisor within the police department.  On June 5, 2010, their lives were dramatically changed forever when, on the day of their wedding, the driver of the shuttle bus carrying the wedding party ran a red light at the intersection of South Street and Delaware Street, colliding with another vehicle.  Tom’s best friend, Jim Douglas, was killed and Tom himself suffered two broken vertebrae and a mild traumatic brain injury which continue to impact him today.  Lauren and the other survivors walked away with minor injuries.

Two years later, litigation has been settled with The Mavris Arts & Events Center.  Lauren commented, “We have always envisioned donating part of our settlement to a variety of charitable organizations to substantiate our desire to better the community and to inspire a positive situation from a negative experience.  Tom and I have become considerably involved as advocates for red light awareness with organizations such as the National Coalition for Safer Roads.  We are also working with state representatives to close the gaping hole in the current Indiana Code that allowed our driver, who killed one and injured fourteen, to walk away with nothing more than a red light traffic ticket.”

Tom added, “Litigation was a long process without a level playing field.  Despite our impassioned struggle for justice, we were finally forced to take a less than desirable settlement.  The settlement covers already incurred costs but there are no provisions for the future medical costs which we anticipate will exceed well over $300,000 throughout my lifetime.  The settlement also fails to provide for the many other losses suffered due to the careless actions of others as well as a lack of business provisions.  Regardless, we feel it is vitally important to donate a portion of our settlement in a way that will support the community.  We hope that our gift-matching challenge will generate interest among a variety of benefactors and allow our personal donation to have a much larger impact.”

After much reflection, the Hanley Family decided to approach the rest of the executive staff at Nine13sports with their fundraising ideas.

“This matching gift challenge idea is quite simple it allows us to find nine grant and endowment organizations or individual benefactors who are willing make the same pledge as the Hanley Family,” said John Singleton, Operations Director for Nine13sports.   “When the $250,000 pledge total is reached, all contributions will be accepted by Nine13sports.  Although the challenge sets out to identify nine benefactors willing to pledge $25,000 each, the real goal is to raise $225,000 from any benefactors who donate any amount.  The $25,000 pledge from Lauren and Tom and the additional $225,000 raised allows Nine13sports to reach its 2012 fundraising goal as intended by the Hanley Family.”

Lauren and Tom closed with, “The events of the tragedy will forever be part of who we are.  Our passion for community and the belief that Nine13sports is part of the solution to combat childhood obesity in Central Indiana lets this Pledge back up our words with action.  We both have athletic backgrounds.  Lauren is a 2007 Women’s Little 500 champion and runs competitively.  Tom has won multiple national cycling championships.  We credit sports and exercise with having a role in making us who we are today and helping us survive these last two years.  We believe that innovative action is needed to get the community involved and it is the reason we came up with this gift-matching concept.  The settlement we received as a result of our tragedy does not fix the past, remove the physical and emotional pain we endure daily, hold the responsible parties fully accountable, or bring back our beloved friend.  What it can do is foster our community involvement and hopefully encourage great funding organizations to support one of the most unique and growing youth health and wellness nonprofits in the country.  We are doing our part and now hope that philanthropic organizations and individuals will do the same.”

Lauren and Tom have specified that their portion of the donation will be in memory of Jim Douglas, their friend whom they lost on that tragic day.  Nine13sports will commemorate the Hanley Family for their contribution and efforts to grow Nine13sports as the stated goals are reached.

The executive staff at Nine13sports will be pursuing grants already in process and encouraging communication with potential new donors.  Specific inquiries can be addressed to

About Nine13sports

Indy Velo (dba Nine13sports) is a Central Indiana 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that promotes health, wellness, and exercise for local youth between the ages of 8 and 18, using bicycling as the gateway. We have created a unique program in which we have integrated the traditional bicycle with technology to provide a turnkey product for youth programs, schools and other community organizations at no cost to them. In addition to individual betterment of health and fitness, our programs promote community, teamwork and mutual respect for one another. Our vision is to use the art and sport of cycling to teach and positively influence our participants and leave a lasting impact.  For additional information please visit or email

About the Hanley Family

Tom and Lauren Hanley are active in the community through a variety of passions and commitments that positively impact Central Indiana.  Both share a love for health and exercise, college athletics, working with at-risk youth, and their Alma Mater, Indiana University.  They share their life experiences to encourage and inspire others.  Their popular blog can be found through their website and they can be reached by email at   Currently the Hanley Couple is working on details for a book to share their life story, tentatively titled, “So Much Life in Such Little Time”.


This press release has been issued jointly by Nine13sports and the Hanley Family with approval from all parties and respective Members of the Board.

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