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This profile was last updated on 3/13/13  and contains information from public web pages.

Mr. Eddie Lee

Wrong Eddie Lee?


Phone: (407) ***-****  HQ Phone
Local Address:  Madeira Beach , Florida , United States
Florida Kiwanis
5545 Benchmark Lane Www.Floridakiwanis.Com
Sanford , Florida 32773
United States


Employment History

59 Total References
Web References
FLORIDA KIWANIS - Executive Officers, 13 Mar 2013 [cached]
Eddie Lee
Florida Kiwanis [cached]
Treasurer Eddie Lee's Message
5. Kiwanis International President's Message
9. Intent to Run for Treasurer: Eddie Lee
Eddie Lee, the head of ... [cached]
Eddie Lee, the head of Florida Kiwanis, said his organization has about 50 people from across the state in town for Children's Week. He said children and the issues affecting them need to be considered by each policy maker this session.
"I can't think of anything you'd need to remember more," Lee said. "They're not just our future.
MADEIRA BEACH - Born and raised ..., 10 Jan 2010 [cached]
MADEIRA BEACH - Born and raised in Winter Haven, Fla., Eddie Lee was the product of what he describes as a "solid middle-class" upbringing. As captain of the high school swim team and a member of the Key Club, Lee showed promise as both an athlete and a leader.
After high school, Lee served four years in the U.S. Marine Corps. On a tour of duty in Southeast Asia, Lee says he spent more time in Thailand than in Vietnam and saw virtually no combat. Shortly thereafter Lee married his first wife and the couple had a son. The family moved to Alabama where Lee began working in construction after his enlistment ended. He eventually started his own business and found time to volunteer at a local chapter of the Jaycees. His community involvement caught the eye of the governor, who named Lee "Outstanding Young Man in Birmingham, Alabama."
It was around this time, Lee says, that his social drinking was becoming less and less social. A number of drunk driving arrests were the first indicators of trouble, but Lee's failure to heed the warning signs led to divorce. He gave up his business and went to work for "other people" for a period of 10 to 12 years as a "functioning alcoholic."
"I was very resilient there for awhile," Lee says, "I had about a five-year span in there where I didn't do any drinking. I didn't go to treatment or anything, I would just stop on my own. Lee says he spiraled through a cycle of heavy bouts of drinking interspersed with increasingly shorter periods of sobriety for several years in the late 1970s. During one of these interludes, he secured a job as a manufacturer's rep, was remarried, and enrolled at the University of Alabama.
After a second divorce, Lee moved to Pinellas County. He enjoyed another five-year period of employment as a cook on a seagoing tugboat. But time and time again, Lee's drinking caught up with him. He missed an assignment due to drinking and was fired. "It went downhill pretty quick and before I knew it, I was on the streets," he said.
For a period of about five years, arrests for trespassing, petty theft and alcohol-related incidents preceded failed attempts at recovery in treatment centers, halfway houses and similar programs. Lee recalled that period of his life as being more or less typical of what any homeless individual might deal with.
"The culture of living on the streets is something I can't imagine anybody actually enjoying," he said. "But I can imagine, because I did it myself, people adapting to the lifestyle."
Lee mentioned a social hierarchy that exists in the homeless community, a pecking order based on intellect. He said he mostly tried to distance himself from the subculture of homelessness whenever possible, to avoid the attention brought on by fights, police confrontations, and whatever unforeseen drama might unfold when homeless people assembled in the open.
"I was a loner on the streets. I drank with anybody I could drink with but when it came time to nestle down for the night, I would have my own spot someplace," Lee says. "I could control my environment a little better if I stayed by myself."
His "spot," Lee said, was often the restroom of a 24-hour laundromat or tucked in the sea oats between sand dunes on the beach. For about six months, Lee slept in the front seat of a box truck being used for storage behind a restaurant, while doing odd jobs for the owner.
It was during this time that the events that led to his recovery were put into motion. Lee woke one morning and, with the little money he had, bought a six-pack of beer.
Jaundiced and severely underweight, Lee appealed to the court to be sent to a longterm treatment center in Tarpon Springs, expecting nothing more than being given a comfortable bed, warm meals, and medical attention - until he was well enough to return to the streets.
"You can milk that system for weeks," he said.
"He saw something in me that I didn't see in myself," Lee said. "He just wouldn't give up on me. He coached me through some things and didn't try to push me. All of a sudden, one day, it was like the scales came off."
"It became clear to me that everything was going to be alright," Lee said, recalling an epiphany he had while on a spiritual retreat four months into sobriety. "I couldn't tell you why, because I had no job, no prospects for a job or a place to go or anything. I had no exit plan. I just knew I was going to be okay. I just knew it."
Lee enrolled in management and design courses at a community college and was hired at a job fair as a night supervisor on an airport renovation project, which led to positions with construction projects all over Florida.
Lee returned to Pinellas County and became actively involved in his Madeira Beach community. He was invited to join Kiwanis of Gulf Beaches and eventually became club president. At his first meeting as president, Lee announced his plan to build a baseball field for Miracle League of Gulf Beaches, a baseball league for children with special needs.
"Seventeen months later we'd raised $335,000 and they were playing ball."
"Kiwanis has become my passion," Lee said. "Had someone set me down a year or two into my sobriety and said, 'Look ten or twelve years down the road and write down the best-case scenario of what your life will be like,' I would have short-changed myself."
Lee still attends recovery programs and support meetings. On a regular basis, he makes time to work with alcoholics undergoing treatment.
In July, after eight years of involvement in the club, Lee was elected Florida district treasurer of Kiwanis International. When asked if such a position might be a bit heady for a guy who once slept in the cab of a truck, Lee replied, "I'm no further away from a drink today than I was the first 24 hours that I got sober, but I think it's fair to say that, at this point in my life, it is less likely that I will drink - today.
Eddie Lee, and Doug ... [cached]
Eddie Lee, and Doug Sessions
Eddie Lee, Governor of the Florida District Kiwanis (2011-2012) accepted the award of appreciation at the 2012 Healthy Families Florida Leadership Meeting held on September 20-21, 2012 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
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