About Us

Northwest Infant Survival & SIDS Alliance

1961 – 8 bereaved parents formed what would become the SIDS Foundation of Washington, later Northwest Infant Survival & SIDS Alliance (NISSA) as a way to reach out to the families affected by, what was known at the time as “crib death.”
2012 – The SIDS Foundation of Washington becomes NISSA. continuing the mission set forth by our founders to find and support those who have lost infants.
2012 – Liz Montgomery, a bereaved mother, once supported by NISSA, forms Inland Northwest SIDS Foundation to provide support services and prevention education to Idaho and Eastern Washington.
2019 – NISSA and Inland Northwest SIDS Foundation merge to form an updated and stronger NISSA. Serving the entire Northwest region, providing emotional support services to bereaved families and world-class, free prevention education and training to parents, caregivers and medical professionals.

About Our Work

Annual Reports





Mary Dore Heart of Gold Award

Mary Shuman Dore was one of the initial eight families that banded together in 1961 to find others walking their journey of child loss so no one would have to walk alone.  

Mary lost her fourth child, Christine, to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (“SIDS”) in 1961. As a result of this tragedy, she was instrumental in raising money for SIDSresearch and starting one of the nation’s first foundations dedicated to searching for the causes of what was then called crib death.

“Mary was a disturber of the peace, and she was always right,” said Dr. Abe
Bergman, a noted Seattle pediatrician. “She was more important to SIDS than anyone in the world. Her doggedness helped people realize they did not kill their children. That’s what triggered the whole research movement, not by doctors but by laypeople like Mary. With her compassionate heart, she was the single most important person in the field.” He said through Mary’s work and state money, Children’s Hospital & Regional Medical Center set up the largest SIDS research project in the world.

Every year NISSA awards the “Mary Dore Heart of Gold Award” to an individual or business that has shown an exceptional commitment to NISSA and its mission, that every child should celebrate their first birthday, and beyond, free from unintentional death and injury.

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About Us

2020 Mary Dore Heat of Gold Award Winer

Bart Buckendorf


About Bart

Bart Buckendorf is a Battalion Chief for Ada County Paramedics in Boise, Idaho.  Bart has been a firefighter and paramedic in Southwest Idaho for over 30 years.  Bart is married to Dana and they have three children, Sarah, Amanda and Kelcey.  Bart enjoys walking and woodworking.


Bart Buckendoft has been a long-time collaborator with Inland Northwest SIDS Foundation, now NISSA.  Bart is a certified safe sleep educator and has taught our Safe Sleep 101 class throughout the state and has raised awareness on the ABC’s of Safe Sleep. In March of 2020, Bart joined our board of directors.


Bart’s selection as the 2020 Mary Dore Heart of Gold Award Winner was easy.  In 2019 he walked over 600 miles throughout the State of Idaho and to raise awareness about preventable sleep related infant deaths all the while teaching 33 Safe Sleep 101 classes throughout the state, making him the perfect choice for this award!

Hear About Bart’s Journey

Mary Dore Heart of Gold Award Winners


Aileen Carrell



Allison & Aaron Key & Christine Pezzner

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Roger Pardo



Helen Cook

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Lee Family



King County Medical Examiner



Wendell Tobiason



The Dore Family

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Our Directors

Board President
Katie Brown, M.Ed.
Tammy Androes, MSML
Tia Clifford
Board Member
Miranda Hoefert
Board Member
Cara Turningrobe, MBA
Board Member
Aileen Carrell
Board Member
Bart Buckendorf
Board Member
Amanda Williams

Our Staff

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Executive Director
Liz Montgomery, Bs.Ed
Program Coordinator
Andrea Fulks

How do you 
preserve a legacy?

With a rich history that stretches back almost 60 years, NISSA’s legacy is vast and deep.  We are proud of how we started, how we have grown and what the future has in store. Legacy Hall will be a place where we can document our incredible journey that NISSA has traveled. Over the course of the next year, we will be creating “Legacy Hall,” a place where our history can be preserved online and available for everyone.  If you have a document, story, picture or memory that you think belongs in Legacy Hall, we would love to hear from you. Please click below to contact us

Contact Us

Get In Touch

To get in contact with us about any of our programs, support requests or other general questions concerning NISSA fill out the form below.   We’ll be in touch shortly.

Our Address

1130 N 4th Street, Coeur d'Alene, ID 83814
Please call for office hours