The Dawn Brancheau Foundation

Dedicated to improving the lives of children and animals in need, inspiring others to follow their dreams, and promoting the importance of community service.

dawn b foundation

Our Goal

We continue Dawn’s legacy of helping others, animals, and the environment. The Foundation strives to make a difference in our world that surpasses what Dawn could have accomplished on her own.


Help Out

The Dawn Brancheau Foundation is grateful for all who choose to organize a community service project in honor of Dawn. We strive to help in as many ways as possible and will continue looking for new opportunities.



The Dawn Brancheau Foundation honors the concept of Dawn’s dreaming big by virtually hosting Dawn's Dream Big Birthday Fundraiser, awarding a Dream Big Scholarship at Andrean High School, and supporting Dawn’s Dream Big Runners in marathons every 5 years.

We are grateful for all past  participants of the Dream Big 5K at SeaWorld Orlando and the Dream Big Walk in Northwest Indiana.


Dawn's Dream Big Birthday Fundraiser

Donate today!


Dawn's Story

For Dawn Brancheau, it all began with a dream. After watching the Shamu show as a child, she was so moved by the bond shared between the whales and their caretakers that she made it her life’s ambition to become a SeaWorld whale trainer.  Though a thousand miles of land separated this young Northwest Indiana girl from the nearest ocean, Dawn let nothing hinder her from daring to dream.

During her 15 years as a SeaWorld trainer, she not only lived her lifelong dream, she mastered her craft. Dawn earned love and respect from her colleagues and admiration from the animal-training world. Dawn inspired millions of park guests to love marine life as she did, and to serve as passionate stewards of their environment.

Dawn savored life and nothing brought her more joy than her husband, family, friends, and her chocolate labs. Dawn lived each day to the fullest and was always looking for ways to brighten someone’s day through a kind and loving act. Whether you were a family member, a friend, or a total stranger, Dawn would always make you feel special. Dawn lived her life with purpose. In honor of Dawn, we choose to do the same.

dawn's dream big birthday fundraiser