I wanted to announce the creation of a journey many years in coming. I am Danny Hellwig, the Laboratory Director and Forensic DNA Technical Leader of the Intermountain Forensics Laboratory, made possible by the efforts of the Cold Case Coalition.
I have been in the forensic DNA field for 16+ years now, and I have worked in the public and private sectors of crime laboratories around the country. As I moved through my career, I couldn't help feeling like we could be doing more. I became frustrated with bureaucracy of public forensic laboratories, always struggling with politics and paperwork to get the resources they need. Private laboratories circumvent the "red tape", but it feels wrong to profit from service to victims of crime and it takes a very strong moral compass to put quality first and make the best decisions for the case when it tends to cost more against the bottom line. We can do better! We should do better!
And thus, a dream formed. What if we could take the agility and efficiency of a private forensic DNA laboratory with the quality focus of a public lab? The best of both worlds! Thanks to the partnership of the Cold Case Coalition (http://www.utahcoldcasecoalition.org/) we have the seed of something amazing.
The Intermountain Forensics Non-Profit Forensic DNA Laboratory in Salt Lake City, UT is the culmination of that dream. We intend to bring cutting edge technologies to Forensic DNA and provide it as cost effectively as possible (hopefully free of charge!). We will use the best technology, keep the focus squarely on quality, use proven process improvement techniques, find amazing talent all over the country and always do what is best for the victim in the case to lead toward the justice they deserve.
We will do this in the most transparent way possible, opening a window into the laboratory for our partners, those we work for and (where confidentiality is not required) the public.
Our vision is this:
The POWER of Forensic DNA should never allow a Victim's JUSTICE to go Cold!
If you believe in this dream as much as I do, please help us. It takes a lot to start a laboratory and we are off to an amazing start.. but there will always be need. If you find it in your heart, please donate to our cause.
We are working on creating a donation link within our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Intermountain-Forensics-316357309046198)
but until then, you can donate to the Cold Case Coalition that is funding our progress. https://www.facebook.com/UtahColdCaseCoalition/
Thank you so much! I cannot tell you how much I appreciate all of the support and well wishes to make this dream a reality!
Let's do something amazing!