Our Founder

Annie Lee Warren Roberts

The Summerlee Foundation was founded by Annie Lee Warren Roberts, a philanthropist, historical advocate and Texas native. She was born in Terrell, Texas in 1895, the only child of Annie (Cartwright) and state Senator Robert Lee Warren. Following graduation from high school, she attended Gunston Hall Women’s College in Washington, D. C., and Monticello College in Geoffrey, Illinois.

In 1920, Annie Lee Warren married Summerfield G. Roberts, a Terrell native and a fifth-generation Texan. As they prospered in Mr. Roberts’ banking, oil, and real estate ventures, together they pursued their interests to improve the cultural, social, and literary life of their community.

During her lifetime, Mrs. Roberts championed causes that addressed the alleviation of fear, pain, and suffering of animals and worked diligently to improve the plight of homeless animals and captive wildlife. Throughout the nation, she was known for her dedication and support of animals in need of sheltering, sanctuary and refuge, and emergency care. In 1984, she was a recipient of the Founders Medal for extraordinary service to animals.

In 1988, she founded The Summerlee Foundation. That same year, in association with the Animal Protection Institute and the United Animals Nations-USA, Mrs. Roberts founded the Annie Lee Roberts Emergency Animal Rescue Service Fund and received the award for Excellence for Extraordinary Achievement in Animal Rescue. In 1989, she was the recipient of the Animal Philanthropist of the Year award from the Animal Protection Institute.