collage of women divers


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Member Roster A - E

To find a member's listing, click above on the first letter of her last name to jump to that section of this alphabetical roster.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q |R | S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z



Danielle Alary, 2001
Danielle was certified in 1982. She is an award-winning speaker, writer, photographer and multimedia producer. Danielle is currently an underwater photography columnist for Diver magazine. She has co-authored more than 950 articles. Danielle was the recipient of the Diver of the Year Award for the Arts at Beneath the Sea (in 1995) and has also won the coveted Silver Diver Award at the Antibes World Festival of Underwater Images (in 1997). In addition she chaired the photo jury at the 2000 edition of that prestigious event. Danielle also received, in 2007, the Our World Underwater Award, in recognition for her contribution to the diving community.

Barbara Allen, 2014
Pioneer, Instructor, Ocean Advocate. In 1957, Barbara Allen graduated from the 6th Los Angeles County Underwater Instructors Certification Course, the second woman to do so. She taught at Dive N’ Surf and the Diving Locker. In 1961 Barbara became secretary of the San Diego Underwater Photographic Society. She worked at the Westinghouse Ocean Research Lab as a technician in near shore studies, and demonstrated Mark VI semi-closed circuit mixed-gas rebreathers at Offshore Exploration Conferences. She also worked with the FMC Ocean Engineering Department, using her diving and underwater photography skills in test tanks. In 2009 Barbara was honored by the San Diego Underwater Photographic Society as a diving pioneer. Barbara currently serves as a volunteer with the California Surf Museum, educating people about the ocean environment and aquatic history.

  Renee Steven Applegate, 2003
Renee, a former head nurse, is a PADI Master Instructor with over 26 years of diving experience. She is the owner of Dive Paradise in Cozumel Mexico.
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, 2007
Philippines, enacted a national conservation policy for the Philippines to protect the archipelagic country’s unique and rich nature, with initial focus on the heart of Southeast Asia’s Coral Triangle. President Arroyo has taken a visionary step by committing her government to protect the nation’s natural wealth for the benefit of the Filipino people, now and in the future. She recognizes that a healthy environment is the foundation for a stable, productive society that can develop in a sustainable mann er. In 2005, President Arroyo also signed a Proclamation declaring the second week of January of each year as “Best Dives Philippines Week,” promoting scuba diving with an emphasis on protection and conservation of the Philippines’ underwater
marine resources.

Carole Baldwin, Ph.D., 2003

Dr. Carole Baldwin is a well-respected authority on marine biology, especially tropical-marine fishes. Her face will be familiar to any of you who have seen the Smithsonian 3-D IMAX film, Galapagos, for which she was a scientific advisor and on-air talent. She grew up in coastal South Carolina and studied at James Madison University, the College of Charleston and the College of William and Mary. She has published over 70 scientific articles, and her work includes the discovery of dozens of new fish species from Belize, Curacao, Tobago, Saba Bank, Australia, Cook Islands, El Salvador and Galápagos. Her current research is focused on diversity and evolution of Caribbean reef fishes through a combination of genetic and traditional morphological investigation. This work has recently involved submersible diving to 1,000 ft. off Curacao in the southern Caribbean as part of DROP (Deep Reef Observation Project), a Smithsonian marine research initiative that Baldwin established in 2011. In 2003 Carole was inducted into the Women Divers Hall of Fame, in 2006 she received the Ronald E. Carrier Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award from James Madison University, and in 2014 she was inducted as an alumni member into the James Madison University chapter of Phi Beta Kapa. She is currently in the Director’s Circle of the National Aquarium, a member of the Board of Governors of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, a Council Member for the Biological Society of Washington, and a sectional editor for the scientific journal Zookeys. She has devoted much time to sharing her experiences as a marine biologist with students and the general public and is a positive role model for females considering careers in science. Dr. Baldwin is senior author of One Fish, Two Fish, Crawfish, Bluefish -- The Smithsonian Sustainable Seafood Cookbook (Smithsonian Books, 2003), a marine conservation project featuring educational information and recipes from professional chefs for U.S. seafood species fished or farmed in an environmentally sound manner. More recently, Dr. Baldwin served as a curator of the Smithsonian’s popular Sant Ocean Hall. She is based at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, where she has worked as a Research Zoologist (Curator of Fishes) since 2001.

Susan Bangasser, Ph.D, 2000
Susan investigated and wrote articles on the physiological aspects of women divers during the late ‘70s and ‘80s. She co-authored Women Underwater, the first book about women and diving. Her interest in safe diving for women resulted in surveys of divers and promotion of investigation of controversial issues of diving during pregnancy and susceptibility to decompression sickness. Susan also established a support hotline to help resolve issues and concerns for women divers.

Kristine Barsky, 2014
Marine Biologist, Environmentalist, Author, Videographer. An avid diver since 1972, Kristine Barsky is a senior marine biologist and diver with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Humboldt State University. One of the Department’s senior environmental specialists, she interacts with the public, other government and academic colleagues, and fishermen. Kristine is currently in charge of the Department’s lobster fishery management plan. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Historical Diving Society USA as well as the American Academy of Underwater Sciences. As well as being an author, Kristine is a photographer, dive model and videographer.

Sally E. Bauer, M.D, 2011
Sally is President and co-founder of the Florida Keys History of Diving Museum, featuring the world’s largest collection of historic diving artifacts. A founding member of the Historical Diving Society, she has lectured and published on diving history, marine biology and aquariology. Diving since the late 1960’s led her to certification in Underwater Medicine as an adjunct to her work as an ER physician in Ohio. She conducted a 30-year project researching marine angelfish reproduction and social behavior, and is currently establishing the Joe Bauer Research Library to provide a resource for diving history scholars.

Amelia Behrens-Furniss, 2012 (deceased)
Amelia was a 1920s pioneer in early hardhat diving, along with barnstorming as a “wingwalker,” stunt woman, actress, and WWII WAC nurse. Her father ran a diving operation servicing the oil industry in Simi Valley, and he taught his two daughters to dive and work as hard hat divers. His operation included both hat and bell divers, and Amelia did both, eventually earning world records for her dives of that period. “Fearless” (as described by the press of the day) and of appropriate size for pipe work at about 5’1” and 118 lb, her main claim to fame was a 162’ dive into a 24” pipe to retrieve tools other divers dropped that would have no doubt blocked the drilling operation. She made five dives into the pipe (getting stuck once), but ultimately brought up all the tools. She did this weighing 118 lb, wearing full diving dress which weighed 446 lb. On one dive she was down 5 hours. At the time she was known from coast to coast as a gutsy hard hat diver and described as having a “reputation as such which is reached by no other woman.” At the time she was diving during the “roaring 20’s,” she was a also a wing walker on bi-wing airplanes of that era for air shows various air shows and worked in “moving pictures” including an underwater film, “The Perils of Pauline.” Her other service to the community and to the war effort were also exemplary and cited by the press of the day.

Monique J Bellefeuille, 2002
Monique became a diver in 1982 (PADI). She co-founded the Ottawa chapter of Save Ontario Shipwrecks. She was a speaker at many US and Canadian scuba diving shows. Monique has donated thousand of hours to marine archeology research and studies. She has had hundreds of articles published in Canada, France and the USA (French & English). In the early 90's she founded several successful non-profit International photo contests. She is in the arts, producing paintings in pastel and black and withe. She also makes jewelry and does specialty wire wrapping of her husbands gemstone art (pendants etc...). She is now involved in charities, such as food banks, World Vision Canada, Save the Manatees, Turtle Protection in Florida. She donates her art work and jewelry for various organizations and charities. She has undertaken a new project video filming of nature, the sea and many more subjects. She is in the process of archiving (Micheal's) thousands of slides of shipwrecks from Eastern Ontario Canada, to donate to the Marine Museum in Kingston Ontario. Perhaps one day a book in the making...

Wendy Benchley, 2015
Marine Conservation Leader, Ocean Conservation Governmental Policy Advocate, Shark Conservation Spokesperson. Providing leadership of the highest caliber on an international level, Wendy Benchley has worked with fierce determination to protect our oceans – and sharks in particular – through the Peter Benchley Ocean Awards, and serving on the boards of a number of organizations including WildAid, Shark Savers (serving as President), Ocean Champions, and Blue Frontier. Wendy is now based in Washington, D.C. engaging in the marine policy community and supporting many of the world’s leading ocean and environmental philanthropies. She has appeared in many documentaries, articles and television shows for National Geographic, the Discovery Channel, PBS, and others. Wendy is knowledgeable, motivated, and her efforts have helped to shape smarter, stronger environmental and marine conservation policies. She is the recipient of the International SeaKeepers Award which is given annually to an individual or organization that has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to ocean conservation. Wendy has also been avid scuba diver for over 40 years.

Cecilie Benjamin, 2015
Pioneer Scuba Instructor, Ocean Conservation Leader, Marine Environment Education Program Advocate. Cecilie Benjamin went to West New Britain Province, Papua New Guinea, as a new agricultural science graduate in February, 1972, and worked with the Department of Agriculture, Stock and Fisheries of PNG as an agricultural extension officer for over 11 years. A diver since 1976 and FAUI instructor since 1982, the first woman in PNG to do so, she and her husband built and opened Walindi Plantation Resort in September, 1983. Work over the years now means Kimbe Bay, where Walindi is located, is now recognised worldwide by such organisations as National Geographic, award-winning underwater photographers, and eminent marine scientists for its globally significant marine biodiversity and conservation initiatives. Cecilie is Chair of the Board of Directors for Mahonia Na Dari (Guardian of the Sea) Research and Conservation Centre, PNG (2006 to present). The Centre, at Kimbe Bay, designs, disseminates and conducts marine conservation education training programs for PNG youth, annually reaching 7,000 students and 3,000 community members. The Centre developed the Marine Environment Education Program or MEEP which is the core of the organisation’s teaching ethos.
Gina Bier, 2011
Gina took her first SCUBA course in 1986 from Dan Orr. In 1994 she began working in the Wright State University (WSU) SCUBA program which she now directs. She has personally certified well over 1800 NAUI Divers in various levels. Diving became an integral part of Detective Bier’s 20 year career in law enforcement. A female pioneer in this field, she led underwater evidence recovery investigations, hosted the International ‘Homicide by Drowning’ Course, taught Public Safety Diving to police and fire-rescue personnel in Ohio and was named 2010 Police Officer of the Year in Kettering, Ohio.

Capt. Janet Bieser, 2000
Janet was first certified in 1977. She is a SSI Platinum Pro 5000 diver and is certified as a PADI divemaster (1000 logged dives), an IANTD nitrox diver and an NSS-CDS Apprentice Cave Diver. In 1981 Janet was the first woman to dive the Republic and the second to dive theAndrea Doria. She is an experienced trimix diver, avid spearfisherman, heavy salvage diver, and holds a 100-ton Master Captain’s license. She captains theR/V Wahoo and manages Custom Breathing Media in Rocky Point, NY.

Carla Binelli, Ph.D., 2004
Carla became certified in 1972 and after retiring as a teacher in 1988 she submerged herself in diving. She is a PADI Master Instructor, DAN & IANTD Instructor Trainer, Educational Manager of Acquamarina Diving School and Vice-President of IANTD Italia-Adria. In 1993 Carla ventured into the technical realm and was instrumental in bringing nitrox, trimix and “tech” diving to Italy and nearby areas. She is certified on oxygen, semi-closed and closed circuit rebreathers. Carla has participated in diving expeditions in the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean, Red Sea and Adriatic Sea including that of the battleship “Szent Istvàn”. She has certified more than 1,000 divers & instructors and has logged several thousands of dives.
Christine R. Bird, M.D., 2011
Christine works at Greater Lawrence Family Health Center in Lawrence, MA as a family medicine physician, site medical director and faculty member. She is also an active diver, Founder and member of the Board of Directors of Oceanic Research Group, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of the world’s oceans and marine life through education. Co-creator and Executive Producer of the Emmy Award-winning public television series Jonathan Bird’s Blue World, Dr. Bird is committed to enhancing knowledge and helping to bring better education to our children and their families.
Captain Debra Bodenstedt, 2002
Deb has been a United States Navy diving and salvage officer since 1983. Shes been a commanding officer of a diving unit responsible for underwater ship repair and a diver during the salvage of the space shuttle Challenger. Deb also was the first woman to qualify as a submarine rescue chamber operator and the director of the Atlantic Fleet Diving School. She has dived on the historic USS Monitor at a depth of 240 feet and is a qualified scuba and surface-supplied mixed-gas diver.
CDR Bette Bolivar, 2005
CDR Bette Bolivar has been a Navy Diving Officer since 1988 and since then has excelled as a leader in Navy Diving. She became the fourth women to take command of a Navy Diving and Salvage ship when she became the Commanding Officer of USS SALVOR in 1998 and led her crew through a 6-month Western Pacific deployment. During that time, the ship salvage two crashed Navy Fighters off the coast of Korea. She then became only the second women to
take command of a Navy Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit in 2003. She is a highly decorated Naval Officer and accomplished SCUBA, Surface Supplied Air and Mixed Gas Diver and Salvage Officer.
Rena M. Bonem, Ph.D., 2001
Rena is a professor of geology and biology at Baylor University. Her research centers on the development, human impact, and recovery of living coral reefs. Rena’s diving activities began with certification in 1971, and in 1975 she became an instructor for YMCA and PADI. She chaired the YMCA Coral Reef Specialty in 1977 and has been a member of their National Advisory Committee since 1989. Rena is a fellow of the Geological Society of America and the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a life member of the American Academy of Underwater Sciences.
  Mary J. Bonnin, 2001
Mary’s diving career has spanned 24 years and she currently holds the position of Master Chief Petty Officer in the US Navy. After graduating at the top of her class (in both air and mixed gas diving), she went on to become the only woman in the US Navy to qualify as Master Diver. Mary has trained over 1,000 military divers and worked in ships’ husbandry, salvage and rescue. During her last tour she served as the leading naval diving safety authority. The Naval Undersea Museum in Keyport, Washington has dedicated their meeting room as the Mary Bonnin room.

Dr. Jolie Bookspan, 2000
Jolie earned Master’s and Doctoral degrees in exercise physiology and underwater physiology, a fellowship in cold immersion, and post docs in saturation decompression and altitude. Eleven years of her work involved unraveling the results of extension of oxygen tolerance research in humans. She taught anatomy at a college in México in the mountains where the entrance exam was getting up there without a nosebleed, and has conducted intensive work in cold chambers and other areas. Jolie is the author of many books and papers; of particular interest to divers are the books Diving Physiology in Plain English, Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Review For Physicians, and Hyperbaric Medical Review For Board Certification Exams, CHT / CHRN. She is a Martial Arts Hall of Fame Black Belt, and former undefeated full-contact ring boxer.

Tova Harel Bornovski, 2013
Tova is Founder/President of the Micronesian Shark Foundation, and owner and general manager of Fish ’N Fins and the Ocean Hunter fleet. Traveling the globe, she has dived many oceans and developed an appreciation of the ocean and its delicate ecosystems. She and her family sailed from Florida to the western Pacific and settled in Palau in 1993. There she developed a deep love for the local culture, flora, and fauna. The realization of the mistreatment of sharks both locally and internationally as well as the lack of knowledge about many species led Tova to establish the Micronesian Shark Foundation in 2002. Tova initiated the first shark research in Palau to collect, distribute and analyze data that could be used for shark regional protection. Her work included the first shark count in Micronesia, where tour operators and volunteers tabulate the number of sharks and gather additional identifying and to support the goal of shark protection by local government organizations.
Jane Bowman , 2010
Of the 8,000 dives Jane has made, 2,000 have been in caves. One of Australia’s leading female cave divers and instructors, Jane’s diving highlights include diving in Mexico, Florida, the Nullarbor Cave systems (in the central Australian desert), Palau, Vanuatu, and too many other exotic dive destinations to list. Jane has issued 4,000 diving certifications through PADI and the Cave Divers Association of Australia (CDAA), many at the upper limit of Australian cave diver training. Jane is the current Standards Director for the CDAA, the first woman to hold this challenging position since the association officially formed in 1974.
Georgienne Bradley, 2006
Georgienne Bradley is a noted scientist, artist, photographer, videographer, writer, teacher, and has lent her many talent to the diving community for over a decade. She has produced a variety of television programs about scuba diving for PBS and Paramount studios. Her writing and photography, which focus on diving and marine environmental issues, have appeared in hundreds of articles worldwide. Georgienne is the Founder and Chair person of the America Society of Media Photographers and she owns and operates Bradley Ireland Productions, one of the world’s largest underwater still photography and video stock houses. She is also the Director of the Imaging foundation, a non profit organization that enables travelers and high school and college students to get involved with educational production projects
Jana Bradley, 2000
Jana was certified in 1978 and became a member of the Underwater Society of America and the Midwest Diving Council that same year. She has held offices for a total of 52 different terms on the local, regional and national level. Jana chaired the Freediving/Scuba Nationals in 1990 and published the 40-year history of the MDC in 1999. She is a scuba skills competitor, boat driver for spearfishing competitors and her honors include the MDC Diver of the Year and President’s Award.
Tamara "Tammy" Brown, 2000
Tammy Brown, President and CEO of Divers Academy International, began her career in Commercial Diving in 1982, after graduating from what was then Divers Academy of the Eastern Seaboard. Located right on the Delaware River in Camden, NJ, the school was owned and operated by her parents, ‘Captain Bill’ and Sharon Brown. In the years that followed, Tammy went on to obtain many advanced certifications in related fields, such as bridge inspection and Nondestructive testing. Additionally, she was very active with the Accrediting Commission for Career Schools and Colleges of Technology, serving as a Management Specialist and a Team Leader.

She continued her work at Divers Academy, advancing to School Director in 1990. At the same time her career in the diving industry was rapidly advancing, and Tammy soon became President of the Association of Commercial Diving Educators, a position she held several times in the years that followed. She was one of the pioneers in developing commercial diving certification standards, and went on to have those standards become accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). To this day, Tammy is recognized as a leader in the commercial diving industry.

In 2006, she purchased Divers Academy of the Eastern Seaboard, took over as President and CEO, and renamed the school Divers Academy International. With a broad vision for the future, she purchased a 40-acre, 60’ deep quarry and surrounding property in Erial, NJ, designing and overseeing construction of a state-of-the-art administrative and training facility right at the water’s edge. This beautiful facility is conveniently located just north of Atlantic City, NJ, and is very accessible from Philadelphia and New York City. But this was just the beginning.
Still keeping a keen eye on industry trends and the future, Tammy began to explore advanced curriculum options to even further enhance the professional standard of Divers Academy International. Her focus turned to a higher certification level for graduates, and supporting technologies that would provide students with the best possible education for the industry. After a period of research and location scouting, Tammy purchased a nearly 300’depth quarry in Allentown, PA where students will now train to the highest deep dive international standard with curriculum options in Welding Technologies or Deep Dive Mixed Gas. Also knowing the demand for highly trained and certified topside welders, she purchased a large commercial facility in Berlin, NJ for two fully accredited new programs – Commercial Welding and Non -Destructive Testing. This bold move is a testament to her leadership and vision within the field and provides a major expansion for the Academy under her guiding hand – and within only a few short years of taking over as President and CEO.

Besides her diligent and unrelenting drive for the business, Tammy is also a very proud parent to her beautiful teenage daughter Chelsea Anya, whom she adopted as a young child from the Ukraine. Together they enjoy golfing, water activities, traveling, and spending down time with their playful Boston Bull Terrier, Molly.
Lucy Bunkley-Williams, Ph.D., 2005
Lucy began diving in 1969, NAUI certified 1975, Hyperbaric Recompression Chamber Operations 1975-82, Deep Diving certification 1979, Saturation/Habitat 1979-84 in 5 week-long missions in NOAA Hydrolab Undersea Habitat in St. Croix, Remote Operated Vehicle 1988, Nitrox certification 1998), Platinum Pro 5000 Diver Award 2005 with 6928 dives. Received MS Univ. Puerto Rico, Mayagüez (UPRM); PhD Auburn Univ. Studied aquatic animal health around the world & documented & explained the most important threats to our coral reefs & marine environment (Coral-reef Bleaching, Sea Turtle Fibropapillomas, diseases & mass mortalities) in 215 scientific publications & 4 books. Named 27 new species of large, external crustacean parasites of fishes seen by divers. She is Professor in the Biology Department, UPRM. Honored as Outstanding Woman Graduate of Auburn Univ. 1992; by Association of Marine Laboratories of the Caribbean by permanently renaming their best student paper award the “Bert & Lucy Williams Award” & Distinguished Service Award 2003 & Honorary Lifetime Membership 2002. Lucy’s underwater photographs have received awards, appeared in numerous books & articles, & were displayed in the Smithsonian Institution. Her research has been featured in television & radio programs, magazines, & newspaper articles.
Bonnie J. Cardone, 2000
Bonnie J. Cardone: Certified in 1973, Bonnie wrote more than 900 articles and published thousands of photos during her 22-years with Skin Diver Magazine. She also wrote articles about women diving pioneers for the Historical Diving Society’s magazine and authored two books, Shipwrecks of Southern California and Fireside Diver. Now a freelance photo/journalist, Bonnie’s work appears in dive periodicals. She received the WSA’s Women Diver of the Year Award and St. Brendan Corp.’s California Scuba Service Award and is a member of the California Wreck Divers Hall of Fame.
  Toni Carrell, 2001
Toni is an underwater archaeologist who has worked on sites from the Great Lakes to the Western Pacific and from World War II to early man. She served as the first woman regional dive officer for the National Park Service and worked with US Navy MDSU divers directing the first archaeological documentation of shipwreck sites in Palau. In 1993 Toni assumed the highest elected position in her field, chair of the Advisory Council on Underwater Archaeology and in 2007 was elected as an emeritus member of the council. Toni directed the excavation of a ship lost by the explorer La Salle in Texas in 1997-1998 and was the curator of the permanent exhibit installed in the Corpus Christi Museum of Scence and History. Recently, she has been co-director or the Search for the Slave Ship Trouvadore Project for Ships of Discovery. Toni continues her involvement in underwater cultural heritage management issues and was elected to the UNESCO International Committee on Underwater Cultural Heritage in 2007.
Jennifer Carter, 2000
Jennifer is the first woman to dive theTitanic and to achieve record-breaking height (skydiving from 12,500 feet) and depth (diving to 12,500 feet). She authored the book Titanic Adventure, produced National Geographic’s The Sharks,The Great Whales (Emmy Award-1978) and IMAX films Across the Sea of Time, Titanica and Mark Twain’s America. Jennifer has done saturation hard-hat diving and has scuba-dived worldwide, including in the search for the legendary monster of Loch Ness.
Capt. Victoria Anne Cassano, MC, USN (ret), MD, MPH, 2004
Victoria began diving in 1977 and advanced to PADI Instructor certification by 1980. She entered the Navy to attend medical school, while there she became a certified Navy diver and dived with the British saturation diving team while conducting Submarine Escape research. Victoria subsequently trained as an Undersea Medical Officer and became certified in surface supplied and mixed gas diving. She is one of the first women to have qualified for submarine “dolphins”. Victoria has spent her career in “operational undersea medicine”. She is board certified in Occupational /environmental Medicine and in Undersea and Clinical Hyperbaric Medicine. She has been an associate professor at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences where she Directed a graduate program in Undersea and Aviation Medicine. After retirement she was the Director of radiation and Physical Exposures; Acting Chief Consultant in Environmental Health and the Senior Medical Advisor in the Office of Disability and Medical Assessment.
She is currently the Director of Military Public Health for the Assistant Secretary of Defense- Health Affairs.
Cathryn Castle, 2001
Cathryn holds instructor ratings from NAUI, PADI, SDI/TDI and DAN. Cathryn has a USCG 100-ton Master captain’s license and is medically qualified as an EMT and hyperbaric chamber tender. Her occupations in the scuba industry have included co-owner of Dive In dive center in the USVI, scuba instructor, boat captain, yacht crewmember, EMT, photojournalist, sales associate for Uwatec USA, and underwater model. In 1997 Cathryn joined the staff of Dive Training Magazine and is currently Executive Editor. She also serves as Managing Editor of California Diving News.
Cathy Church, 2000
Cathy has been writing about and teaching underwater photography since 1967. She has an MS degree in marine zoology from the University of Hawaii and received the NOGI award in 1987 (arts), the DEMA Reaching Out Award in 2000 and was inducted into the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame in 2007. Cathy's coffee table book "My Underwater Photo Journey" was published in 2004, she teaches private classes year round in Grand Cayman, and offers seminars throughout the US. She has inspired more students to take better pictures underwater than any other teacher in the world.
Dr. Eugenie Clark, 2000 (deceased)
Eugenie is an ichthyologist with a special interest in sharks. She has served at great institutions such as Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the New York Zoological Society, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Mote Marine Laboratory. Eugenie has authored three books and over 160 scientific papers, holds three honorary degrees, and has received awards from National Geographic, the Explorers Club and the Underwater Society of America. She is a Senior Research Scientist at the University of Maryland.
Dr. Melanie A. Clark, 2009
A veteran diver with over 4,000 dives Dr. Clark is a high level Instructor Trainer of Technical Diving and Open and Closed Circuit Rebreather Diving. She has authored five rebreather training manuals and is also an accomplished underwater photographer and a staff photojournalist for Advanced Diver Magazine. She has been a volunteer firefighter and has provided other emergency medical services. Dr. Clark’s current role is a Doctor of Pharmacy and co-owner of Silent Scuba, LLC, which is a technical training facility in Seattle, WA.
Cecelia A. Connelly, 2001(deceased)
Cecelia (mother of 10) was certified in 1972, became an instructor in 1976 and , up until the time of her illness in March 2002, was the YMCA's oldest active female instructor. She was a Gold Star instructor who had trained over 500 students and logged over 1000 hours underwater on 2000+ dives. Her most memorable accomplishments included diving the Andrea Doria, testifying at Gentile vs. NOAA USS Monitor hearings and helping to open the site for recreational divers, working with the Atlantic Alliance (Cross Creek, NJ), her participation in underwater archaeological work in Caesarea, Israel, and helping to recover the only intact canal barge in the US. Cecelia died on Feb. 14, 2003.
Mary Connelly, 2013
Certified in 1972, Mary Connelly has attained the rank of PADI Dive Master and SDI Assistant Instructor. Most noteworthy, however, is Mary’s leadership role within the diving community. Mary has served as a Trustee on the WDHOF Board of Directors since 2008, being elected as Chair of the Board in 2011. Mary’s involvement with WDHOF started in 2003 when the Connelly family established the Cecelia Connelly Scholarship in Underwater Archaeology, in memory of their mother WDHOF member Cecelia Connelly (2001). Mary has served as an active supporter of the scholarship and training grants program promoting not only the Connelly Scholarship but all of the WDHOF opportunities available. Mary’s leadership and organizational skills have helped to envision and implement WDHOF’s 10th Anniversary Celebration, the Tropical Dreams and Paradise Sunsets scholarship fundraiser and other traditions focused on supporting WDHOF’s goals and bringing the membership together. Mary, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, has worked in Higher Education for over 35 years, focusing on leadership and student development.
Lynn Costenaro, 2013
Since 1992, Lynn Costenaro has operated the Sea Saba Dive Center in the Dutch Caribbean. Lynn’s passion for nature is evident in her environmental training programs incorporated for staff and customers, her service on the Board of the Saba Conservation Foundation, and as founder of the award-winning Sea & Learn Foundation. Believing that people will protect what they love and make the most of what they have, Lynn designed the Sea & Learn program and gained community support from local businesses to create a win/win/win relationship that benefits local businesses, the local environment, and provides a fun and educational experience for participants.
Amanda Cotton, 2015
Underwater Photographer, Cave/Tech Diver, Educational Outreach Program Creator
Amanda Cotton was the first female photographer to photograph American Crocodiles underwater in Banco Chinchorro in Mexico for a feature on the Discovery Channel showcasing the UNESCO Marine Biosphere Reserve Project. She was the lead underwater photographer on the USS Mohawk artificial wreck project for a 360 spherical mapping survey for Google Earth. Amanda is Founder and CEO of Water Women Inc, a nonprofit organization focused on empowering girls ages eight to eighteen to become leaders and advocates in water related industries through internships and mentorship programs. She is the creator of “Children and Sharks,” an educational outreach program, seeking to educate children and teens about sharks through hands-on diving experiences, documentation, and lectures. Amanda is an experienced cave diver and cave/tech diving photographer, and is working on several dive industry equipment advertising campaigns.
Cindi Courter, 2000
A diver since 1981, Cindi was the second woman SSI Instructor Trainer worldwide and one of the first 100 Instructor Evaluator / Master Instructors. She's taught hundreds of young people to dive and educated thousands on diving and the underwater environment. From 1991 - 2001, Cindi held the positions of Director of Sponsorship and Chief Development Officer for Divers Alert Network. Cindi is an accomplished underwater photographer with a BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art and holds a Masters degree from Duke University. Since 2006, Cindi has had her own non-profit consulting business working with universities, schools and environmental, research and educational NGOs, as well as editing, writing, and showing her art photography. She served as a Trustee for WDHOF from 2005 - 2007.
Céline Cousteau, 2011
Founder of the non-profit CauseCentric Productions and Executive Director of Ocean Inspiration, a unique event created to recognize, reward, and celebrate ocean advocacy of all forms, Céline seeks to educated and inspire through filmmaking. Focusing on the human story behind environmental issues, Céline lends support to many organizations like Sea Web, Clean up the World, and Amazon Promise.
First joining her father, Jean-Michel during a PBS production The Gray Whale Obstacle Course, Céline has been working on documentaries around the world ever since. As field producer, diver and logistics coordinator for the 2-part show Return to the Amazon, she led a team into multiple, hard to access areas, including glaciers in the Andes and rarely seen protected areas in Brazil.
Simone Melchior-Cousteau, 2013 (deceased)
Simone Melchior Cousteau was the daughter of the Director at Air Liquide - the company which was to become the mother corporation of Aqua-Lung. In 1937, She married French naval officer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, and her father introduced Cousteau to Émile Gagnan, the engineer who developed the first on-demand regulator. The rest is diving history.
Simone was very much a pioneer scuba diver in her own right. Figuratively and literally the “First Lady of the Ocean,” she was the first to observe the design and manufacture of an air tank and apparatus with hoses attached to breathe air while underwater. She was part of the team that tested the Cousteau-Gagnan prototype regulators, and as a free diver she witnessed Jacques on his first underwater excursion using one in the Marne River outside Paris. Within hours she used the same rig to become the first woman to use scuba and participate in events that could truly be considered as the birth of modern scuba diving. Simone went on to play an essential role in the development of scuba diving technology as well as undersea operations. A passionate diver, she was a full member of the team that eventually became known worldwide for the films that literally established scuba not only a sport but also an essential tool for exploration, science, military and commercial operations. Acting as mother, healer, nurse and psychiatrist to the all-male crew of Calypso for 40 years, her nickname was “La Bergere,” the Shepherdess.
Simone was part of the team that filmed The Silent World, the first documentary to win the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival. In 1963 Simone Melchior-Cousteau became the first aquanaut when she visited the Conshelf II undersea habitat in the Red Sea.
Annie Crawley, 2010
Annie is a filmmaker, motivational speaker, photographer and writer, as well as a Master Scuba Diving Instructor and USCG (United States Coast Guard) 100-ton boat captain. She founded the company, Dive Into Your Imagination, and has launched a series of illustrated books and award winning DVDs about our ocean to entertain, educate and inspire. Ocean Annie partners all of her ocean messages with empowerment and leadership skills encouraging our youth that they can create their lives. Annie has worked throughout the world for two decades; her work has been published and broadcast worldwide.
Mandy-Rae Cruickshank, 2009
Mandy-Rae Cruickshank is a world renowned Freediver and a Scuba Instructor/ Course Director. She has held 7 world records in Freediving and she teaches for, and runs, Freediving with Performance Freediving International. In 2006, Cruickshank teamed up with the Oceanic Preservation Society to create a movie called The Cove that brings awareness to our oceans, the captive dolphin industry and the slaughter of dolphins.
Cathie Cush, 2000
Cathie has been scuba diving and sharing her experiences with readers since 1981. Her articles on shipwrecks, scuba diving and ocean-related issues have appeared in Sports Illustrated, Outside, Caribbean Travel & Life, N.J. Monthly, NY Outdoors, Underwater USA, and numerous other publications. She is the author ofShipwrecks. Cathie was certified as a scuba instructor in 1986. She has participated in expeditions to the wrecks of the Andrea Doria and the USS Monitor.
Helen T. Davis, 2000 (deceased)
Helen established Medical Seminars, Inc. over 22 years ago to meet the need for physicians to be educated in diving medicine. Because of her efforts there are now more than 5,000 physicians trained to provide medical advice and treatment of diving accidents. Helen has received a NOGI Award for Education and an Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society Award in Education. She continues to enjoy scuba diving in addition to providing seminars for physicians of all specialties.
Sheri Daye , 2010
Sheri is an accomplished scuba diver, freediver, and spearfisher. She is trimix certified with many dives to 250 feet. She has been a Freedive Spearfishing National Champion and has over a dozen world record fish to her name. Sheri is the host of Speargun Hunter on Outdoor Channel, bringing the sport to millions of viewers. She teaches spearfishing with an emphasis on safety and selectivity, and she organizes “The Blue Wild Spearfishing Expo” -- an annual event with proceeds to charity. Sheri is a corporate manager with a mechanical engineering degree and an MBA. She promotes “Dive Flag Awareness” and “Freediver Blackout Education.”
Valerie de la Valdene, 2007
Valerie is an accomplished cinematographer and educator. Noted for filming “Hammerheads: Nomads of the Sea,” she has also been featured on television with Montel William, Jane Pauley, Geraldo, Jim McLaughlin and CNN talking about illegal shark finning. Valerie is currently working on a children’s film for Discovery Channel. She has joined up with Wild Classroom to podcast an educational program on the internet, which is expected to reach over 100 million children. Valerie volunteers at a local school in the Galapagos islands, giving local children an alternative to fishing and finning.
Anna DeLoach, 2011
Anna left her computer industry career in 1994 to join her husband, Ned DeLoach, and Paul Humann, in their publishing company, New World Publications as a researcher and videographer. She has co-authored articles for Scuba Diving Magazine, Fathoms, Skin Diver, Asian Diver, Ocean Realm and ScubaDiver AustralAsia. Her videos documenting marine life behavior have been used by NBC Nightly News, Fox News and National Geographic’s Wild Chronicles. Anna is a spokeswoman for the Reef Environmental Education Foundation (REEF) for whom she developed two DVDs: Sensational Seas, Rare Sights from the Sea and Reef Fish Identification: A Beginning Course. She currently serves as Marine Life Editor for Scuba Diving Magazine.
Meg Donat, 2015
Pioneer Scuba Instructor, Hyperbaric Chamber Instructor, Diver Medical Technician, Ocean Advocate Margaret (Meg) Donat is a valuable member of the diving safety community on the Monterey Peninsula. She has been leading the operations of the Pacific Grove Hyperbaric Chamber for over 30 years and is a charter dive volunteer for the Monterey Bay Aquarium since 1984. She became a NAUI Instructor in 1968 after being introduced to diving in 1965 and was the only woman in her dive class. She was the first female volunteer on staff at the hyperbaric chamber and has been instrumental as their Education and Training Officer for over 22 years. She is an ocean advocate, delivering conservation messages during her feeding shows at the Aquarium. Meg has received Distinguished Service Awards from the American Heart Association, the U.S. Coast Guard Public Service Award and the Monterey
Bay Aquarium Wendell Ayers Memorial Leadership Award.
Anne Doubilet, 2007
Anne was the only woman in the 1968 SCUBA certification class in Beverly, Mass. Since then she has participated in successful, worldwide diving expeditions that produced National Geographic Magazine articles shot under most of the Earth’s warm and temperate seas: the Red Sea, Papua New Guinea, all around Australia, Hawaii, Palau, Japan, Galapagos, throughout the Caribbean, and the Northeastern Atlantic coast. Return trips over the years to document the disturbing changes have turned Anne into an ardent conservationist, involved in several educational outreach programs. Anne is committed to showing the oceans to the next generation.
Sue Drafahl, 2000
Sue is a professional undersea journalist, lecturer and audiovisual producer. She has co-authored over 500 articles that have been featured in numerous dive publications, wildlife/nature publications and photographic publications. Sue has produced DEMA’s Reaching Out Awards Program for 10 years and has participated in film festivals from coast to coast. She is the recipient of the Beneath the Sea Diver of the Year (1996) and a Platinum Pro 5000 Diver with over 25 years of diving experience.
Evelyn Bartram Dudas, 2000
Since 1961 Evelyn has been diving the wrecks off the East Coast. She was the first woman to dive the Andrea Doria, one of the first women to use mixed gasses in diving, and also launched her own custom wet suit company when none could be found commercially. After the untimely death of her husband in 1982 she continued to expand Dudas’ Diving Duds into a full service dive facility and raise 4 children on her own. She is an active wreck and cave diver who continues to instruct to this day.
Kathleen Dudzinki, Ph.D., 2003
Kathleen, Director of the Dolphin Communication Project, has been featured in documentaries, articles and books for her work on dolphin communication. Her most recent book, Dolphin Mysteries, was published in October 2008 by Yale University Press.
Dr. Sylvia Earle, 2000
Sylvia is a marine biologist, lecturer, consultant, author (including Sea Change & Wild Deep), former Chief Scientist at NOAA, and founder and chairman of Deep Ocean Exploration & Research. She led the first team of women aquanauts in 1970. In 1979, Sylvia walked untethered on the sea floor at a lower depth than any living human being before or since. In the JIM, a pressurized one-atmosphere suit, she was carried by a submersible down to the depth of 1,250 feet, where she detached from the vessel and explored the depths for two and a half hours with only a communication line connecting her to the submersible, and nothing at all connecting her to the world above. Today, Sylvia is Explorer in Residence at the National Geographic Society. More recently, she led the Google Ocean Advisory Council, a team of 30 marine scientists providing content and scientific oversight for the “Ocean in Google Earth.” Among the more than 100 national and international honors she has received is the 2009 TED Prize for her proposal to establish a global network of marine protected areas. She calls these marine preserves “hope spots... to save and restore... the blue heart of the planet.”
Nancy Easterbrook, 2012
Nancy started diving in 1973, got the bug and diving became a passion. She moved with her 2 children Brandee & Walker to Grand Cayman in 1994 and started Divetech. She was a pioneer in technical diving, Rebreathers and the sport of breath-hold free diving in Cayman, including co-authoring training manuals for students to learn free diving. She founded Inner Space, celebrating its 9th year, which brings together CCR divers from around the world to share knowledge and friendship and loves to teach children how to dive. She has devoted the past 20 years to exploring all that diving has to offer and has championed many causes for environmental awareness in the marine and terrestrial environment. Her latest achievement was an 8-year project to bring the Kittiwake to Cayman as an artificial reef. She resides in Grand Cayman with her husband and partner Jay.
Mary Ellen Eckhoff, 2000
Mary Ellen’s twenty-four year diving career focused on education and cave exploration. She was heavily involved in cave exploration throughout Florida, and joined cave exploration teams in Mexico, Lanzarote, Belize, Turks and Caicos Islands, and other states. She taught NSS-CDS cavern and cave diving courses in Florida. She is a Fellow of the National Speleological Society. Mary Ellen’s professional interests include Learning Disabilities, Adult Education and Literacy.
Randi Eisen, 2009
As a Technical Diving Instructor and Deep Diving, Mixed Gas expert, Randi Eisen earned a spot on the team mapping Bikini Atoll. Educated in Science, Eisen works as an Experimental Scientist. She also serves as the Senior Director and Trustee for Beneath the Sea, and as Vice President of the Long Island Dive Association (LIDA) in New York.


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