collage of women diving photos


scholarship opportunities


Member Roster P - T

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


Zale Parry, 2000
Zale began diving in 1951 using one of the first imported Aqualungs. She helped run the first hyperbaric chamber for civilian divers in California; set a woman’s depth record to 209 feet (1954); and became the third female instructor to graduate from the LA County UICC program. She is best known as the underwater damsel in distress in the TV series Sea Hunt. She is currently working on a book about the roots of diving in America. In 1999 she received WSA’s Woman Diver of the Year Award.


Carolyn Pascal-Guarino, 2002
Carolyn is current publisher of Florida Travel + Life magazine. She focuses on creating multimedia programs that contribute to the growth of the brand as it relates to upscale Florida travel and lifestyle . Over her 30-year career, Carolyn has traveled extensively working to increase dive and learn to dive tourism. She is an active member of SKAL, and has led many dive travel seminars and roundtable discussions. Carolyn has also played an active role in the development of consumer and trade events, has been involved in photojournalism and many non-profit dive travel related activities aimed at the youth market.
Alese O. Pechter, 2000
Alese is a renowned underwater photojournalist. Her work has appeared in most scuba magazines, on internet websites and in general interest publications. She co-wrote the award winning book What's in the Deep? (an ocean-oriented book for youngsters). Alese is an active photographer, writer, teacher, diver, lecturer and marine ecology advocate. Together with her husband, she has been the DEMA photographer for over 20 years. She is a member of the American Society of Media Photographers, the National Association of Press Photographers and the North American Travel Writers Association. Her contact and work with the industry, public and media has helped to change the "macho" image of SCUBA to that of a family recreational sport. She is a Platinum Pro 5000 Diver, an elected Fellow National in the Explorer's Club, has received the NOGI for Distinguished Service and the 2008 Beneath The Sea Diver of the Year.
Ruth Petzold, 2016
Photographer, Conservationist, Public Speaker
Ruth Petzold is a long-time scuba diver and professional underwater photographer. She played a major role in the research of Dr. Eugenie Clarke, traveling with her on over 50 expeditions and serving as her research photographer. A member of the Explorers club, she has been recognized as a Champion of the Sea due to her philanthropic work in seeking to promote the welfare of the seas and the protection of the marine environment through her generous donations. Her philanthropic actions have reached a number of marine-oriented organizations including SHARK SAVERS. She attended the University of Michigan Hospital and Rockefeller University to do Immunology Research. She turned to full time underwater photography and dive travel in 1985 and has made diving her life ever since. In addition to her skills as a scuba diver, Ruth is an airplane pilot.

Margo Peyton , 2009
Family travel tour expert, Educator, PADI MSDT Instructor, Kids Sea Camp inc. owner, SCUBAPRO Deep Elite Ambassador

Margo has been diving and traveling the world as a leader in the dive travel industry since 1989. With a degree in travel & tourism, Margo also a PADI dive instructor, with two children of her own, realized a need for kids educational programs that would provide safe and fun opportunities for kids who's parents and grandparents wanted to share their love of dive travel as a family. Margo founded Kids Sea Camp in 2000. Kids Sea Camp contributes approximately 400-600 certification each year. She has created the world’s best and largest family dive program, with 1,600 participants each year. Kids Sea Camp is a fun family dive trips geared around Ocean educational and scuba diving activities for kids aged 4 up through adults. They travel to 11 countries over 15 weeks during the summer, spring break and over Thanksgiving when the kids are out of school. Kids Sea Camp donates and financially support local marine environments and support local youth programs that teach kids about the ocean. Margo is passionate about teaching kids to respect and protect our underwater world, and marine environments. Margo is co-founder of Ocean Wishes Foundation 501c providing beginner training grants and scholarships as well as make a wish scuba certifications to children around the world. Besides her own initiatives, Margo contributes to Oceans for Youth, Ocean Pals, and many other charities. Margo has numerous certifications and has been passionate about educating children and their families about plastics, shark finning and coral health. Through Ocean Wishes, she has been able to create a “make a wish” for kids who are underprivileged and provide the opportunity for them to become divers by paying for their PADI open water certifications at their local PADI dive centers. Margo partnered with ScubaPro to provide every child certified through her programs with fee ScubaPro BC's. She provides at no charge SASY and Seal Team kids with ScubaPro fins, masks and snorkels as well.

  Linda Pitkin, 2003
Linda’s underwater photography has won national and international awards. The author of four books on marine life, she is also an entomologist at The Natural History Museum in London, England.
Shirley Pomponi, Ph.D., 2003
Dr. Shirley Pomponi is Executive Director of the NOAA Cooperative Institute for Ocean Exploration, Research, and Technology at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Florida Atlantic University in Fort Pierce, Florida. She received her B.A. in Biology from the College of St. Elizabeth, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Biological Oceanography from the University of Miami. Her research focuses on marine biotechnology, in general, and the discovery and development of marine-derived drugs, in particular. She has authored or co-authored more than 100 scientific publications and is co-inventor on several patents. An explorer at heart, Dr. Pomponi has led numerous research expeditions worldwide. She has discovered many deepwater sponges from which chemicals with pharmaceutical properties have been identified. A highlight of her career is the opportunity she’s had to make more than 300 dives in the Johnson-Sea-Link submersibles—piloted by her husband, Don Liberatore—and she continues to enjoy scuba diving for science and pleasure. Although she’d much rather be in the lab or at sea, Shirley participates in a number of national, regional, and state organizations where she helps develop priorities for ocean and coastal research. She is President of the Southern Association of Marine Laboratories and Chair of the Florida Institute of Oceanography. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, the Florida Oceans and Coastal Council, the U.S. National Committee for the Census of Marine Life, the National Association of Marine Laboratories, the Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association, and the Florida Ocean Alliance. She was inducted into the Women Divers Hall of Fame in 2003.
Ellen J. Prager, Ph.D., 2000
Formerly the chief scientist at the world’s only undersea research station in the Florida Keys and at one time the assistant dean at the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School. With her ability to make science fun and understandable for people of all ages, she has built a national reputation as a spokesperson on earth and ocean science issues. She has appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, CBS, NPR, the Discovery Channel, and more, and is a frequently requested speaker for public events, educators, and schools. Dr. Prager has participated in research expeditions to locations such as Papua New Guinea, Fiji, and throughout the Caribbean and now acts as the science advisor to the Celebrity Cruise ship Xpedition in the Galapagos. She is currently a freelance writer and consultant, and has published numerous popular science and children's books. She lives in Miami, Florida where she spends as much time as possible on and in the ocean.
Marianne Preker, 2001
Marianne left her counseling career in 1987 to open Underwater Safaris Scuba Center in Chicago. A PADI master instructor and Handicapped Scuba Association course director, she dreamed of teaching people with disabilities to scuba dive. In 1991, Marianne created Project TIDE which has trained hundreds of teens with disabilities to dive in Chicago and the Caribbean. Currently a foundation of Underwater Safaris supports TIDE, scuba programs for inner city teens, and educational programs in Roatan and Papua New Guinea.
Michelle Pugh, 2004
Michelle’s love for the ocean, passion for exploration and environmental activism has guided her diving career since 1970. Michelle was the first woman to teach PADI classes in Moscow, Russia. Michelle was also the first woman to dive with Killer Whales (Orcas) in the Johnston Straights in Canada in 1979. She did this to photograph them in the wild underwater for a book called "Orca: The Whale Called Killer" by Erich Hoyt. Michelle is the founder of Dive Experience, St. Croix’s oldest originally owned dive center.She spearheaded “Project Anchor Away” which established dive moorings throughout St. Croix and serves as a testament to her vision for protecting the marine environment. Michelle's involvement on the Fisheries Advisory Committee and her work to create the East End Marine Park is part of her continued concern for the US Virgin Island marine life.
Janice Raber, 2001
Janice is a Trustee of the Long Island Divers Association and has served as an officer in various capacities as well as co-producer of their annual film festival. She’s been diving since 1986, is an instructor, active member of two dive clubs and has served on the Suffolk County Leisure Services Advisory Board. Janice’s efforts opened 15 county and state park dive sites, fostered the purchase of a historic shipwreck site, and helped designate two local marine parks. She arranges beach cleanups, fund-raisers, seminars and exhibits at dive expos, museums and public functions. A member of the New York State Outdoor Writers Association, Janice has published over one hundred dive articles and is a regular contributor to Long Island Boating World.
Sherry A. Reed, 2002
Sherry has been a research specialist at the Smithsonian Marine Station in Florida since August 1983 and a Dive Safety Officer since 1989. She is the first female scientific diving officer in the U.S. In 1990, she was elected to the Smithsonian Institution Scientific Diving Control Board and continues to serve as Secretary. She has also served on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Underwater Sciences. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Women Divers Hall of Fame since 2006 as Secretary and currently serving as Vice-President. She is the Dive Safety Officer for the Smithsonian Marine Station in Fort Pierce, Florida and for the Caribbean Coral Research Ecosystem Program located on Carrie Bow Cay, Belize. She holds numerous instructor ratings for dive safety and first aid training and holds a U.S. Coast Guard Captain’s license.
Lesley Rochat , 2010
Founder of AfriOceans Conservation Alliance, Lesley established the SOS Shark Centre in South Africa, and is director of media productions at the Shark Research Institute. She is responsible for the M-Sea Programme, which involves the satellite tagging and releasing of sharks from the Two Oceans Aquarium. Equipped with a diverse range of skills, this award-winning documentary producer is also the creative director of educational and awareness initiatives, including the development of campaigns such as the award winning Rethink the Shark campaign. She is also a well-published environmental journalist, underwater photographer, and authored educational and children’s books about the oceans.
CEC (SCW/DV) Lynn Rodriguez, USN (Ret) 2013
Lynn joined the U.S. Navy in 1990 and became a Construction Electrician with the legendary Seabees. Deploying several times and serving in increasingly responsible assignments, she rose quickly in rank. She completed the rigorous requirements to become a Navy Diver in 2003, the fourth female Seabee Diver and first female Seabee to qualify in two elite special programs, as an Underwater Construction Technician and a Mobile Utilities Support Equipment Technician. In 2007 she was selected as the Sailor of the Year for Underwater Construction Team 2, and was hand-picked to represent women in military diving in a 2009 Navy recruiting video. In 2012 she was awarded the Master Chief Anna Der Vartanian Leadership Award and toured with the Vice Chief of Naval Operations and several women naval officers during Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day to recognize women in visible leadership positions and to serve as role model and for others.
Vreni Roduner, 2000
Vreni learned to dive in 1974 and became the first female divemaster of The Scuba Sports Club (NY) in 1980. In 1986 she participated in REPEX, a NOAA-sponsored saturation excursion program for the purpose of predicting the long-term effects of oxygen exposure. She is the recipient of BTS Medal of Excellence and their 20 Year Award for loyalty and dedicated service, as well as the TSSC Diver of the Year Award. Vreni was also a participant in the Aqua Women expeditions from 1981 to 1993.
Carol Taylor Rose, 2000
Carol has been totally involved in organized diving even before she was certified in 1973. She is a charter member and has held offices for the Amphibian Dive Club; been past everything and still currently serves the Cen Cal Council Diving Clubs; is the US representative for the World UW Federation; is on the underwater hockey commission and an international referee for World UW Hockey; and president and editor of the Underwater Society of America. Carol is the author of How to Form A Dive Club and How to Start UW Hockey.
Kathy Rothschild, 2001
Kathy learned to dive in 1987 and has been hooked ever since. In response to the tremendous growth of the dive industry, she created Rothschild Dive Safaris and developed dive travel programs to exotic destinations worldwide. Kathy has dived all over the world and logged more than 1,000 dives. She was instrumental in opening up the Philippines, South Africa, Malawi, and Jordan as dive destinations for the US market. August of 2012 Kathy and her husband Ross followed their dreams and relocated to Costa Rica where they now live in paradise. Strongly committed to the environment, she volunteers for the Shark Research Institute, and several organizations in Costa Rica.
Norine Rouse, 2000
Norine was the first women hired by UNEXCO (1967), not only to show that women could dive, but that they could instruct as well. She has trained more than 1000 students. Norine has taught marine patrol, worked for conservation and preservation of habitats, introduced tourist diving to the Palm Beach, Florida, area, and helped establish its artificial reef committee. She was the only person to gain permits to swim with turtles. Norine is a board member of the Marine Technology Society.
Betsy Royal, 2000
Betsy began diving while in college in the waters of the Northeast. Following graduation she obtained a position in New York marketing the resort Cap'n Don's Habitat (Bonaire). Continuing to dive locally and abroad, she became the Northeast Advertising Manager of Skin Diver and in 1982 moved on to a management position with Henderson Aquatics. In 1996 Betsy was named Vice President of Divingfor Mares-America, Corpdivision of Head Sports. She has served two successive terms on the BOD of DEMA. Currently self employed in sales and marketing for watersports products and luxury category marketing and sales.
Dr. Lesley A. Runnalls, 2006
Dr. Lesley Runnalls is a noted researcher in geology and maritime archeology. Since 1978, she has been part of the dive team working on a number of significant shipwrecks, including the MARY ROSE. Lesley has also been involved in shipwreck projects in Bermuda and Mauritius. Dr. Runnalls has done significant scientific research in pollution effects on corals in the West Indies and has been involved in diving related research projects on Antigua, Barbados, Belize, Cuba, Mexico, Indonesia, Maldives and Mauritius. She is a CMAS Scientific Diver and a British Sub Aqua Club Instructor in scuba diving and a member of the Nautical Archaeology Society and the Historical Diving Society. Lesley also holds a private pilots license and is a committee member of the British Women’s Pilots Association, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005.
Lorraine Bemis Sadler, 2000
Lorraine has been underwater since the 1960s. She holds instructor status with SSI, DAN, LA County, NAUI, and PADI, and has also worked as a stunt diver. She is a founding member of Women’s Scuba Association and holds the position of Equipment Director for WETT - where she helps to design and evaluate equipment for diving manufacturers. Recognized for her expertise on equipment, hyperbaric chamber operations and marine biology, she is invited to lecture quite frequently.
  CAPT Erica Sahler, 2002
Erica is a 1987 graduate of the US Naval Academy, a member of the Naval Ocean Facilities Program and serves in the Navy Civil Engineer Corps. In 1996 she received her Basic Diving Officer qualifications from the Naval Diving & Salvage Training Center. Erica holds a master’s degree in civil engineering (ocean engineering emphasis) and has served as a engineering project officer for ocean construction projects across the globe. She was the Commanding Officer of Underwater Construction Team TWO from 2001-2003 and is slated to become the Navy Ocean Facility Program Director in the summer of 2009.
Susan Sammon, 2002
During her 20 years with the not-for-profit group CEDAM International, Susan mobilized more than 100 scuba diving expeditions in support of marine conservation and science. With other volunteer divers and under the direction of leading scientists in the field, she participated in 40 expeditions, mapping reefs, collecting fish and gathering data on fragile marine ecosystems. Working with her husband, photographer Rick Sammon, she also helped to capture images that celebrate underwater wonders and remote cultures. During an assignment to Siberia in 1990, she became one of the first women to scuba dive in Russia’s legendary Lake Baikal. Susan continues to support the marine environment today through the CEDAM Scholarship program, which funds teachers to participate in diving expeditions and encourages them to share their experiences with others.
Dee Scarr, 2000
Dee is dedicated to helping people better understand marine animals and their behaviors. She has directed numerous conservation and awareness programs. Dee is a contributing writer for Dive Training magazine, and has written Touch the Sea, The Gentle Sea, and Coral’s Reef. Her recognitions include Beneath the Sea’s Diver of the Year Award for Environment, the Boston Sea Rover’s Diver of the Year Award, and the PADI-SeaSpace Environmental Awareness Award.
Barbara “Bobbie” Scholley, Capt(ret), USN, 2000
Bobbie retired from the U.S. Navy in 2005 after 25 years of service. As a Diving and Salvage officer since 1983, she had key leadership roles in many Navy Diving Operations including the TWA Flight 800 recovery in 1996, the USS COLE bombing recovery in 2000 and USS MONITOR Expeditions 2001 and 2002. She has 19 surface supplied mixed gas dives to 240 FSW on MONITOR. Bobbie served in three Commanding Officer positions, USS BOLSTER (ARS 38), a diving and salvage ship; Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit TWO; and Naval Weapons Station, Earle, NJ. She was also the U.S. Navy’s Supervisor of Diving from 1997-1999. She has an MS in National Resource Strategies from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and an honorary Doctorate of Science from Illinois State University(ISU). She is a member of ISU’s College of Science and Arts Hall of Fame and currently does consulting work.
Becky Kagan Schott, 2013
Becky is an Emmy Award-winning underwater cinematographer, photographer, and technical diver whose work can be seen on National Geographic, Discovery Channel and other networks. She is co-owner of Liquid Productions, LLC, specializing in bringing back video from challenging aquatic environments including caves, deep wrecks, under ice, and marine wildlife.
A veteran over over 18 years of diving, she is a NAUI Scuba Instructor, holding certifications in Cave, Tri-mix, and several Rebreathers. Her projects have taken her all over the globe from documenting historic wrecks to filming humpback whales, wild dolphins and great white sharks (cageless). Participating in several exploration projects earned her a place as a Fellow in the Explorers Club.
Nancy Sefton, 2001
Nancy was certified (in duck feet) in 1961 and later was the first woman to publish an article and undersea photographs in Skin Diver magazine. As a resident of the Caymans, she founded the islands’ Conservation Association and became a proponent of coral reef preservation. Most of Nancy’s 300 published articles have emphasized marine biodiversity. She is a winner of the 1985 NOGI Award for Arts, and she continues to foster marine science education by producing CDs and award-winning videos for regional schools.
  Claudia Serpieri, 2002
Claudia is an instructor trainer for PSA, co-founder of the agency SOLO, PADI staff instructor and founder/editor of the technical diving magazine Captain Nemo. Since 1994, she’s obtained women’s records for trimix diving in the sea (687 feet), cold water/altitude (586 feet), and wreck in sea (455 feet). She holds the Italian women’s record for deepest dive in a sinkhole (341 feet) and cave (283 feet), and leads the exploration team at the sinkhole Merro (651 feet). She is co-director of team BioHazard, which has partnerships with space agencies, hyperbaric researchers, universities and the Navy.
Kim Reed Sheckler RN, 2001
Kim has been diving since 1981 and has worked extensively with her husband Dale in diving, writing and underwater photography. In 1984 she co-founded California Diving News and has co-authored several books including Southern California’s Best Beach Dives. In 1988, Kim and her husbanded created the largest consumer dive show in the western USA - SCUBA Show. In 2004, Kim was honored with Historical Diving Society Nick Icorn Award for “continued support of the history of diving.” She, along with her husband, was also inducted into the California Wreck Divers Hall of Fame, and was presented with the prestigious Jon Hardy Award at the Catalina Island Cleanup. In addition to her diving credentials, she is a registered nurse who is an active member of the UHMS and has served as a board member of the Catalina Conservancy Divers. She was recently honored with the California Scuba Service Award, in recognition of her decades of work in the Scuba Industry. She volunteers regularly in a nursing capacity at a local Women’s Help Center.
Maurine Shimlock, 2012
Using words and photography to develop remote regions into world-renowned dive destinations, Maurine Shimlock has pioneered scuba travel to some of the most far-flung locations on earth, while satisfying her passion for discovering new reefs. In 2008 she began working with Conservation International to increase sustainable marine tourism and to educate the local population of Indonesia’s Bird’s Head Seascape about their magnificent marine heritage. The two diving guides she co-authored with her husband Burt Jones, helped stimulate a twenty percent increase in tourism between 2008 and 2011, influencing both the provincial government’s and the local communities’ decision to declare a network of marine sanctuaries in Raja Ampat and beyond.
Amy Slate, 2015
Scuba Instructor, Ocean and Environmental Conservation Leader, Educational Outreach Advocate.From her start as a YMCA teaching assistant in 1976 to her dream achievement, Amy Slate’s Amoray Dive Resort, a PADI 5-Star Dive Resort and BSAC School, Amy Slate’s passion for marine conservation has earned her the first Blue Star designation by the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary for marine conservation education. Since Amoray opened in 1993, the Amoray Diver has served over 60,000 divers and Amy and her instructor staff have certified over 6,000 PADI divers, touching each with her marine environmental message. Amy started performing underwater weddings in 1979 and was featured on The Geraldo Show, The Wedding Story and in People Magazine along with many national and international publications. She has been the owner/operator of Dive Charter/Scuba Instructional Operations in Key Largo since 1978 and has served on numerous community and national boards. She currently serves on the board of the Coral Restoration Foundation and Community Bank of Florida and as the Key Largo Dive Umbrella representative to the Monroe County Tourist Development Council. Amy has also served on the board of REEF.
Jeanne Bear Sleeper, 2000
Jeanne became a NAUI Instructor in 1971. She has served as NAUI’s Mid-America Branch Manager, NAUI Headquarters Special Projects Director and Editor of NAUI News. Jeanne has edited numerous diving publications and articles and co-authored the book Women Underwater. She is the recipient of NAUI’s Service Award for directing five IQ Conferences and redesigning their instructor training courses. Jeanne was the first woman Instructor Course Director. She was a Contributing Editor to Skin Diver, authoring the Advanced Diving column for seven years. She continues to dive, write and photograph around the world. Jeanne began volunteer diving at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, CA before there were fish in the exhibits and continues her service as a Dive Team Leader, Sea Fare committee member and in 2013 was appointed Co-Chair of the Trustees of the Pacific. Jeanne also serves on the Advisory Board of Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, CA.
Debbie Smith, 2007

Debbie is a qualified PADI Master scuba diver trainer instructor, Shark diving instructor, SRI international field agent and founder of an eco tourism company “Diving with Sharks”. A partner in “Offshore Africa” Port St John’s, she is a specialist guide in the annual sardine run and is assisting in pioneering diving/ocean and shark conservation along the Wild Coast of S.A. Since certifying in 1986, Debbie’s passion and dedication have led her into assisting top researchers in shark awareness and reef conservation. She has been instrumental in the complete setting up of top dive centers at up market resorts, from mapping and naming sites to full operational status. Both have won top international awards and host celebrities from all over the world. Debbie has written and had published articles on diving with great white sharks and shark conservation and education remains her passion. She is highly involved in educational community work with rural school children on water safety, ocean & shark education, having educated thousands of rural school children to date.

Marguerite St. Leger Dowse, 2000
Marguerite has been associated with the Diving Diseases Research Centre (DDRC) since 1989 and specialises in field data – real world information from divers – until recently focusing on the effects of diving on women. Other topics have included diving and asthma, diving with diabetes, reverse dive profiles and flying after treatment for DCI. She was awarded the BSAC Duke of Edinburgh Prize for research in 1994 and again in 2006, being the only person to awarded the accolade twice. In 2006 she received the European Underwater and Baromedical Society’s Zetterstrom Award. Current research projects include studies into the general health of divers which also looks at the use of physician prescribed, over the counter, and recreational drug use in divers; and a separate study is investigating the reasons for delay in seeking help and treatment for decompression illness.
Pat Stayer, 2005
Pat Stayer a well known underwater photographer, author, and video editor has co-produced over 25 presentations and 3 books.  Her work has appeared on the Discovery, Learning and History Channels and she is a frequent presenter at dive conventions.  As a maritime artist, her drawings depicting shipwrecks are recognized throughout the Great Lakes.  As co-owner/operator of a dive charter, she has discovered and documented over a dozen shipwrecks.  She began diving in 1975, helped establish the Michigan Sanilac Shores Diving Preserve and was the first woman on the county dive team.  She has served in various offices including secretary of the Michigan Preserve Council.
Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper, 2007
Captain Piper was the first female U.S. Navy Engineering Duty Officer to qualify as a salvage diver. After making significant contributions to several Navy diving and salvage projects, including the development of the salvage plans for the Peruvian submarine PACOCHA and the de-stranding of the tanker EXXON HOUSTON off of Barbers Point, Hawaii, she became a NASA Mission Specialist. A member of the STS-115 shuttle mission team, her extensive experience and training in NASA’s Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory paid off in September, 2006, when she conducted two successful space walks to install solar panels on the International Space Station.
Andrea D. Stockert, 2001
Andrea (Drey) is a veteran SCUBA instructor and television producer, who began her diving career in 1988 as one of the first female instructors at Dive N' Surf in Redondo Beach, California. Early on, Stockert achieved her Master Scuba Diver Trainer rating and began working as a safety diver on films and commercials, including The Perfect Storm and Pirates of the Caribbean.
In 1998, Stockert led a crew of divers through Central America and the Middle East to shoot an ocean-based series for Animal Planet. Since then, she has amassed Producer, Director & Writer credits on The Travel Channel, Fine Living, Discovery HD, Showtime, The Speed Channel, TLC and The Food Network. She was inducted into Women Divers Hall of Fame in 2001.Stockert is Founder & Executive Producer of One Giant Leap Media, which specializes in fusing documentary film with groundbreaking video technologies. Drey is a native Californian and lives near the water in Laguna Beach.
Karen Straus, 2011
In the 1960’s Karen graduated from the Los Angeles County Underwater Instructor Program, becoming an instructor, writer, and underwater photographer with her work appearing in Oceans, Skin Diver, and Sport Diver. Karen organized PADI’s Fluid Visions, one of the first underwater film festivals. Her expertise was utilized in documentaries by Al Giddings, Jim Lipscomb’s Discovery Channel programs and books by Douglas Faulkner. She sits on the board of the San Diego Underwater Film Exposition and works with the San Diego Audubon Society. Karen is free-lance in the media, travelling the world to capture digital stills and HD video.
Tanya Streeter, 2000
Having grown up in Grand Cayman, Tanya was perhaps destined for an aquatic career. But nobody could have guessed she would become the only woman in history to break a man’s world record in any sport, when she freedived to 525ft in 2002. Her achievements, totaling 10 world records, have raised the profile of freediving worldwide and her personality has changed its death-defying image. She’s a committed spokesperson for marine environmental groups and is an award-winning television presenter/host for the BBC and Animal Planet.
Diedre Sullivan, 2014
Marine Geologist, Educator, Submersible Diver. Deidre Sullivan’s 35 years of dive experience include diving director for Catalina Island Marine Institute, the largest program certifying teenagers in the world, to research diver/submersible diver/marine geologist making marine habitat maps of the ocean floor. Many areas mapped by Deidre are now Marine Protected Areas in California. She is a NAUI and CMAS instructor and has taught thousands of students. Deidre is currently the director of the Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center, which uses marine technology to improve science and engineering education and to provide the technical workforce with appropriately-educated marine professionals. One example of MATE’s successful programs is its network of underwater robotic competitions which engage thousands of students each year.
Kathryn Sullivan, Captain, USNR (ret), Ph.D., 2008
Astronaut, Oceanographer. Kathy received her doctorate in geology from Dalhousie University (Halifax, Nova Scotia) in 1978. She has been awarded honorary degrees by Kent State University (2002); Ohio Dominican University (1998); Stevens Institute of Technology (1992); State University of New York, Utica (1991); Dalhousie University (1985). Her doctoral studies included participation in a variety of oceanographic expeditions, under the auspices of the U.S. Geological Survey, Wood’s Hole Oceanographic Institute and the Bedford Institute. Her research included the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the Newfoundland Basin and fault zones off the Southern California Coast.

Kathy is the first American woman to walk in space and she is a veteran of three shuttle missions. She is a 2004 inductee to the Astronaut Hall of Fame. Leaving NASA to accept a Presidential appointment to the post of Chief Scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), she oversaw a wide array of research and technology programs ranging from climate and global change to satellites and marine biodiversity. Kathy has served on the Pew Oceans Commission, whose nationwide study and subsequent report, “America’s Living Oceans: Charting a Course for Sea Change,” called for immediate reform of U.S. ocean laws and policies to avert the decline of ocean wildlife and collapse of ocean ecosystems (2000-2003). An oceanography officer in the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1998-2006, she served on the Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel from 1988-1996. She is also a member of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Explorers Club, the Society of Woman Geographers and Association of Space Explorers. She served as President and CEO of COSI (Center of Science & Industry) in Columbus, Ohio, and as the inaugural Director of the Battelle Center in the John Glenn School of Public Affairs at the Ohio State University. In 2011 Kathy returned to government service as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction and Deputy Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In March, 2014, she was confirmed by the Senate as Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator. Kathy was inducted into the Women in Aviation International Hall of Fame, along with Navy Commander Trish Beckman, who helped repeal the combat exclusion laws for women in aviation, and Retired Coast Guard Vice Admiral Vivian Crea, who was the first woman vice commandant (i.e., second in command of the Coast Guard). As one of our own WDHOF members, she stands in GREAT company!

  Helen K. Talge, Ph.D., 2004
Helen began diving in the late 1950’s in Key West, Florida, where she learned from and then later assisted the Navy SEAL instructors. She investigated the effects of diving activities on coral reefs and earned her masters degree in Marine Science in 1991. The following year The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recognized her for her excellence and leadership in coastal and marine research. Helen received her Ph.D. for the examination of the cellular processes associated with bleaching in reef organisms in 2002. Her life was committed to coral reef conservation. Helen is being inducted posthumously.
Dr. Maida Beth Taylor, 2000
Maida has been diving since 1975. Her contribution to the industry has been primarily through research. She authored a chapter in Bove’s and Davis’ text Diving Medicine. Maida studies the interactions and influences of hormones, menstruation, menopause and pregnancy on fitness, and in particular the effects of hormonal changes in diving performance. Her current area of concern is the effects of low estrogen states on the incidence and severity of decompression illness.
Valerie Taylor, 2000
Valerie is a marine conservationist, underwater photographer, videographer, scriptwriter, and painter. In 1969 she played herself in the film Blue Water White Death and has twice graced the cover of National Geographic. Valerie, together with her husband, has captured live shark footage and successfully tested mesh suits for shark bite protection and an electronic barrier against sharks. She is the recipient of the American Nature Photographer of Year (1997) and the Golden Palm Award at Antibes, France (1998).
Mia Jean Tegner, PhD, 2002
Dr. Tegner was a world-renowned expert on kelp forest ecology. In 31 years as a research marine biologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography she focused on near-shore marine resources, specializing in abalones, sea urchins, and the kelp itself. She was instrumental in closing California’s abalone fishery and in dealing with sewage pollution problems off San Diego. Mia’s work studying and protecting the marine environment earned her many honors, including a Pew Fellowship, Cooper Ecology Award, and University of California, San Diego, Distinguished Alumna of the Year Award.
Bridget K. Thomas, RN, 2001
Bridget was certified in 1982. In 1990, she left her career in nursing education to pursue the development of the International Society of Aquatic Medicine. ISAM offers diving related medical seminars whereby physicians and staff can be brought up-to-date on the latest technology and sciences of undersea exploration while also exploring the conditions found in the Caribbean, South Pacific, and Middle East. Under Bridget’s direction, the membership has more than tripled and the number of medical conferences increased from one to five per year.
Tamara Thomsen, 2014
Maritime Archaeologist, Shipwreck Conservationist, Instructor. Tamara Thomsen opened Diversions Scuba, Wisconsin’s first technical dive shop in 1994, became the state’s first technical diving instructor, and she continues to teach a full range of mixed gas, rebreathers, and cave diving courses. Since 2004 Thomsen has worked as a Maritime Archaeologist for the State of Wisconsin’s maritime preservation and archaeology program. She is the state spokesperson for maritime heritage, disseminating information about the importance of our submerged cultural resources. Using underwater still and video photography to document, and a corps of volunteers to survey deep water shipwreck sites, Thomsen’s work has resulted in thirty-two Great Lakes shipwrecks being added to the National Register of Historic Places.
Donna M. Tobias, 2001
Donna was the first woman to become a US Navy deep sea (hard hat) diver in 1975. She worked on search & salvage operations, underwater repairs of surface ships and submarines, and on the conversion of two YFN (barges) into diving and salvage liftcraft. Donna also served as a submarine escape instructor, hyperbaric chamber operator, and a scuba instructor at a Navy scuba diving school. In the late 1970s she participated in leading-edge hyperbaric treatments for medical purposes and the evaluation of one-person portable recompression chambers.
Bonnie Toth, 2007
Bonnie Toth is creative director and owner of Bonnie Toth Advertising & Design in San
Clemente, CA. For more than 30 years, she has shared her passion and creativity, elevating
the marketing world through outstanding visual communications and advancing
exploration of the undersea world through her deep commitment to diving and leadership
in the industry. Over the last decade, Bonnie has volunteered countless hours behind the
scenes to promote, grow, and raise awareness for the Women Divers Hall of Fame, twice
chairing its board of trustees and currently serving as president. Bonnie also handles membership communications, web design and upkeep, print and tradeshow booth graphics,
scholarship and grant materials, and fundraising items such as the WDHOF commemorative book,
calendars, and cookbook. Shealso underwrites the advanced dive training grant.
  Sue J. Trukken, 2002
Sue entered the Navy in 1978. To ensure an at-sea assignment, she became the first female diving officer and the first female mixed gas diver to graduate Naval School, Diving and Salvage, Washington Navy Yard. Later while at Navy Experimental Diving Unit she became the first female saturation diving officer. For most of her career she was the only female diver assigned to her command. During her Navy career Sue was a ship husbandry diver, experimental diver, salvage diver, diving safety officer and hyperbaric diver.
  Ruth Turner, Ph.D., 2001
Ruth is one of the most academically published female marine researchers. She was the first female scientist to use Alvin, the deep submersible research sub for ocean research. Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute recognized Ruth as the foremost female “Pioneer in Oceanography.” She was a biology professor, curator in malacology at Harvard University, Boston Sea Rovers Diver of the Year (1992), and the female aquanaut who logged the most hours in the Alvin. Ruth also worked with the US Navy Office of Oceanographic Research.


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