• 08 September
  • 09 September
  • 10 September
  • 11 September
  • 12 September
  • 13 September

Alex Otte

Recreational Boating Safety Advocate
Alex Otte was involved in a boating accident cause by a drunk boater. However, she has refused to allow herself to be labeled a victim. She is a student, a communications intern, a traumatic amputee, a professional photographer, a Mother’s Against Drunk Driving representative, and an activist. Since the crash nearly seven years ago, Otte has made it her mission to make sure that what happened to her never happens to anyone else. In addition to the loss of her right leg, Otte sustained a severe brain injury, a broken neck, and many other fractures and lacerations. In 2015, she was named MADD’s youth activist of the year for her work in legislation. She has represented one law in the state of Kentucky, and is now working to revamp it, and will hopefully soon be working on another. She has traveled to speak at events and conferences across the United States for the last seven years, as well as, participated in panel discussions regarding drinking and driving and underage drinking. She also mentors new amputees and other victims of severe trauma across the state of Kentucky.

11 September

Amanda Perez

Director of Education
Boat U.S. Foundation
Amanda Pérez has been with the BoatU.S. Foundation for 11 years. In her current role as Director of Education, she manages their free online boating safety course, specialized courses and other online assets and media as well as the team of developers, designers and project managers who keep those programs running.

Amanda serves on the National Education Standards Panel whose mission is to “Establish and maintain recreational boating education standards to increase safety on our nation’s waterways.” In addition, Amanda also serves on the NASBLA Education and Outreach committee, helping to shape boating safety marketing and education best practices.

A lifelong boater, Amanda has spent nearly her entire career working in the boating industry. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Towson University and a Master of Arts from St. John’s College.

11 September


Bill Schwarz

FELL Marine

12 September

Brad Williams

BOAT Program Manager

11 September

Brandon Gust

Law Enforcement Training Supervisor
South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks
Brandon Gust was born in raised in Rapid City, South Dakota.He graduated from South Dakota State University with Bachelor’s Degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Management and a minor in Criminal Justice.Upon graduating, Gust was hired as Conservation Officer for South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks.In 2010, Gust was promoted to a Conservation Officer Specialist position and became the Boating Law Administrator for South Dakota.In the fall of 2016, Gust was again promoted and currently serves as the Law Enforcement Training Supervisor for the department.In his current position, Gust oversees all hiring of new officers as well as all training for department law enforcement staff.Additionally, Gust also serves as department instructor for the Boating Enforcement and Defensive Tactics Training Programs. Gust is an avid outdoors man and enjoys playing just about any sport. He currently lives in Madison, South Dakota with his wife Shelli and their three boys, Brayden, Kaysen and Layten.

13 September

Brandon Riley

Vice President
Planet Inhouse
As Vice President of Operations at Planet Inhouse, Inc., Brandon Riley helps to oversee various UAS growth sectors including Marketing, Sales, and Training.His prior background in commercial and television video production allowed him the unique opportunity to gain behind the scenes access and develop relationships with entities such as Discovery Communications, Harris Corp, NatGeo, US Coast Guard, & US Army to name a few.

Having witnessed on multiple occasions, the life saving work our military and first responders execute on a daily basis has given Brandon a drive to assist the domestic safety and security efforts of our country.Brandon’s role in helping to provide custom turnkey unmanned aerial systems for LE, Public Safety, and SAR is propelling Planet Inhouse, and their cliental, to new heights.

11 September

Captain Scott Johnson

Auxiliary and Boating Safety
Captain Johnson is the Chief of the Coast Guard Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety where he serves as the Chief Director of the Coast Guard Auxiliary as well as the National Coordinator for the National Recreational Boating Safety Program.

In 2010, Captain Johnson was assigned to Sector Anchorage in Alaska as the Chief of Prevention. In this role, he was responsible for all Marine Safety, Waterways Management, and Port Security missions in Western Alaska.

In 2006, Captain Johnson was assigned to the Coast Guard Marine Safety Center in Washington D.C. as the Division Chief of the Tank Vessel and Offshore Division. In this capacity, he supervised a staff of naval architects and engineers performing technical plan review of tank vessels, offshore supply vessels, mobile offshore drilling units and oil production facilities. He oversaw the technical review of numerous novel vessel designs, including the United States first Floating Production Storage and Offload System an innovative oil production ship.

Captain Johnson is a 1994 graduate of Norwich University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He also graduated from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA in 2006 with a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering.
Captain Johnson is a native of Covington, Louisiana. He and his wife Tamara live in Stafford, Virginia with their five children: Madison, Nolan, Benjamin, Teagan and Callahan.

13 September

Christian Frost

FELL Marine
CEO and Chairman FELL Marine
  • Solid entrepreneurial experience from building several companies. Winner of Oslo Entrepreneurial award.
  • Served in the Norwegian Coast Guard as a MOB boat pilot and marine firefighter
  • MBA Finance, BI International Business

12 September

Dan Hesket

Kansas Wildlife, Parks & Tourism
Major Dan Hesket was raised in a small community in North Central Kansas, fourteen miles from the Nebraska border. He was taught the treasures of the outdoors during the “Golden Age” of wildlife conservation, by his father, Game Protector Gary Hesket. The exposure to a game wardens life formulated the expectations of a career path leading to Fort Hays State University in Western Kansas where degrees in Biology and Industrial Education with a teaching certificate were gained. After student teaching an 8th grade shop class, Officer Hesket continued after a M.S. degree in biology with an emphasis towards wildlife and fisheries management, feeling it was safer to carry a firearm than teach 8th grade shop classes. Major Hesket gained employment with KDWPT in 1989 and in 1990 joined the law enforcement division being stationed in Russell County and assigned to a major reservoir, Wilson. Major Hesket used the recreational boating platform as a building path to further his career by developing and challenging the status quo in modifying and improving the attitudes towards game wardens duties as they related to marine enforcement.

In 1993 Major Hesket took a promotion (with no pay increase), to be one of two statewide boating enforcement specialist and moved near Wichita Kansas. 2002 Introduced Major Hesket to the true management structure of the organization as he was promoted to the Assistant Division Director of Law Enforcement where his main duties were to oversee the recreational boating duties for law enforcement and assist the Boating Law Administrator. In 2004, Major Hesket took over the duties of the Boating Law Administrator of which he currently retains these duties. Major Hesket manages the logistics and planning section for the law enforcement division and supervises two Captains. Basically, anything that no one else wants, Major Hesket will get assigned to it.

Major Hesket recently graduated from the National Association of Conservation Law Enforcement Chiefs Academy in September of 2016 held at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Training Center.

11 September

Dan Maxim

Everest Consulting Associates
Dr. L. Daniel Maxim is president of Everest Consulting Associates, a firm that does research in industrial safety, product stewardship, toxicology, and epidemiology.His pro bono activities include serving as an active member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary, NASBLA’s ERAC Committee, and as Chair of NBSAC.He has written over 200 publications on various technical subjects including statistical analysis of remote sensing data, analysis of oil spill probabilities, toxicology, epidemiology, and risk analysis of exposure to mineral fibers, advanced coastal navigation, the Coast Guard’s Loran-C Users’ Manual, and the Nautical Chart User’s Manual.He is a former commercial pilot with an instrument instructor rating and now operates a Post 42 Sport Fishing boat.He has won numerous awards from the Coast Guard and was inducted into the Boating Safety Hall of Fame.

11 September

Dave Considine

BOAT Program Director
Dave Considine came to NASBLA in March 2011 after retiring from the USCG. Considine became the BOAT Program’s Response Course Program Manager.In 2015 Considine became the BOAT Program Coordinator, overseeing the day-to-day operational logistics for the program.In November of 2016 Considine was promoted to the National Director for the BOAT Program.

Before joining the NASBLA Staff, Considine was a Senior Chief Boatswain Mate in the United States Coast Guard.He attained the qualification of Surfman in 1996, the highest small boat qualification in the Coast Guard.Following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Considine was assigned to Boston’s Harbor Defense Team as a Tactical Boat Coxswain and Boarding Officer, and became the Supervisor of the Harbor Defense Team until 2003. Considine was then assigned to Group/Sector Boston as a Homeland Security Watchstander and Ready for Operations Team supervisor.He was assigned as the Officer in Charge of Motor Lifeboat Station Chatham on Cape Cod from 2005 – 2008. Considine was then assigned to the First Coast Guard Districts Field Intelligence Support Team as an Intelligence Officer until his retirement in 2011.

Considine was the Assistant Fire Chief at the South Hampton NH Fire Department following his retirement from the Coast Guard.He has been a Professional Ski Patroller at Loon Mountain for 29 years.He lives in South Hampton, NH with his wife Nancy, and two children, Kylie and Conor. He is an active Rotarian, and continues to fly as a “Flying Santa” for the Friends of Flying Santa program that delivers toys at the holidays to the children of Active Duty Coast Guard personnel.

11 September

13 September

David Phillips

St. Louis County (MN) Sheriff's Office
Dave Phillips has 28 years in law enforcement and is currently the Undersheriff of the St. Louis County (MN) Sheriff's Office. He has taught numerous agencies nationwide on the use of sonar and underwater robotics and has also worked worldwide with agencies on marine incidents involving underwater search techniques. He is also part of the Crossmon Consulting team who specialize in drowning search and recovery, training public safety agencies in underwater technologies and boat electronics. Dave is a diver and has a 50 ton US Coast Guard Master's license.

12 September

Edward Cossette

Vice President
E-Learning, Kalkomey Enterprises, LLC
I love learning, and I'm a teacher at heart. When I'm not helping Kalkomey (Boat Ed) develop the next-generation of online courses, I devote much of my time to the pursuit of knowledge—reading, writing, traveling, and chasing the elusive goal of trilingual fluency. In alternate versions of myself, I've achieved a degree in mathematics, taught college English, worked on nuclear submarines, been the subject of a feature article in the Wall Street Journal, and starred as myself in the HBO film The Curse of the Bambino (you can look it up). I'm a Dallas Cowboys season ticket holder and live by Coach Jason Garrett’s mantra of “stacking one good day on top of another.”

11 September

Esson Miller Jr.

Chairman,ULC Enactment Committee
Mr. Miller served as the Director of the Division of Legislative Services of the Commonwealth of Virginia from 1988 until July of 2011. Prior to 1988, he was the Staff Director of the Senate Finance Committee of the Virginia General Assembly. He has worked in the legislative branch since graduating law school in 1972 in the capacity of staff attorney, budget analyst, and as director. He holds a J.D. degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law and a B. A. degree from the University of Richmond.He is licensed to practice law in Virginia and North Carolina and is a member of the Virginia Code Commission. He has been a member of the Uniform Law Commission (NCCUSL) since 1988 and a life member of NCCUSL since 2008. He is now in general private practice covering a broad range of subjects, including representing parties and consulting with businesses in State legislative matters.
More relative to our NASBLA workshop, Esson served as chairman of the two-year ULC drafting committee on UCOTVA which was adopted by the ULC in 2011 and now serves as chairman of the ULC enactment committee for UCOTVA. He was instrumental in getting UCOTVA adopted in Virginia in 2013, the acts first state of adoption.

13 September

Fred Messmann

Deputy Director
National Safe Boating Council
Fred F. Messmann is a Retired (2009) Game Warden Captain from the Nevada Department of Wildlife currently serving as the Deputy Director of the National Safe Boating Council.

Captain Messmann was the Nevada Boating Law Administrator, Boating Access, Clean Vessel Act, and Boating Infrastructure Grant Programs Administrator for 20 years.

Captain Messmann served as the Western States Boating Administrators Association (WSBAA) President, and was a Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) Board member. Fred was PRESIDENT in 2004 of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and had served at various times as chair of nearly every NASBLA committee.

Fred was appointed to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) from 2002 through 2012. Beginning in 2005 Fred helped develop and then implement the first two 5 year USCG Strategic Plans, 2007-2011 and 2012-2016 where the plans goals were met or exceeded, with the fatality rate for the last three years the lowest on record. Fred was the National Safe Boating Council U.S. Coast Guard Grant project manager for: Inflatable Life Jacket Wear Education, 2010; International Boating and Water Safety Summit Exhibitions 2010 – 2016 (current); Navigation Rules Youth Education 2011; Navigation Rules Awareness Boat On Course video training, 2011 and part two Sequel 2013; Point of Sale for Marine Professionals Training, 2012; the Saved by the Beacon, Emergency Locator Beacon Awareness Program, 2015, and the Media Toolbox, 2016. Fred is currently working on the Media Toolbox Photo Library and the Distracted Boater Awareness training. Fred has received numerous awards and commendations over the years.

11 September

12 September

George Birdwell

Boating Investigator
Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency
George Birdwell is a lifelong resident of Tennessee. He is a graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science. George started his career with Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency in 1998 as a Wildlife Technician. In 2000, George promoted to Wildlife Manager. In 2002, he transferred to a Wildlife Officer position in Unicoi County, TN. In 2004, he transferred to a full-time Boating Officer position where he began to investigate many of the boating accidents occurring in his work district. George promoted to a Statewide Boating Investigator position in 2012. He is responsible for assisting in boat accident investigations, vessel theft investigations, ROV operation, and boat accident and BUI training throughout the state. George has assisted the NSBC Close-Quarter and Open Water Boat Control program as a Master Instructor and he serves on the VIRT committee for NASBLA.

11 September


Jeff Ludwig

Regulatory Development Manager
USCG Office of Auxillary and Boating Safety

Jim Emmons

Director of Nonprofit Safety Grants
Water Sports Foundation Inc.
“Shouting from the highest rooftops” is what Jim Emmons does best! Known for his activism, Emmons has been a devoted marketing and public relations leader sharing passion since his early years. His three-decade career includes being the Water Sports Industry Association’s four-term, twelve-year president where he developed the foundation for WSIA’s thirty-five year success story, creating popular, successful events such as the WSIA’s Leadership Awards, WSIA’s Summit in the Snow, cofounding Wakeboarding magazine, eventually serving as the brand’s publisher, and creating the industry’s overwhelmingly successful trade show, Surf Expo. Through a partnership with the United States Coast Guard, Emmons has orchestrated recreational boating safety’s most complex, far-reaching outreach campaign stretching over six years, disbursing $4.6 million and delivering more than one-half billion, zero waste, boater-targeted safety impressions. Most recently, Emmons initiated “doubled-down” efforts targeting vulnerable newcomers in boating niches such as Hispanic boaters and the troublesome paddle sports segment with custom and very creative messaging delivered in provocatively unique ways. As a result, he was invited to join NASBLA’s Paddle sports Committee and has been an active member since 2015. Emmons also currently serves on the United States Coast Guard’s National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC).

11 September

John Fetterman

Deputy Executive Director
Major John Fetterman serves as the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators’ (NASBLA) Deputy Executive Director. Fetterman was hired by NASBLA in January 2010 as the association’s first Law Enforcement Director. In this capacity, Fetterman worked to integrate and coordinate law enforcement programs within NASBLA and to improve the nonprofit organization’s law enforcement program value to its members. Fetterman was promoted to Deputy Executive Director in 2014. Before joining the NASBLA staff, Fetterman worked for the Bureau of Marine Patrol for 32 years. He began his career with the Maine agency in 1977 as a field officer. Much of his career with the Marine Patrol was spent as chief pilot, flying some 12,000 hours in multiple aircraft. In non-flight duties, Major Fetterman also supervised the Bureau’s Special Services where he focused on safety programs within both the recreational and commercial boating communities. In 2001 he was promoted to deputy chief and he served as coastal boating law administrator for the state of Maine until December 2009. Major Fetterman was an active member in the Maine Emergency Management Agency’s Emergency Response Team and the Sector Northern New England Coast Guard Executive Steering Committee. He served as project leader for Maine in drafting the “first in the nation” memorandum of agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard on enforcement of Safety and Security Zones.

12 September

John Malatak

Program Manager, CRBP
John M. Malatak served as Chief, Program Operations for the Department of Homeland Security/United States Coast Guard, Boating Safety Division, Washington, DC from 1992-2012. Prior to his assignment with the Coast Guard he held various positions within the American Red Cross from 1970-1992. During his Red Cross career he served in various capacity’s including national safety representative for European Area Headquarters, Stuttgart, West Germany.While in Europe, he assumed special assignments to Africa, Greece, Crete, Turkey, France, Holland, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Portugal and the Azores.His last assignment with the Red Cross was as Assistant National Director, Health and Safety. He has a B.S. and advanced degrees in Business Administration; A few of his recognitions are: American Red Cross Lifesaving Award of Merit, signed by President Jimmy Carter, for saving the life of another individual; 1991 High School Sports Hall of Fame; 1992 Lifesaving and Water Safety Hall of Fame; 1998 International Swimming Hall of Fame, “Paragon Award”; 1999 NASBLA Special Recognition Award; 2000 NSBI “Silver Schooner” Award; 2002 National Water Safety Congress National Award of Honor; 2002 State of Pennsylvania Swimming Hall of Fame; 2004 U.S. Sailing Larr Award; 2005 National Boating Safety Hall of Fame; and 2010 NASBLA Lifetime Achievement Award. He is an active member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary and Past Rear Commander of the United States Power Squadrons. He has authored 187 national articles and contributed to 11 Red Cross publications. He and his wife, Jane, live in Franklin, Tennessee where they enjoy boating on the Cumberland River on their 40 foot Silverton Motor Yacht.

13 September

John P. Nadeau

Rear Admiral
Rear Admiral John Nadeau is the Assistant Commandant for Capability. He is responsible for identifying and sourcing new and extended capabilities, competencies, and capacity to meet U.S. Coast Guard mission requirements. In addition, he leads the development of service-wide policy for staffing, training, equipping, sustaining, and employing platforms, equipment and people.

Rear Admiral Nadeau previously served as the Commanding Officer of the Coast Guard Marine Safety Center and led the review and approval of plans for the design, construction, alteration and repair of U.S. and foreign flag commercial vessels subject to U.S. laws, regulations and international standards.

Other assignments include Chief of Inspections at Marine Safety Office Corpus Christi, Texas, Senior Investigating Officer at Activities Baltimore, Maryland, and Commanding Officer of Marine Safety Unit Wilmington, North Carolina, where he served as the Captain of the Port, Federal On Scene Coordinator, and Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection. As Chief of the Office of Design and Engineering Standards at Coast Guard Headquarters, he was responsible for the development of safety and environmental protection standards for commercial shipping and offshore oil and gas activity, and represented the U.S. as Head of Delegation at the International Maritime Organization.

Katerina Douskova

Product Manager
Katerina brings a wide range of experience in customer service, reporting and course development to her role as Product Manager of BOATERexam.com USA. She previously worked with the development team, handling Quality Assurance and testing. Katerina holds Bachelor’s Degrees in International Business and MIS.

11 September

Kelli Toth

Education Specialist and Spokesperson
Alaska Office of Boating Safety
Kelli M. Toth is a life-long Alaskan who enjoys the outdoors. She received her Bachelors of Business Administration in marketing and a minor in Psychology from the University of Alaska Anchorage. She joined the Alaska Office of Boating Safety team in 2011, as a, education specialist and spokesperson. She is primarily responsible for development, implementation and evaluation of the Kids Don’t Float education program, outreach efforts of the Alaska Office of boating safety, and media relations.

Kelli continues in her seventh year of service to the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) Education and Outreach committee and is a charge team leader of the Passenger Safety standard. This committee is also a designated workgroup within the Education Standards Panel. Kelli is a Commissioner of the Certified Recreational Boating Professional program. She was invited to join the National Safe Boating Council’s Tiger team and is a member of the Water Safety Congress Board of Directors.

In 2014, she received an Award of Merit from the Alaska Office of Boating Safety, and in 2015, a Regional Award of Merit from the National Water Safety Congress. Kelli was awarded the Boating Educator of the Year for the State of Alaska in 2015 and 2016. Kelli was recognized as the Boating Educator of the year by the Western States Boating Administrators Association in 2017.

During playtime, you will find Kelli at the barn watching her daughter ride her horse, cheering on her son the professional shooter, or outside with her husband hunting in Texas, hiking, shooting or teaching retriever training. Being outside on the water, either boating, fishing, hunting, or SCUBA diving, brings a smile.

13 September

Kerry Moher

Vice President of Business Development
Fresh Air Educators Inc.
A quintessential problem solver and people person, Kerry is constantly on the move helping agencies and partners identify new opportunities for online education to open the door to outdoors experience. Kerry has sat on NASBLA’s National Education Standards Panel and spoken at conferences around the world about the power of eLearning to improve boating safety education. He holds an MBA from the University of Georgia and is always the first one in the boat, whether it’s an evening trolling for walleye or a weekend trip of whitewater canoeing.

11 September

Kim Jackson

Boating & OHV Safety Education Program Manager
Arizona Game and Fish Department
Kim Jackson started her water recreation early in life.She grew up in Bullhead City, AZ and enjoyed waterskiing and jetskiing with her family on the Colorado River.After attending Northern Arizona University, she moved to California seeking fame and fortune, but what she found instead was a love for the ocean.Being the adventurous type, she and her husband purchased and lived aboard a 41’ sloop, despite the fact that at the time, neither one of them knew anything about sailing.They lived in a working harbor for 8 years before her husband convinced her to move to Idaho with promises of tall evergreens, snow-capped peaks, and pristine lakes fed by the melting snow.From 2001-2006, Kim served as the Head Ranger at Henrys Lake State Park, as well as the marine deputy for this remote mountain lake.When she wasn’t busy saving stranded boaters, she spent her time teaching the park’s visitors about the wonders of the area, how to stay safe while boating, and introducing local school children to the art of sled dog racing.In the fall of 2006 until June of 2012, she held the position as Boating Education Safety Coordinator in Idaho until; she accepted the position of Arizona’s Boating and OHV Safety Education Program Manager.She has a Boating Safety Instructor certification through the National Safe Boating Council, is a certified Interpretive Guide with the National Association of Interpretation, and has attended training courses in close-quarters boat handling, PWC Rescue techniques, and swift water rescue.She has also attended an accredited river guide school and is a paddle sports instructor.

12 September

Lisa Dugan

Recreation Safety Outreach Coordinator
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Enforcement
Recreation Safety Outreach Coordinator with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in the Division of Enforcement. Dugan provides statewide outreach and communication through the development of coordinating marketing goals and executing marketing plans to create a broad statewide culture of outdoor recreation safety in Minnesota.

12 September

Mark Davenport

USCG Safety Assurance and Risk Reduction Division
Afloat Safety Manager
Mark Davenport is a 32-year veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard. He served at numerous Lifeboat Stations on the west coast and as an instructor at the National Motor Lifeboat School. His tours also included a patrol boat in northern California and a coastal buoy tender in North Carolina. He served as both Executive Officer and Officer in Charge/Commanding Officer of multiple stations. In 2005, Mark reported to Coast Guard Headquarters where he served as an Enlisted Assignment Officer for the Boatswain Mate specialty. Following that, he served in the Office of Boat Forces and culminated his service as the Specialty Force Manager overseeing the operational Chief Warrant Officer corps. Mark became very involved in the safety and risk management programs and was a co-founder of the Boat Forces Mishap Analysis and Assistance Team (MAAT). He has continued to pursue his passion in the realm of operational safety and is now the Coast Guards Afloat Safety Manager working in the Safety Assurance and Risk Reduction Division.

13 September

Miranda Lee

Management and Marketing
Fresh Air Educators, Inc.
A certified ATV Safety Instructor and former Product Manager of ATVcourse.com, Miranda brings extensive experience managing online safety certification courses, not to mention a great love of the outdoors, to her current role. She has also taken on a marketing role at Fresh Air Educators and is combining her past experiences with e-marketing strategies. Miranda holds an Honours Degree in Psychology and a Certificate in Project Management.

11 September

Pam Dillon

Education and Standards Division Directorna

11 September

11 September

11 September

12 September

Paul Petani

Americas Sales Director
FELL Marine

12 September

Peter Schrappen

Vice President, Director of Government Affairs
Northwest Marine Trade Association
Peter Schrappen has spent the last 17 years within the political and lobbying world, attempting to win over lawmakers to support his clients’ point of view. He began his career helping get over 100 candidates elected to office and now he’s on the other side of the equation selling policies to elected officials.

In the process, he’s accumulated numerous “rules of thumb” that all center on an effectively run campaign. More specifically in the last seven years at Northwest Marine Trade Association, the trade association the represents Washington state’s $4 billion boating industry, he has led campaigns to pass seven pieces of legislation that grow boating in Washington state.

13 September

Rachel Johnson

Executive Director
National Safe Boating Council
Rachel Johnson, CAE, is the Executive Director of theNational Safe Boating Council (NSBC). She oversees the strategic direction and daily operations in support of the NSBC’s mission ofSafer Boating through Education, Outreach, and Training.Rachel has been with the NSBC for nine years, previously as its Communications Director.
Rachel was recently appointed by the Department of Homeland Security to serve as a member of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC), has done extensive committee work with the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) as Subcommittee Chair and Committee Member, and, most recently, her article on the importance of developing and implementing grassroots campaigns and their impact on positively changing people’s behaviors was published in the U.S. Coast Guard Proceedings magazine.

Rachel’s recent accolades include being recognized with PR News’ People to Watch in PR Under 30 and the Association Forum and USAE’s “Forty Under 40,”recognizing 40 up-and-coming association or nonprofit professionals under the age of 40.

Rachel graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies and a Bachelor of Sciences in Recreation and Parks Management from Frostburg State University.

12 September


Richard Moore

Executive Board Chair

Ron Sarver

Deputy Executive Director

11 September

12 September

Stacey Brown

Boating Safety Program Manager
Virginia Dept. of Game & Inland Fisheries
Stacey is currently the Recreational Boating Safety Manager for the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries. In her role, Stacey represents the Commonwealth on a state, regional, and national basis to ensure Virginia's collaboration and participation on boating safety laws and educational measures across the U. S. She manages the implementation of the mandatory boating education requirement, provides outreach materials that promote boating safety, assists citizens with understanding state and federal boating safety laws and regulations, and compiles boat incident reports.

Stacey has worked in the natural resources field for over 20 years. Prior to joining the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, she was the coordinator for the non-profit, Virginia Save Our Streams. Stacey has been with the Department since November of 2008.

Stacey is a has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from the University of Virginia and a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Virginia Commonwealth University. She lives in the Richmond area with her husband and two boys. She enjoys spending time on the water at Smith Mountain Lake.

11 September

12 September

Stan Linnell

Stan Linnell has been the Boating and Water Safety Manger for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources since 2013. He spent his first 19 years with the DNR as a landscape architect designing recreational facilities and has served as the DNR’s Title II accessibility coordinator. Other jobs in the DNR have included managing operation and maintenance of the Department’s 2500 buildings and serving as planning, acquisition and development manager for the Division of Parks and Trails. Stan is a member of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and the Park and Trail Division’s safety committee. Stan loves the outdoors, especially boating of all types. He enjoys stand-up paddle boarding and captained his pontoon boat down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico in 2011 while supporting his son’s record breaking stand-up paddleboard trip. Stan can be reached at stan.linnell@state.mn.us.

12 September

Stephanie Weatherington

NASBLA President, Arkansas BLA

13 September

Susan Stocker

BLA / Education Coordinator
Department of Natural Resources
Susan Stocker is the Boating Law Administrator (BLA) and Education Coordinator for Iowa with the Department of Natural Resources. She received her B.A. from Upper Iowa and spent her early career in the field as a Conservation Officer.Susan is a regular member of the Northern Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), Northern States Caucus (NSC), National Safe Boating Council (NSBC) and National Water Safety Congress (NWSC).She currently serves as the Chair of the NASBLA Marketing and Education Committee. Susan is passionate about the outdoors and enjoys such things as boating, hiking, camping, gardening, traveling and touring on her 1985 BMW motorcycle. She currently resides in Grimes, Iowa and can be contacted at susan.stocker@dnr.iowa.gov.

11 September

12 September

Tim Spice

Boating Safety Education Manager
Texas Parks & Wildlife Dept.

11 September

Todd Hillhouse

Planet Inhouse, Inc.
Todd A. Hillhouse has over 15 years of experience involved with film and video productions, government programs and pursuits, digital media for marketing and training, along with sUAS flight operations. He continues to support R&D for many clients along with integrating air-to-ground infrared for advanced and critical applications.
Todd’s interest in industrial applications, flight systems and government programs began after years of shooting content and developing training material for one of the world’s largest defense contractors, Harris Corporation. There he would support programs involved with critical and secure communications, as well as support the internal FTI program which provides the FAA’s flight and network infrastructure monitoring.
In December of 2009, Todd pursued and attained his FAA private pilot certificate and continues to remain current. His background, interest and knowledge in aviation, film and video, photography and his knowledge and usage of UAS and wireless communications provide a level of trust that ensures integrity and safety remain a top priority.

11 September


Mission Partner

Boater Exam

Strategic Partner


Mission Partner


BOAT Mission Partner

Absolute Outdoor, Inc

Mary Snyder

America's Waterway Watch

Mary Larsen

Boat Ed Inc

Jason Alexander


Kerry Moher

Boatmaster Trailers

Joe Isley

Boy Scouts of America

Keith Christopher

BRP US Inc -- Evinrude Outboards

Justin Antolini

Brunswick Commercial & Government Products

Kelsey Nemeth

CPI Marine

Bill Clark

Faria Beede Instruments, Inc.

Nicholas Salvi

FARO Technologies

FELL Marine

Paul Petani

First Watch

Ross Johnston

FLIR Systems Inc.

Andrew Cox



Honda Marine

Alan Simmons

Metal Shark Boats

Dean Jones

Mustang Survival

Steve Chambers

National Safe Boating Council

Dan Ratner

North River Boats

Sara Lynn

Propeller Guard Technologies

Keith Jackson

Safe Boats International

Steve Ingle

Silver Ships, Inc.

Dave Hunt

Suzuki Motor of America

David Greenwood

The Coleman Company

Jeff Gayer

Transport Canada

Walsh Marine Products

David Ackley

Water Sports Industry Association

Kevin Michael

Education Standards Panel Meeting

08:00 AM 05:00 PM Salon D - Holiday Inn

NASBLA Executive Board Meeting

08:00 AM 12:00 PM Private Dining Room - Holiday Inn

Business attire is requested.

Education Standards Panel Meeting

08:00 AM 05:00 PM Salon A-C - Holiday Inn

NSBC Executive Board Meeting

08:30 AM 05:00 PM Salon G-H - Holiday Inn

Registration Open

11:00 AM 04:00 PM Ballroom Foyer - Holiday Inn

Registration Open

07:30 AM 04:30 PM East Concourse - Civic Center

NASBLA Workshop & Committee Meeting

08:00 AM 12:00 PM Alpine/Ponderosa - Civic Center

All NASBLA policy committee, the NASBLA Education Standards Panel, and the BOAT Program Advisory Board will brief the NASBLA membership during this time. Each committee will present the committee’s completed work and actionable items, as well as discuss charges for the upcoming committee year. Any action items or final reports that will be voted on during the NASBLA Annual Business Meeting will be formally presented during this workshop.

Workshop_Committee_Meeting Agenda 2017.pdf Download Link

Lunch on own

12:00 PM 01:00 PM

Executive Session (BLAs Only)

01:30 PM 03:00 PM Alpine/Ponderosa - Civic Center

Spouse / Guest Welcome

02:00 PM 04:00 PM Private Dining - Holiday Inn

NSBC General Membership Meeting

03:00 PM 04:00 PM Salon E - Holiday Inn

Opening Ceremonies & Welcome

04:30 PM 05:30 PM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

Business Casual attire is recommended for attendees and guests.
Opening Ceremonies Agenda 2017.pdf Download Link

President's Reception

05:30 PM 07:30 PM Rushmore C-D - Civic Center


09:00 PM 11:00 PM Black Hills Ballroom - Holiday Inn

Exhibits Open/ Continental Breakfast

07:00 AM 04:00 PM Rushmore C-D - Civic Center

Continental Breakfast 7:00 am - 8:00 am

Registration Open

07:30 AM 12:00 PM East Concourse - Civic Center

Keynote: As the Rotor Turns: Life After a Recreational Boating Crash

08:00 AM 08:45 AM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

The presentation that I will be giving at NASBLA’s National Conference will primarily be a telling of my story. This presentation will address the personal injury aspect of the National Recreational Boating Safety Strategic Plan. I plan to describe my life on the water before the crash, to go into detail about the crash itself and the time around it, and to talk about how my life has changed since. The presentation will explain what it is like to live the rest of your life as a victim of intoxicated, unsafe boating and recklessness on the water. The presentation will then go into thanking these professionals for their efforts to make boating safer for everyone, and explaining why this should be a main concern. As someone who continues to enjoy boating and the water, making sure that it is always done safely is a priority.


Keynote: Perspectives on Recreational Boating Safety

08:45 AM 09:30 AM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

This session provides the author's analysis of recreational boating accidents and suggestions for a way forward to shape possible interventions. Key things to focus on are ways to increase life jacket wear, decrease alcohol consumption while boating, and possible changes in the focus of boating education courses.


Eyes in the Sky - Drones for Law Enforcement Use in the Maritime Environment

10:00 AM 10:45 AM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

Discussion regarding the available small unmanned autonomous systems (sUAS/Drones) platforms and capabilities of each. How to integrate a sUAS/drone program into your department, as well as required training and certifications needed for sUAS operators. Learn about new advancements in air-to-ground infrared for situational awareness and search and rescue.


Targeting Outreach to Boaters & Paddlers

10:00 AM 10:45 AM Ponderosa - Civic Center

The presentation will share the past six years of experience using media to target boaters and the lessons learned from market specific research. We'll share best practices and show results from both the power/sail and human powered outreach projects. We'll also show states how to use national boating media for their own targeted messages.


Boating Safety Dashboard - How Your State Can Participate

10:00 AM 10:45 AM Alpine - Civic Center

Data drives programs and good decision-making. Access to data is needed at all levels of an organization and for members of the boating community, the media, and the general public. Under a newly approved USCG grant, the Boating Safety Dashboard tool is now available for view by all. Future Dashboard screens are planned to illustrate state-specific programs. Find out how YOU can link to the federal and state data currently illustrated AND be part of the plans for moving this project forward for state-specific content.


3D Scanning Technology for Boating Accident Investigation

11:00 AM 11:45 AM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency's Boating and Law Enforcement Division is utilizing 3D-Laser Scanning System for the enhanced capabilities in documenting, photographing, and processing major boating accident scenes. The implementation of a laser scanner into their workflow has generated benefits far beyond processing at the scene of a crime. For example, a photorealistic 3D model can be generated and then used in courtroom presentations to interactively and accurately bring the jury to the crime scene. By generating models of the scene using scan data, the scene can be revisited and reexamined at a later date for additional information. The versatility of the technology allows for high-resolution documentation of both indoor and outdoor scenes, helping reconstruction teams to create a more efficient workflow in a shorter timeframe. 


Lessons and Successes in Conducting a Marine Firearms Course

11:00 AM 11:45 AM Ponderosa - Civic Center

One of the most critical components of law enforcement is proper training and to be more specific, training that is relevant to the type of work officers are providing. This philosophy ensures that officers utilize proper judgment exercised in the environment they are working from to reduce possible litigation and ensure officer survival in the worse-case scenarios. Marine law enforcement professionals focus tremendous amount of times towards firearm training, but the reality of officers actually conducting live fire from patrol boats on a national scale is slight at best. This session will focus on the logistics involved in developing and applying a shoot-from-the-boat type of training and incorporating all of the safety angles involved. It will also involve working with other State agencies in accomplishing this training task. The concepts of this program should allow individual states to set up their own maritime law enforcement patrol vessel training program whether incorporating live fire, simunitions, or other types of adaptive training methods.


Using BoatBeat.org in Your Agency Media Work

11:00 AM 11:45 AM Alpine - Civic Center

www.BoatBeat.org is a new online tool for BLAs, Education Coordinators, and Public Information Officers’ use to access valuable, up-to-date data, talking points and resources for work with the boating media. This is also intended to be used by the media to improve their articles to include safety information and connect them with you. The best way to introduce BoatBeat is to demonstrate it in action! Join us for this scenario-based, interactive session to illustrate how to get the most from this valuable tool. BoatBeat.org was produced by the National Safe Boating Council (NSBC) in partnership with NASBLA under a Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund grant administered by the US Coast Guard.


Awards Luncheon

12:00 PM 02:00 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

Business casual is recommended.
Awards Luncheon Agenda 2017.pdf Download Link

NASBLA Course Approvals - Interactivity Rubric

03:00 PM 05:00 PM Alpine - Civic Center

In September 2016, the NASBLA membership approved a change in Section 9.3A of the NASBLA Basic Boating Course Approval Policy which can result in the OPTION to remove required course timers for online courses which incorporate a heightened level of student interactivity. This Deep Dive session presents an overview of the Interactivity Rubric created for NASBLA Approval under the Section 9.3A option. Produced by the NASBLA Education Committee with input from professional Interactivity Design Consultants and feedback from boating course providers, the Interactivity Rubric is available for Interactive Course Approvals effective Jan. 1, 2018.


Federal Regulations & Regulatory Reform

03:00 PM 05:00 PM Rushmore G - Civic Center

Federal regulations impact our jobs in the recreational boating safety community every day. This session will explore the regulatory process and take a look at the work of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) Regulatory Review Subcommittee. In the subcommittee, The U.S. Coast Guard seeks the input of recreational boating stakeholders regarding the review and identification of U.S. Coast Guard regulations and guidance documents within the scope of the council’s purview in accordance with Executive Orders 13771 (Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs) and Executive Order 13783 ( Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth.)


Boating Education Advisory Panel

07:00 PM 09:00 PM Private Dining Room - Holiday Inn

This session is for all state boating education coordinators.


09:00 PM 11:00 PM Black Hills Ballroom - Holiday Inn

Exhibits Open/ Continental Breakfast

08:00 AM 11:00 AM Rushmore C-D - Civic Center

Continental Breakfast 8:00 am - 9:00 am

Registration Open

08:00 AM 11:00 AM East Concourse - Civic Center

NASBLA Business Meeting

09:00 AM 11:00 AM Rushmore A-B - Civic Center

Business attire is requested.
Business Meeting Agenda 2017.pdf Download Link

Lunch on own

11:00 AM 01:00 PM

Technologies for Underwater Search and Recovery

01:00 PM 01:45 PM Salon A-C - Holiday Inn

Underwater robotics, sonar, and autonomous underwater vehicle technologies have changed how public safety agencies are performing the difficult task of victim recovery in the water. This session will introduce attendees to a variety of platforms available for wide area and point searches, as well as considerations for training and deployment. Equipment will be on display for attendees and recovery video and sonar data of actual cases will be shown for training purposes (attendee discretion advised).


Toughest Carbon Monoxide Law - Educating Boaters and Changing an Industry

01:00 PM 01:45 PM Salon D - Holiday Inn

Overall focus: preventing carbon monoxide (CO) boating fatalities.
1. Overview of CO poisoning related to boating.
2. Lessons learned from quick implementation of a complex new boating safety law.
3. How a new law has led national manufacturers to develop new products.
4. Understand the different types of CO detectors available and their limitations.
5. A power on light or test signal doesn't mean your old CO alarm is working.


Final Sticker Sheet Layout Accessible.pdf Download Link
Sophia's law extract June 2017.pdf Download Link
BAW_173_17 Carbon Monoxide Law for Boaters REV.pdf Download Link

National Campaigns for Life Jacket Wear and Engine Cut Off Devices

01:00 PM 01:45 PM Salon E - Holiday Inn


Engine Cut Off Device Technology & Safety for Law Enforcement

02:00 PM 02:45 PM Salon A-C - Holiday Inn


Town Hall: Increasing Participation & Completion of Boating Education Courses

02:00 PM 02:45 PM Salon D - Holiday Inn

State, Non-profit organizations, course providers, and many others put a LOT of time, effort, resources, and energy into urging and recruiting boaters to complete a boating course. The Spring Aboard: Take a Boating Education Course national campaign is an effort to focus media attention on this important need, but how can the campaign be improved? Are we focused on the right tactic? What other ways can we use to get students enrolled in boating courses of all types: online, classroom, or on the water? Join us for the Boating Community Town Hall to discuss the possibilities.


Knowledge Management

02:00 PM 02:45 PM Salon E - Holiday Inn

NASBLA is made up of many members who play many different roles in promoting safe boating throughout the nation. NASBLA committees and member organizations create great content and possess boating safety knowledge that sometimes get lost in Basecamp or not shared at all. Often, member organizations spend time and money creating content that has already been created and pondering questions that have already been answered. One of the most valuable tools that can be provided by NASBLA is a forum for sharing content and knowledge throughout its membership. We have the tools to do this! The purpose of this session is to show-off these tools, demonstrate how to use them, and provide guidelines and best practices for participating in knowledge management.


Off-site/Dinner: Mount Rushmore

03:30 PM 09:00 PM

Gather in Lobby of Rushmore Plaza Hotel at 3:30 p.m.
Buses will leave starting at 3:45 p.m.


Mt. Rushmore National Memorial Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a massive sculpture carved into Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills region of South Dakota. Completed in 1941, the sculpture's roughly 60-ft.-high granite faces depict U.S. presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln. The site also features a museum with interactive exhibits. See the illuminated faces of the Mt. Rushmore National Memorial during the lighting ceremony and listen to a presentation by a park ranger all about Mount Rushmore!

  • Don't Forget Your Ticket! In order to take part in the trip to Mt. Rushmore you will need to bring your ticket. You will receive a ticket with your name badge when you check in at registration. To get on the bus, please have your name badge and ticket with you. *If you have registered for the conference you will receive a ticket - if you have not registered as an attendee or guest you will not have a ticket at registration.
  • Take the bus to Mt. Rushmore. Take the tour bus along with other NASBLA conference attendees to the National Memorial. The buses will roll out of the hotel at 3:45 p.m. Please arrive in the Rushmore Plaza Hotel lobby at 3:00 p.m. Drive time is 30 minutes.
  • Time to explore. Walking the Presidential Trail is a great way to get a closer view of Mount Rushmore. The trail makes a loop from the south side of the Grand View Terrace to the Grand View Terrace and Sculptor's Studio on the north side.
  • Eat Dinner. Dinner will be served on site. A buffet will be set up for all NASBLA guests to enjoy while at the Memorial. The meal is included.
  • Lighting Ceremony. This inspiring and patriotic program consists of a brief ranger talk, the "Freedom: America's Lasting Legacy" film and the lighting of the sculpture as the audience sings the National Anthem. Military and veterans may participate in a flag-folding ceremony. The ceremony begins at 8:00 p.m.
  • Return to hotel. The bus will arrive back at the Rushmore Plaza Hotel at 9:00 p.m.


09:30 PM 11:00 PM Black Hills Ballroom - Holiday Inn

USCG Update

09:00 AM 09:30 AM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn


Body Cameras in the Maritime Environment- An Overview of SDGFP's Body Camera Program

09:30 AM 10:00 AM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks recently deployed body cameras statewide for their officers. After nearly 5 years of research, testing and policy development officers were outfitted with body cameras in April of this year. Officer Brandon Gust has been the lead on the departments' body camera program from its beginning and continues with its oversight. Officer Brandon Gust will provide an overview of their program, highlighting the processes their department went through to ultimately deploy body cameras statewide for their officers as well as provide some of the lessons learned and benefits gained over the first six months of their program.


The Certified Recreational Boating Professional

10:00 AM 10:30 AM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

Learn how you'll be able to differentiate yourself in a competitive job market. How to increase, demonstrate, and validate your skills and knowledge; achieve personal accomplishment; enhance your professional reputation, while demonstrating your high level of commitment to the national recreational boating program. Achieving the "CRBP" credential will demonstrate your competence and professional growth through continuing education, involvement and leadership.


Developing a campaign so you win: How to succeed in the legislature without really trying

11:00 AM 11:30 AM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

What's complicated? The legislative process. What's not complicated? Using tried-and-true rules of thumb to succeed in the legislative process. Hear from a government affairs specialist who has made mistakes and learned from them so you don't have to.


Coast Guard Risk Assessment Model - Green, Amber, Red - is changing; Get Onboard!

11:30 AM 12:00 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

A discussion detailing the gaps within the Coast Guard's current risk management model and the strategies to close those gaps and mitigate risk exposure up and down the chain of command.


Hurricane Harvey - The Impact and Response in Texas

02:00 PM 02:30 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

Uniform Certificate of Title for Vessels Act (UCOTVA)

02:30 PM 03:00 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

This brief program will look at the status of the Act with
(1) the Uniform Law Commission,
(2) state activity towards enactment,
(3) US Coast Guard’s view of UCOTVA, and
(4) reasons states need to move forward with enactment (lessons learned).


UCOTVA - Summary.pdf Download Link

The Float Coat Song: Weaving Safety With Tradition

03:00 PM 03:30 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn

The Alaska Office of Boating Safety partnered with The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and the Kingkikmiut Singers and Dancers of Anchorage to develop "The Float Coat Song," a community-based project with key safety messages woven into traditional song and dance to promote the use of life jackets. The song was written in Inupiaq, an Alaska Native language.

"The Float Coat Song" is now shared across Alaska in celebration of indigenous people’s boating lifestyle, and “normalizing” the wearing of life jackets. The potential shelf-life of this injury prevention effort is remarkable; some Alaska Native songs over 400 years old are still being performed. Learn the dance, share the message and consider how you can work within other cultures to potentially create change.


Moving the Needle

04:00 PM 04:30 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn


Closing Ceremonies & 2018 NASBLA Annual Conference Preview

04:30 PM 05:30 PM Dakota Ballroom - Holiday Inn


09:00 PM 11:00 PM Black Hills Ballroom - Holiday Inn