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Sober Skippers Belong on Every Boating Trip

Posted By Gail Kulp, Saturday, May 16, 2020
Updated: Thursday, April 9, 2020

May 16 - Sober Skippers Belong on Every Boating Trip

A full day in the sun enjoying the open water is on the agenda. Your friends are invited and everything is ready to go, but first, before the day gets started, you need to know who is your sober skipper? Let’s make that plan now! 

Launched in 2015, the Sober Skipper program encourages boaters to be or to designate a sober skipper before every boating trip in an effort to eliminate accidents and deaths related to Boating Under the Influence (BUI). Sober Skippers are identified by wearing a yellow wristband indicating that the person has accepted the responsibility before the boat leaves the dock and that the Sober Skipper is a qualified, non-alcohol drinking operator in charge of the boat.

 Sober Skipper wristbands are free and can be requested online at

One of the biggest supporters of the Sea Tow Foundation’s Sober Skipper program has been Freedom Boat Club. Designed for folks who want to access a versatile fleet of boats on a regular basis, at an affordable cost of entry, Freedom Boat Club is part of 150 groups in 145 cities across 29 states. They collaborate with the Sea Tow Foundation to promote the Sober Skipper Program in each of their local communities.

The wind, vibration, noise, and the sun that you experience while boating can impair balance, coordination and concentration all on their own. Adding alcohol or drugs intensifies these effects. And since alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in boating accidents every year, it is critical to ensure that every boat has a Sober Skipper at the helm.

And in case you missed it, today’s letter is S.

Tags:  2019-20  Boating Safety  Freedom Boat Club  National Safe Boating Week  Sober Skipper 

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Sea Tow Foundation appoints 13 members to serve on inaugural North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council

Posted By Michael Wesolowski, Thursday, April 4, 2019
Updated: Thursday, March 5, 2020

Sea Tow Foundation appoints 13 members to serve on inaugural North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council

The Sea Tow Foundation selected 13 marine industry stakeholders to serve on its newly launched North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council, with the goal to collaborate on current and future boating safety messages including its popular Sober Skipper campaign.
"The Sea Tow Foundation is uniquely positioned to bridge the gap between the non-profit recreational boating safety community and the for-profit boating industry with the launch of the Sober Skipper Advisory Council,” said Executive Director Gail R. Kulp. “The highly qualified group of individuals that were nominated and subsequently appointed to serve on this inaugural council bring extremely valuable insight and unique perspectives which will help us to strengthen industry messaging, awareness and adoption of boating safety initiatives.”
Members of the inaugural Sea Tow Foundation North American Sober Skipper Advisory Council will serve a two-year term. Appointees in alphabetical order include:
• David Connolly, Partner, TH Connolly & Sons Inc.
• David Dickerson, VP State Government Relations, NMMA
• Jim Emmons, Non-Profit Outreach Grants Director, Water Sports Foundation, Inc.
• Kevin Falvey, Editorial Director, Boating Magazine/Bonnier
• Mike Hankins, Operations Director, Crevalle Boats
• Will Higgins, Public Policy Manager, MRAA
• John Jost, Director of Marine Solutions, Ken Cook Co.
• Captain Keith Lake, Delivery Captain, MarineMax
• Dave Marlow, Director, Product Integrity/Government Affairs, Brunswick Corporation
• Captain Frank Stoeber, Team Development Manager, Regal Boats
• Nic Thomas, Corporate Director of Dock Operations, Freedom Boat Club
• Stephanie Vatalaro, Senior VP Marketing & Communications, RBFF
• Annamarie Worrell, Boat Club & Marketing Manager, Emerald Coast Marine Group

In addition, an executive committee of four will direct and facilitate advisory council efforts including Gail R. Kulp, Sea Tow Foundation Executive Director; Michael Wesolowski. Sea Tow Foundation Director of External Relations; Kristen Frohnhoefer, Sea Tow Foundation Board President; and Wanda Kenton Smith, President, Kenton Smith Marketing.

“Our executive committee was extremely pleased by the high level of interest and the positive response when we announced plans a few months ago to establish this council and extended the nationwide call for nominations,” said Kulp. “While our new council membership represents broad segments of the boating industry, everyone involved shares a strong passion for and commitment to boating safety. Our executive committee is very excited to get underway and to collaborate with these industry stakeholders in this important effort.”

Tags:  Boating Industry  Brunswick  Crevalle Boats  Emerald Coast Marine Group  Freedom Boat Club  Ken Cook  Kenton Smith Marketing  MarineMax  MRAA  NASSAC  RBFF  Regal Boats  Sea Tow  Sober Skipper  TH Connolly & Sons 

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