Boating Safety Hall of Fame

Career leadership in recreational boating


The Boating Safety Hall of Fame recognizes individuals who have demonstrated vital leadership and support through many years of service by making our nation’s waterways safer for all to enjoy. Contributions must have long-range, national impact and encompass numerous years of involvement. Nominations must be received by January 31 of each year.



Chris Edmonston

Chris Edmonston was instrumental in the development and growth of the only FREE online boating safety course developed specifically by state boating license agencies across the nation offered by the BoatU.S. Foundation. Believing that pairing online education with on-water skills training would result in safer boaters, he spearheaded the development of the NSBC on-water training program. Edmonston has extensive knowledge of state and federal laws that pertain to boating, and environmental issues that affect boating. He has made a nationwide impact through involvement with national entities, including Center for Sportfishing Policy, National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, National Boating Safety Advisory Committee, National Safe Boating Council, Outdoor Recreation Roundtable, Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Association, United States Power Squadrons, and more. Learn more >>

Veronica Floyd

Veronica Floyd has been a tireless advocate for the marine industry for more than four decades and has interacted and worked with many associations, organizations, and coalitions such as the American League of Anglers and Boaters, American Sailing Association, BoatU.S. Foundation, National Marine Manufacturers’ Association, National Association of Manufacturers, National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, National Safe Boating Council, U.S. Coast Guard, and more. She played a key role in the repeal of the boat luxury and diesel fuel taxes, as well as successful annual efforts to ensure that the federal Research & Development Tax Credit is extended. She successfully worked on getting a 5-year net operating loss carryback relief for all companies for tax years 2008 and 2009 that aided OEMs with much needed tax dollars during the last recession. Learn more >>


Mary Carrier

Mary Carrier has been instrumental in developing and implementing various components of boating safety programs to advance boating safety throughout the nation and the state of Texas. Carrier served in the United States Army for over twenty years and completed her career as a Training Advisor at Fort Shafter, Hawaii. After retiring from active duty, Carrier used her leadership skills and commitment to boating and water safety to develop outreach programs and hands-on training for recreational boaters. She has made a nationwide impact through involvement with national entities, including the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, American Canoe Association, National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), National Safe Boating Council, and Safe Kids, as well as local organizations including Galveston Bay Sail & Power Squadron, The Single Sailors Association, The Texas Drowning Prevention Alliance, Coastal Brigade, and others. Learn more >>

James Muldoon

James Muldoon was a key contributor to the development of the U. S. Coast Guard’s Strategic Plan of the National Recreational Boating Safety Program. He advised the U. S. Coast Guard and its Boating Safety Division that on-water skills-based training was necessary to increase safety and reduce accidents and fatalities. As the chair of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) for 11 years, Muldoon’s leadership advanced NBSAC’s ability to contribute to U.S. Coast Guard initiatives that support boaters around the country. Under his direction, NBSAC established permanent liaisons with two other U.S. Coast Guard Councils (Commercial and Towing), increased cooperation, and expanded implementation of safety measures for all boaters. Learn more >>


Thom Dammrich

From the beginning of his tenure at NMMA, Dammrich recognized that collaborating across recreational boating as well as the broader outdoor community would be critical to the industry’s success. He created a united voice in both the legislative and economic arenas and has positioned recreational boating as a leader. He has championed the American Boating Congress to help ensure the marine industry voice is heard on Capitol Hill, and he’s built important relationships for the industry across the globe.


Fred Messmann

Fred Messmann faithfully served the boating safety community throughout his career, and recently retired as deputy director of the NSBC. From the Nevada Department of Wildlife to the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and from grant program management to board positions, Fred shaped many boating safety programs and advancements.

Phil Cappel

Throughout Phil Cappel’s career with the U.S. Coast Guard, he has stood out as a leader in the never-ending pursuit of boating safety. He has been an active and passionate participant in the development of industry standards to further boating safety above and beyond what is required by federal law.


Jeff Johnson

Jeff Johnson has spent numerous years in the boating safety arena. He has served as President of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators and two term President of the Western States Boating Administrators Association. He has served on and chaired numerous NASBLA committees. He is a three term member of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council.


Timothea “Timi” Larr

Timothea Larr has quite an impressive resume during her time in boating, including being the three-time Adams Cup recipient; two-time Etchells North American champion; and recipient of the Nathanael G. Herreshoff Award. She earned a degree in naval architecture from the University of Michigan,and worked for the yacht design firms of MacLear and Harris, followed by McCurdy and Rhodes. She worked tirelessly to establish standards for sailing in the United States.


Dan Maxim

Dan Maxim held U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary posts from Flotilla Commander through District Rear Commodore, and was appointed to various national staff positions including the Branch Chief through Department Chief of Education. He served as the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary liaison to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) and served as the former National Directorate Commodore, Recreational Boating Safety. In addition, Dr. Maxim had U.S. Coast Guard training at the National  Search and Rescue School, National Aids to Navigation (ATON) School, National Advanced Vessel Operator School, and numerous  leadership courses. He was the only U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliarist nominated to attend the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Loran-C  Engineering course and one of just two U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliarists funded to attend the University of Southern California course in  Aviation Safety Program Management. His insights helped formed the Research and Development Objective, an objective the National Strategic Plan of the Recreational Boating Safety Program.


Kim Elverum

Kim Elverum was  involved in the boating safety community for nearly four decades. During that time, he created and fostered boating safety partnerships and helped develop life-saving legislation. Kim was instrumental in developing partnerships between the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and other units of government, enforcement agencies and public service groups on a local, state, national and international level. Two critical laws passed during Kim Elverum’s tenure were the Minnesota BWI Law, enacted in 1986, and the PWC Law, first enacted in the early 1990’s with a major amendment in 1998.  Kim has been recognized for his exceptional efforts promoting recreational boating safety education and innovative high-impact social media programs. Elverum has received many awards and recognitions for his contributions to recreational boating safety.

Marty Law

During Marty Law’s career at OSMB, he was the driving force behind the implementation of the Mandatory Education Program. This program continues to be a model that has been followed by other states across the country. Oregon has been a continued decrease in the number of boat accidents and power boater deaths since the implementation of the law. As the Boating Safety Program Manager and Boating Law Administrator, Marty has implemented significant changes that have improved boating safety in Oregon through improved enforcement.


John Johnson

John Johnson started his career in the safe boating arena in 1992 with the Center for Recreational Safety in Lexington, Kentucky, serving as an administrative contractor first with the National Safe Boating Council and ultimately with the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA). In that role, Johnson guided NASBLA’s growth and prominence as the nation’s leading association for boating program administrators and safe boating initiatives in the 56 States and U.S. Territories. In 2006, Johnson accepted the position of NASBLA Chief Executive Officer, working to further position the association as an advocate for policies and resources to reduce the loss of life on the water. He was instrumental in developing outreach and intraoperative agreements, organizational activities and relationships in the name of furthering boating safety. Johnson is the 2011 recipient of the NASBLA William B. Garner National Boating Safety Leadership Award and the NSBC Horizon Award in 2009.

Ruth Wood

Ruth Wood began her boating safety career with the BoatU.S. Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water, a sister organization of Boat Owners Association of the United States (BoatU.S.).  In her time at BoatU.S., she created critical partnerships with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary and US Power Squadrons. Ms. Wood was instrumental in creating a free Online Boating Safety Course, an EPRIB rental program and a Life Jacket Loaner Program for Kids. She helped develop Foundation Findings, a series of boating product tests. Ms. Wood was instrumental in building BoatU.S. Foundation’s national reputation as a leader in boating safety and environmental stewardship. Her dedication to recreational boating has contributed to the improvement of life jacket design and awareness, online education and responsible boating. Throughout her career, Ms. Wood has served as Chair of the National Safe Boating Council, was a member of the US Coast Guard Auxiliary Board of Directors, as well as being on the Underwriters Laboratories Technical Panel and the US Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Advisory Council.


Shawn Alladio

Ms. Alladio has been involved in recreational boating safety since 1979. Her world-wide boating safety education, training, and emergency response organization K-38 Boating Safety has developed the basic techniques employed for swift water rescue. Through Ms. Alladio’s personal advocacy, curriculum development, training and program development, she has worked tirelessly worldwide to help focus recreational boaters, first responders, and others on the importance of education and real-life implementation on the water.

William (“Bill”) Gossard

William (“Bill”) Gossard has been employed in federal service for over forty years and  has been a voice for the recreational boating community, testifying on various boating safety issues and publishing or contributing to fourteen national transportation safety studies focused on important topics as they relate to the recreational boating community. Bill has contributed countless hours as a volunteer in the field of boating safety, both internationally and on U.S. soil. He has been recognized with several awards, including the NASBLA President’s Award and Bonner Award as well as the NTSB Outstanding Performance Award.


Commodore Ev Tucker 

Commodore Ev Tucker has been a willing and successful U. S. Coast Guard Auxiliary volunteer for nearly 40 years. He championed the cause of boating safety education in the United States and abroad through his many education efforts with the Auxiliary. In addition to his service in elected positions, he also is a qualified instructor, vessel examiner and coxswain. Commodore Tucker is an exceptional volunteer and team member. During NACO Tucker’s tenure, he spearheaded the re-establishment of recreational boating safety as a core mission of the Auxiliary and the provision of increased U.S. Coast Guard funding for the Auxiliary. This achievement was instrumental in providing more boating safety programs and consequently more dollars to help educate the boating public about safe boating practices. His efforts were also instrumental in opening up the opportunity for other organization such as the USPS to participate in the Vessel Safety Check Program. Commodore Tucker has received several awards for his contributions to boating safety.

Virgil Chambers 

Virgil Chambers is a past executive director for the National Safe Boating Council, Inc. and had a integral impact on the growth of the foundation. He is the founder of the National Association for Search and Rescue (NASAR) water rescue training program and was the director of this national program for 10 years (1987-1997). While in the navy he was stationed at the U.S. Naval Amphibious School, Inshore Patrol Boat Division, at Coronado, California, Later he was assigned to the Coastal and Inshore Division aboard a patrol craft in the Republic of Vietnam where he was decorated for his actions in combat. Mr. Chambers has received several awards for his contributions to boating safety.

Tim Smalley 

Tim Smalley has been the boating safety education coordinator for the Minnesota DNR since July of 1984 and, in the past 25 years has contributed in countless ways to the recreational boating safety community. In that time he has changed the face of boating safety outreach and education, not only in Minnesota, but across the country. The innovative television and radio public service announcements, and other public outreach campaigns he worked on, have won numerous regional and national advertising awards, including the Oscar of advertising, the CLIO award. They have been used since the 1980’s by over 30 U.S. states, a number of federal agencies and in Canada.


Ed Carter

Ed Carter began is career in boating safety with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) in 1972. In 1990, Mr. Carter became the Boating Law Administrator for TWRA’s Boating Safety Division. On February 19, 2009, Mr. Carter was named the new Executive Director of the TWRA. In addition to his supervisory position with the TWRA, he has served in leadership positions for several regional and national organizations. Other awards and citations for Mr. Carter include the NASBLA Bonner Award, NASBLA Lifetime Achievement Award, U.S. Coast Guard Public Service Commendation and in 2006, the Tennessee Legislature passed House/Senate Resolution 735 recognizing Ed Carter for meritorious service to the state of Tennessee.


Carolyn Belmore

Carolyn Belmore has been actively involved in boating safety for the past 35 years as a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NSSAC). While president of the New England Safe Boating Council (NESBC), she  worked to initiate a series of paddlesport safety forums that reached out to paddle oriented sporting organizations and retailers. These efforts allowed the collaboration of multiple safety organizations to form the highly successful “Boat Smart/Paddlesmart” Campaign. She also served as a volunteer manager of the Support and Training Center on Cape Cod for the District Director of the Auxiliary.

William “Griz” Griswold

William Griswold began his 52 year career in boating safety in the U.S. Army, serving in aviation tours and a tour in Vietnam. Retiring in 1993 as Captain after a 37 year military career, Griswold went on to become a member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary, eventually serving as the Chief Director of the Auxiliary at the Coast Guard Headquarters in Washington, D.C. He is active in his local Auxiliary unit in Florida and has continued to contribute to the field of boating safety by serving as the Chairman of the National Safe Boating Council and as President of the United Safe Boating Institute and serves on several committees for the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators.


Scott Swanby

Scott Swanby’s quest for boating safety began following the drowning death of a good friend while duck hunting. After that accident, Mr. Swanby embarked on the development of a comfortable and truly wearable inflatable jacket. Mr. Swanby is a dedicated boating safety activist and developer of the first S.O.S. inflatable life jacket. He has worked on the some of the most significant improvements and enhancements to PFD inflatable technology. He has led the industry in a search for automatic inflation systems which was ultimately approved for use the U.S. Coast Guard after 10 years of persistence and hard work.

Charlie Walbridge

Charlie has been active and involved in paddlesport safety for nearly 40 years. He has dedicated his life to improving paddling safety, volunteering tens of thousands of hours to the sport. His contributions in safety and access have kept rivers open and increased the enjoyment of paddlesports. His work, while focused predominantly within the US, is imitated and known worldwide. Some of Mr. Walbridge’s accomplishments include equipment design and development, boating accident analysis, and extensive leadership at the national and regional levels with organizations like the American Canoe Association and American Whitewater. His outstanding contributions and enthusiasm for recreational paddling have contributed greatly to the overall field of boating safety.


Lt. Col. Charles Clark

Lt. Col. Clark has enjoyed a 29 year career with the Enforcement Division of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Lt. Col. Clark has been given the honor of being appointed by President Bush to serve in certain homeland security and boating capacities. Lt. Col. Clark has spent many years advocating boating safety on the state and national levels by pushing for the passage of better laws concerning funding and boating safety. An example was the passage of a mandatory boating education law. His influence in passing boating safety laws and persistence in acquiring funding to benefit boating safety has been of great influence to boating safety in the state of Louisiana, as well as on the national level. Lt. Col. Clark has enjoyed memberships with several organizations, including the NASBLA, the NSBC, and the National Boating Safety Advisory Council. Lt. Col. Clark has also received honors and recognition by organizations such as NASBLA, USCG, and the NSBC.

Pamela S. Dillon

For nearly 30 years, Pamela Dillon has been a tremendous advocate for boating safety on the local, state, and national levels. Ms. Dillon is currently serving as executive director for the American Canoe Association, and has the honor of being the first woman to chair the National Safe Boating Council. On the local and state levels, Ms. Dillon helped to develop the river rescue program for the state of Ohio, and has created key educational programs regarding boating safety. Ms. Dillon also created Ohio’s boating education grant program. On the national level, Ms. Dillon serves as the executive director of the ACA and is working to expand partnerships with the United States Power Squadrons, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the Boy Scouts of America. Ms. Dillon currently serves on the boards of the National Safe Boating Council, the Professional Paddlesports Association, the Future Fisherman Foundation and the Outdoor Alliance. In 2004, she received a federal appointment to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council. Pamela Dillon has received numerous recognitions and honors from several organizations, including the NSBC, the U.S. Coast Guard, the ACA, the National Water Safety Congress, the state of Ohio, the Army Corps of Engineers and the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators.


William Garner

William Garner served as the boating law administrator for the state of Alabama for over 30 years. Mr. Garner has made significant contributions to Recreational Boating Safety through his successful campaigning to institute an engine cut off switch law in Alabama, legislation to require boat operator’s license and increased penalties for boating under the influence. These endeavors have resulted in a significant reduction in boating fatalities in Alabama. Mr. Garner has been actively involved in such organizations as the Southern States Boating Law Administrators Association, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, the Boating Safety Advisory Council and the Marine Engineering Council, all which promote safety in recreational boating.

John Michael Malatak

John Malatak has been involved in boating safety for over 35 years. Mr. Malatak has been a key figure in boating safety programs in more than ten national organizations. His positions in these various boating organizations have allowed him to contribute significantly to safe boating on both a professional and personal level. As Chief of the Programs Operations Division for the United States Coast Guard Headquarters, Mr. Malatak serves to coordinate all aspects of the United States Coast Guard’s Recreational Boating Safety Program including funding implementation and outreach and awareness programs. Mr. Malatak has taught and continues to teach numerous boating safety courses, ranging from general boating and water safety as volunteer for the Red Cross to more advanced safety topics such as Coastal Navigation and Search and Rescue as a Boating Safety Master Instructor.


James Ellis

Jim Ellis is the president of the Boat Owners Association of the United States (Boat U.S.) and current chairman of American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC). Mr. Ellis is a member of the board of the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation and a past chair of the National Safe Boating Council. Through his vision and participation we have seen the development of the Boat US Foundation, boating safety internet courses, and the advancement of the inflatable life jacket. Mr. Ellis is a life-long avid power boater, sail boater and fisherman.

Richard H. Snyder

Richard Snyder retired after a forty-two and a half year career as a design engineer with Mercury Marine. Mr. Snyder continues as a consultant for Mercury Marine. During his career Mr. Snyder was involved in product safety and accident prevention. His inventions have reflected very positively toward the advancement of safer boating. Mr. Snyder has been an active participant in the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC), National Association of Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), USCG Boating Safety Advisory Council and the National Safe Boating Council (NSBC). Mr. Snyder is a boating enthusiast.


Albert J. Marmo

Retired from the USCG Office of Boating Safety as Chief of the Program Management Division and Executive Director of the USCG National Boating Safety Advisory Council. Mr. Marmo has been responsible for many improvements in the RBS program over his 35 years of service. He has assisted the States and boating safety organizations in advancing safer boating.

George W. Stewart Jr.

Served as the Boating Law Administrator for the State of Delaware from 1973 to 1987. A leader in boating safety among the State administrators was President of the North East Boating Law Administrators (two terms) and President of the National Association. After his State Retirement went on to be NASBLA’s first Executive Director.


Ray Scott

Founded Bass Angler Sportsman Society (B.A.S.S.) Served on the US Coast Guard Boating Safety Advisory Council by appointment from 1976 through 1978. His leadership in implementing safe boating practices into tournament fishing has not only saved lives, but also made a nationwide impact and created a high standard for others to follow.

William Selden

Served for the U.S. Power Squadrons for more than 42 years working his way to the National Level and serving various areas including Vice Commander as the National Administrative Officer of the National Bridge, National Chief Commander, and on the National Safe Boating Advisory Council, where he received the US Coast Guard Meritorious Service Award. Received two U.S. Coast Guard Distinguished Public Service Awards and served a two-year term as Chairman of the National Safe Boating Council, which will come to completion in September of 2002.


Lysle Gray

Served in the US Navy from 1945-46 and 1951-55. Served in the US Coast Guard from 1973 to 1987 as Chief, Product Safety Assurance Branch. He has served as Executive Director of the American Boat and Yacht Council since 1987 maintaining boating safety standards.

Al Simon

Served from 1972 to 1995 on the National Boating Safety Advisory Council and its various subcommittees. He also served as President of the National Boating Federation, Commander of the Potomac River Power Squadron and Director of the American Boat and Yacht Council. Was an ardent activist for the development of safe and effective inflatable personal flotation devices.


Hunt Anderson

Former Chief of Boating Education with the U.S. Coast Guard Office of Boating Safety, helped steer the way to a series of excellent safe boating week campaigns in the 1980’s and early 90’s.

Mario Biaggi

Former U.S. Representative and Chair of the Coast Guard and Navigation Subcommittee. He kept recreational boating safety issues as a top priority. The “Biaggi Bill”, the recreational Boating Safety and Facilities Improvement Act, established an alternate method of providing a base of federal assistance for state boating safety programs.

John Breaux

A U.S. Legislator, who served in both the House and Senate. Co-sponsored the Deficit Reduction Act of 1984 which created the Aquatic Resources Trust Fund, also known as the Wallop-Breaux Trust Fund.

Malcolm Wallop

This former U.S. Senator was a leader of senate efforts to expand the Sportfish Restoration Act. This act was enacted in 1984 as the Aquatic Resources Trust Fund, also known as the Wallop-Breaux Trust Fund.


Ron Stone

Worked with the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Instrumental in the early development days of the NSBC and in establishing national awareness of boating safety.

Carl C. Mahnken

Served as a key member in the NASBLA Boating Education Standards Advisory Board and in the U.S. Power Squadron.


John C. Bernhartsen

Served in U.S. Coast Guard Boating Education & Information Branch. Established minimum level of knowledge for boaters and assembled a work group that eventually blossomed into the NSBC. Credited with the idea for a Presidential Proclamation for Boating Safety Week as well as for the materials to support the annual national campaign.

Aime Bernard

Served as National Commodore of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, winning the highest awards for operational accomplishments. Served as the Auxiliary’s liaison to the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators and as the Chair of the NSBC in 1992.


Dale P. Morey

Involved in boating safety and the NSBC since its formation in 1975. He served as Boating Law Administrator of Wisconsin from 1973 to 1990. In 1982 he became the president of NASBLA. Served as chair of the NSBC from 1986-1988.

William C. “Jack” Lucey

Worked with the American Red Cross for 45 years, retiring from his position as Executive Director in 1974. Specialized in water safety, small craft and first aid, traveling the country in order to train upcoming instructors. Active in the NSBC, NASBLA and The U.S. Power Squadrons, where he served as Chief Commander.


Al Bernardi

Participated on the committees of the National Fire Protection Association, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and the American Society for Testing and Materials. Secured critical support for NSBC during its early years through his association with Underwriters Laboratories.

Newell “Boats” Garden

Founded the New England Safe Boating Council. Spearheaded boating safety prevention with Raytheon Company. Leadership in the NSBC; serving as Chair from 1983-1984. Served on the National Boating Safety Advisory Committee from 1979-1991 with nine years as chair.


Richard Schwartz

Founding member of the NSBC, founder of Boat U.S. Helped to enact important legislation to represent the recreational boating community.

Robert Burnside

Served the American Red Cross as the National Director of Health and Safety, authoring the Red Cross’s Basic Boating and Sailing and Canoeing texts. Served on the original NSBC Board of Directors; served as Chair from 1973-1975.