From the Captain's Chair: A Time of Transitions
This year’s Annual Meeting enjoyed active participation from the MIASF membership and their guests. Thank you to everyone who joined us for this luncheon. The attendance was great, and we were proud to welcome local notables including Commissioner Steven Glassman, Commissioner Steven Geller, and Brandey Edelson, Director of the Office of U.S. Representative Ted Deutch.
As always, the Lauderdale Yacht Club was a great host. Besides wonderful hospitality and delicious food with a nautical view, attendees also enjoyed a strong speaker line-up. The speakers at this year’s event were outstanding, and their remarks were both informative and entertaining.
As the CEO of Broward Health and former Chief of Staff to Governor Ron DeSantis, Shane Strum has political insights that are second to none. He is a Broward County native with over three decades of both working and living here, so to say he knows and understands the business climate in our area is an understatement. His pro-business, pro-Broward County, and pro-marine industry views are a huge asset to not just our industry but the region overall.
Our other keynote speaker, Brooks Smith, is another great asset to the marine industry. He has proven business acumen and has demonstrated his commitment to our industry with his numerous boating-related acquisitions in recent years such as Lewis Marine Supply, Boat Owners Warehouse and Willis Custom Yachts. His passion for the business is fueled by an equal passion for boating as the owner of a varied collection of boats, from yachts to competitive fishing machines. He sees the opportunity to upgrade our industry and improve the customer experience all around, and we look forward to where he will take things in the future.
The Annual Meeting was also our opportunity to announce our newly elected board of directors. Congratulations to Graeme Lord, Secretary/Treasurer; Bill Walker, Director; and Katie Hagen, Director who will be joining our tremendous board. Julie Berry, Andrew Doole, and Michael Kelly were also re-elected to the board for another term. Each term is 2 years and begins on July 1st.
As everyone knows, Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start to the summer boating season, not just in Florida where we enjoy an active fishing season together with a calm Gulfstream to facilitate quick trips to the Bahamas, but across the country. On rivers, lakes, and coastal areas from Maine to Seattle, and all points in between, boaters will be hitting the water with family and friends to enjoy the all-too-short months of warm weather and sunshine.
As you spend time on the water this summer, remember to practice safe boating habits. If you’re the captain, it is your responsibility to ensure everyone on board is aware of what to do in case of an emergency.
Whether you’re taking a leisurely cruise up the New River, heading offshore to explore the Bahamas, or dragging a few baits, staying safe this summer is always a priority.
I hope you enjoyed the holiday.