Captain's Chair - Annual Meeting, First Responders Tribute, and Happy Fourth of July!
For those who were not able to join us for the MIASF Virtual Annual Meeting and Awards Ceremony on June 24th via Zoom Webinars, you missed something very special. In an unprecedented time in modern history, MIASF is incredibly fortunate to have exemplary thought leaders and business minds at its helm with new leadership on the Board of Directors, but we are equally fortunate to have talented staff who did not miss a beat when planning the annual meeting and impressively pivoted to producing and executing an entertaining and informative online event that could easily become a model for others to replicate. Former Bronco’s running back, broadcaster, motivational speaker, and author, Reggie Rivers proved to be an engaging and comedic emcee who kept the event moving smoothly between the live segments, videos, and power point presentations. New board chairman Doug West announced the composition of the new board following the elections, and MIASF recognized Award of Excellence winners, the Golden Anchor Award, the Marine Research Hub and Ocean Exchange partnership, and the Frank Herhold Memorial Scholarship winner.
Keynote speaker, Patrick Lahey, presented an inspirational and truly awe-inspiring account of ocean exploration and diving to the deepest depths of the five oceans in submersibles that he builds at his facility in Sebastian, Florida, Triton Submarines. The team is finalizing the recording of the event so that those who missed it will be able to view it on YouTube and the MIASF website.
MIASF was proud to work with the members of the Lauderdale Yacht Club board of directors to plan a unique tribute to first responders who have worked tirelessly to protect and save lives during the coronavirus outbreak. On July 25th, a parade of eight colorful sailing prams, pulled by a double-decker Water Taxi with notable community leaders and elected officials onboard, traveled west on the New River to Esplanade Park. Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis offered thoughtful and encouraging remarks to those who continue to put their life on the line while we battle COVID-19. This salute to doctors, nurses, firefighters, police, and essential personnel like cashiers and clerks, was a moving expression of the city’s gratitude.
The Fourth of July is upon us, and as we begin planning for next weekend’s Independence Day celebrations, I encourage everyone to please remember to follow the rules. Yes, we will be celebrating the birth of our country’s freedoms, which we all hold dear, but for everyone’s safety and benefit, not just your own, wear a mask in public places, keep a physical distance of six feet or more from other people, do not raft up your boat with others, refrain from patronizing a crowded bar or restaurant, wash your hands, sanitize surfaces, and otherwise do the right thing to stay safe and protect us all. It’s not too much to mask!