2021 IBWSS Speakers

Glenn Anderson

Professional Speaker | Glenn Anderson Speaks

Glenn Anderson was a Managing Consultant with IBM Systems Lab Services and Training. During his 45 years with IBM, Glenn held positions in sales and support, management, technical training, conference speaking and event planning. Glenn holds a B.S. in Computer Science from the Missouri University of Science and Technology. In his private life, Glenn is active in the Chicago area theater as a member of an improvisational acting troupe and is a graduate of the Player’s Workshop of Second City. He is a personal development speaker, keynote speaker and conference host at events throughout the world. glennandersonspeaks.com

Tizzy Bennett

Coming soon.

Coming soon.

Chuck Best, Jr.

Owner | Twiggy’s Inc.

Coming soon. twiggysinc.com

LouAnn Best

Founder | Twiggy’s Inc.

Coming soon. twiggysinc.com

Kevin Bonnema

Founding Partner | Carefree Boat Club

Kevin Bonnema is a founding partner of Carefree Boat Club.  In 20 years, the club has grown to over 100+ locations worldwide. Kevin mentors existing club locations and educates individuals to open clubs. He has developed the Carefree Boat Club Training Program that includes boat safety and handling training, operations, sales and marketing, and entrepreneurship. Kevin is retired U.S. Air Force after 21 years of service. He holds a B.S. in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. Kevin is the owner of Coastal Marina Sales & Services, a boat dealership and service center in Virginia Beach. In his personal life, Kevin enjoys travel and boating. carefreeboats.com

Dr. Diana Bowman

Professor | Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law

Diana M. Bowman is a full professor in the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, where she serves as the associate dean for international engagement, and the School for the Future of Innovation in Society. She is also a PluS Alliance Fellow (2016-2019) and team member of PlanetWorks in the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability. Her research analyzes and informs the development of smarter governance and regulation of innovation in order to simultaneously enhance creativity, improve public health, and stimulate deliberation of the ethical, legal, and societal dimensions of emerging technologies. Diana is an Andrew Carnegie Fellow (Class of 2018).

Mary Carrier

Boater Education Coordinator | Texas Parks and Wildlife

Mary is the Boater Education Coordinator with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Through Texas Parks and Wildlife, Mary hosts Boater Education Instructor courses to help educate and inform boaters. She is also serves on the Coastal Brigade Committee. The Coastal Brigade is a nonprofit organization with a mission of education and empowerment of adolescents through education. tpwd.texas.gov 

Mikele D’Arcangelo

Vice President of Global Marketing and Product Management | ACR Electronics, Inc.

Mikele is vice president of global marketing and product management for ACR Electronics, the leading development center for emergency beacons. acrartex.com

Captain Chris Day

Owner | TowBoatUS Lake Allatoona/Georgia Boat Safety and Training

Chris started his on water career after spending 11 years in Law Enforcement Criminal Interdiction. He was looking for a change from the fast paced life of a narcotics officer. Little did he know, responding to an ad for a deckhand in Tybee Island, GA would turn into a new and exciting career. Chris started Georgia Boat Safety and Training in 2016 with a target audience of public safety professionals. Chris purchased TowBoatUS Lake Allatoona in 2018 and began to build his brand in the area by giving back to the local community. Chris serves as the Water Safety Coordinator for SafeKids Bartow/Cherokee County, National Water Safety Action Plan Life Jacket focus group, hosts an annual fundraiser to support local families on the lake, and participates on the Lake Allatoona Water Safety Task Force. Chris servers on the Board of Directors for CPORT and is the Chairman for the Programs and Education Committee. Along with his duties as Programs and Education chair, Chris serves on the C-PORT Government and Legislative Affairs Committee and the C-PORT US Coast Guard Focus Group. His boating experience expands from near coastal to inland waters, working in both the private and government sectors. boatus.com/towboatus/lake-allatoona

Laura Fergusson

Manager: Ambassador & Events | Mustang Survival

Coming soon. mustangsurvival.com

Adam Fortier-Brown

Government Relations Manager | Marine Retailers Association of the Americas

As Government Relations Manager, Adam is responsible for representing the legislative and regulatory interests of the MRAA and its members, ensuring the Association’s voice is present wherever issues concerning boating and marine retailers are discussed. He is based out of the offices of the National Marine Manufacturers Association in Washington, D.C., where he works directly with the NMMA team in representing the marine industry and its significance in the overall economy. Adam leads MRAA’s efforts in all areas of advocacy, including BoatPAC, the joint MRAA-NMMA Political Action Committee. He graduated from the University of Maine magna cum laude, with a Bachelor’s degree in economics and political science. He has previously worked in the office of Senator Susan Collins, and for former Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen. mraa.com

Ryan Foland

Global Keynote Speaker, Author, Brand Consultant

Ryan teaches people how to build their brand, get featured in publications, and grow their social media following. Ryan’s clients include New York Times bestselling authors, venture capitalists, and Fortune 500 executives. His book, Ditch the Act, helps executives and entrepreneurs navigate the waters of what to do, in the right order, to help them harness the power of vulnerability and authenticity to build a better, more relatable, more profitable brand. Recognized by Inc. Magazine as a Top Marketer and named a Top Personal Branding Expert by Entrepreneur Magazine, and a 4 time TEDx speaker whose talks have been named in Top TED lists by Forbes, Mashable, and Inc. Ryan works with thought leaders to create and syndicate content that reveals their whole self to drive differentiation, growth, and loyalty. By positioning the expertise of people within companies as the core talent behind the corporate brand, he helps to drive reputation, trust, and more clients to their businesses. ryanfoland.com

Four W’s Fishing Team

Big Will, Wanda, Lil’ Will, and Wendy

Four W’s Fishing Team promotes the outdoors to elementary, middle school, high school, & college students preparing them for careers in the outdoors. Outdoor education is not only for schools: churches, car and boat shows, fairs, and other events and groups can benefit. fourwsfishingteam.com

Wendy Franklin

Team Member | 4 W’s Fishing Team

Wendy is a team member of the 4 W’s Fishing Team, who is committed to promoting the outdoors through saltwater fishing. They specialize in diversity, inclusion, conservation, and careers – mostly through visiting elementary to college aged students. Wendy loves to fish on the coast, but also loves fashion blogging and modeling. fourwsfishingteam.com 

Dana Gage

Founder | The LV Project

Dana Gage is founder of The LV Project, a non-profit organization dedicated to buoyancy, on water and in life. Ms. Gage founded The LV Project in 2012, following the preventable drowning of her 15-year-old son at a lake birthday party. Ms. Gage previously served as VP of Marketing of Tribune Media Services, a $200M division of Chicago-based Tribune Company. Before joining Tribune, she served as Vice President of Marketing and equity partner in JDTV, a company she and four others founded, which ultimately sold to Tribune in 1999. Before founding, JDTV, Ms. Gage was Director of Marketing for Fox Sports Satellite. She has led volunteer-based organizations, served as President of Women in Cable Television, and is an active member of the water safety community. Ms. Gage holds a bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. She lives in Fort Worth, Texas. thelvproject.org 

Dr. Lincoln German

Chiropractor | Spine Care of Manassas Chiropractic Center

Dr. German is a 1987 Magna Cum Laude graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa. He completed his internship at the Outer Banks Chiropractic Clinic in 1987 in Nags Head, North Carolina, where he concentrated on the prevention and care of sports injuries. He received his specialty training in Chiropractic Rehabilitation from Cleveland Chiropractic College and additional training in Clinical Nutrition through Logan College of Chiropractic. Dr. German holds a B.S. degree in Biochemistry from Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin. Dr. German recently completed his training in postural neurology and is certified by the American Posture Institute as a Certified Postural Neurologist.

Dima Ghawi

Executive Coach and Author | Ghawi Consulting

Dima draws from two decades of corporate experience leading global teams and developing future leaders worldwide. She has worked across the United States, Europe, Asia, Middle East, and Africa for several Fortune 100 companies including IBM, Merrill Lynch, and Intuit. She has honed a keen expertise in developing leaders to meet the demands of the global workforce. Her memoir Breaking Vases received many awards including Writer’s Digest 2018 Grand Prize Award, Best Indie Book Award, Readers’ Favorite Award, National Indie Excellence Award, and Nautilus Book Award. dimaghawi.com

Verne Gifford

Chief | Boating Safety Division at Coast Guard (CG) Headquarters

Verne Gifford has been the Chief, Boating Safety Division at Coast Guard (CG) Headquarters since September 2017. He is responsible for the administration and coordination of all functions of the National Recreational Boating Safety (NRBS) program, whose mission is to minimize the loss of life, personal injury, property damage, and environmental impact from recreational vessel use, while optimizing safety and waterways enjoyment by the American public. These program functions include managing a $110 million grant program; developing the NRBS strategic plan; serving as Designated Federal Official (DFO) to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC); administering the casualty reporting system for recreational vessels; developing standards for recreational boat and equipment manufacture; administering the boat manufacturer compliance program; publishing Boating Safety Circulars; maintaining the notification (recall) process concerning defects; and administering the NRBS education, state law enforcement, and undocumented vessel numbering programs. uscgboating.org

Kim Hodges

Founder | National Injury Prevention Council

Kim and her husband, David, founded the National Injury Prevention Council in 2011 after the loss of their son, Brandon, due to a drowning accident. The National Injury Prevention Council is a nonprofit dedicated to minimizing injury and death due to accidental injuries. Kim’s ultimate goal is to bring awareness to the epidemic of accidental injuries and its impact on the community. nationalinjurypreventioncouncil.org 

Captain Scott Johnson

Chief | Coast Guard Office of 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. The National Recreational Boating Safety (NRBS) program’s mission is to minimize the loss of life, personal injury, property damage, and environmental impact from recreational vessel use, while optimizing safety and waterways enjoyment by the American public. These program functions include managing a $110 million grant program; developing the NRBS strategic plan; serving as Designated Federal Official (DFO) to the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC); administering the casualty reporting system for recreational vessels; developing standards for recreational boat and equipment manufacture; administering the boat manufacturer compliance program; publishing Boating Safety Circulars; maintaining the notification (recall) process concerning defects; and administering the NRBS education, state law enforcement, and undocumented vessel numbering programs. uscgboating.org

Dave Marlow

Coming soon.

Coming soon.

Rebecca Medeiros

Education and Agency Relations Team | Kalkomey

Rebecca is a member of the Education and Agency Relations Team at Kalkomey. She works closely with Kalkomey’s agency partners on a daily basis to ensure students have a top-notch experience with our courses and curriculum. As an avid recreational boater herself, her goals at Kalkomey include providing students with an educational foundation to ensure that each student who takes our course is prepared to participate in the community as a responsible and safe boater. kalkomey.com

Jennifer Moore

YouTube Certified TV/Media veteran

Jennifer Moore is a 15-year veteran of the broadcast / media industry working in 6 local TV newsrooms, HSN, and CNN in Atlanta. She has served in the roles of line / field / special projects producer, digital content producer, show booker, and assignment editor. While at CNN, Jennifer started and grew multiple YouTube channels, which ended up being the avenue for quitting in 2017 to focus on being a full-time video creator. She currently produces and manages content for five different channels, including a few local clients in the Tampa Bay area. extvproducer.com

Kate Neubauer

President | Neubauer Consulting Group

With over 20 years of professional experience in nonprofit management and philanthropy, Kate Neubauer has served in leadership roles for a wide range of environmental, sailing education and mission-based organizations. She is a key problem solver with entrepreneurial passion and loves working with her clients to design innovative strategies that increase organizational capacity and leverage philanthropy for impact. Kate has an extensive portfolio of projects, ranging from grassroots nonprofit organizations to multimillion-dollar capital campaign and currently serves as Board President of Rozalia Project. neubauerconsultinggroup.com

Keri-Anne Payne

British former competition swimmer and Olympic medalist

Keri-Anne Payne is a South African-born British swimmer, specializing in marathon open water swimming and long-distance freestyle swimming in the pool. She is a two-time 10-kilometre open water world champion, and an Olympic silver medallist. Keri-Anne is now an advocate for water safety and education. 

Yvonne Pentz

Communications Director | National Safe Boating Council

The NSBC’s communications director, Yvonne Pentz, has more than 15 years of experience in integrated communications and marketing, with over a decade working in recreational boating safety. She focuses on reaching the boating public with safety information in a format that is user-friendly and engaging. She oversees grant management and implementation working alongside staff, partners and contractors. Her recreational boating safety work has received recognition from the likes of the Academy of Interactive & Visual Arts’ Communicator Awards, Hermes Awards, PR Daily Nonprofit Awards, and PRSA’s Bronze Anvil, to name a few. safeboatingcouncil.org

Peg Phillips

Executive Director | National Safe Boating Council

The NSBC’s Executive Director, Peg Phillips, is an experienced executive and boating instructor. She is a certified American Canoe Association L2 Kayak Instructor, SUP Instructor, and NSBC Powerboat Instructor. Working hands-on with hundreds of students, she has instilled recreational boating safety and influenced boater behavior. She has successfully provided guidance for over a dozen federally grant-funded programs since she joined the NSBC in 2018. Phillips has received awards for her outstanding boating instruction including the American Canoe Association President’s Award and American Canoe Association State Director of the Year. With two decades of senior executive level management experience, Peg is accomplished in strategic planning, staff development, inspiring commitment, managing change, and building coalitions and partnerships. safeboatingcouncil.org

Jaret Rogers

Acting Warning Coordination Meteorologist | National Weather Service

Jaret is the Acting Warning Coordination Meteorologist for the National Weather Service office in Phoenix, Arizona. He specializes in building relationships with external partners, such as government agencies and community organizations, to enhance weather preparedness in support of a Weather Ready Nation. Prior to his stint in Phoenix, Jaret previously forecasted severe thunderstorms and tornadoes for the United States at the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Jaret enjoys researching hazardous weather and developing innovative ways to deliver and communicate weather information. weather.gov

Crystal Skahan

Licensed Recreational Therapist | University of New Hampshire

Crystal is currently a Licensed Recreational Therapist at the University of New Hampshire. Crystal’s areas of expertise are diverse, boasting the following accomplishments: Certified Brain Injury Specialist (CBIS), American Canoe Association (ACA) Certifications: Adaptive Paddling Instructor Trainer (AP-IT) and Coastal Kayaking Instructor-Level 2, Water Safety Instructor (WSI), Certified Nordic skiing guide for individuals with visual impairments through Ski for Light, Sexuality, & Disability. Crystal is committed to serving the adaptive/universal community through her various passions.

Chris Stec

Past Chair | National Safe Boating Council

Chris Stec served for 12 years as the Chief Operating Officer of the ACA, the oldest nonprofit paddlesports organization in the U.S., focusing on paddlesports education, stewardship, recreation and competition, including the Olympic paddlesports of Slalom and Sprint and the Paralympic discipline of Paracanoe. In addition, Chris holds numerous paddlesports instructor certifications and enjoys spending time on the water with his wife and two kids, whether it’s racing downriver canoes, kayak fishing, or surfing SUPs in the ocean. He currently serves as the Past Chair of the National Safe Boating Council.

Scott Swanby

Boating Safety Activist

Scott Swanby, boating safety activist and developer of the first S.O.S. inflatable lifejacket (SOSPENDERS®), has made boating safety his life’s work. Swanby is a nationally recognized boating and outdoor enthusiast that has won numerous accolades, including his most recent award as the 27th inductee into the National Boating Safety Council Hall of Fame. He also served two terms as a member of the Boating Advisory Council, a prestigious position that is appointed by the White House. Swanby is presently the Director of Sales for UST Brands, an emergency and survival gear manufacturer founded in 1936, and still works to advocate boating safety worldwide.

John Trierweiler

Public Information Officer | Arizona Game and Fish Department

John is a member of the public affairs and media relations team for the Arizona Game and Fish Department. Working with both local and national media outlets as well as the public, promoting and showcasing the work of the department. John is a veteran television broadcaster with over a decade of experience in media and television journalism in the midwest, Florida and Arizona. azgfd.com


Water Safety Advocate | Twiggys Inc.

In 1978, a baby squirrel was rescued after being blown from her nest during a hurricane. Chuck and Lou Ann Best chose to take her in and make her a part of their family. Shortly there after, Chuck bought his daughter a remote controlled boat for her birthday. Their friends started teasing him saying that he bought it for himself, since he played with it all the time. Defending himself, he quipped, “I have to learn to drive the boat so I can teach my squirrel to water-ski!” The rest is history. Twiggy has been performing since September of 1979, traveling all across the US, Canada, Bermuda, Europe and Germany. She has appeared in numerous books, magazines, newspapers, and television shows all over the world. Learn more at twiggysinc.com.


Dr. Reena Vaid, MD

Board Certified Dermatologist | Renewal Dermatology

Dr. Vaid is a board certified dermatologist with the American Board of Dermatology. She is also board certified in pediatrics with the American Board of Pediatrics. She received extensive training in medical and surgical dermatology at the highly-ranked University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Hospital, where she developed a special interest in skin cancer evaluation and management.Dr. Vaid has published in several journals and textbooks in dermatology. She has many interests in dermatology including adult and pediatric skin rashes, acne, warts, and skin cancer prevention and treatment. She is a fellow with the American Academy of Dermatology and the Washington D.C. Dermatologic Society. In her personal life, she enjoys Indian classical dance, soccer, running, and spending time with her family. renewaldermatology.com


Nicole Vasilaros

Senior Vice President, Government Relations and Legal Affairs | National Marine Manufacturers Association

Nicole is a seasoned government affairs leader with demonstrated experience bringing together industry executives, trade associations, non-profit organizations, and policymakers. She is also skilled in crisis communications, trade, transportation and environmental policy, strategic planning and budget analysis, and will lend her experience and expertise to IBWSS21. nmma.org

Mario Vittone

Retired U.S. Coast Guard Helicopter Rescue Swimmer

Mario Vittone is a retired U.S. Coast Guard helicopter rescue swimmer, who for 22 years rescued boaters in distress from the turbulent waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. He served two tours as a rescue swimmer at Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, and one at Air Station New Orleans, Louisiana. Vittone was also an instructor and course developer at the Aviation Technical Training Center in Elizabeth City before retiring in 2013. An expert in immersion hypothermia, drowning, sea survival and safety at sea, he today writes and lectures on boating safety and search-and-rescue topics for popular print publications. mariovittone.com

Allison Wagner

American former competition swimmer and Olympic medalist

Allison Wagner is a decorated Olympic swimmer, previously holding the world record in the 200 meter medley. Her world record, set in 1993, stood for almost 15 years. Allison is now an advocate for enforcing anti-doping violations, due to the fact that she competed against many athletes that were doping. Allison is now devoted to becoming a member of the third cohort of the Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree in Sport Ethics and Integrity. She is also a member of the Safesport Athlete Advisory committee team and the U.S. Center for SafeSport and the Team USA Council on Racism and Social Justice. allisonwagner.com 

Hiroshi Yamaoka

Coming soon.

coming soon

Courtney Young

Executive Director | American Red Cross Southern Arizona Chapter

Courtney Young joined the American Red Cross in March 2018 as Executive Director. Prior to her current role, she worked closely with the local Southern Arizona Red Cross chapter on numerous disaster responses through Community Organizations Active in Disasters from 2015 to 2017. She previously served as the Executive Director of local non-profit, World Care. She led World Care through many organizational transitions and coordinated large-scale disaster relief efforts. Courtney is a Tucson native and earned her bachelor’s degree in Public Health with a minor in Spanish from the University of Arizona in 2014. redcross.org

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