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GOALS

Our Mission

Our Mission is to Promote Excellence and Ensure Sustainability in the Global Yachting Industry.
Founded in 1989, ISS is the representative organization of the large yacht industry. Our mission is to build alliances worldwide, serve as the collective voice on issues affecting the industry, recognize achievement, and further strengthen the industry overall through regional and global committees, educational opportunities, and networking events.

The International Superyacht Society is a member-driven organization with a marketing and administrative staff that is reliant on the volunteer efforts of its Board and members. Funding for the organization comes directly from members and sponsors, and is used for initiatives that benefit the large yacht industry as a whole.

STRATEGY

Our Objectives

Grow our Marketplace
Collaborate with industry partners and associations to develop and implement a programme of activities that favourably represent the superyacht industry and attract new clientele.
Promote New Talent Outreach
Communicate with educational and vocational institutions regarding career opportunities (afloat and ashore) in the yachting industry, including creation and circulation of Best Practice procedures.
Engage with Regulators

Actively participate in setting/amending regulations—in cooperation with other associations—to be in congruence with the overall needs of the superyacht industry.

 

Inspire Professional Collaboration
Deliver a series of global events throughout the year to bring industry members together to meet, collaborate, and grow their businesses.

 

Promote Professionalism
Deliver programs to capture qualification, certification, and activity history for individuals working in the Superyacht industry
Recognition Through Awards
Deliver an annual peer-reviewed awards programs for the yachting industry: Leadership, Design, Business, Technology, Environment, Distinguished Crew, Artisan
Business Practices
Develop and implement a broad industry programme to define and promote good business practices specific to the yachting industry.

 

TEAM

Our Committees

Marketing

Positions ISS globally and provides insight to creatively position the superyacht industry luxury lifestyle pursuit.

Sponsorship

The Sponsorship committee is dedicated to providing the best possible ROI for every ISS partner.

Education

Creates topics, invites presenters, and selects venues for the ISS’s expanding global educational programmes.

Gala for Design & Leadship

This Committee works throughout the year to produce the society’s signature annual gala event.

Events

Manages a variety of sponsored international member events, networking opportunities and speaking engagements.

Technical

The technical committee stays apprised of international regulation and issues affecting every aspect of superyachting.

Association Alliance

This committee meets three times a year with at least one global summit to discuss key issues and provide global solutions.

Policies & Initiatives

Provides assessment and recommendations regarding overarching industry developments.

Awards Administration

This committee will evolve into a Chairman working with the Office team; effective immediately.

Oversight

Ensures that ISS, its Board and members adhere to Bylaws and provides guidance on legal and tax matters.

Captains’ Committee

Captains identifying needs and working on solutions for crew members worldwide.

Yacht Management

Yacht Management Advisory Council was created to bring operational realities and achievements together for actionable results.

MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Directors

Abi McGrath
Director

Biography: Abi McGrath began working in the superyacht sector in 2003 thanks to her appointment as Business Development Manager with Bellingham Marine. During her 7 years with Bellingham Marine Abi had the opportunity to engage with the yachting world at international events and won noteworthy marina development projects including the construction of the Valencia Yacht Base for the 2007 Americas Cup. In 2012 she founded ACREW with the objective to build a professional membership of superaycht captains and crew that would facilitate knowledge exchange and professional development. Now in 2018 ACREW has over 12,500 crew members and runs events throughout the Mediteranean and Caribbean. A personal ambition for Abi was to create an Awards programme for captains and crew; something that ACREW successfully achieved in October 2018. Abi is a strong advocate for equality in yachting and during the 2018 Monaco Yacht Show she held a seminar for Women in Leadership attended by close to 100 prominent women in field. Abi is proud to be a working mother with an (almost) 4 year old girl Beya and a baby boy Dillon.


Company: ACREW


AJ Anderson
Immediate Past President

Biography: Captain AJ Anderson has 40 years’ experience as a Merchant Marine Officer. AJ holds the post of Chief Executive Officer of Wright Maritime Group (WMG). Having participated in the MCA’s Large Yacht Code Working Group during the LY2 re-write, AJ continues to serve on the Cayman Islands Ship Owner’s Advisory Council. AJ has been an ISS Board Member since 2003 and serves as the ISS Technical Committee Chairman. AJ has been a member in the ISS Ethics Initiative and continues to work in the development of best business practice guidelines for the industry. WMG is a large yacht operations and management company with yachts up to 138 meters (450ft), operating globally. With over 2.5bn in the fleet portfolio and over 3bn delivered in construction, WMG is considered the leader in large yacht development, operations and management.


Company: Wright Maritime Group


André Jonker
Director

Biography: André Jonker is a well-known face within the small yachting industry family. Born in the Netherlands, he has been living in close vicinity to Abeking & Rasmussen for decades and knows the industry like the back of one´s hand. André started his career back in 1988 with the company ALJO in Northern Germany working in the Design Department for superyacht equipment. Pretty soon he stepped into Sales and was also in charge for Project Management. Over that time he got in contact with Designers, Owners Reps, Captains and of course other important people from the industry. In 2002, Abeking & Rasmussen employed him as a Project Manager for Super Yacht new builds. Since then, he delivered 10 Motor Yachts and number 11 is currently in build. He is working with all well-known designers as well as with all relevant Owner´s Management Teams. Next to the role as project manager he also supports the A&R Sales Department for all the important boat shows. Building Superyachts is not only a job, it is passion.


Company: Abeking & Rasmussen Schiffs- und Yachtwerft SE


Antonio Caviglia
Director

Biography: Antonio Caviglia joined the Oceanco Sales Team ten months ago as Sales Director based in the Monaco office. Antonio studied, lived and worked in the US for 15 years. Along with a mechanical and aerospace engineering degree and MBA from Cornell University, Antonio brings to the team 13 years of corporate experience in the automotive and manufacturing industries, and 15 years of experience in the yachting industry, working with respected brands covering a wide spectrum of yacht types and markets.


Company: Oceanco


Brendan O’Shannassy
Director

Biography: Brendan has served on the ISS Board since February 2018. Captain O’Shannassy is a career Mariner. He began is seafaring at 17 with an undergraduate degree and maritime cadetship under scholarship with the Royal Australian Navy. He then served at sea in Australian Naval ships before entering the commercial sector working in harbor tug and barge and offshore support. In 2001 he began in yachting and 16 years later he has worked with some of the yachting industry’s largest and most highly reputable yachts. His experience includes Captaincy of PRINCESS MARIANA, OCTOPUS, MY VAVAII and AMADEA. Having already developed a sound knowledge of seamanship and leadership as a commissioned naval officer and a commercial master, Brendan made the transition to yachting as a deckhand before working his way up to Captain. He views this as a unique perspective for a Master unlimited. He understands his crew, their concerns and their roles as he has walked in their shoes. There is an extended history of industry contribution through many published articles and presentations within forums such as GSF and ASMEX. Brendan’s strongest passion in yachting is to represent crew and the need for seafarers to be extended a duty of care within the industry. This is balanced by a belief that due to the increased size and complexity of modern yachts crew need to ‘step up’ and be worthy of their roles. Parallel to maritime commitments Brendan has also an established history in Social Engagement. Brendan has contributed to the goals of Blue Marine Foundation and also the Brain Tumour Charity through active fundraising. As a working Captain at sea as Captain on +100m Passenger Yacht, Brendan provides the ISS board with a direct link to the perspective of operational crew.


Company: KATANA


Cameron Mitchell
Director

Biography: Cameron Mitchell is the Director of the Isle of Man Ship Registry. He is a qualified Marine Engineer and has a Diploma in surveying of ships and yachts. More recently he has completed the Isle of Man Governments Senor Leadership Development Programme. After a seagoing career as an engineer working for Geest Line, Maersk and Farstad, Cameron moved to the Island in 2001 and joined the Isle of Man’s growing ship register, initially as a surveyor in 2003. He became its Deputy Director in 2018 and Director in 2019. Cameron has a genuine desire to see the Isle of Man continue to succeed as an international ship register and as a centre of excellence for maritime business. He enjoys promoting the Isle of Man around the globe to those who may not be aware of the benefits it has to offer. The Isle of Man Ship Registry was awarded The Best Shipping Registry 2019 by World Commerce Review; an accolade Cameron believes reflects the values and behaviours of a winning team. In June 2019 the Isle of Man Ship Registry was awarded No 1 position on the Paris MOU White List on Port State Control. Cameron describes this as a true reflection of an ongoing strategy with all commercial partners to maintain a registry of quality ships and yachts over quantity. Cameron enjoys fishing, golfing, rugby union, boating, trials bikes and the beautiful Isle of Man countryside.


Company: Isle of Man Ship Registry


Christelle Holler
Director

Biography: Christelle Holler was born in France and grew up in Lyon. She moved to Tahiti 20 years ago. Tahiti Private Expeditions, she has brought her focus on the company’s marketing and strategic developments and PR for the past 11 years. After graduating from business school, Christelle joined the pharmaceutical industry in the USA and Europe as Operational Manager, also in charge of European public relations and events before discovering the high-end hospitality industry working for the Aman group. Her background naturally led her to join the yachting industry a few years after her move to Tahiti. She started as a stewardess aboard a couple of luxury charter yachts travelling to the various islands of French Polynesia. She and her husband founded Tahiti Private Expeditions 12 years ago to meet a growing demand for excellence in diving and local knowledge onboard superyachts. She acts as Managing Director focusing on marketing / communication and strategic development. Additionally, Christelle consulted for 8 years with the local board of tourism. She initiated the first steps of promoting the destination to the industry worldwide – through events overseas, seminars, familiarization trips, working with the press while raising local authorities’ awareness of the superyacht development potential in the South Pacific. Within this frame, she managed to bring Tahiti as the Gala Destination Sponsor in 2014. She is also a member of the Marketing and Educational Committees. Of course, she is also an experienced keen diver!


Company: Tahiti Private Expeditions


Christina M M Norris
Director

Biography: Being the Chief Executive Designer of Oversee Yachts LLC. allows me to pursue my passion for yachting and fulfill client’s dreams. My innovative designs, ambition, global experiences and sense of duty make me qualified to promote and expand the mission of ISS. Staring in 1990, I have worked in many aspects of yacht design, specializing in full project management and interior design architecture. My yachts have been recognized for their unique harmony of beauty and scientific design. The 100’ M/Y Red Pearl, a finalist for the 2011 Show Boats Design Awards; S/Y 100’ Pangiea after ten years, is still breaking records in Mike Horn’s expeditions; the140’ M/Y Raffaella II, the largest yacht built in Brazil. More recently, Oversee Yachts was tasked to refit the Newcastle 129’ M/Y Safira. As the industry continues to change, it is important to preserve and revolutionize the values and interest of yachting. Striving to give back to the yachting community I served as a board member of the US Superyacht Association from 2014 to 2015, where I focused the association’s mission statement and I continue to advocate for the industry. The ideals of family yachting translated into my roll on the board of the Macatawa Bay Junior Sailing Association. As an outlet to share my vision, I have had the honor of speaking at key superyacht events such as, the Superyacht Design Week, Superyacht Design Symposium, Superyacht Global Forum, The New World of Luxury and hosted the Yachting 2012 Dutch Economic Mission to Brazil. Receiving my bachelor’s degree in Architecture and Urbanism in Brazil, working at Feadship and being fluent in five languages gives me a multi-dimensional international background.


Company: Oversee Yachts, LLC.


David Good
Director

Biography: David is the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian International Marine Export Group (AIMEX), Superyacht Australia (SYA) and Australian Commercial Marine Group (ACMG). David is a graduate of the Royal Military College, Duntroon and served as an Infantry Officer on active service including deployments with the United Nations and working in multinational command headquarters. David was previously the Manager Operations for the Far North Queensland Ports Corporation. Included in the ports David was responsible for was the port of Cairns containing three shipyards, HMAS Cairns and Australia’s largest superyacht marina, Marlin Marina. During this time David was the Deputy Chair of Superyacht Group Great Barrier Reef and a member of the SYA Working Groups for charter legislation and Great Barrier Reef superyacht anchorages. Since joining AIMEX in July 2018, he has successfully negotiated the Special Recreational Vessel Act 2019 (Charter Laws for Foreign Superyachts) and strengthened regional cooperation with Indonesia, Thailand and the South Pacific superyacht collaboration with NZ, Fiji, Tahiti, Cook Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia and PNG.


Company: Australian International Marine Export Group (AIMEX) and Superyacht Australia


Edward Roberts
Director

Biography: Ed has spent the past 25 years developing business in the luxury yachting market. Ed currently represents Grand Banks and a few superyacht clients. He recently represented the Dutch Superyacht builder Oceanco in the North American market. In past years Ed led the development of high end superyacht tenders, state of the art advanced composite superyacht builds and the promotion of superyacht interiors for a legacy US based shipyard. He served as Vice-President of Sales, Marketing and Product development for two other leading luxury yacht builders over a 20-year period. Ed’s extensive experience includes a high degree of success in direct sales, sales management, branding, marketing and new business development. Ed has considerable experience working directly with clients as well as industry professionals and is particularly adept at facilitating the communication and interface between the owner’s team, project managers, designers, engineers and the shop floor. Ed is an avid sailor, downhill skier, and cyclist who enjoys cooking and fine wine at his home in Boothbay Harbor, Maine.


Company: Roberts Consulting / Grand Banks Yachts


Erin Ackor
Vice President

Biography: Erin Ackor is a Partner at the maritime and aviation law firm Moore & Co, P.A., located in Miami, Florida, where she has been serving clients for more than 12 years, since Moore & Co. opened its doors in 2004. Erin is the current Treasurer of the ISS and has been a board member since 2014. Erin also serves on the Admiralty Law Committee of the Florida Bar, as well as being a member of the Maritime Law Association and the Florida Yacht Brokers Association. Erin spent several years as a professional crew member on board several different sailing yachts, transiting both the Panama and Suez Canals and sailing to numerous international destinations, before deciding to attend Maine Maritime Academy. Following her graduation from Maine Maritime Academy, Erin worked for both bulk and container cargo services, including Lykes Lines Limited headquartered in Tampa, Florida, before going to law school and joining Moore & Co. Since joining Moore & Co., Erin has represented clients in both transactional and litigation matters, primarily devoting her practice to advising clients in connection with vessel acquisition and sales, new construction, regulatory compliance, vessel finance, refurbishment and repair, chartering, registration and corporate structuring, crew employment issues and local customs and sales/use tax issues.


Company: Moore & Company, P.A.


Glen Allen
President

Biography: Derecktor Ft. Peirce International sales Former Fleet Captain for Fleet Miami, Glen managed nine yachts. He has been a professional captain for over 28 years, for both Sailing and Motor Yachts. Glen joined the U.S. Coast Guard in 1978, and was assigned to search & rescue patrols in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on an 82’ patrol boat operating between the U.S.V.I. and the Dominican Republic. In 1980, he was transferred to Houston, Texas, as a vessel traffic operator for the Houston and Galveston ship channels, a challenging and educational position. After an honorable discharge, he remained in Houston selling folding trimarans and teaching sailing until he moved back to Mississippi where he obtained an advanced captain’s license. Answering a Sail magazine advertisement for a captain’s position, he met the boss in Miami, Florida, accepted the job and took on his first command as captain, fell in love, married his boss and entered the world of professional yachting on a 65’ motorsailer. Glen has extensive experience in the charter yacht industry, first in the Florida Keys, then in the Virgin Islands. From charter yachts to private sailboats and on to private motor yachts, he has cruised the Caribbean, U.S. Northeast, Alaska, Mexico, Panama Canal, the Mediterranean as well as other countries. He was also a build captain for a Sparkman & Stephens 96’ sailboat built in the U.S., a 220’ Lürssen yacht built in Germany and a 147’ Feadship yacht built in Holland. Glen has overseen numerous yacht refits and improvement projects. And, after all of this, he finds the most satisfaction in his life’s career is now being able to mentor new and upcoming young people interested in yachting careers.


Company: Derecktor Fort Pierce Shipyard


Joel Walton
Director

Biography: Mr. Joel Walton has been the CEO of the Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands, which has owned and operated the Cayman Islands Shipping Registry (also known as the Cayman Registry) since May 2004. Previously, Mr. Walton served in various posts within the Cayman Islands public sector, including as Deputy Financial Secretary of the Cayman Islands for 11 years. Mr. Walton has held appointments on a number of boards and committees in the Cayman public and private sectors. These include: Chairman of the Maritime Sector Consultative Committee; Deputy Chairman of the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority; Chairman of the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority; Chairman of the Company Sector Consultative Committee; Deputy Chairman of the Cayman Islands Public Service Pensions Board, and Deputy Chairman of the Cayman Islands Stock Exchange Authority. Mr. Walton has also held other board appointments, including, with the Caribbean Utilities Company Ltd., a TSE-listed company, and with the Caribbean Development Bank. In 1983, Mr. Walton obtained a Bachelor of Administration (Hons) degree with a specialisation in Finance and an MBA in 1988 with a concentration in Finance and Strategic Planning.


Company: Cayman Island Shipping Registry


John Venables
Executive Officer

Biography: Served on the ISS Board since January 2008. John Venables has been devoted to the yacht industry for over 30 years, in both engineering and executive roles, and has been active in the International Superyacht Society from its beginning as a corporate, contributing or professional member of the Society. John is President & CEO of NAIAD MARITIME GROUP, INC, parent of the NAIAD DYNAMICS companies with operations in Connecticut, Maryland, Florida, Washington USA, Portsmouth UK and Maastricht Netherlands. ND specializes in marine engineering, and is a leader in Stabilization and Ship Motion Control for the luxury yacht, commercial and naval ship sectors. Related ND products include Bow Thrusters, Integrated Hydraulic Systems and Waterjets. In addition to the Naiad Marine Systems brand, recognized ND brands include Maritime Dynamics, the foremost innovator of Advanced Ride Control (Stabilization) systems for the commercial ferry and naval sectors, as well as Vosper brand stabilizers for military ships. A familiar presence in the luxury yacht industry, John and his team have supplied more stabilization systems than any other company worldwide. Throughout his career John has been actively engaged in marine & aerospace engineering and precision manufacturing. John has served as a Director on several corporate Boards, including VT US Inc, a corporation with annual sales in excess of $500 million. John holds three degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Business Management, including a Master of Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. He is a member of various professional organizations such as the Society of Naval Architects & Marine Engineers (SNAME), American Society of Naval Engineers (ASNE) and the US Naval Institute. John continues to be a strong advocate for the yacht industry and consistent supporter of the International Superyacht Society.


Company: Naiad Dynamics


Kristina Agustin
Director

Biography: During her last ISS term, Kristina has relocated back to her home country of Australia and continues her work in business relations and yacht management by engagement with Wright Maritime Group. As a qualified Australian lawyer with extensive superyacht industry and seafaring experience as a senior crew member, Kristina is also methodically building an Australian immigration advisory as a Registered Migration Agent, specialising in the superyacht sector.


Company: Wright Maritime Group - Australia


Lance Sheppard
Director

Biography: I have enjoyed an extensive and successful career within the Superyacht and Global Marine sector. Growing up in New Zealand my childhood and early years were spent on the water messing around in anything that floated. In my early 20’s I raced in many of the major sailing regattas in and around Europe, ran a sailing flotilla in Greece and then began my 15 year onboard Superyacht career, gaining my Class 4 Master Mariners ticket and skippering mostly large sailing yachts around the world. In 1999 I returned to New Zealand for the 2000 Americas Cup where I was one of the founding organizers of the first Millennium Cup Superyacht Regatta held that year and now an annual event. In that same year I was asked by a Canadian Superyacht builder to locate and secure land close to Auckland that had deep water access to enable them to relocate their shipyard to New Zealand. The result was I formed a Governmental and private sector task force that saw a surplus NZ Air Force base closed down for a public / private redevelopment project and the establishment of a dedicated Superyacht marine cluster. On the back of this project I was asked by the NZ Government to take up a Diplomatic posting in Ft Lauderdale to establish the first of the NZ Government trade agencies Beach Head offices to promote and establish trade opportunities for New Zealand’s Superyacht building and accessories sector which I oversaw for 5 years. During this time I was heavily involved with working within all areas of the US marine industry and was an active member of the International Superyacht Society, serving on the Board of Directors from 2004 to 2012. On my return to New Zealand I have remained actively involved in the Superyacht sector with my focus being on developing and delivering environmentally sustainable solutions into the industry. I am currently involved in several Superyacht initiatives and events around the upcoming Americas Cup and establishing a Superyacht and Global Marine division for New Zealand company ecostore positioning their 100% natural environmentally sustainable cleaning and body care products into the Superyacht, Cruise Ship and global marine market.


Company: ecostore


Maggie McDonald
ISS Administrator

Biography: Maggie comes to the International Superyacht Society with an exceptional resume of yachting industry experience. She began her yachting career in the charter marketing division of Camper & Nicholsons International. More recently, Maggie was the Marketing Director at Sanlorenzo Americas, which is a division of the Italian shipyard. Prior to her work in yachting, Maggie spent five years in the events department at the Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center, where she managed ten to twenty events per month. Maggie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Recreation and Leisure Administration with an emphasis in Event Planning from Florida State University. Maggie is actively involved in professional and charitable organizations including serving three years on the Board of Directors for Young Professionals in Yachting. Maggie’s marketing and events experience will greatly aid her in her role as part of the International Superyacht Society’s administration and marketing team.


Company: International Superyacht Society


Melissa Orlick
Treasurer

Biography: Melissa Orlick is a native of the Midwest and grew up in Illinois. Melissa graduated from Loyola University (Chicago) with a BA in Communications. During her time at Loyola Melissa lived in Rome, Italy studying at Loyola’s Rome Center, focusing on Art History. Melissa joined the CME Group in 2008 holding positions in Public Affairs and Television Broadcast Communications, where she produced and casted CME Group management and traders for national and international television broadcast segments. Melissa has been working in the superyacht sector since 2011 where she's had the opportunity to engage with the yachting community in business development, sales and brand awareness roles. Melissa attends relevant international maritime and satellite industry conferences and is a member of multiple superyacht associations and organizations, as well as a member of the Junior League of Greater Fort Lauderdale. Melissa resides in Fort Lauderdale and is active in the equestrian show jumping world.


Company: Intellian is the world’s leading provider of satellite antennas and terminals, with a mission to empower connectivity so connectivity can empower the world. The recognized leader in maritime satellite communication, Intellian is the trusted provider of worldwide connectivity solutions for VSAT and satellite TV systems, using state-of-the-art RF antenna technology. Expanding into the next phase of continuous connectivity, Intellian is empowering satellite communication around the globe to provide access at any time, anywhere, on land, in the air, and at sea. Intellian’s feature-rich, future-proof technology, groundbreaking research and development, with a passion to embrace and overcome challenges is accelerating the availability of fast, reliable communications for everyone.


Peter Southgate
Director

Biography: Peter is a shipbuilder, naval architect and marine surveyor with experience spanning nearly 40 years in the maritime industry and is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects. He began his career at UK based shipbuilder Vosper Thornycroft as an apprentice shipwright/metalworker and later as a naval architect in the ship design department. After a period with Lloyd’s Register specializing in yachts and passenger ships, Peter worked with the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency where he was involved in the implementation and expansion of the large yacht code and directly responsible for the development of LY2. He joined the Cayman Islands Shipping Registry as a marine surveyor where he was instrumental in developing the Register as the world leader in large yacht registration and more recently has played a lead role in the development of the Red Ensign Group Passenger Yacht Code, which was first published in November 2011. Peter has been a regular panelist at innumerous super yacht events and regularly contributes to articles on regulatory matters in industry publications. He is a well-respected authority on matters related to the construction and regulation of large yachts. Having obtained a Law Degree from the University of London in 2009, Peter has recently completed the Legal Practice Course with the University of Law in London and in addition to his regulatory responsibility, Peter has been involved in the development of legislation and providing advice on international maritime regulatory matters. After a period in yacht management, Peter is now the Managing Director at Southgate Maritime, a company specialising in providing regulatory services to the maritime industry. Peter is currently serving as Regional Director Americas/Yacht Codes Specialist to the Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands.


Company: Southgate Maritime Inc


Rafael Mataix
Director

Biography:

Rafael Cervantes Mataix has been running yachts professionally as captain for the last 21 years. He holds a master unlimited license. Rafael has successfully operated a number of yachts both power and sail. He has followed the construction of two yachts, Rafael has cruised extensively throughout the Mediterranean, Caribbean, Pacific, Central America and the South Pacific

He has been the captain onboard the 72 m yacht Azteca for the last 5 years. He is a member of  “The bridge committee” of the ISS

Being a professional mariner, he hopes to be able to collaborate with other professionals and bring to the table the perspective and experience of a master that deals with the daily challenges of running a luxury yacht, managing and training a large crew, effectively meeting owners expectations, managing large refits , etc. He would be delighted to have the opportunity to joining the board of directors of the ISS and continue to collaborate on the ongoing projects as well as starting new ones.


Company: Cervantes Yachting


Rebecca Taranto
Secretary

Biography: Rebecca Cahilly Taranto began her career in the yachting industry in the early 2000s, working first as an editorial assistant for Jill Bobrow – the editor of Boat International USA Magazine – in a charming little office overlooking a covered bridge in Waitsfield, Vermont. But, as with any juicy “how’d you get into yachting” story, it was a winding path that led her to the world of big boats. After graduating from Virginia Tech in 1996 with a degree in International Business and French, Rebecca received a diploma in Human Rights Law from the International Institute of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France. Intent on making a difference in the world, she took an internship opportunity with a non-governmental advocacy organization at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland and moved from there to Washington, D.C. looking for work in Human Rights. It was a job in marketing that would pay the bills, so she took a role with a marketing agency focused on sports marketing and socially responsible campaigns. In 1998, an opportunity with Ben & Jerry’s ice cream at the company headquarters in Burlington, Vermont took her to Vermont, and from there she decided to help her family launch and market a series of high-end educational board games. It was there that she was chatting with Jill, a longtime family friend, who mentioned she needed some general copyediting and office management help. Rebecca began working full time for Boat International in 2002. Three years later, Boat International came under new ownership, so Rebecca agreed to relocate to Fort Lauderdale and open a new office. She assumed the role of Editor of Boat International USA magazine in 2005. In 2009 the company acquired ShowBoats magazine and Rebecca assumed responsibilities for that title, during that time writing and editing the annual Megayachts hardcover books, CharterFleet and a variety of supplemental publications. The role afforded the opportunity to visit shipyards all over the world and yacht construction quickly became her area of focus. She stepped down from her editorial role after the birth of her 2nd child in 2011 and founded the boutique creative agency, Superyacht Creative with her husband, Boat International’s former Art Director. Today she writes for a variety of luxury lifestyle magazines on topics from fine dining to yachts, the arts and fashion. She writes the in-house hotel magazines for Marriott Harbor Beach and Margaritaville and contributes regularly for Venice magazine. Her clients in the yachting industry range from the top builders and designers to yacht owners, brokerage houses and marine businesses around the world. Rebecca maintains relationships with yachting industry operators around the world and is inspired to work on causes that advance the industry as a whole. She lives in Fort Lauderdale (the longest she’s ever lived anywhere) with her husband, Richard, their two children, two cats and one amazing dog. https://www.superyachtcreative.com


Company: Superyacht Creative


Rick Thomas
Director

Biography: The founder of Nautical Structures Industries, which designs and manufactures high-end yacht equipment, specializing in hydraulic motion-and-control (tender-handling, watertight closures and boarding equipment). The nature of his business allows him to work directly with virtually all of the larger production and custom yacht builders around the world. His responsibilities allow him the opportunity to visit a large number of these shipyards every year. He works directly with the managing directors, project managers and engineering staff of these yards and in this process has developed a unique perspective of the industry's custom yacht building opportunities and challenges. Rick understands the symbiotic relationship that a quality equipment supplier must forge with the naval architect, yacht management company and the yacht builder to support the effort of building a custom yacht. He looks forward to an opportunity to give back to an industry that has provided him so much opportunity over the past thirty-plus years.


Company: Nautical Structures


Silvia Nordio
Director

Biography: Silvia Nordio: Natural multicultural and multiethnic interpersonal relationship skills. Excellent communication and presentation skill, consistent work discipline and commitment, systematic and independent working procedure with considerable personal involvement, team player, good judgment, initiative, creativity and business-oriented mind. Deep understanding of the luxury global market. With her education including • EDUCATION BA in Sociology University of Urbino, Italy - 1996 • BA I.S.E.F. (Superior Institute of Physical Education) University of Urbino, Italy - 1988


Company: Ferretti Group America


Steven Bates
Director

Biography: As an avid sailor and while Competing in the Antigua Sailing Week, over 25 years ago, Steven secured a deckie role on a busy 42m charter sailing yacht while in Antigua. This was the start of his career in the super yacht industry, which compared to today, very little was known about the world of Super Yachts. Steven changed from Sailing Yachts to Motor yachts, when an opportunity arose for a position onboard the 59m, Motor Yacht October Rose as the Bosun/Diver Master, which he was successful in securing. He spent the next 8 years with this Owner and worked on the various yachts that he had. Competing his Master 3000GT licence in early 2000 and shortly afterwards, secured his first command as the delivery Captain, at that time, one of the largest and the most powerful motor yacht in the industry at 30 years old. In 2007, upon the arrival of his first born, Steven moved ashore with the family and successfully made the transition to shore side by working for a New Zealand shipbuilding company as their Sales and Marketing Manager. From there Steven moved into the CEO role of Yacht Lifeline, which was then acquired and integrated into Medaire in 2011. During this time in New Zealand, Steven also served as a Board Member for the New Zealand Marine Export Group. Steven is currently the Global General Manager for the Luxury Yacht market segment for the Aviation and Maritime business line, comprising of MedAire, Future Care and Medsea businesses at International SOS. He has worked with MedAire since 2011. Steven is very passionate about the yachting industry having been intimately involved with multiple aspects of it for over 25 years. He is keen to see it to continue to grow as it becomes a more established career path for new persons entering the industry and technology pushes the boundaries on design and innovations.


Company: MedAire


Tony Browne
Director

Biography:

Tony grew up boating in coastal Tasmania, eventually teaching sail-training on a square-rigged sailing vessel during his spare time in his early 20’s. He moved to a professional yachting career 1997 which led to 10 years’ onboard experience in both private and charter - 5 as a Captain, two circumnavigations of the globe, and over 80,000 nautical miles. His final year ‘onboard’ was spent in the yard as the build captain of a 40m sailing yacht. Drawing from his experience of the varying standards of worldwide marinas, over the last 14 years, Tony has managed the Porto Montenegro Marina vision and team from early design, construction, and financial development, through to all ongoing operational aspects of this multi-award winning, industry-leading Superyacht marina. He is also the current Chairman of the Board for the Global Marina Institute. This position affords him the opportunity to regularly meet and collaborate with senior marina professionals worldwide, and to provide input in to the consistency of marina training programs, operational best practice, regulatory compliance, and environmental sustainability standards. All of these experiences have required collaborative leadership excellence, input into existing and new government legislation, mentoring industry professionals progressing through their career pathways, and the promotion, development, and growth of our industry across multiple platforms, including regular presentation and speaking engagements. As a board member of the International Superyacht Society, Tony would use his extensive background and experience to assist this important industry society in maintaining its mission and vision. He also believes with his senior position in the Marina Industry, there is a great opportunity for enhanced collaboration and dialogue between the Superyacht and Marina sectors, with a particular focus on a sustainable future.


Company: Porto Montenegro


Vanessa Stuart
ISS Administrator

Biography: ISS Administrator since 2000. Along with her administration duties she’s also an independent trainer for Yacht Interior Crew, where her written manual cover all types of interior services. Prior to becoming land based, Vanessa worked on Superyachts as a chief stewardess where she completed 13 Atlantic crossings and several re-fits. Vanessa has a BA(Hons) in Fine Arts which has complemented her work with in the yachting industry, giving her the understanding and passion for the artistic sensibilities of design and space planning.


Company: International Superyacht Society