JOIN US VIA ZOOM FOR SOME INTERESTING CONVERSATIONS . . .
When we had a physical store location, we'd occasionally try to get
a Reef Seeker Dive Cub going. But it always seemed hit or miss.
Lots of work for little return. But Zoom has changed all of that.
(Perhaps this is the one good thing to come out of the pandemic.) So
we're doing in 2021 is hosting a monthly "Zoom Seekers" meeting with
notable speakers from around the country. Each meeting starts
at 7:30PM Pacific time on the second Tuesday of the month (except
for January) and will go for about an hour with a Q&A session to
follow each talk. Scroll down to see who we've got scheduled and what
they'll talk about. Hope you can join us.
JANUARY 5 • DAN ORR • "FIVE MISTAKES IN DIVER SAFETY"
Dan Orr retired as President of
Divers Alert Network (DAN) after 23 years. Prior to coming to
DAN, Dan worked and taught in recreational, military,
commercial, and scientific dive environments. He has published
and co-authored over 200 articles as well as a dozen books and
manuals. Dan has also been honored by being the recipient of the
NOGI Award in Sports/Education, the Leonard Greenstone Award for
Diving Safety, the Our World-Underwater Award, Beneath the Sea’s
Diver of the Year, the Wyland Foundation Award for Lifetime
Achievement and the DEMA Reaching Out Award. He is a member of
the Hall of Fame for Disabled Divers, the Diving Industry Hall
of Fame, and the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame.
FIVE MISTAKES IN
Recreational scuba diving
is inherently safe but is very unforgiving of mistakes.
When you look at the available diving accident data,
especially the "triggering events" in diving fatalities,
the majority are either directly or indirectly caused by
human error. With the appropriate amount of forethought
and preparation, divers should be able to reduce the
likelihood that when something does happen, an incorrect
choice will plunge the diver into a cascade of events
leading towards truly unwanted circumstances.
IF YOU MISSED
DAN'S TALK, VIEW IT ON OUR YouTube PAGE IN FULL:
DAN ORR • FIVE MISTAKES IN
FEBRUARY 9 • JEFF BOZANIC • "DIVING IN ANTARCTICA"
Jeff Bozanic has been diving for nearly 50 years. A prolific
writer, adventurer and scientist, he has participated in over 70
scuba diving expeditions to countries scattered around the
globe. Cumulatively he has spent more than a year living and
diving in Antarctica on multiple expeditions, recently returning
from a collecting expedition to South Georgia Island and the
Antarctic Peninsula. He is the recipient of many awards,
including being honored as the DAN/Rolex Diver of the Year and
the recipient of NAUI's Lifetime Achievement Award.
DIVING IN ANTARCTICA
Antarctica... just the name sends shivers down the spines
of most people. Stories of heroic journeys, howling winds,
bitter cold, and epic tragedies come to mind... but so do
visions of penguins, whales, and majestic landscapes unsullied
by the activities of mankind. Unknown to most, the underwater
vistas are equally majestic! Under the surface swarm
dense schools of krill, leopard and fur seals, colorful
invertebrates, and wild and wonderful animals totally unlike
those found anywhere else on the planet. Come visit this
spectacular location through the images of Jeff Bozanic, and see
what it is like both above and below the surface.
MARCH 9 • MIKE EMMERMAN • "LIFE IN THE FAST LANE"
Michael N. Emmerman leads an interesting life. He's a money
manager at a large NYC investment firm, he's a Board-Certified
Forensic Examiner, serves as a Government Liaison Officer for
the American Red Cross, and is an Honorary Deputy Chief of both
the New York City Police Department and the Fire Department of
New York. He's also a longtime diver with an impressive list of
credentials. which include being the former president of the NE
chapter of the Undersea & Hyperbaric Medical Society. Mike has a
broad base of self-driven research, he has become an authority
on dive safety, physiology and technology. Throughout his
career, he has delved into topics from the safety of flying
after diving, to the implementation of the first dive computers.
His research has served as a foundation for modern safety
protocols. In 2017, Mike was named the DAN/Rolex
Diver-of-the-Year recipient. Over the past 40+ years, Mike has
taught diving safety and emergency response courses to thousands
of law enforcement and civilian divers across the United States.
Mike has carved out some time to speak with us about diving
safety issues he has researched over the years.
LIFE IN THE FAST LANE
While researching a series of diving fatalities in the 1990s,
Mike found a correlation between a particular set of personality
traits that the divers exhibited that may have contributed to
actions they took on the dives that cost them their lives. Mike
will discuss these traits and how all of us can take steps to
understand our own personal risk profiles.
APRIL 13 • DR. DOUG EBERSOLE • "DIVING IN THE ERA OF COVID"
Douglas Ebersole, MD, is an interventional cardiologist at the
Watson Clinic LLP in Lakeland, Florida and is the Director of
the Structural Heart Program at Lakeland Regional Health, an
850-bed tertiary referral hospital in Lakeland. He has been
diving since 1974 and is an avid recreational diver, technical
diver, rebreather diver, and cave diver. He is also a
recreational, technical, rebreather, and cave diving instructor
for several training agencies, and is a cardiology consultant to
Divers Alert Network. In other words, Doug's experience and
interest touch all aspects of the diving community.
DIVING IN THE ERA OF COVID-19
The world is currently dealing with a generation-defining
pandemic in COVID-19 that has affected all aspects of our
lives. This includes both our ability to enjoy the sport we
love and the diving industry as a whole. Doug speaks not only
from his medical background, but also from personal knowledge,
as he contracted and has recovered from COVID-19. He'll provide
an overview of the presentation and pathophysiology of the virus
and its complications as well as discussing ways the diving
industry has changed and will need to keep changing in terms of
disinfecting gear, providing safe dive training, and assuring a
safe environment for crew and customers on dive charters. Finally, the presentation will provide a framework for divers
who have contracted the virus to safely return to diving.
MAY 11 • DANNY CHARLTON & ANGELIQUE BATUNA • "DIVING INDONESIA WITH
Danny & Angelique are the owners of Murex Dive Resort in Manado,
Sulawesi (Indonesia), a frequent Reef Seekers destination. Danny
holds a BS in Tourism Studies and worked in corporate America
for several years before venturing to Indonesia. A one-year
contract evolved into meeting and marrying Angelique and a
permanent expatriate life.
In 2002, Danny and Murex expanded their operations and opened
the dive concession at Lembeh Resort (in the Lembeh Strait).
Murex also owns a resort on Banka Island and the three
properties combine to offer some unique diving opportunities.
Angelique's father, the late Dr. Han Batuna, was a diving
pioneer in Sulawesi. So Angelique grew up with Murex and along
the way, acquired a degree in Financial Management. Although she
assisted her parents in the Murex operations all of her life, in
2003 she began an NGO career; first with USAID, then as Program
Coordinator for the World Wildlife Foundation in North Sulawesi.
Angelique has passionately spearheaded several legal cases which
have successfully thwarted illegal activities aimed at degrading
the local environment and decaying the social fabric of local
communities. Angelique has a deep passion for diving and
providing opportunities for tourists to experience all that
Murex and Sulawesi have to offer, while still maintaining
respect for the environment and health of the reefs in the area.
DIVING INDONESIA WITH MUREX DIVE RESORTS
Danny & Angelique will give a joint talk about all that the area
has to offer in terms of diving and will also touch on their
unique "Passport to Paradise" program, which allows you to spend
time at all three Murex properties: Murex Manado, Murex Bangka,
and Lembeh Resort.
JUNE 15 • MARTY SNYDERMAN • "FINDING & PHOTOGRAPHING FISHES
landlocked Little Rock, Arkansas, decided to pursue his dream of
chasing fish with a camera during his college years at
Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. (Prior to that
chapter of his life Marty had hoped to play professional
baseball. Although he made his Little League All-Star team as a
shortstop and pitcher when he was only eleven years old, he
later discovered that he lacked the power, speed, and
coordination to realize his dream.) He got his scuba
industry start working at the legendary Dive Locker in San
Diego, which was home to many other famous shooters including
Chuck Nicklin, Jack McKenney, and Howard Hall. Mary was honored
with the 2018 NOGI Award in the Arts by the Underwater Academy
of Arts and Sciences, won an EMMY Award for cinematography, is
the 2008 recipient of DEMA’s prestigious Reaching Out Award, is
widely published, and is the Marine Life Editor for Dive
Training magazine as well as serving as Senior Editor for California
Diving News. Marty’s still photography has also been used
by the National Geographic Society, Nature Conservancy, National
Wildlife Federation, Sport Diver, and more. His cinematography
has been used by National Geographic, Howard Hall Productions,
the PBS series Nature, BBC,
Discovery Channel, and Audubon, to name a few. Marty's also the
author of ten books that delve into a variety ocean-related
Marty feels certain that he has blown more magical opportunities
and dinged or drowned more expensive camera equipment than most
folks do but over time, he has managed to capture enough nice
images and film sequences to enable his editors to create a
persona that allowed him to also be named the recipient of the
California Diving News 2020 Scuba Service Award. Ain’t
life the strangest thing ever!
FINDING & PHOTOGRAPHING FISHES & THEIR BEHAVIORS
about it, the amazing diversity in the world of fishes is a
feature that brings many people to diving. But there is a lot
more to enjoying the world of fishes than just seeing them and
moving on. Learning where and when to look for different
species, watching fishes go about their daily lives, gaining
some understanding of their nuanced behaviors, and photographing
them can add a lot of fun to your diving. Certainly,
photographing fishes well is an endeavor filled with challenges.
But it is also very educational in terms of getting to know
Mother Ocean, and it is lot of fun and extremely rewarding when
you capture the images you have in mind. In this “Zoominar,”
Marty will share insights into how to find various fish species
in the reef communities and in the muck at the Atlantis resorts
at Dumaguete and Puerto Galera in the Philippines, into
behaviors, and his thoughts and techniques about what he does to
try to capture his fish photographs. He has been trying to get
those perfect shots for almost 50 years. There will be some Q &
A. In addition, Marty will tell us about his
latest endeavor, teaching one-on-one, customized classes in
underwater photography using Zoom software.
JULY 13 • BILL MACDONALD • TBD
Bill Macdonald is an
independent filmmaker and speaker. From 1975 to 1980, he was a
member of the Cousteau dive and film team and had the
opportunity to work with Philippe Cousteau on a number of
projects. Scuba diving and physical disability became a focal
point for this independent film production house in 1984.
Macdonald was a producer of “Freedom in Depth.” Hosted by
co-producer Jean-Michel Cousteau, this film explored the
relationship between physically disabled individuals and the
freedom that they found while they were in the water.
Environmental awareness has always been a key element that’s
incorporated into Macdonald’s films. Another contribution by
this independent filmmaking enterprise was the film “Synthetic
Sea” which focused on making individuals aware of the enormous
amounts of debris that are accumulating in the ocean. In 1996,
while working with his wife Susan, they produced the “Secrets of
California Waters.” One of the exciting aspects of the
underwater world is that you never know what you will find. In
this film, many secrets were revealed as the couple discovered
many types of rare encounters with aquatic life such as elephant
seal harems and basking sharks. Macdonald also created “More
Secrets of California Waters,” which highlighted the kelp
In 2016, Bill was inducted into the International Scuba Diving
Hall of Fame.
As you can see from his bio, Bill's lead an interesting life and
had a varied career within the diving industry. I've given him
caret blanche to talk about whatever he wants but as of this
writing (12/29), he hasn't yet let me know what that is.
However, I assume whatever he chooses will be of much interest
and well worth your time to invest in front of your computer
listening to what he has to say. (I do hope to get a better
picture from him though . . .)
AUGUST 10 • BILL ACKER • "DIVING YAP - MORE THAN JUST MANTAS"
Bill is constantly asked “What brought you to Yap?” and
invariably answers with tales of reading Mitchner, Conrad and
Kipling plus watching anything produced about the South Pacific.
The lure of the tropics has been in Bill’s blood since his early
childhood days. Bill first came to Yap as a Peace Corps
Volunteer in 1976.
After two years in the Peace Corps and then some time in Hawaii,
Bill got a call to return to Yap to become the manager of the
WAAB Transportation Company, which is when he took up scuba
diving. Bill conceived the idea of opening Yap’s first
dive shop and by the summer of 1986, Yap Divers opened for
business. As they say, “The rest is history.” Bill discovered
and developed the manta dives have culminated in Yap being one
of the top international dive destinations in the world. With
very few exceptions, all of the dive sites in Yap were found,
explored and named by Bill. With over 9,000 dives in the waters
of Yap, Bill remains active in exploring new dive sites and
teaching the sport to people interested in sharing his love for
the ocean environment. Along the way, Bill met and married
Patricia Mangthin of Yap and they have 4 wonderful children (Numie,
Nathan, Valerie and Opie) who are all active in the sport of
diving and share in their father’s commitment to safety and
preservation of this natural resource. Bill was inducted into
the International Diving Hall of Fame in 2014. These days, as a
new retiree, Bill is found at his cleaning station at the back
deck of the Mnuw (the sailing ship/restaurant at manta
Ray Bay Resort & Yap Divers), ready to help with suggestions on
diving, fishing or just to swap stories, some of which he'll
tell in this talk.
DIVING YAP - MORE THAN JUST MANTAS
Yap has some of the most interesting and diverse dive sites,
from the well-known Manta cleaning stations to the lesser-known
Mandarinfish mating spot only five minutes from Manta Ray Bay
Resort. In this talk, Bill will share with you some of his
favorite Yap diving spots, delve into dive stories (he's been
known to have a few), and explain why this remote island in the
middle of the Pacific has so grabbed his heart for all of these
years. He's may be known as "The Manta Man" but Bill is also
quite happy to be yapping about all things Yap.
SEPTEMBER 14 • PETE "NETDOC" MURRAY • "SECRETS OF SCUBABOARD"
Pete grew up in Orlando and took his first breath underwater
under the watchful eye of a Navy Master Chief and family friend
in 1969 at the age of 12. That encounter changed his life.
Since that time, he’s logged over 3,000 dives
and remains very active living in Suwannee County Florida in
Cave Country. Frustrated by what he considered a gap in the
quality of scuba instruction, he became an instructor in 2001.
He enjoys introducing people to scuba and the joys of being in
trim & neutral from their first pool encounter. The growth of
the internet and online communities was intriguing to Pete, who
worked as a network consultant in the late 1990s. He signed up
for a small site called “Scubaboard” and became the owner in
2002. At that time, there were less than 3,000 members but the
site has consistently grown and today, there are more than
300,000 registered members on ScubaBoard. Pete estimates that
there are more than 1000 entries posted on the ScubaBoard site
on any given day. “A key element of diving is having a buddy.
ScubaBoard is a way for divers to have thousands of virtual dive
buddies in almost every area of the world. A certified
rebreather diver for over ten years, Murray enjoys testing new
ideas and equipment and frequently receives “care packages” from
friends in the industry looking for his opinions as a “beta
SECRETS OF SCUBABOARD
When Pete joined ScubaBoard back in 2002, the Internet certainly
was not then what it is today. Neither is ScubaBoard. Pete will
tell you how and why ScubaBoard into the valuable diver resource
that it is today as well as take you through the trials and
tribulations of that growth, which included a very nasty legal
battle. But you'll get a feel how, through his guidance and
stewardship, ScubaBoard persevered and survived. And if we're
lucky, he may even tell you how his nickname of "NetDoc" came to
OCTOBER 12 • JON COUNCIL • "CIRCUMNAVIGATION DIVE OF CATALINA"
Originally from Seattle, Washington, Capt.
Jon began underwater exploration at the age of eighteen, while
diving in Dutch Harbor, Alaska in 1974. His diving
experience spans forty-seven years with the past thirty-three of
it as a scientific research diver, submersible pilot/instructor
and Aquanaut. His career has taken him around the globe from the
arctic to the tropics with projects ranging from collecting
subsea biological data beneath arctic ice for the EPA and NOAA,
to searching out ancient shipwrecks in the Aegean Sea with Dr.
George F. Bass for the Institute of Nautical Archaeology and the
National Geographic Society. Expeditions he has been a member of
have been featured through Nat-Geo, the Discovery Channel, the
BBC, the History Channel and others. He has worked directly with
NASA to help train astronauts underwater in preparation for
future space missions to sitting down with school children to
teach them about the mysteries and majesty of marine organisms.
Jon has been blessed by working with, and being influenced by
the very best within the oceanographic, deep submergence and
diving industries. Because of it, he was inspired to become an
avid diving historian and now operates the “Avalon Diving
History Exhibit” museum in southern California’s Catalina Island
where he resides. In 2018 his works involved with historical
preservation were recognized and honored by the Historical
Diving Society when he was presented with the Nick Icorn Diving
Heritage Award. In January of 2020 he was elected President of
the Historical Diving Society USA where he is able to utilize
his years of experience to promote and further the mission to
preserve and educate future generations about the unique and
important contributions to science, exploration, medicine, and
the human condition made possible through the diving industry.
CIRCUMNAVIGATING CATALINA ON A SINGLE DIVE
How long can you make a tank last and, more to the point, how
far could you get? Could you possibly make it around . . . an
entire island? Jon Council did just that (though admittedly not
on a single tank). Jon holds the single-dive world-record for
completing a 52-mile circumnavigation around Catalina in 23˝
hours in 2004. And this is what this cha is all about. He'll go
over the reason behind the dive, how it came to be, what the
logistical challenges were, and other aspects of this remarkable
NOVEMBER 9 • RENEE GRINNELL CAPOZZOLA • "FROM POINT-&-SHOOT TO
Renee is a Southern California
native who started scuba diving in 2004 and is now known
throughout the world for her award-winning split-level and
wide-angle images. Her work is an intriguing combination of
artistic talent honed through oil painting during her youth and
a professional background in biology. In just the past five
years, her pictures have been awarded over forty prestigious
international accolades including “USA Photographer of the Year”
from the 2019 World Shootout and the “David Doubilet Award of
Excellence” in the Portfolio category from the 2020 Ocean
Geographic Pictures of the Year. Likewise, her work has appeared
throughout the world in numerous print and online dive
publications. Renee’s passion for underwater photography and
appreciation of marine animals complements her love of travel
and adventure. When she is not in the water with her camera,
Renee teaches biology and educates her students about the
challenges facing our oceans and the importance of conserving
FROM POINT-AND-SHOOT TO PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER
Everyone starts somewhere. It wasn't too long ago that Renee
didn't know her f-stop from her ISO, not to mention DOF and POV.
But through hard work, trial and error, and dedication, she has
gone from pushing the shutter button and hoping for the best to
being an acclaimed award-winning published and sought-after
shooter. In this talk, she'll share the story of her journey,
share the triumphs and hurdles, and perhaps even inspire you to
pursue a similar path (or at least take better pictures).
DECEMBER 14 • DOUG & LORENZA SLOSS • "TAKE BETTER PICTURES"
Doug and Lorenza Sloss
have worked in the tourism and hospitality business for several
years aboard the Aggressor liveaboards in Kona, Hawaii and
Palau, Micronesia. There, they have taught hundreds of people
how to dive and shoot photography. Their passion for teaching
translated into the creation of a successful series of video
tutorials that help photographers of all levels to effectively
and professionally post-process their images. Their
award-winning photography has appeared in Sport Diver, Scuba
Diving, Scuba Diver Australasia, Islands, Asia Diver and many
other magazines and books worldwide. Doug has been Field Editor
and regular columnist for Scuba Diver Australasia magazine.
They also lead photo
photography and digital editing, both above and below the
TAKE BETTER PICTURES - IF SAM CAN DO IT, WHY NOT YOU?
Everyone who has ever held a camera in their hand wants to take
better pictures than they currently do. And for those who are on
that quest to be the next underwater Ansel Adams, Doug & Lorenza
can help point you there. In this talk, they'll go through some
of the basics and will share with you how they got their son,
Sam, interested and involved in underwater photography.
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