Meet the Team!
Location: West End, Tortola
Welcome aboard, dawgs! We’re so excited that our shipmates are finally arriving at their new home for the next three weeks, our beautiful catamaran known as Yo Dawg. Our team has been prepping our boat for Day 1, from pumping dive tanks to sorting gear, stocking the galley with food, cleaning from bow to stern, and so much more. Despite the extra challenges posed by COVID-19, we are so glad that we’re able to welcome students for a fun, safe summer. Here are the staff members for your upcoming adventure!
Mara Booth: Skipper and Dive Instructor
Mara grew up in New York City and first came to AQ in 2013 as a new shipmate eager to learn sailing and diving for the first time. After four summers sailing as a student, she was completely hooked and went on to become a staff member. She took a gap year before college to sail with Seamester aboard S/Y Argo, crossing the Indian Ocean from Australia to South Africa, and traveling to get her PADI scuba instructor certification. When not spending her summers at ActionQuest, Mara is a student at the University of Colorado Boulder.
Anna Pedersen: Marine Biologist and Divemaster
Anna grew up on the Central Coast of California, surrounded by the ocean and the beach. She went on to study Conservation and Resource Studies and Global Poverty at the University of California, Berkeley, and had the opportunity to sail aboard S/Y Ocean Star as a study abroad experience while in school. Since, she has worked as an outdoor marine science educator for 2 years, both abroad in French Polynesia and closer to home in San Diego, CA. With a strong passion for the ocean and conservation, she has also spent time in the field studying Northern Elephant Seals on the Farallon Islands and volunteering with various research institutions. She loves to travel, surf, and depict the natural world through art and photography. While traveling along the Great Barrier Reef in 2018, she became a PADI Divemaster and loves spending time beneath the waves. Anna is excited to work with students in and out of the water this summer, sharing her love for marine biology, diving, and sailing!
Alessandro Cecchin: Dive Instructor
Alessandro got his open water diver certification in 2016 and fell in love immediately. After his first summer at AQ, he was totally hooked! He couldn’t get enough. But as the school year dragged on, it became harder for him to dive, and slowly that love faded away. It wasn’t until he joined AQ again that following summer that he rediscovered his passion again. Although, as he rediscovered his passion, he realized something for the first time- diving can be more than just a hobby, more than just a summer activity. Since then, he has been working towards his instructor’s license. Now, finally, he will be able to do what he’s wanted to do for so long- teach scuba diving! Teaching students at AQ will be his first time, and he is so stoked! There is nowhere he’d rather do it!