Many times I am asked by my clients and there families what ever made you get into doing this type of work. Well, the stock answer is …. ” I love the Sea.” Almost any Captain will boast about their love for the water, the open air and the smell of the sea and the wind in your face while underway. All the glorious things that make people envious of that life style. BUT !!!!! What’s really in a Captain ?

The Captain has to be the good guy, even when he/she has to be the bad guy. Why, because EVERYTHING that happens aboard a vessel is ultimately the responsibility of the Captain. Let’s start by defining what is a Captain.


– The one that doesn’t have to look up the rules of the road, because a Captain knows them

– A Mother, a father, a counselor, a priest, a chaplain etc., a friend, an enemy, the one feared, the one respected, the one who is awake when everyone else is sleeping, the one with energy when others are tired. The single one individual that EVERYONE looks to, not some of the time, but all of the time.

– The one who commands respect by their actions and tone, not by demand or iniform.

– The only one single person on board a vessel that is always wrong, or accused of making a mistake if something goes wrong. Remember … the sea is not forgiving, nor is the United States Coast Guard. Their rules of the road are in place for the safety of everyone at sea. From the fisherman in his canoe, to the passenger on a luxury cruise liner.

– The ability to task manage, deligate, utilize resources, remain calm under all circumstances. DO THE RIGHT THING.

– Often times, the Captain holds the financial responsibility of the vessel as well as fiscal management, records etc, including maintenance and overseeing repairs.

The list goes on and on. But the important thing to remember in the short article is that when any passenger steps aboard your vessel, they are doing so with the thought that YOU, the Captain, are responsible and know what you are doing. It is with that confidence that they enjoy themselves and their experience on your vessel, be it for    commercial or personal use. Many times I have taken family and friends on my personal boat and they say, hey don’t be so serious, put it on auto pilot and party, have a drink etc. NEVER forget for a single moment, that anything can happen at sea at any given moment, without warning. Therefore, the responsibility, whether your being paid, or it’s your personal vessel, for the safety and the lives of the people on board your vessel is not one that you to take lightly because it’s all yours. It’s serious business. There’s plenty of time for the party when the boat is at the dock.

In closing …. the training we have all undergone, and the years of experience we have all gotten, dictate to us what is means to be a vessel Captain. You get it all, the guts, the glory, the ups and the downs. You learn to have eyes all around your head and to be able to see independently out of each. You mind and our actions are one, without hesitation or reservation. When you can do all these things and more …… YOU ARE A BOAT CAPTAIN. I salute you all