Jake Emmert’s childhood was spent exploring the picturesque hill country in Austin, Texas. It was his mother who opened the doors to an entirely new world for him when she introduced him to diving at the age of 12. With his mother lacking a dive buddy, she had Jake get certified and accompany her on a dive to Pelican Rock in Cabo San Lucas. Those dives were nothing short of breathtaking, as he was surrounded by huge schools of fish and congregations of majestic stingrays. That experience was a defining moment in his life, and he knew he was hooked on diving.
Jake begin his journey into diving operations as an undergraduate student participating and supporting theTexas A&M University at Galveston’s (TAMUG) Dive Program.
During that time, he took every opportunity to learn and participate in diving operations, including far-reaching projects 100 miles off the Texas coast in the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS). While completing graduate school at TAMUG, Jake continued to participate in diving operations that enabled him to land an internship at Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Artificial Reef Program. When the Dive Safety Officer position for Moody Gardens on Galveston Island became available, he cut his internship short to begin administering a program conducting over 2,000 dives annually. The program has since seen much success not only for on site for animal husbandry operations, but also for the now established scientific diving operations in the field. Jake accounts this success with an opportunity to grow abilities of a zoo and aquarium dive program within an institution (Moody Gardens) that provides support.
Jake is a NAUI Instructor Trainer and Technical Instructor, American Academy of Underwater Sciences Scientific Diving Instructor, DAN Instructor Trainer, CCR diver, and Emergency Medical Technician/Diving Medical Technician.
He has been recognized for his contributions to diving by receiving the National Association for Underwater Instructor’s Outstanding Contribution to Diving Award in 2018, the FGBNMS Volunteer of the Year and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Wavemaker Award Nominee in 2019, and the American Academy of Underwater Science’s Distinguished Achievement Award in 2022.
Over the years, Jake has worked tirelessly to become a successful NAUI and dive industry leader.
These achievements speak to his commitment and dedication to advancing the field of diving and supporting conservation and science efforts. His focus remains on taking care of people and facilitating success within the diving and conservation fields, is a staunch advocate for pursuing a career in diving, and encourages others to not be afraid to follow their dreams of a profession in diving.
If you’re interested in being featured in the NAUI dive spotlight article series, please reach out to Jeremy Gabrielson at email@example.com we look forward to hearing from you and sharing your story with the world!