NAUI Recognizes 2019 Award Honorees at DEMA

With DEMA behind us, NAUI wanted to take a moment and recognize our award honorees for 2019.

This year, NAUI recognized 82 of its members and three non-members. These include two Lifetime Achievement Awards, four Hall of Honor inductees, 46 Outstanding Service members, 17 Continuing Service members, two Albert Pierce Medal of Heroism awardees, two Charlie Brown Memorial awardees, two Environmental Enrichment awardees, two Outstanding Training Support awardees, one Honorary Member, and four Next Generation Leader Award recipients.

NAUI awards recognize the contributions and services of industry professionals and groups made to both NAUI and to the greater diving community.

“As a democratic association, members proudly recognize those who represent the best in NAUI, our mission, and sport diving in general in such a way as to deserve special merit and attention,” said NAUI Executive Director Rick Lorimor.

Among the honorees are two for Lifetime Achievement, Tim O’Leary (NAUI 10144) and Tom Hemphill (NAUI 2491).

O’Leary has more than 35 years of diving experience and most recently served as the Director of NAUI’s Technical Training Operations. In addition, he has hosted an array of scientific symposiums and conferences for the decompression science community. He has had several government contracts for teaching Closed Circuit Rebreathers for military applications. He has dived in Asia, South Pacific, North Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Mexico, Central and South America, and the United States as both a commercial diver as well as a technical diving instructor trainer

Hemphill became an instructor in 1971 and has spent more than 48 years distinguishing himself as an exceptional leader and committed NAUI member. Hemphill has a long history with the National Association of Underwater Instructors. His motivations have always been clear, his love for the association evident, and his commitment to always serve when called distinguish him among his peers. He has never sought recognition, but few members have done more and are more deserving.

NAUI also recognized four new members of the Hall of Honor. They are Antonio Arcucci (NAUI 8292), John C. Fine (NAUI 4431), Nancy Guarascio (NAUI 5008L), and Walter “Butch” Hendrick (NAUI 1724).

Arcucci has been a NAUI instructor since 1984 and has been instrumental in the development of NAUI in both Italy and Turkey.

Fine began his membership with NAUI in 1976 and has been a pioneer in many areas of diving including training, writing, photography and environmental concerns.

Guarascio received her membership in 1978 and her leadership skills were quickly recognized. Guarscio was elected to the NAUI Board of Directors in 1985 and is the first woman to preside as Chairwoman of a national diving agency.

Hendrick joined NAUI in 1969 and has been instrumental in developing safety and rescue procedures by teaching thousands of divers and served for many years on the NAUI Board of Directors.

NAUI’s independent awards are one of the most coveted in the industry and are widely seen as the most robust recognition of innovative success to the Association. Awards in all categories recognize those who represent the best in NAUI, its mission and programs, environmental consciousness, and diving safety or sport diving in general in such a way as to deserve special merit and attention.

The selection of appropriate recipients depends on all members of the Association to place deserving names and achievements into consideration. We congratulate all our honorees for 2019.

To see the complete list of award winners, please click here.