Red Sail Sports in Grand Cayman has been awarded the Professional Association of Dive Instructors Longevity Award for 25 years of outstanding service to the dive industry.
The company, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, has maintained a PADI membership since the day it opened its doors with two dive boats and a small, but enthusiastic staff. PADI Regional Manager Mike Kurczewski presented the award to Red Sail Sports Operations Manager Rod McDowall.
“Just from a longevity standpoint it is quite an accomplishment,” said Mr. Kurczewski who has been serving PADI dive centres and resorts in Cayman Islands for 17 years. “To be able to be in business today in light of the economy, 9/11 and other challenges; to survive all that is a testament to their business acumen.”
Mr. McDowall said there are many reasons for Red Sail Sports’ resiliency through the ups and downs of global economics and natural disasters.
“We have adjusted to industry needs, embraced changes and innovations, been flexible and professional; we have maintained quality customer service and equipment more than a quarter of a century, but none of that could have been achieved without exceptional staff at all levels who have made the company what it is today.
“Through the years they have given hundreds of thousands guests and families memorable vacation experiences,” he added.
McDowall estimated that Red Sail Sports has increased the rolls of scuba divers worldwide by about 50,000 people during the past 25 years. Thousands of vacationers enticed by the warm clear Caribbean water have taken a Discover Scuba Course which allows them, after pool training, to enjoy Cayman’s famed coral reefs on a supervised dive.
After an introduction like that, many have gone on to become certified divers. Thousands more have completed or advanced their scuba training with Red Sail Sports.
The dive industry’s success depends on the commitment and enthusiasm of the dive store and resort operators like Red Sail Sports, said PADI executive Nick Jenny.
“Twenty-five years of membership certainly demonstrate commitment and adaptability to the sport,” he said. “To achieve this kind of longevity, businesses must be innovative and driven.”
Red Sail Sports is one of 29 members to receive the 25-year award in 2012.