2017 Conference Schedule

Marine Recreation Association’s 46th Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show

October 23 – 25, 2017

Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa
Monterey, CA
Embracing Change
October 23, 2017
8:00 am Registration Desk Opens for Marina Tour Attendees

9:00 am Registration Desk Opens for Marina Operations Attendees and Exhibitors

9:30 am Transportation for Marina Tour Leaves Hotel

9:30 am 23rd Annual Golf Tournament

9:45 am – 10:00 am MRA Orientation

10:00 am – 11:20 am Introduction to Basic Marina Operations: Policies and Practices
Jeremy Grewal
Jeremy Grewal
Tony Reese
Tony Reese
Administrative practices that keep your marina running smoothly and allow you to spend more time where you need to most, with your boaters. Including these practices in your routine will allow you to do this. What do you need to have on record to cover your marina? How often do you need to update the information? What is the best process to acquire the information that you need. Making this process easy will save you time and money with the least amount of impact on your boaters.
Jeremy Grewal, Marina Manager, Safe Harbor Marinas
Tony Reese, General Manager, Cabrillo Isle Marina

11:30 am – 11:55 am Introduction to Basic Marina Operations: Q&A Policies and Practices

Noon Lunch for Introduction to Basic Marina Operations Attendees

1:00 pm – 2:20 pm Introduction to Basic Marina Operations: Safety and Maintenance

Larry R. Halgren
How do I look for safety concerns in my marina and how do I manage these risks? This discussion will give you a number of examples of things you may walk past every day that can hurt or kill people. Do you have different employees tour your facilities looking for boats or boaters not living within your own marina rules and regulations? Do you have an Emergency Management Plan for the marina; for things like fires, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, shootings, medical emergencies, or any other number of things? Do you have a well maintained marina and could it be improved?
Larry R. Halgren, CMP, Principal, Halgren & Associates
2:30 pm – 3:00 pm Introduction to Basic Marina Operations: Q&A Safety and Maintenance

2:00 pm – 7:00 pm Registration Desk Opens for Attendees

5:00 pm – 5:15 pm New Member/Attendee Welcome and Orientation

5:15 pm – 7:15 pm Welcome Reception in Exhibit Hall
Golf Awards Presentation
Golf Prizes sponsored by —
Golf Goody Bags sponsored by —

Golf Food Vouchers sponsored by —

Welcome Reception Hor D’oeuvres sponsored by —

Welcome Reception Cocktails sponsored by —
October 24, 2017
Meeting Room Schedule Displays
sponsored by —

Meeting Room Laptop Computers
sponsored by —


7:00 am – 5:30 pm Registration Desk Open

7:00 am – 7:55 am Continental Breakfast with the Exhibitors

8:00 am – 8:20 am President’s Welcome
Darrell McConnell Leadership Award & Innovation Award Presentations

8:20 am – 8:30 am Welcome to Monterey

Clyde Roberson
Clyde Roberson, Mayor, Monterey, CA

8:30 am – 8:45 am General Membership Meeting, Elections, Benefits of MRA, Where MRA has been, is Now, & Going in the Future

Jim Hayes
Jim Hayes, Chief Operating Officer, Almar Management, Inc.

8:45 am – 9:05 am California Legislative Update

Bill Krauss
Bill Krauss, Legislative Advocate, The Apex Group

9:05 am – 9:40 am National Trends in the Industry

Anna Townshend
Anna Townshend, Editor, Marina Dock Age Magazine

9:40 am – 10:25 am Coffee with the Exhibitors

Coffee Break sponsored by

10:25 am – 11:10 am  Keynote Speaker

Gary Griggs
Gary Griggs, Distinguished Professor of Earth & Planetary Sciences, University of California Santa Cruz

11:10 am – 11:45 am State of the Marine Industry—Embracing Change

Robert Newsome
The recreational marine industry continues to experience rapid change, and it’s not just limited to the growth and current sales trends of boat types or propulsion. Technological innovation and activity preferences are driving new production methods and new product design, the prevalence of boat-sharing and other boating participation models are bringing the experience to new individuals, and the changing North American population demographics has the industry facing workforce challenges while at the same time looking to demonstrate to a diverse marketplace that boating is a unique and fun experience for everyone and an unparalleled way to spend time with family and friends.
Robert E. Newsome, Vice President, Engineering Standards, Membership & Association Marketing, NMMA

11:45 pm – 12:15 pm Trade Show Review

12:15 pm – 1:10 pm Lunch with the Exhibitors

1:15 pm – 2:10 pm Classroom Seminars – Session 1:
Topic 1: Status of California Salt-Water Marinas and Boatyards
Paul Kaplan
Paul Kaplan

Mark Sanders

Kate Pearson
As California’s economy continues to improve one would expect this to be reflected in improving rates and increased occupancies for its ocean marinas. This report will cover regional rate trends, shifts in occupancies, and important legislative changes affecting California’s ocean marinas. In addition, boatyard businesses will be included in this review. While closely tied to marinas, boatyards have unique differences which will be explored in this session. Panelists will provide unique insights into ocean marina trends, tools to gauge success, and historical data to help attendees accurately assess the performance of their marinas and boatyards.
Paul Kaplan, Founding Partner, KKMI
Mark Sanders, President, West Point Harbor
Kate Pearson, Regional Vice President, Safe Harbor Marinas

Topic 2: Status of California Inland Marinas/Resorts

Rick Herbert

Scott Robertson

Mark Sandoval

Bill Harper
The prayers for rain have been answered, and we received record amounts of rain in many parts of the State. The lakes and reservoirs are now full, for the most part, and it looks to be a great season for inland water recreation. However, it may not all be rosy. With full reservoirs comes unforeseen problems—see Lake Oroville. In this session three inland water resort operators will discuss the good and the bad as it relates to rain swollen lakes, and how this may affect the success of the 2017 season.
Rick Herbert, Owner, Lake Sonoma Resort Area
Scott Robertson, CEO/President, Emerald Cove Marina, Inc.
Mark Sandoval, General Manager, Monterey Lakes Recreation Company
Bill Harper, Bill Harper, CMM, Bidwell Canyon Marina

Topic 3: Social Media—Be Social

Darin Selfridge
Your public wants to hear from you. You aren’t bothering them, you’re helping them. They want to know what’s happening. When you contribute and connect they will know you care. When they know you care, they will respect you and want to visit your business. When they’re browsing social media for something to do, make sure you’re present at the table. No doubt about it, your customers are using social media. Shouldn’t you? Change is good—embrace it! In this session you’ll learn how to start your own self-managed social media program, how to grow it, and how to keep it going.
Darin Selfridge, President, Compass Consulting

2:15 pm – 3:10 pm Classroom Seminars – Session 2:
Topic 1: Finding and Attracting Quality Workers

Dennis Kissman
In this ever changing world decoding today’s workforce is a challenge that can mean the difference between success and failure of your business. A look into how to attract, motivate and retain quality workers.
Dennis P. Kissman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Marina Management Services, Inc.

Topic 2: Marine Industry Problem of Invasive Mussels—Control & Remediation

Keith Boulais

Cynthia Yniguez
Discussion of two problems that invasive mussels (quagga and zebra) cause the Marina and Boating Industry, which is controlling and remediating them. Also, we will be fact-checking the related costs to the boater and industry. Why should you be concerned? What should/can be done? The role of canines in the prevention of the spread from infected to non-infected waterways.
Keith Boulais, CEO, Premier Materials Technology, Inc.
Cynthia Yniguez Mussel Dogs

Topic 3: Know Your Rights & Remedies

Philip Weiss
Marinas possess certain rights and can exercise certain remedies, including ones that are unique and reserved for the benefit of marinas and other waterfront businesses that provide services to vessels. These rights and remedies flow from three principal sources: the Marina’s wharfage contract, state statutes, and federal statutes. In addition, over the course of more than 200 years a body of judge-made law (the General Maritime Law) has produced judicial decisions benefitting maritime service providers in various ways. It is important that Marina owners and managers understand what rights and remedies are available, so they can pursue the most appropriate legal avenues when problems arise. Sometimes, for example, multiple remedies are available to address a given problem (such as a failure to pay wharfage fees or a trespassing vessel), and in such cases it is important to utilize the remedy that “gets the job done” at the least possible expense. It is also helpful to understand that various factual constraints (such as when a person is living aboard) can render impractical certain remedies that are, theoretically, available. Sir Francis Bacon was right when he observed “scientia portentia est” (knowledge is power). Increase your knowledge and power by learning what special rights and remedies are available to marinas.
Philip E. Weiss, Esquire, Brodsky, Micklow, Bull & Weiss

3:15 pm – 3:45 pm Refreshments with the Exhibitors
Refreshments sponsored by

3:45 pm – 4:40 pm Classroom Seminars – Session 3:
Topic 1: The Next Wave of Avoidable Litigation: ADA Compliance

Ian Blakey

Mike Miyaki
This topic will include ADA litigation, avoiding common pitfalls, the CASp program and general boating and marina accessibility requirements.
Mike Miyaki CASp, Director of Operations, Kim R Blackseth Interests, Inc.
Ian Blakey, Program Manager, Kim R Blackseth Interests, Inc.

Topic 2:  Ground Fault Protection –Upcoming Changes That All Marina Owners Need To Know

Brian Bateman

Eric Noegel

Cliff Norton
In the world of marina electrical systems, there are several things that are changing that affect your marina plans. This presentation will help every marina owner understand how this will negatively affect your marketplace and what you can do to address it. Our panel of electricians, designers, and project managers will guide you through the basics of electrical systems and how code changes will ultimately determine your path forward. This is a session “not to miss” for marina owners/operators that wish to retain their boating tenants through these unavoidable changes in the electrical code.
Brian Bateman, Electrical Project Manager, Bellingham Marine
Eric Noegel, Manager of Project Development Southwest Division, Bellingham Marine
Cliff Norton, Bellingham Marine

Topic 3: The Ever Changing Cyber Risks

Jeremy Ong
This session will provide an overview of cyber risks facing organizations today and will include an overview of cyber trends, regulatory considerations, financial implications, cyber insurance solutions and risk management tools and tips.
Jeremy Ong, Divisional Vice President, Cyber Risk Insurance, Great American Insurance Group

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm Wine Tasting & Craft Beer Reception in Exhibit Hall
Entertainment by guitar duo and songwriters Steve Meckfessel and Peter Andrews

Steve Meckfessel

Peter Andrews

Wine Tasting Corkage sponsored by

Hor d’oeuvres sponsored by
October 25, 2017
Meeting Room Schedule Displays
sponsored by —

Meeting Room Laptop Computers
sponsored by —


7:00 am – 2:00 pm Registration Desk Open

7:30 am – 8:25 am Continental Breakfast with the Exhibitors

8:30 am – 9:25 am Economic Forecast

Andrew Micallef
Separating the signal from the noise is just as important for an investor as it is for an electrical engineer. Today, there is more political noise interfering with the economic signal than perhaps ever before. While healthcare and tax reform have material impacts on consumers and our economy, much of the noise is not relevant to the core signals on GDP growth, interest rates and the Federal Reserve, earnings and employment growth, consumer and business confidence, capital investment, and the dollar and international markets. The after-effects of a lengthy but relatively slow economic recovery since 2009, large deficits, and growing regional economic imbalances may be long lasting. Please join us for a conversation about the current state of the US and global economy, the financial markets, and of course an outlook for 2018.
Andrew J. Micallef, Executive Director and Client Advisor, J.P Morgan Private Bank

9:30 am – 10:25 am Weather Prediction in the 21st Century

Brian Garcia
Brian will be discussing the advancements in forecast techniques for the marine environment over the last decade, as well as new instrumentation that is now available to forecasters. Beyond the nuts and bolts of weather forecasting, there will also be a brief discussion on weather safety and the seasonal forecast for the upcoming winter months, including El Niño and what it might mean for California.
Brian Garcia, Warning Coordination Meteorologist, National Weather Service Bay Area

10:30 am – 10:55 am Coffee with the Exhibitors
Coffee Break sponsored by

11:00 am – 11:55 am Classroom Seminars – Session 1:
Topic 1: Threats of Violence in Your Marina and How to Address Them

Barbara Galgiani
This session will address external threats to the staff and guests at your marina. These could be from a boater, a transient person that has taken up residence or a person under the influence. We will look at how to protect and prevent these situations along with how to handle if they should escalate.
Barbara Galgiani, President, CAPAX Marine Providers

Topic 2: Safe Harbor and the Future of Marinas in North America

Baxter Underwood
Most major travel and leisure businesses in North America have undergone consolidation and “institutionalization.” Safe Harbor Marinas is one company that believes such change is currently underway in the marina industry. What does consolidation mean for the industry? What can boaters, marinas, and nautical product and service providers expect from the decades ahead?
Baxter Underwood, President & CEO, Safe Harbor Marinas

Topic 3: Environmental Success Stories

Robert Wilkes
Robert Wilkes has covered the industry for more than twenty years and written dozens of articles about marinas that faced environmental challenges and overcame them. His talk will be a series of case histories that show the breadth and scope of the issues facing marina operators and how marinas in the U.S. and the world found innovative solutions to those challenges.
Robert Wilkes, Owner, Wilkes Creative

12:00 pm – 12:55 pm Lunch with the Exhibitors

1:00 pm – 1:55 pm Classroom Seminars – Session 2:
Topic 1: Sportfishing: A Case Study of how Protecting Recreational Fishing Benefits Marinas

Marko Mlikotin
California is home to over 2.6 million anglers who generate over $4.6 billion annually in economic activity that benefits communities and jobs dependent on outdoor recreation and tourism. Despite California’s abundant natural resources and size, the state’s recreational fishing participation rate is ranked dead last (per capita) in the country, and annual fishing license sales have decreased over 55% since 1980. Learn how a coalition of marina and fishing lake operators, fish farmers, retailers, the boating industry and other businesses are employing grass roots tactics to challenge fishing restrictions, government regulations, and costly licenses that threaten jobs dependent on its future. The threat to recreational fishing is very real, largely unnoticed and growing all over the country.
Marko Mlikotin, Executive Director, California Sportfishing League

Topic 2: Transforming the Marina Experience: How to Capitalize on Customer Insights to Build Your Business

Dale Hoover
Is your marina stuck in the 1.6% annual growth doldrums? This engaging session will examine the powerful role customer insights-driven facility design plays in the context of today’s more savvy and digitally empowered consumers. We will outline valuable tactics to better understand your market and the expectations of your boaters, customers and community, and how to align your assets with your strategic goals.

We’ll present a case study of a large-scale full-service marina operation in Sausalito, CA to demonstrate how your marina can thrive in today’s changing market and achieve double digit growth by applying advanced thinking, innovation, and renovation.
Dale Hoover, President/Creative Director, Anza Environments

Topic 3: Overcoming Adversity

Mick Kronman
In one form or another, everyone endures adversity. From deadlines to divorce, bullying to bankruptcy, there’s no escaping it. Mick Kronman has seen his share, and will offer “how to” ways to cope and overcome. Attendees will leave with tools they can employ in their personal and professional lives to surmount challenges of all kinds.
Mick Kronman, Harbor Operations Manager, City of Santa Barbara

2:00 pm – 2:55 pm Classroom Seminars – Session 3:
Topic 1: Economic Impact of Vessel Taxation

Tony Faso

Mik Maguire

Dean West
Recreational boating in the State of California is by varied accounts, a $9 billion to $12 billion a year economic impact to the state coffers. Prospective, as well as existing boaters, have a myriad of choices as to where they spend their recreational dollars. High sales and use tax rates, inconsistent and often capricious assessment of county personal tax assessments, threatened loss of second home mortgage deductions, and attempts to collect various taxes from cruising, non-resident vessels all severely threaten our state’s boating industry, especially as other states out-compete us to gain the coveted revenues that a fairly taxed and regulated boating environment brings to their state’s economies.
Tony Faso, President, Delta Marine Sales
Mik Maguire, Associate Yacht Broker & CYBA President, Richard Boland Yachts
Dean A. West, Owner, Dean A. West Marine Enterprises

Topic 2: Healthy Harbors/Healthy Oceans and Clean Marina Preparation

Rikki Grober-Eriksen

Tony Reese
The purpose is to showcase an overview of the opportunities (funding, resources, tools) available to help marinas move towards cleaner practices and provide useful information to their boaters. The presentation will focus on real world advice from the experts, rather than the high level programmatic descriptions. We hope that harbormasters will walk away with tangible next steps for action and a better understanding of the local marine conservation efforts underway across the state.
Rikki Grober-Eriksen, Ph.D., Marine Ecologist and Director, California MPAs Program, California Marine Sanctuary Foundation
Tony Reese, General Manager, Cabrillo Isle Marina

Disclaimer: The speakers, presentations, and presentation times listed in this schedule may change. MRA cannot guarantee that all presentations will be included in the conference proceedings.