2014 Speakers


Becky Kagan Schott - Diving the Sacred Maya Underworld

Underwater Cinematographer

During the summer of 2012 Becky & David Schott directed and filmed technically challenging underwater cave scenes for the National Geographic documentary Maya Underworld. Traveling deep into Mexico’s Yucatan jungle near the ruins of Chitzen Itza the shoot took place in several sacred cenotes. The task was to film an underwater archeologist and set up a live video feed to the surface. This would allow the host of the show to communicate in real time as they searched for artifacts and discovered human remains. This was no simple task. The dive team had to rappel 25 meters read more...


Mike Gerken - Diving Around the Globe & SUDS

Boat Captain, Dive Professional, and Underwater Photographer

Underwater videographer and professional dive master Mike Gerken will be here to dazzle us with his stunning underwater images and videos. Mike will tell us of his experience in producing the documentaries The Wrecks of Truk Lagoon, The S.S. President Coolidge Project and his videos for diving the waters in North Carolina and Palau. Mike has also had the privilege to work with the SUDS (Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba ) divers as read more...


Fred Stonehouse - Forgotten Heroes, The U.S. Life-Saving Service on the Great Lakes

Author,Historian, Teacher, & Veteran Presenter

From 1874 until 1915 when it became the U.S. Coast Guard, the men of this remarkable organization displayed incredible courage and bravery in rescuing over 55, 000 people from potential death on the Great Lakes. Despite personal danger or difficulty, the life-savers invariably accomplished the rescue. Their unofficial motto was, "Regulations say we have to go out, they say nothing about coming back." read more...

Ric Mixter

Ric Mixter - November Gales

TV producer, U/W photographer, Shipwreck Researcher & Story Teller

November gales are notorious for their toll on Great Lakes shipping. Hundreds of ships now line the bottom of the lakes due to storms that brew up in a moment’s notice. Join author/producer Ric Mixter as he dives into the mystery of late-season storms, not only sharing rare eyewitness interviews but also award-winning video that he has recorded underwater. read more...


Tamara Thomsen & John Janzen - Shipwreck Lakeland

Diving Instructors & Photographers

On 3 December 1924, the steamer Lakeland sank in Lake Michigan under mysterious and suspicious circumstances. At 280 feet long, she was a large and seaworthy vessel, capable of carrying massive cargoes, but she sank in the calmest of weather, while carrying only 22 automobiles, less than 10% of her cargo capacity. In 1925, an investigation conducted under hazardous conditions by hard hat divers found no incriminatory evidence, read more...


Jerry Eliason & Ken Merryman - Finding and Exploring Lake Superior's Undiveably Deep Shipwrecks

Shipwreck Hunters & Photographers

Lake Superior's waters hide some of the the Great Lakes deepest shipwrecks. These wrecks lie in 400+ feet of water and are currently beyond even rebreather limits for almost all divers. Since the 2006 discovery of the Harriet B in 650 feet off water. Jerry has been building and perfecting his deep water camera equipment and techniques read more...


Myron Haynes - Diving the Philippines

Dive Instructor &Dive Shop Owner

Myron’s presentation is full of the diversity of diving found in the Philippines. From Tubbataha Reef located in the Sulu Sea, at the center of the Coral Triangle rarely visited by tourists due to it’s location and it’s status as a marine preserve to the world renowned read more...


Yung Yip - Amazing Galapagos! A how-to guide

Underwater Photographer

Named one of the Seven Underwater Wonders of the World, the Galapagos Islands are home to some of the world’s rarest and most enchanting animal life, making it a secret gem for mid-west divers. For centuries now, the marine life surrounding the Galapagos have fascinated and entranced its visitors, especially its most famous visitor, Charles Darwin read more...

becky belly rubs reef sharks

Becky Kagan Schott - Beauty and the Beasts

Professional Underwater Cinematographer

Becky will return in the evening to entertain us at the UMSAT Show dinner banquet. Becky is an Emmy Award winning underwater cameraman, photographer and technical diver whose work can be seen on major networks including National Geographic, Discovery Channel, and Animal Planet. She specializes in bringing back video from challenging aquatic environments including caves, under ice, shipwrecks to sharks. read more...