Congratulations to our Annual Award Winners

Recognized for Outstanding Service to the Superyacht Industry

The USSA was proud to honor the following individuals at this year’s Annual Meeting luncheon on Friday, October 29, 2021 at the Bahia Mar Hotel to a sold-out room of 300 attendees.

The Golden Compass Award – Denison Family

The Golden Compass Award was created to honor the company or individual that is focusing the efforts of the USSA and the superyacht industry in the “true” direction.

The Denison Family is arguably responsible for developing the marine industry in Broward County as well as making a significant economic impact for the City of Fort Lauderdale, “The Yachting Capitol of the World.” They got their start in the yachting business after Frank and Gertrude Denison bought a boatyard during their honeymoon in 1948. The shipyard, Broward Marine, became at one time, the county’s largest employer and the state’s largest defense contractor. While it initially built minesweepers, Broward Marine went on to construct motoryachts in the 1950s. Despite building hundreds of yachts, Broward Marine earned renown for launching the 95-foot (29-meter) megayacht Alisa V in 1956.

Denison Family

Beacon Award – Dan Wood, Crow’s Nest Yachting

The Beacon Award was created to honor the company or individual that is shining a light and making a difference in our community (i.e. humanitarian, environmental, socially, etc.)

Dan Wood of Crow’s Nest Yachts Seattle, has spent the better part of the past 20 years in the selfless dedication to the underprivileged youth in the Pacific Northwest.  He utilized his contacts and time spent in the yachting industry to organize a collection of local yacht captains that gathered monthly for drinks and camaraderie and later became one of the largest groups of benevolent yachting professionals in the world. To date, the Northwest Yacht Captain’s Association has raised nearly $1.5 million for the Forgotten Children’s Fund and others


Dan Wood, Beacon Award Winner

NEW THIS YEAR – Crystal Vision Award
Carl Allen, Walker’s Cay

This award celebrates leadership in responsible business practices by a company or individual, doing what’s best not just for themselves but also for people, the planet, and society. Sustainability should be demonstrated in at least two of these categories:

  •  Pioneering new ideas and actions to change the status quo within their business and yachting
  • Developing an innovative product or service addressing a critical social or environmental challenge
  • Taking critical steps to transform a business model for a clean, resilient. and equitable future.

There’s virtually no one else that exemplifies this vision more than Carl Allen. Allen has taken his deep love for the ocean and the Bahamas. Currently, he is restoring the northernmost Bahamian island Walker’s Cay. It was closed since 2005, following two consecutive devastating hurricanes until they opened earlier this year. Allen has tremendous plans for transforming Walker’s Cay into a superyacht hotspot.

Carl Allen Headshot

Chairman Award – Northwest Marine Trades Association/Superyacht Northwest

As her final act as Chair of the USSA, Kate Pearson was honored to recognize the tremendous partnership we’ve enjoyed with both the Northwest Marine Trade Association (NMTA) and the voluntary team at Superyacht Northwest who have all been tremendous supporters of the USSA’s efforts to promote the United States as a superyacht destination.  Their efforts have made a significant impact on the number of superyachts who have made the westward journey.  We also want to applaud these groups on their significant success of the passage of 1107 this past year that made yacht charter in Washington State a reality.


YPY Leadership Award -Chris Coleman, Oversea Yacht Insurance

In 2020 we added a new award to celebrate the leadership and accomplishments of our up and coming yachting professionals. The Young Professionals in Yachting (YPY) has done a great job of educating and uniting our next generation of industry professionals. This award singles out the best and brightest amongst their ranks.

This award was created in 2020 to recognize the strength and confidence in the up and comers in the superyacht industry.  Chris Coleman, Director of the Commercial Marine Division for Oversea Yacht Insurance truly represents the intent of this award.  He has insured Fortune 50 companies around the world, a global conservation company (4Ocean), and multiple motor yacht and research vessel refits across the United States. In addition, he continues to advocate and work to support Non-Profit Organizations like Beneath The Waves & Ocean Grants and others.  He currently serves as the Plywood Regatta Co-Chair and Membership Committee Member for MIASF, a past Events Director and Director for Young Professionals in Yachting (YPY) USA, the Sponsorship Chair for Young Professionals in Yachting International, and currently serves as the active Vice President of YPY, USA.

Chris Coleman award photo
charter members
Crowd in Annual Meeting Room

Thank you to our Sponsors!

Annual Meeting Sponsors