I’m passionate about the opportunity to share my life experience with younger kids, giving them a leg up on life as they grow and age. If we can teach them to respect the earth and the oceans, we will build a generation of new strength in our pursuit. In 1978, some friends and I held a recycling event once a month on Saturday mornings in the parking lot of the grocery store. People would come by and drop off their recycling – metal, glass, plastic, and aluminum – we’d gather it up and take it to the large recycling center, all at our own cost. Other people would question me as to why I was wasting my time with this. Here we are, 35 years later, and I am honored to see kids carrying a plastic bottle until they can find a recycling can, not just discarding it from their sight at first chance. Change comes through generations; 11th Hour Racing gives us the opportunity to educate people and spread this energy.
Dave has been sailing since his first ride on a Sunfish off the beach on the southern shores of Lake Michigan at age 12. From there, he progressed through small boats – Lasers and Hobie Cats – to half-ton keelboats, 3/4 ton and 1-ton racing machines, and on up in size. He’s competed in many events, both crewed and solo, and is passionate about offshore sailing.
In 2011, he commissioned the construction of hull #3 of the Kiwi 40 FC Class 40 to prepare for and compete in the single-handed Global Ocean Race. After campaigning this boat, now named Bodacious Dream, for two years in Europe and North America, he learned that the Race was canceled. Adjusting to the situation, in October of 2013, he started an amazing journey on Bodacious Dream, eventually solo sailing 25,000 miles around the world. After leaving Jamestown, RI, and stopping in Cape Town, Wellington (NZ), the Galapagos Islands, and the Panama Canal, he returned home in June of 2014, creating a blog with educational materials for kids of all ages at www.bodaciousdreamexpeditions.com. Dave recently published a book on this journey as well, Spirit of a Dream and still races on Lake Michigan when he is home, enjoying the marvelous ocean of freshwater and its beautiful but evermore fragile ecosystems.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BE AN 11TH HOUR RACING AMBASSADOR?
The Great Lakes have been my home since I was nine years old. I’ve grown up in the middle of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Park and have a keen relationship with wild areas regardless of where they are. I love the open desert as much as the wide ocean. I’ve experienced first-hand the health of the ocean and have shed tears with dolphins as they swim through polluted waters. It’s time, friends. It’s time to work on this problem. The ocean can heal if we stop beating it up.
SUPPORTING THE MISSION
I am actively engaging my local sailing community, and I am committed to youth education and ocean stewardship.
I’m approaching the larger boatyards on Lake Michigan to support them in making environmentally positive changes and find viable solutions. Simple changes in recycling, use of plastics, water bottles, and such.
I’m also approaching yacht clubs, event organizers, and fleets on the Great Lakes to raise awareness on sustainability during their big regattas and to implement some simple changes that can have a big impact on this fragile ecosystem, such as eliminating single-use water bottles.
I continue to build the Education Outreach program for the Atlantic Cup.
- Racing throughout the Great Lakes with over 28 Mackinac Races, 7 Solo Mac Races, 2 Solo Super Mac Races.
- Presented the Mike Silverthorne Award by the Great Lakes Singlehanded Society
- Presented the Ralph Elberg Award by the Great Lakes Singlehanded Society
- Many ocean races including Newport to Bermuda, Trans-Pac, Montego Bay Race.
- In 2011 began the Bodacious Dream campaign on the Farr designed, Kiwi 40 FC – a Class 40 racing boat. Competing in the Atlantic Cup, Quebec-St. Malo, Normandy Channel, and Mondial Championships.
- 2013 began a solo circumnavigation on Bodacious Dream to support youth education and environmental awareness.
- Dave has been a writer of articles for sailing publications and published his book on the solo circumnavigation entitled Spirit of a Dream: A Sailor’s Ultimate Journey Around the World Alone in the Fall of 2018
Nickname: Some people call me WhatTime
Hometown: Chesterton, IN
Resides: Chesterton, IN
Grantee: Chicago Maritime Arts Center
Free Time: What’s free time? What time is left after living is spent living
Bad Ass Moment: Really? I’m pretty old to be arrogant enough to call myself badass
Hidden Talent: I’m a pretty good storyteller, writer, and dreamer
Guilty Pleasure: Hershey’s Dark Chocolate Kisses… I couldn’t have made it around the world without these! Thank you, Hershey’s!
The Fridge: Cold pesto and chicken pizza, orange juice, real butter and chocolate
Best Advice: If you make a mistake, tell the person what you did wrong, how you are going to fix it, and what it will be like when you are done fixing it. If they are still mad at you, it’s ok…you’ve done the best you can. No one can ever be mad at you for doing the best you can.
Fun Fact: I’ve ridden all but one railroad line across, up or down the USA and Canada
Patagonia – I don’t know of another more proactive corporate model out there.
Capeline first layer.
Levis 501 shrink to fit jeans – if cotton kills, I must be pretty tough!