The National Marine Manufacturers Association and Boating Writers International announced the panel of judges who will evaluate 77 product entries this year for the 2016 Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show Innovation Awards.
The awards will be presented during the show’s annual Industry Breakfast from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 11 at Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin.
Innovation awards recognize exceptionally innovative new consumer marine products, and they will be on display throughout the Feb. 11-15 show at the stadium park and basin and Miamarina at Bayside.
The Industry Breakfast will be held in the Biscayne Ballroom of the Rusty Pelican restaurant. The Rusty Pelican is at the east end of the boat show site.
The Innovation Awards judges’ committee is composed of eight Boating Writers International members who do product testing throughout the year and have expertise in marine products and equipment. The committee is co-chaired by Zuzana Prochazka and Alan Wendt.
Prochazka is a boating and travel journalist and photographer who has been in the marine industry for two decades. She regularly writes for a dozen magazines, including Sea, Sail, Bluewater Sailing and Southern Boating and covers chartering, destinations, boat reviews and technical articles.
Wendt is president of Boating Writers International and has served as a judge for more than 15 years. He is a freelance writer for Lakeland Boating and Southern Boating magazines and a consultant to retail boat dealers for customer outreach, and he organizes customer group boating cruises throughout the United States, Canada and the Bahamas.
The panel also includes:
Frank Lanier, an SAMS-accredited marine surveyor with more than 35 years of experience in the marine and diving industry; Marilyn Mower, who has been a marine journalist for more than 30 years; Lenny Rudow, senior editor for Dominion Marine Media, electronics editor for BoatUS magazine and boating editor for Texas Fish & Game; Lawrence Husick, a patent lawyer, entrepreneur, freelance writer for several boating publications and lifelong cruising sailor; Nigel Calder, who is known for his Boatowner’s Mechanical and Electrical Manual and his Marine Diesel Engines; and Gary Reich, a Chesapeake Bay-based freelance writer, editor and photographer who has worked in the marine industry for more than 25 years, with the last 15 focused in marine publishing.