Great Lakes boating pioneer dies

Author:
Updated:
Original:

Jim Sima, an icon in the Ohio marine industry, died last week at the age of 82. He founded Sima Motors Corp. in 1953 in Maple Heights, Ohio, and expanded the business into boat sales under the Sima Marine Sales banner in 1956.

During his more than 50 years in the industry, Sima was a leader of the Lake Erie Marine Trades Association and the only member to serve as the organization’s chairman on three different occasions.

In 1973, Sima was chairman of the show committee that initiated the North American In-Water Sail and Power Boat Show at Cedar Point, the largest in-water show held annually on the Great Lakes. In addition, he served on virtually every other LEMTA committee, from membership to legislative relations.

Sima was a founder of the Marine Trades Association of Ohio, known today as the Boating Associations of Ohio. On the national level, he was a founding member of the board of directors of the Marine Retailers Association of America, and later served as MRAA chairman from 1977-79.

— Norm Schultz

Related

Live from Dealer Week

Yesterday’s live-streamed interviews included Malibu CEO Jack Springer; Ron Huibers, president of Volvo Penta of the Americas; and a virtual reality demo with Chaparral/Robalo.

LIVE from DEALER WEEK

Yesterday’s live-streamed interviews included Correct Craft CEO Bill Yeargin, who discussed market conditions; Stephanie Vatalaro, who talked about RBFF’s effort to get 60 million Americans boating and fishing; and Regal’s Duane Kuck, who with his sons described being part of a multigenerational boatbuilding business.