MRAA names members to youth council


The Marine Retailers Association of the Americas named six people to seats on the organization's Young Leaders Advisory Council.

The MRAA created the council in 2009 to provide recommendations to the association’s board in regard to the development and enhancement of the MRAA. The YLAC is made up of 14 marine industry professionals, all of whom have at least seven years of experience in the marine industry.

"Since its inception, [the council] has been a critical component in the success of the MRAA,” MRAA president Matt Gruhn said in a statement. "Our board of directors created this group to draw from the next-generation thinking they could provide, and the group has helped move the MRAA forward into an even stronger network of marine industry professionals.”

The six new members of the council consist of four dealers and two industry suppliers. The dealers in the group are:

• Stephanie Haywood of Blue Springs Boat Co., Kingston, Tenn.

• Jake Jostand of Oak Hill Marina, Arnold’s Park, Iowa

• Greg Knop of the Family Boating Centers, Tampa, Fla.

• Chad Taylor of Taylor’s South Shore Marine, Wilmington, Ohio

The industry suppliers are:

• Mike Alleva of Lighthouse Media Solutions, Boston

• Gordon Brittle of Starcraft Marine and the Smoker Craft Family of Products, New Paris, Ind.

They officially joined the council in November. Click here to review the bio of each member of the council.

"We are absolutely thrilled to welcome these new members to the group,” council chairman Ryan Hebert said in a statement. "Each of them brings their own unique perspectives and background that will enable them to contribute great value to our discussions and the direction that YLAC takes as we continue to move forward.”

Seven members of the original group vacated their seats in November. Six dealer members of that group include Thalia Chase, Castaway Marina; Alex Russo, Russo Marine; Matt Lodder, Lodder’s Marine; Brad Parker, Parker Boats of Daytona; Kyle Kelly, Kelly’s Port. Another dealer member of that group, Carly Poole of Buckeye Marine, was selected to join the MRAA board of directors. And the one non-dealer on the council, Liz Walz, is vacating her seat because she joined the MRAA staff in August.

Those members of the council that are continuing their terms on the council include: Chairman Hebert of Texas Marine; Vice Chairman Josh Vallely of Vallely Sport & Marine; Chris Kewley of Nobles’ Marine; Lauren Woodard-Splatt of Woodard Marine; Jeff Haradine of WakeSide Marine; Craig LeBlanc of Allen Harbor Marine Service; Eric Smith of Colorado Boat Center; and Martin Boyer of Austin Boats & Motors.

Click here for the full release.


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