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A Fond Farewell

BoatUS Founder & Chairman Richard Schwartz Retires, June 2013

BoatUS Founder and Chairman, Richard Schwartz, has been leading the way since 1966, creating innovative programs and pushing for boaters' rights every day since. Click here to read an interview in BoatUS Magazine with Richard as he celebrated his 80th birthday in 2009, and looked back to the start of BoatUS. At the end of June, Richard (now 83) will retire from his daily life at BoatUS. Richard's passion inspires all of us here who work to improve the boating lifestyle, while keeping it affordable and available to all who wish to discover the joys of being on the water. Please join us in thanking Richard for creating BoatUS and share with us in wishing him a happy retirement!

Richard Schwartz & BoatUS Throughout the Years


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Posted By: Klein on
You built a great company and I'm proud to say that I work for BoatU.S. May you rest in peace Mr.Schwartz.
Posted By: Roger Fortin on
Richard, All the best and thanks for all you have done for us. Roger
Posted By: Edward Pratt on
I am member No. 00004681, been a member since 1967. That was the year I bought my first big boa, a 1967 Chris Craft Craft . I do not remember how I found out about BoatUS but I joined. I thought my membership would be helpful in managing my new boat. I congratulate you for the vision to bring Boating as a sport for all families and not some activity that only rich people could afford. Your organization as it turned out meant more to me than just helping run my new boat. It has been an important membership during the almost 50 years of boating. I will be 90 years of age in two weeks, my wife and operate our 75 Motor Yacht. In addition we tow a 25' Scout fishing boat on our trips to the Bahamas each summer. God bless you for your vision, hard work and dedication to Boating in America. You are indeed a Patriot. Happy sailing.
Posted By: Capt. Douglas Owen on
Congratulations, Richard! When you were an honored guest on Opening Day at Corinthian Yacht Club of San Francisco a couple of years ago, I didn't have the opportunity to meet you and thank you. As a cruising sailor for many years and many miles, I was not a Boat US member, as most of our time was spent in foreign waters; we joined Boat US when we became trawler owners (and switched our insurance also!), and over the past six years we have been very impressed with the dedication and professionalism of the organization you created. Thank you for your many years of service to the boating community, and we wish you a long and happy retirement.
Posted By: Dottie Stiff on
Congratulations on your decision to retire. You've had a great career, accomplished so much in your life, and have made lots of friends. I'll never forget our good times at the Coles Point house. Best of wishes for your future; stay well and keep active.
Posted By: Richard Thieringer on
Richard, the very best wishes to you for many healthy and happy years of "smooth sailing" during your retirement. On behalf of your friends at CNA Marine / MOAC, it has been a real pleasure working with you and the entire BoatU.S. organization. Look forward to visiting you in your new office! Personal regards, Richard
Posted By: Dale Sain on
Richard, you've been a tremendous force in helping countless people have incredible fun. Safely. You are forever in our debt. Cheers, Dale
Posted By: Larry Casey on
Thanks for founding such a fine organization and for your great leadership throughout the years. You have made a contribution to recreational boating that few, if any, can match.
Posted By: Manny Mier on
Richard Congrats on a great life and career! I was in Washington too short a time as I was on non stop visits and parties with some great old friends. sure wish I could have gotten in touch. All the Best to you and Beth and I look forward to seeing you both again. If you find yourself in SF for the America's Cup please give a call or anytime. Su amigo, Manny and Pat Mier
Posted By: Bonnie Basham on
Thank you for all the dedicated passionate years you have given the recreational boating public. Your leadership has created an organization known for its integrity, support of boaters and common sense approach to boating issues. Best wishes for a peaceful and special retirement. Thank You Bonnie Basham
Posted By: Mark Hathaway on
You have helped many, many folks by improving their lives and the joy in their lives. An inspired life's work. Congratulations.
Posted By: Will Staat on
I want to say thank you for providing the boating public a very professional and outstanding way of doing business. I worked for you in the Milwaukee Boat US store for 2 yrs and also spend some time in Naples Fla. one winter helping out that store. I never once ever heard a bad word said about the service your customer reps help service the Boat Us. membership. Before I left your company for a different job direction, I became a Board Cert. Prosthesis. You had just hit your 400 membership and we all were very happy to have helped you make that goal. There has now been other Discount stores who have tried to duplicate what Boat US. started. None so far as done better than you. Thanks Once Again for hiring me !!! your great !!! W. J. Staat
Posted By: Wilson Wright on
Mr. Schwartz: I fondly recall meeting Mike Scuilla for lunch one day while participating in a "day on the hill" program for other clients. As lunch was coming to an end Mike said, "Where do you go from here ?" I said Clay Shaw's office. Mike asked to tag a long as it was when the luxury tax was under attack. Later Mike called and said Boat US would like to establish a presence in Florida and California. "You seem to know the pointy end from the square end and you seem to know your way around the capitol, would you represent BoatUS in Florida ? I never learned to call you Richard, but it was a long and pleasant relationship although I recall you were a stickler for hourly billings. When I retired, Mike did say, he thought Boat US got a pretty good deal or words to that effect.. Now that I read more about you, I wonder if we could have grown up together. I was born in Washington in 1930, lived in Wesley Heights and went to Friends School until my family moved to Miami where I finished in public schools and attended the University of Florida. Having closed up the office several years ago, I can understand your desire to retire...I hope you enjoy it as much as I am. Wilson Wright, Executive Director Emeritus, Chris Craft Antique Boat Club.
Posted By: Edward Brockbank on
Joined in 1966 from a small ad in a boating magazine, Been a member ever since. You've done a great job over the years and have enjoyed being part of the Boat/us family. Still have one of the original flags you use to give away with your renewal. Best to you and may you enjoy your retirement.
Posted By: Mike Bauman on
We've never met and probably never will, but congrats on a great career and thank you for everything you have done for us with Boat U.S. Enjoy your retirement.
Posted By: Doris Colgate on
Richard, You have always been a hero to Steve and me and one of our greatest inspirations for continuing on with our sailing schools. We enjoy your company and wisdom and look forward to seeing you at the next National Advisory Council meeting. Enjoy your retirement with Beth and your family!
Posted By: Virgil Chambers, Executive Director NSBC on
Mr. Schwartz, You have always been my Hero and a Champion of Boating Safety and other important boating issues. All my best and I hope to see you soon at a boating event so I can tell you personally how much you have meant to me in my own boating safety career. Thank you! Virgil Chambers
Posted By: Bill Hobbs on
Richard has done so much for boat owners over the past and will continue to be a part of BoatU.S. for many years to come. I am honored to have know Richard since 1995 and once a year have always had the pleasure to talk with him and his lovely wife. Because of Richard, I have been working doing what I love, towing and helping out thousands of boaters that were a part of over the half million members that support BoatU.S and allow them to continue to represent them with the government and be sure they have all the information boat consumers need to keep them safe...You were a very important part of my last 18 years and will forever be greatful for that...see ya at the next confrence and enjoy your retirement...but I know you will still be working hard in many ways for all the boaters of the world
Posted By: Doug Fuegel on
Can understand why you want to retire; life is short and you deserve whatever you wish in your remaining years. Boat owners of this nation will never fully realize how much you gave to further enjoy boating at an affordable price and an pastime you made so much safer over the years. Enjoy your retirement, Doug
Posted By: Dan Puleio on
Congratulations Richard. As a member since 1983 I have enjoyed many of the benefits, including the delivery of fuel the other day when my most recently acquired boat ran out of fuel due to an inaccurate gauge.
Posted By: Martin B on
He will certainly be missed and thank you for the great and service your organization has to given me and my family, not counting the many menbers of my fishing club, thank you again and enjoy your retirerment god bless.
Posted By: Jim Strickler on
Hey Richard thanks for all your efforts and dedication to the boating community. We have been members for nearly 30 years and have enjoyed the benefits of the organization you built. Best wishes for many happy and healthy years of retirement. Enjoy life and have FUN! Thanks again! Jim - member #00259967
Posted By: Rick R on
Mr. Schwartz: Congratulations on your well-deserved retirement. May it be long and full of joy. Please accept my grattitude for your strong efforts on behalf of the American boater. You have been a blessing to all of us! May the SCHWARTZ be with you! :)
Posted By: Robert Hanley on
Thank you, Richard, for 47 years of leadeship and guidance to the recreactional boating comunnity. What you originally started as a small organization now spans the entire United States with over 500,000 members. The programs you have put in place have benefited all of us. Also, you intercession with numerous local and state goverments and also numerous federal agencies has saved us from unnecessary proposed regulations and excessive fees. Enjoy your well deserved retirement. Bob Hanley, No. 270008.
Posted By: Michael Kennedy on
At 36 did you EVER imagine it would turn out like this? Wow, what a great legacy you leave and think of the thousands of happy boaters you have helped. Now it is time for you to enjoy JUST boating again. Congratulations and Cheers!
Posted By: Mitch Korbey on
Thanks for the stewardship. You certainly have built a great organization....one to be proud of. Enjoy
Posted By: Richard Fisher on
Welcome to Retirement after a long job superbly done. Im' 82, beat you to retirement (from medical practice), 1by a yr a.IJpO253SBoat U S has been around as long as I can remember. Began sailing since 1971.. So celebrate retirement like I did...just got back to Texas from a 2& 1/2 mo. cruise through the Bahamas on a 42 ft Valiant. Go get 'em.
Posted By: Jim Spence on
Thanks for creating a great company with customer service at the heart! I have dealt with your company several times over the years about various matters, and each time it was a very pleasant experience. Enjoy your retirement!
Posted By: Melvyn Miller on
You changed boating and your creation has been part of our lives for a very long time. We look forward to seeing you again in Florida.
Posted By: Andy Graham on
Richard, you rock.
Posted By: Steve Vail on
Richard...congratulations on your impact on all boaters over the many years. I met you once in Chicago many years ago....in overlapping trade show lines at mcCormack place. We had a very cordial conversation ...and I was impressed on your "customer relations" and cordial conversation...and have been members sinc the early 1980s... Enjoying new acts and features of Boat US all the time. Enjoy the time to smell the roses.....and thanks again for. Passion!!,
Posted By: Robert E Schofield on
Richard, thanks so much for all you have done for all of us who have enjoyed our years of boating. I have been at it for 60 years and remember going to the store in Alexandria right after it opened. I finally joined in 1978 and have been a member since. Wishing you fair winds in your retirement.
Posted By: Dan Faoro on
Enjoy the good life Richard, I enjoyed my time working at Boat US headquarters in the early 90s!
Posted By: Capt Gary T. Finerty, USN-Ret on
Richard, I have been a member since 1988 and the organization you founded has been an excellent assist to us boaters. I and my family have used your organization's assistance both on and off the water. Thank you for this practical and efficient organization. Enjoy your retirement.
Posted By: GILBERT D on
HATS OFF TO YOU, Skipper! I've been around for a long time, too - Long enough to know "you done noble" - And thousands will long be in your debt.
Posted By: Capt. joe Kurilecz on
As a member since 1984, it is great to see how far BOAT US has come and how safe it felt with you at the helm. Thank you so much for your efforts and I wish you the best.
Posted By: Len Gullickson on
Hello Richard, We have been members since 1974 and have enjoyed many of the amenities offered by BOAT/US. I remember getting the first catalog which was less than a dozen pages and also shopping at the only store at the time in Alexandria, VA. Hope you enjoy your retirement; you have earned it. Member #32065
Posted By: Henry Spector on
Congratulations on a great career. Thank you for creating and building a wonderful service to the boating community. I've been a member since 1972 and consider my dues a great investment in boating. Enjoy the well-earned retirement.
Posted By: Barrie McCune on
A man with a dream and the fortitude to see it come to fruition. He watched it grow to be a leader in the industry. Hands on for many years. Richard, you deserve the rest in retirement. Take care and enjoy.
Posted By: John Malatak on
Richard, thank you VERY MUCH most importantly for your friendship over the years, your vision and dream of what recreational boating in our country should be; your commitment to the boaters of our great country; for never giving up, your tenacity, generosity, spirit and national leadership. Thank you for your many years of stellar professionalism!
Posted By: Lee M DeKeyser on
Job very well done. I have been amember since 1981 and Thank you for your service. Enjoy your time!
Posted By: Dean Brewer on
I have just retired from teaching school. 34 years I want to build a house boat and live on the St. Jonhs river, here in orlando fl. If you you are dowm my way, ii would love to talk boats with you. I am very new to boats. I would love to gain insight from you. I am asking to bless your retirment.
Posted By: Phil McGann on
Richard it's a long way from the LA SALLE bldg, Conn. & K st NW. I started there too. And you were giving away dock line for members. I didn't have a boat then. But do now in part thanks to you & BOAT US. Retired in the Fl Keys,. GIVE THEM HELL, RICHARD
Posted By: Lynn Lesch on
Good job and enjoy your retirement. I have enjoyed Boat US since 1979 (00093614)
Posted By: Creighton Maynard on
It is good to have known you for all of these years. Best on all to come in the future.
Posted By: Capt Daniel Folk on
Posted By: Brian Will on
Richard, Thank you for all you've done for boaters throughout the US. Your well-deserved retirement will allow you to spend more time boating now. Regards, Brian Will Plano, TX
Posted By: frank gioia on
I've been a member since 1988 and the first thing I tell new boaters at the dock is to join BOATUS.You're services can't be beat.Again thanks for starting such a great agency keeping boats rights in the right perspective.ENJOY your retirement and thanks again.
Posted By: Tim howard on
Aloha Richard, Many mahalos for your efforts over the years. I read every issue with an eye towards what will make me a better boater in mind. My heartfelt congratulations to your many years of contributions to the boating community. Aloha, enjoy your retirement years! tim
Posted By: dr peter i berman on
Richard is far too young to retire. Too much to do. The boating industry desperately needs a "Consumer Reports" service evaluating marine products and boats plus places where to obtain repairs. And there's so much more that can be done with an expanded web site offering technical discussions to members and access to marine publications. Boats are becoming high tech consumable goods and we need all the help we can get !
Posted By: Ted Fautz on
Thanks Richard for BoatUS!
Posted By: K9Bait on
Thank you Richard. We joined up in 1988 having just moved to Georgia (with our boat) from Boston and hearing of BoatUS for the first time. We're currently enjoying boat #5 and continue to promote BoatUS at every possible opportunity. Our boys (now 30 & 27) grew up on the water and continue to spend as much time as possible there along with their families. This has truly been one of those instances where our experience has far exceeded our expectations. Best wishes for a long and happy retirement, Laurie & Howard
Posted By: Bill Husted on
Who would have thought that BOAT/US would become the powerhouse it is today, not only as a recreational boating advocate in legislative affairs, but as a guiding force for "all things boating" on behalf of all boaters? My thanks to you for your vision and dedication to boating as the #1 recreational pursuit it is. My fellow members in United States Power Squadrons and all boaters everywhere salute you for adding a remarkable dimension to the outdoor activity we all love so well. Enjoy your retirement, Richard. It is well deserved. Bill Husted, Stuart, FL
Posted By: Billl English on
Richard, Thank you for recognizing a need and having the persistence to see it through to establish BOAT US.You have done the nations boaters a real service and it gets better every year. Congratulations from all of us grateful boaters. May your retirement be filled with wellness and joy!
Posted By: Jim Holtzinger on
Thanks Richard for the years of service especially the last fifty years. S/V CHIPPER Key West, FL
Posted By: Michael G on
In 1967 I wandered into you small office, was it on K St NW?, cold calling with computer services. You didn't have a data base then that needed computers, but you gave me your passionate prescient pitch. You brilliantly navigated your ship of ideas through treacherous waters and times into safe and secure harbour. When I bought my first boat in the 80's, I joined. G-d speed to you Richard. 207204 (would be lower but my memory and membershiped laspsed once).
Posted By: Tom Bass on
Richard- Sailing is so much more enjoyable knowing that BoatUS is watching our back. Thanks to your extraordinary efforts through the years, all of us boaters have an organization that gives us peace of mind and a place to turn for comradeship and sharing. Your work has not gone unnoticed and is much appreciated. You have earned a rich and fulfilling retirement. Enjoy!
Posted By: Alfred O. Grimminger on
Richard, I want to Thank You for all the information I received from your publications over the past years. I also want to thank all the people you have in your stores. They have gone out of their way to help me when I had a problem, I am sure this came about because of your guidance. Richard, I also want to Thank You for all your support of the Coast Guard Auxiliary. Welcome to the retired group. Al.
Posted By: Ira L Goldman on
Richard: As a long time member (#96387) I am very grateful for the vison and effort you have put into making BoatUS the success it is today. You have not been afraid to continually change the model such as the merger with West Marine in ways that continued bring value to members. As a long time member of USPS I am also pleased with the joint education programs that are starting between the two organizations and I only wish that they had someone with your vision in their leadership ranks. I wish you a long and healthy retirement. Regards Ira Goldman
Posted By: David Emsellem on
Richard, as a boater for over 40 years and a member of BoatUS for close to 40 years I have always been impressed by your foresight and initiative. I well remember, when I wore a younger man's clothes, traveling down to one of your first stores to buy boat supplies. Thank you for the many years that you have been there for us boaters. I just retired and can honestly say.....jump on in the water is great!!!
Posted By: Bill Eilers on
I have been a member for 33 years with number 91097 and value my membership and all that you and the organization have done for boating. Thank you for your dedication.
Posted By: Charles Richardson on
Thank you Richard, You have made boating safer and more enjoyable to all of us. Enjoy your RETIREMENT! Sincerely, Charles Richardson
Posted By: Ray on
Thank you Richard, I'm not sure what your original goal was in 1966 but the piece of mind I have on the road and on the water are priceless to me. Thank you for your awareness of our needs and retire knowing you are appreciated. Ray
Posted By: Ted Guy on
Richard, Boat/US is maybe the best example of a successful business that works for the benefit of all it serves; a real public service!
Posted By: ADDIICTED on
Members since 1989, Thank You Thank You Thank You... My wife / galley wench / anchor girl / deck hand and I have cruised the Chesapeake feeling a little more secure knowing if & when needed...help was just a call away.. and while not serious, we have made that call on a few occasions and have said thank you for UNLIMITED TOWING. Your vision has made thousands of boaters feel the same everywhere and we thank you...Enjoy Ken & Brenda
Posted By: Mayer Levy on
Richard, We have sailed our Chesapeake Bay for most of my (almost) 81 years, much with the help of your baby, Boat/US. Enjoy your retirement. Keep active.
Posted By: Jim Delligatti on
Its been a great boating life for the past 40 plus years with Boat US leading the industry and its customers. I been a member over 40 years and a boat owner for 58 years. You had a lot of vision, Thanks for your innovations and creativity.
Posted By: Tuck and Alice Biays on
Thank you, Richard, for your vision and dedication in creating BoatUS--one of our favorite organizations! SeaWorthy is the one journal we read cover-to-cover as soon as it arrives, with its important and useful information, well written in a reader-friendly style. And BoatUS boat insurance is simply the best-- in a league by itself. We feel so fortunate that our then-new insurance agent introduced us to it in 1985 as better than anything he could sell us! We are grateful to you, too, for representing the boating community in legislation that an uninformed Congress tries to foist on us from time to time! Well done! We appreciate you! All the best, Tuck and Alice aka DianaMacFarland.com
Posted By: Jeff Corwin on
Thank you, Richard, for all your thoughtful and effective work and insights in building Boat U.S. so as to represent the interests of all of us who love being on the water! With best wishes to you for a long, fulfilling, and well deserved time for rest and recreation as you retire.
Posted By: Al Biggs on
Dear Mr Schwartz Thank you for love of Boating.This must be the most rewarding time for you to think back and remember how far Boat US has changed the whole industries. I tip my hat to you and all of the people you have met and worked with through the years. Best wishes to you and your Family.
Posted By: Bob Schwartz on
You were absolutely the only person who sensed what BOATUS could become. How do I know this? Because a number of times we baby sat for your young daughters while you were working your butt off getting this thing going. Out of the house at 7:00 in the morning after kissing your girls good bye and back at 10:00 or 11:00 at night, kissing the kids in their beds before going to sleep yourself. You never waivered, you never doubted the potential of this organization.
Posted By: Chuck Sterin on
Richard: I worked for you and Dick as one of your BoatUS managers in the early 1980s - building up the BoatUS publications department and as the founding director of the BoatUS Foundation. In part, from the launching pad of my three years as one of your managers I went on to become an award-winning documentary filmmaker, author, business owner and university professor. I'm still a boater and a BoatUS member now living on the Pamlico Sound just outside of Oriental, NC. - in "semi-retirement". Best wishes on your well-earned retirement. Warm Regards, J. Charles Sterin, Ph.D. - MICSI
Posted By: Charlie Richardson on
I have been a member for a couple of years now and have absolutely enjoyed your services and anyone I have had any contact with in your company has been very professional you must be proud of your accomplishments and have a well deserved retirement coming and hope you enjoy it to the fullest. Charlie
Posted By: Ed on
Thank you for all your hard work. Enjoy retirement you earned it !