Experts and Their Fields

Please contact Scott Croft to be put in touch with any of these experts.


MPred triangle Margaret Podlich
BoatUS Government Affairs

BoatUS President Margaret Podlich can share her knowledge of boating issues at the state level as well as on Capitol Hill. From unfair taxes and fees and other anti-boating legislation, Podlich knows the latest on government proposals and how they may affect recreational boating, from anchoring restrictions in Florida to discharge permits at the federal level. She also can be a big help with issues such as E-15 fuel, no-discharge zones, Working Waterfronts legislation and the Sport Fish Restoration Act.

AWred triangle Adam Wheeler
BoatUS Towing Services

Vice President of BoatUS Towing Services Adam Wheeler oversees the nation's largest recreational towboat fleet with over 600 towing assistance vessels across North America. With over two decades of experience, Adam knows recreational boat towing at the national level and can speak on why boats get towed, towing vs. salvage, boating traffic, or towing statistics. If you require a local angle, an interview with a local TowBoatUS or Vessel Assist Captain can be arranged.


Susan Shingledeckerred triangle Susan Shingledecker
BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water
As Assistant Vice President of Clean Water Programs for the non-profit Foundation, Susan Shingledecker knows what it takes to keep our waterways clean, and can speak about best practices as well as Foundation clean water programs including Fishing Line Recycling and "Help Stop the Drops" clean refueling. She's an expert on invasive species and boating, clean marina programs, pump outs and marine debris.

Chris Edmonstonred triangle Chris Edmonston
BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water

As President of the non-profit BoatUS Foundation, Chris works extensively with state and federal agencies to develop common sense approaches for educating boaters on how to be safe on the water and how to be good stewards of our nations' waterways. Chris also works closely on boating safety issues with the angling and hunting communities and frequently appears on outdoor TV shows. In addition, he has over 25 years marine industry experience in many roles — from pumping gas (and poop) to repairing and selling boats.


Mike Pellerinred triangle Mike Pellerin
BoatUS Marine Insurance

Unlike auto insurance, boat insurance policies can vary significantly from one company to the next.  Mike Pellerin, Vice President of Underwriting BoatUS Marine Insurance, knows a lot about matching the right policy to the boat and its owner, certain coverages to be concerned about such as salvage or fuel spill liability, and anything else related to the purchase of marine insurance.

Steve Chaconas Butch Rickeyred triangle Steve Chaconas and Butch Rickey
BoatUS ANGLER Fishing Experts

Captains Steve Chaconas on the nation's river, the Potomac, and Doug "Butch" Rickey on Florida's Gulf Coast can share their knowledge on just about any fishing related topic, covering both fresh and saltwater species, trailering topics and angler safety.  Both are established authors, media spokespersons, active guides and combined have over 45 years of fishing experience.


Steve Chaconasred triangle Beth Leonard
BoatUS Marine Insurance

Seaworthy magazine editor Beth Leonard spends her days finding out how and why boats get damaged – and what boaters can do to prevent becoming a statistic. As Director of BoatUS Technical Services, she's queen of the BoatUS insurance claims files and investigates sinkings, groundings, collisions, fires and hurricane damage to boats and marinas. Leonard is also an expert on hurricane preparation, ethanol fuel, offshore sailing, and heavy weather tactics.

Charles Fort, Consumer Editorred triangle Charles Fort
BoatUS Consumer Editor

 As Director of the BoatUS Consumer Affairs Department and BoatUS Technical Services team member, BoatUS Magazine Consumer Editor Charles can answer question regarding ownership, consumer protection, and dispute mediation issues as well as mechanical, electrical, fuel, and other technical topics. He serves on ABYC technical committees, is a member of the National Assn. of Marine Surveyors, director of the BoatUS Salvage Arbitration Board, and holds a 100-ton USCG license. Charles has grown up from his youth spent in canoes and ski boats, to several years of cruising with his family of four aboard a 30-foot sailboat, to now sailing/living-aboard a 45-foot cutter.