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"Sisters Under Sail" Founder Honored with Leadership in Women's Sailing Award

110-Foot Schooner Sails New England and Great Lakes

Photo Caption: (Left to Right) NWSA Founder Doris Colgate, NWSA President Joan Thayer, 2011 Award Recipient Dawn Santamaria, BoatUS Membership Programs Manager Dina MurrayPhoto Credit: Sisters Under Sail
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 MARBLEHEAD, Mass., June 6, 2011 - Dawn Santamaria, Founder and Executive Director of Sisters Under Sail, was presented the 2011 Leadership in Women's Sailing Award at the 10th Women's Sailing Conference held Saturday at the Corinthian Yacht Club in Marblehead, MA. The award is sponsored by BoatUS and the National Women's Sailing Association (NWSA).

The Leadership In Women's Sailing Award honors an individual with a record of achievement in inspiring, educating and enriching the lives of women through sailing. Santamaria founded the non-profit organization Sisters Under Sail in 2005 to build confidence, enhance self-esteem, develop social conscience and teach the value of working together through sail training. Sisters Under Sail has the only all-female crewed tall ship in the world, the 110-foot, square topsail, gaff-rigged schooner STV Unicorn, which sails New England and Great Lakes waters.
Santamaria said, “We are truly honored and thank BoatUS and the National Women’s Sailing Association for the recognition of the work that we are doing with Sisters Under Sail. I personally want to thank my family for providing the inspiration behind the Sisters’ mission. After all, it is because of our family’s story and our beautiful tall ship that Sisters Under Sail actually ‘found’ me.”
Santamaria purchased the ship with her husband, Jay, and the couple’s four daughters have become intricate parts of the training and business. “As a family, we are proud that Sisters Under Sail has put aboard nearly 200 women and 400 teenage girls. Nearly half of the teens were able to come aboard Unicorn due to sponsorship dollars,” added Santamaria.
About BoatUS:
BoatUS – Boat Owners Association of The United States – is the nation’s leading advocate for recreational boaters providing over half a million members with government representation, programs and money-saving services. For membership information visit or call 800-395-2628.
About NWSA:
NWSA – National Women’s Sailing Association - is a national organization for women sailors. Their mission is to enhance the lives of women and girls through education and access to the sport of sailing. For membership information, visit or call 401-682-2064.