About The Authors

Bernadette and Douglas Bernon

Photo of Bernadette and Douglas Bernon aboard Ithaka

Before going cruising, Bernadette was the Editor In Chief of Cruising World for 10 years (1990 to 2000), and the Editorial Director of Cruising World and Sailing World magazines (1997 to 2000). During her tenure, Cruising World won national Folio and Ozzie awards from the publishing industry for editorial and design excellence, as well as Boating Writers Of America awards for technical writing and editing.

Bernadette founded the Cruising World Safety At Sea Institute, which organizes with US Sailing a dozen day-long safety seminars around the country each year. She also developed Cruising World Adventure Charters which has sent more than 3,000 readers to far-flung destinations around the world. She was on the board of directors of Sail America, and on the advisory board of BoatUS.

In the 80s, she worked for a Washington-based economic consulting firm, where she was in charge of attitude surveys; and spent two years with VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America, our domestic Peace Corps) as a community organizer working on grassroots political issues in inner cities. She co-authored Maiden Voyage, the book about Tania Aebi's solo circumnavigation, which was published by Simon and Schuster in seven countries, spent three weeks on The London Times bestseller list, and was selected in 1998 as a Best Book For Young Adults by the American Library Association. In 2000, she was awarded the "Leadership In Women's Sailing" trophy from the National Women's Sailing Association, and in 2002 she won the Genmar Trophy from Boating Writers International for the best story of the year: "Midterm Reflections From A Semester At Sea," published in Cruising World magazine.


She began sailing in college, took a beginning sailing course at Offshore Sailing School in Florida, bought a Laser and then raced J/24s and Shields. Since then she's had 20,000 miles of worldwide sailing and cruising experience. In addition to her column for BoatUS, she's an Editor At Large for Cruising World, where she writes features for the magazine, as well as a monthly column with her husband.

For 14 years before going cruising, Douglas was a psychologist and psychoanalyst in private practice treating adults and children, and maintaining an active forensic practice. He was also a clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at Brown University Medical School, and president of the Rhode Island Association of Psychoanalytic Psychology. He has a certificate in Psychoanalysis, a Ph.D. in Education, and another Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.

Photo of Douglas Bernon

He's worked as a consultant to the National Institute of Mental Health; US Department of Education; Western Union Telegraph Corporation; PSA Airlines; American Association of Retired Persons; Giant Food; National Institute of Drug Abuse; General Telephone and Electronics; and DTR Manufacturing Industries.

Before this three-year cruising odyssey, Douglas's sailing experience included an 18-month singlehanded cruise in the late 70s aboard a 30-foot wood folk boat named Evora on which he taught himself how to sail. He also owned and cruised a 24-foot Quickstep, and crewed with friends on ocean passages across the Atlantic, and down to the Caribbean.

An accomplished photographer, Douglas's work also has appeared in Conde Nast Traveler and in Cruising World. He's lectured professionally on a wide range of subjects, including psychoanalytic profiles of Buster Keaton and Stephen King; childhood suicide; and forensic profiling. Currently, he's a contributing editor for Cruising World, where he writes a monthly column with his wife.

Bernadette and Douglas Bernon have been married since 1990. Before selling the house, the cars and the furniture, and going cruising on their Shearwater 39, Ithaka, in 2000, they lived in Newport, Rhode Island.