Our staff members have been hard at work over preparing for our students to arrive! These experienced sailors, divers, and marine biologists have spent the past several days learning and practicing all things BVI sailing and marine life!
Eliot Faust, Program Director
Eliot joins us from Bethesda, MD. He is currently getting an MA in International Studies from Johns Hopkins SAIS, concentrating in Strategic Studies and International Economics. Starting in 2007, Eliot spent five years enrolled as a student at Sail Caribbean. Sail Caribbean really attracted Eliot due to his interest in marine biology from a young age. Following his time as an SC student, Eliot then completed the Sail Caribbean Dive Master Internship and transitioned to staff. Always ready with a funny one-liner, Eliot loves diving at the Fearless and the Indians or sailing to his favorite location of Little Harbor on Peter Island.
Emily Mussio, Program Director in Training
Born and raised on the shore of Lake Huron in a small beach town of Grand Bend, Canada has put the love of the outdoors and traveling in her blood. Emily recently graduated from Laurentian University in their Outdoor Adventure Leadership program as well as completing their Concurrent Education Program, where she obtained her Wilderness First Responder (WFR) certification. She first joined Sail Caribbean as a student in 2012 and returned every year afterwards, in a wide variety of programs to ensure she got the full Sail Caribbean experience. She has many boiling passions that range from athletics, the outdoors and exploring the world. She is looking forward to her fourth summer at SC and sharing her passion for the outdoors with others and educating them in more ways than one!
Lilly Dunphy, Provisions Manager
Lilly Dunphy is originally from Rhode Island – aka the Ocean State – where her love for the ocean blossomed. Her love for sailing is rooted in her Danish blood, where she spent this past fall at an environmental cooking school. She graduated in May from the University of Colorado Boulder with a bachelors in Environmental Design specializing in urban planning. Her sights are set on law school as an environmental lawyer dealing with land management and water resources in hopes to preserve our beautiful home. She is an avid environmentalist which sprung from her summers with Sail Caribbean’s Alpha and Sierra Programs. From Sail Caribbean to her time exploring Colorado, her love for the ocean and the mountains have dominated her adventurous lifestyle. Lilly is also a yoga sculpt instructor and loves being active, creative, cooking, and being on the beach. She is psyched for an awesome summer!
Samantha Lundquist, Provisions Manager/Med Officer
From the west coast of Canada, Samantha has grown up with mossy forests, steep mountain peaks and ocean tides as her home and happy place. While she loves to spend her weekends either camping by the ocean or summiting mountains, her grade 12 year sailing across the Atlantic Ocean on a tall ship has proven to be her most memorable experience. Samantha has worked as a lifeguard for 5+ years and has just graduated from the University of British Columbia with a bachelors of science in food, nutrition, and health and a minor in business. She wants to go back to graduate studies someday with a goal of one day working in the medical field. She’s stoked to get back out on the water, disconnect from the tech world and connect with others! Samantha is also a big advocate for normalizing discussion around mental health so she is always happy to chat and be a part of anyone’s support system.
Hannah Sanderson, Office Manager
Hannah grew up in mid-coast Maine. She has always loved the ocean and can never stay away from the beautiful water. In high school, Hannah joined the field hockey, indoor and outdoor track teams, leading her to become an avid sports science lover. Hannah is currently pursuing a degree in Kinesiology with a minor in Human Nutrition at the University of Maine. She plans to continue her education and pursue a doctorate degree in Physical Therapy. Hannah’s hobbies include skiing, running, swimming, exercise, community service, and traveling. She has visited many different countries including Mexico, Dominican Republic, Aruba, Italy, France, the United Kingdom, and Canada. During the summer, Hannah enjoys spending time at her lake house, boating, jet-skiing, and hanging out with her family. Her previous work experience includes child care and waitressing at a restaurant. She is very excited to be joining the Sail Caribbean team and is looking forward to hanging out with the kids.
Cara Nestor, Office Manager
Cara Nestor is from Cincinnati Ohio. She is so excited to be joining the Sail Caribbean team this summer. Cara is a rising junior at The Ohio State University, majoring in Hospitality. She loves working and being with people and hopes to become an event planner after she graduates. Cara worked at a resort in Sea Island, Georgia last summer and loved it so she wanted to try something exciting and even further away from home! Travel is something that she is very passionate about, and she has never been to the British Virgin Islands before so she is so grateful for this opportunity. Cara loves going on adventures and meeting new people, so she couldn’t be more eager for this experience! Cara can’t wait to meet you all!
Amy Lawson, Dive Instructor/Videographer
Born in a beachside city in South Africa and raised in Western Australia, a state with over 6000 miles of coast line, it’s easy to say that wherever there’s an ocean, Amy feels at home. Amy’s passion for sailing and diving truly flourished when she moved full time onto a sailing vessel traveling around Australia, in an attempt to quite literally sail away from the chaos of COVID. Here she became a dive instructor and so is excited to start her first season with Sail Caribbean teaching in the incredible waters of the BVIs. As a Photographer/Videographer Amy loves to share her passion for the ocean through a creative lens that she hopes will spark joy and inspire others to love & care for the ocean as much as she does!
Hannah Murphy, Captain
Hannah is finishing her third year at Tulane University and is so thrilled to be joining the Sail Caribbean staff this summer. Hannah plans to major in Sociology with a minor in Teaching, Learning, & Training. She currently works with kids at a local program in New Orleans during the school year, she is excited to continue surrounding herself with the energy of young teens. Hannah grew up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland where she spent most of her time out on boats with friends, either sailing, paddle boarding, tubing, or wakeboarding. During the summers, Hannah worked as a lifeguard and camp counselor. Hannah’s parents met and spent many of their post-college years working for Sail Caribbean, she is excited to be following in their footsteps. Hannah’s other interests include hiking, photography, snorkeling, and riding horses.
Melissa Ferreira, Dive Instructor/Mate
Melissa was born in South Africa with strong Portuguese roots. She grew up with a love for the water, swimming professionally throughout her school years. Eventually she went on to coach swimming through college while studying linguistics, majoring in Portuguese and Spanish. Once she completed her studies, she found a way to make her passion for the water and the ocean her lifestyle and career, by becoming a scuba instructor. She has worked as an instructor for 3 years in South Africa, Maldives and most recently Costa Rica. Melissa loves practicing yoga, drinking tea and drawing when she’s not underwater. Melissa is an animal-lover at heart, especially to her 5 dogs at home. Her favourite diving memory was spotting a manta and a whale shark on the same dive in the Maldives. She can’t wait to share her passion for the ocean this summer with Sail Caribbean.
Mary Haley, Mate/Marine Science
Growing up on the beaches of Rockaway, New York, Mary grew up in the ocean. Surfing, paddle boarding and swimming are just a few of the hobbies she grew up loving before her move up North where she attends the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. There she began exploring the mountains and got into traversing, biking, and snowshoeing. Mary is a rising senior majoring in Environmental Studies with a focus in Law and she has a double minor in Writing and Rhetoric as well as Marine Science. Mary is a commodore of the Syracuse University’s Sailing Team and has been sailing and competing with the team since her freshman year. She also volunteers with the Sea Scouts of America teaching paddling and sailing to kids during her summers. She has also been a kayaking instructor for the National Parks Service! Her most recent trip was a voyage in the Pacific from Honolulu, Hawaii to the Palmyra Atoll in the Southern Pacific. She traveled there along a 134 foot steel sailing brigantine research vessel and researched the effects of thermocline variability in the Southern Pacific. All of Mary’s sailing experience has been built over the last four years and she loves to inspire new sailors by reminding them that it is never too late to learn to sail! Aside from sailing, Mary also loves film photography, yoga, writing, and her puppy Winston!
Callie Wilks, Captain
Callie is from Cincinnati, Ohio and currently attends The Ohio State University as a business major. She discovered her passion for the ocean through Sail Caribbean as she attended the program for 2 years. Through the program, she found a love for diving and has gotten her advance certificate through Sail Caribbean. During the summer Callie loves to hang out with family and her two dogs on the lake. Some of the activities she loves to do are wakeboard, paddleboard, fishing, and kayak. She is so excited about this amazing summer.
Alex McCrindle, Dive Instructor/Mate
Alex was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona and fell in love with diving in the Sea of Cortez on an expedition in 2016. After being washed away by Hurricane Sergio on the same beach a year later, he discovered his passion for experiential education. Alex has spent previous summers working in Honduras, achieving his PADI Instructor Certification and gaining experience in the dive industry. He is now a senior at Western Colorado University in Gunnison, double majoring in Outdoor Education and Business Administration. He enjoys mountaineering, skiing, and Arsenal football matches when not exploring the underwater world.
Felicity Davies, Mate/Marine Science
Felicity is a rising senior at UNC Wilmington studying marine biology and environmental science. Her love of the ocean developed growing up on the south coast of England, and then spending summers undertaking all types of water sports on the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia. She is an officer of the UNCW Sailing Team, and really enjoys competing in regattas and coaching new sailors in the team’s fleet of 420s. In addition to sailing, she wakeboards, surfs, is president of UNCW’s field hockey team, and a keen sculptor and artist. Felicity spent last summer interning with the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Program where she worked to rescue, rehabilitate, and release sea turtles. She’s undertaken various research projects including time on Bald Head Island and during spring break this year completed a coral reef research trip in Belize. She is really excited to be part of the Sail Caribbean team this summer, share her passions for sailing, and protecting the ocean.
Abby Murry, Captain/Marine Science
Abby is a rising senior at Boston University, studying Environmental Analysis and Policy with a minor in International Relations. She is on the BU Sailing Team and spends most of her days sailing on the Charles River with her teammates. This spring she participated in SEA Semester, sailing from Honolulu, HI to Palmyra Atoll. Living on a ship for 6 weeks and spending quality time with the crew showed Abby the value of close relationships and sharing time outdoors. She is very interested in climate change and environmental justice and enjoys sharing her passion for the environment with others. Abby grew up in Scituate, Massachusetts, spending a lot of time on the water sailing with siblings and growing an appreciation for community. For the past few summers, she has worked teaching sailing in her hometown and on Martha’s Vineyard. She loves meeting new people, enjoying the outdoors with new friends, and is excited to meet her campers and have a great summer!
Alex Jenkins, Mate
Alex is from Nova Scotia, Canada, she is currently studying at Carleton University and taking political science with a concentration in International relations. Her passions include being on the water, skiing, traveling, and spending time with friends and family. Alex spent her senior year of high school living on board a tall ship with Class Afloat where she visited over twenty ports of call and sailed over 20,000 nautical miles. Alex is looking forward to meeting students and having a great summer.
Tara Lang, Mate
Tara is from Cincinnati, Ohio, but now lives in Columbus. She has just finished her sophomore year at the Ohio State University and her intended major is Environmental Engineering. She loves marine biology and is excited to kick off the summer with Sail Caribbean! Always having a passion for traveling, she cannot stay away from the ocean. Tara also has been a crew member for two summers at Sail Caribbean where she earned her Advanced Scuba Certification. She is eager to further her education and earn her Dive Master one day. Overall, she is looking forward to learning the ins and outs of what it takes to be a successful mate.
Nic Lennarz, Captain
Nic is a rising fourth year student at the University of Virginia where he is majoring in Economics. When he’s not doing schoolwork, Nic enjoys playing soccer and hiking the Blue Ridge Mountains. Growing up near the Chesapeake Bay, Nic spent his summers competing in sailing regattas all over the East Coast. He also spends weekends sailing with his parents on their twenty-six-foot Herreshoff Alerian. Besides sailing, Nic enjoys boating, wakeboarding, and throwing frisbees for his Australian Cattle Dog. Nic is looking forward to meeting all the new students and sharing his passion for sailing.
Abby Scott, Mate/Marine Science
A Maryland native, Abby spent her first 18 years raised by the rich ecosystem of the Upper Chesapeake and Eastern Shore where she became active in watershed conservation and the boating community, kayaking and surfing. She wasn’t a fan of the cold, so she decided to study biology at Eckerd College in Florida, graduating in 2019 with plans to go to medical school in the future. While at Eckerd, she enjoyed all facets of biology, working as a Lab and Teaching Assistant, and working on research projects. To balance it all, she took up wakeboarding, learned to dive, fell in love with ceramics, and sailed with her friends on the weekends. In addition, she obtained her W-EMT and currently works as a medical assistant at an urgent care. She is eager to join Sail Caribbean to fulfill a dream of combining her many passions like teaching, mentorship, science and watersports!
Kylie Wickland, Dive Instructor/Mate
Kylie is a dive instructor, joining for her first season at Sail Caribbean. Kylie grew up and attended university in Michigan, and has lived all over the world from Little Rock, Arkansas to South Korea. She has been living a nomadic lifestyle since finishing 8 years of military service. Kylie is ready for some new adventures this summer and can’t wait to make some bubbles together!
Stasia Babicki, Captain/Marine Science & Community Service Coordinator
Growing up next to the beautiful Delaware River in rural NJ, Stasia has always been a fan of water and the natural world around her. Stasia moved to the warm south for college to sail, explore, and to always be able to go outside (even in the pouring rain). She just graduated from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg Florida with a double major in Environmental Studies and Spanish. During her time in college, she became a WEMT for the college and joined the rugby team. At Eckerd, she has fallen in love with coastal wetlands and mangroves. She hopes to go to graduate school in the future for environmental philosophy and to teach others about the importance of the natural world. Stasia’s love for the ocean definitely grew when she was a camper at Sail Caribbean participating in the Foxtrot and Sierra clubs when she was younger and looks forward to inspiring campers just as she was inspired.
Kiah Williams, Divemaster/Mate
Kiah is a marine biologist and divemaster from Switzerland, with a BSc in Marine Biology from Newcastle University. She has occupied many roles as a marine biologist including working on a cetacean research vessels in Spain and a coral reef restoration programme in the Mauritius. Most recently she has been working in turtle rescue, rehabilitation and release, as well as eco tourism in the Maldives. Despite having worked on many exciting projects, she’s hoping to find more time out on the boat which is why Sail Caribbean is so perfect! This will be Kiah’s first time in the BVI, so she is excited to see all the marine life and share her joy of the underwater world with everyone there! When she’s not got her head underwater, she loves to play basketball, do various water-sports and also enjoys photography. She can’t wait to meet everyone soon!
Matthew Monts, Mate/Marine Science
Matthew is 20 years old, and is from Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Growing up in a small coastal town, he frequently could be found exploring the local waterways. Matthew has been sailing for 14 years, and began to race at the age of 10. Finding success in a variety of boats, he has found himself on the podium of multiple national championships, and sailed with the US Olympic Development Program in preparation for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games and Youth World Championship, for which he was nominated to be the alternate athlete. While he lived on Hilton Head, Matthew spent his time teaching sailing classes of all levels and ages at his local yacht club. Currently, Matthew is going into his Junior year at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida, where he is studying Marine Science. Although he currently is not racing as competitively as he has in the past, Matthew loves to spend as much of his time as he can outdoors and on the water, and is excited for the opportunity to share his love for the ocean with others.
Emilia dell’Antonio, Captain
Emilia recently graduated from Brown University, where she studied Ecology and Evolutionary Biology with plans to pursue a career in marine biology field research. At Brown, she studied biodiversity in coral reefs in Easter Island and the Galapagos and hopes to apply this research to inform conservation efforts for reefs across the globe. Emilia grew up in Barrington, Rhode Island and has been sailing on Narragansett Bay through the Herreshoff Marine Museum since she was a young girl, where her passion for the ocean took root. Recently, she has developed a love for off-shore sailing after working on a Hinckley 52 in Newport and from Florida to Rhode Island with a friend last summer. Emilia’s other interests include volleyball, film photography, painting, and making friendship bracelets. She can’t get down to Tortola this summer and is excited to spend time in the warm Caribbean!
Anna Sutton, Social Media Coordinator/Mate
Anna is a recent graduate from Elon University with a major in strategic communications and a minor in sociology. Anna grew up in Massachusetts, finding her love for the ocean while spending summers on Cape Cod with her family. Her parents now live in Savannah, GA, and she loves exploring the historic city and spending time on the Georgia coast! Anna has visited the BVI over 10 times and has fond memories of playing cards, sharing stories, and swimming for hours with her brothers while sailing the beautiful blue Caribbean waters. Anna spent January 2020 studying abroad in Barbados, gaining an even deeper appreciation for Caribbean culture. In addition to spending time on the water, Anna has spent her summers as a camp counselor and interning with marketing and PR agencies, learning skills she can’t wait to bring to Sail Caribbean this summer!
Gabby Foley, Mate/Marine Science
Gabrielle is a rising senior at Sewanee: The University of the South. She is majoring in Environment and Sustainability Policy with a focus in Anthropogenic soundscapes of the Ocean. She grew up competitively racing small boats in Norfolk, Virginia and recently wrapped up a semester at sea, sailing from Honolulu, Hawaii, to Palmyra Atoll in the North Equatorial Pacific.
This year, Gabrielle will be analyzing her senior capstone research on cetacean mammal communication in Sewanee. She is passionate about marine and freshwater landscapes, wetland conservation, land management policy, and outdoor education.
“I think the future of our planet rests in environmental stewardship. There is no better way to cultivate a positive relationship of reciprocity with the ocean than to spend time living on it. I am so excited to work with kids at Sail Caribbean this summer. I look forward to watching their academic passions expand. I want them to ask questions, and build lifelong friendships on board. I’m honored to act as a mentor and guide for them this summer.” – Gabrielle Foley
Jackie Bonfiglio, Captain/Dive Coordinator
Jackie is a graduate from Eckerd College where she majored in environmental studies with a focus in marine biology. She is originally from Northern Virginia where she grew up exploring the outdoors and taking interest in the environment. As she traveled abroad to explore and study in Honduras and Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, her passion for environmental conservation and marine ecosystems flourished. Her love for nature and the ocean led her to work with the Coral Restoration Foundation planting young corals throughout the Florida Keys reef system. In the last seven months she lived aboard a traditional brigantine as a deckhand for the Los Angeles Maritime Institute where she taught inner city youth topsail programs. Jackie just recently completed her PADI dive master with the Sail Caribbean Divers upon arriving to the British Virgin Islands this summer. She is looking forward to sharing the beauty of sailing and the underwater world with her campers along with making new friendships and lasting memories this summer.
Dillion Coppersmith, Mate
Dillon is a long-time sailor and youth educator who lives in northern Virginia. As a teenager he lived aboard a sailing vessel with his family for five years, eventually completing a global circumnavigation. He has worked as a sailing instructor ever since, most recently leading the sailing program on Marine Corps Base Quantico. In college he was a member of the William & Mary sailing team where he occasionally competed but preferred introducing new sailors to the sport. Dillon’s passion for mentoring young people has bled into other interests as well, as he works as a varsity esports coach at his alma mater during the fall and winter. Dillon is excited to bring his knowledge, experience, and enthusiasm to Sail Caribbean this year!
Grace Fogarty, Mate/Marine Science
Grace is entering the final year of her Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. At St Andrews, Grace works with the Scottish Oceans Institute to study dolphin acoustics and has become passionate about utilizing bioacoustics for marine mammal conservation as a result. She is fortunate to have had a wide range of marine fieldwork experience, from studying wild stingrays in the Bahamas, and coral reefs in Madagascar, to seagrass communities in the coastal estuaries of Long Island, New York. Grace enjoys being in the water whenever she can, with her favorite activity being SCUBA diving, and hopes to turn her passion and experience into a career in research. Grace’s love for the ocean and marine activities stemmed from her upbringing on the North Shore of Long Island and her time as a student at the Island School on Cape Eleuthera. Grace has worked as a counselor at a sleep away camp in the Berkshires for four summers and is excited to combine her enthusiasm for mentoring future leaders and love for the ocean this summer with Sail Caribbean!