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Steve Burkholder

Steve Burkholder

Master Scuba Diver Trainer

Ever since I can remember I have loved being in the water, on the water, and under the water. If there was a mud puddle nearby, I was in it. The dive bug bit me when, as a kid, I would spend time at my grandmother’s house in Boynton Beach Fla., snorkeling the shallow reefs just offshore. My parents bought me a YMCA diving course in 1977, and I have been hooked ever since.

I attended College at Florida Institute of Technology that provided me with my PADI Open Water Instructor rating in 1984. I have had many mentors in diving over the years, but the most notable are Drew Richardson; president and CEO of PADI, and now Ron “Swami” Willis; owner of West Shore Scuba. I am often asked why I continue to teach, and the answer is quite simple; I love Diving, Divers, and the entire community of people that love the Ocean environment.

One of the things that continues to “trip my trigger”, is the “light bulb” that goes off in a student’s head during their first breaths underwater. That transition from extreme anxiety to one of comfort, and the realization of wonder in a new divers eyes is extremely gratifying.