Owner of "Whitsunday Sailing School", Mal has over 36 years experience at sea. His career began in the fishing industry working trawlers in the Gulf of Carpentaria as an 18 year old. At 20 he signed on to be a seafood technologist based out of Auckland on a joint venture between Japan and New Zealand working Purse Seiners 210 ft long fishing vessels in the South Pacific.
It was while in New Zealand he took a real interest in sailing and when transferred to oversee a joint fishing project in Burma spent his spare time sailing on the waters around Thailand. He returned to Australia and enrolled in the Gold Coast Marine Academy where he spent five years studying to become a Yacht Master Ocean Instructor and Offshore Examiner after which he spent one year in the US studying navigation, big boat handling & advanced spinnaker techniques at the Dana Point Charter Yachts. While in Southern California he became involved with the Marine Heritage Society of Southern California and raced on classic yachts.
Mal returned to Australia and established the Whitsunday Marine Academy in 1992. In 2005 he was awarded the Master of Yachts Unlimited Power and Sail to 200 gross ton by the International Yacht Training facility in Florida. He was then endorsed as a professional instructor in both recreational and commercial qualifications.
During his career, he has owned or operated many boats most of them large maxis including the famous boats Maxi Ragamuffin, Siska, Hammer of Queensland, Condor, Freight Train and many others.
Mal is very well known throughout the Whitsundays and the sailing industry in general as a Master Sailor.
He has a passion for sailing and it is his ability to transfer that passion to his customers that have seen people come back time after time.
Mal has a team of great people behind him. All have been trained personally by Mal and are here to help you get the qualifications you seek.
is a California born man who went to sea early on in his life.
Growing up surfing and sailing his passion for the ocean has been carried out over a lifetime.
Starting out working in the boatyards in Newport Beach harbor across the street from his house on the Newport peninsula he learned early on from the bottom up how to look after boats.
As a local surfer in town, the older skippers knew they could count on Mark to help them move the boats up and down the coast and over to Hawaii so Mark gained his skills early in life to be an able navigator and obtained his one-hundred tonne US Coast Guard ticket at the age of 22.
He owned his own wooden boat a 26 foot "Sea Bird Yawl" at this time and became not only a good sailor but a good boat carpenter.
He was able to secure work onboard one of the more famous boats Ceramco New Zealand re-named Winter Hawk and proceeded to deliver this vessel and campaign it as a full-time crew member.
This lead him on to be foredeck crew sailing on some of the best Maxies in the world during the days of the gypsy boats when you would sail these large 80 foot plus IOR boats around the world racing them in various locations. After some 15 years on the circuit racing and delivering boats he found himself in Western Australia working on boats and club racing and decided to turn his work toward the charter boat industry. He moved to the Whitsunday's in Queensland where he owned and operated his own charter boat. This is where he met Mal Robertson his business partner and good friend owner of the Whitsunday sailing school. Sailing and running his business for 8 years he sold then sold.
Marks diversity continued in the industry and he then moved on to the commercial side of things and he then worked for the Brisbane Marine pilots, and Adsteam tugs one of the companies down in the Brisbane River, as well as a Commercial Dive Operations. Wanting more knowledge and diversity his next gig was on Cargo ship which carried freight to Lord Howe island.
Always in the back of his mind giving back to the community was very important. Tired of the ship after 5 years He then decided to start delivering yachts again and moving smaller vessels around the planet.
While still surfing and building his villas in Kuta Lombok a beautiful island where time has remained at a relaxed pace his vision unfolded when Mal and Mark were racing once again together in Airlie Beach. Partnering with Mal and Whitsunday Sailing School "Lombock Sailing School" Commercial and Recreational licenses was born.
Mark is a master of ships licensed to 45 m and an IYT instructor. He is a delivery skipper with some 500,000 miles under his belt and His passion to give back to the community is lead by his joy to see others get involved in the industry that has provided him and his family with a good life.
We encourage you to give Mark or Mal a call and have a chat and see if you to would like to get involved in the Maritime industry.