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MCCS dive specialist wins prestigious PADI award

Date Posted: 2008-08-30

Robert Zimmerman, a recreation specialist and director of Marine Corps Community Services Tsunami SCUBA’s dive instructor program, has been recognized for his “distinguished service as PADI Instructor Development Course Director on Okinawa.”

Zimmerman, a certified instructor since 1992, has been the MCCS course director since 1997. Bob, as he prefers to be called, is the only SOFA-status PADI course instructor on Okinawa, and has been instrumental in establishing and building the instruction program at Tsunami SCUBA. Tsunami SCUBA is the only PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) IDC 5-star facility in the worldwide MCCS system.

The dive specialist has trained more than 3,000 recreational SCUBA divers, including more than 300 certifications for continuing education courses that expand professional abilities of certified SCUBA instructors. Zimmerman is also the Marine Corps SCUBA Programs chief instructor in Okinawa.

Winning the Distinguished Service Award is no easy feat, says Tsunami SCUBA Program Manager Kevin Freeland. “Bob Zimmerman has been a key contributor to our ongoing success through his shared passion for diving, his relentless pursuit of excellence that exceeds even PADI’s gold standards for instructor for instructor development, and his love of the Marine Corps, which he served proudly from 1971~1993, and Okinawa, which has been his home since 1994.”

PADI divers carry the most respected and sought after scuba credentials in the world, and the PADI system of diver education assures that PADI professionals worldwide deliver PADI courses in a consistent and standardized manner, yet adapted to unique needs and requirements of different local diving environments. There are more than 130,000 PADI professionals and approximately 5,300 PADI dive centers and resorts operating in 180 countries and territories.

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