Tom Ingram (USA)

Tom Ingram (USA)

Tom Ingram has more than 40 years of experience in the recreational diving industry, including dive leadership, retail and retail management, education, marketing, and has served as the President of DEMA since 2002. His leadership of DEMA has elevated his profile globally and he has become the “face” of the USA’s diving industry, developing strategic alliances with international diving groups around the world. With his natural teaching abilities he has held key instructional posts with numerous organizations and educational institutions. As the President of DEMA, he appears regularly at Congressional and State legislative hearings, representing divers and the diving industry. Tom’s managerial skills have brought a much-needed stability to DEMA, and his abilities in his role are endorsed by him becoming the longest serving President in the history of DEMA, with 17 years of service. Tom’s service to recreational diving was recognized by the members of the Academy of Underwater Arts & Sciences with the 2017 NOGI Award for Distinguished Service. 

Ingram started in the recreational diving industry working as a divemaster with a store in Florida, and as a scuba technician with Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) in Jensen Beach.  After becoming an instructor in 1976, Ingram went on to teach at FIT and several different local dive centers.     

Ingram became an FIT faculty member in 1980, and in 1985 became the Department Head of the Sport Diving Operations Program.  A NAUI Instructor Trainer, Ingram volunteered as an Examiner for numerous NAUI ITCs as well as a speaker at various NAUI IQs, NAUI’s US-based national educational conventions.  In addition, Ingram worked as a trainer for scuba-related operational techniques for the US Army Corps of Engineers.  

At FIT, while teaching full-time during the academic year, Ingram worked during summers as Manager of the East Coast Shipwreck Project, coordinating the efforts of Mel Fisher’s treasure salvors, the State of Florida, and Marine Archaeologists employed to recover and catalog treasure from the 1715 Spanish Plate Fleet. Ingram also participated in the recovery of the Nuestra Senora de Atocha off Key West, Florida in 1985.  

In 1987 the satellite campus of FIT closed, and Ingram established the first four-year degree program in Recreational Diving Management (RDM) at Barry University in Miami Shores, Florida.  The RDM program incorporated a business minor, diving business, and diving leadership education, resulting in a diving instructor certification and baccalaureate degree in Recreational Diving Management; everything needed for a career as a recreational diving professional. 

While at Barry, Ingram now a PADI Course Director, served on the Z375 (ANSI) Committee on development of Diving Instructional Standards.  In addition, Ingram frequently volunteered as an Instructor Examiner with PADI, and provided educational support for Dade County's Inner City High School Marine-related-science and business program, the Maritime Science and Technology (MAST) Program. 

In 1995 Ingram joined Scubapro as Manager of Education and Retail Development, and later became Product Manager and Director of Technical Marketing.  In 2000 Ingram joined Aqua Lung as Manager of Sales and Marketing for Swim Products and later as Marketing Manager for Professional Diving Equipment. Ingram joined DEMA as Executive Director in September of 2002. 

Ingram is a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) where he serves on the Public Policy Committee and has been a featured speaker and author on numerous occasions.  He has also been Board Chair for the California Society of Association Executives (CalSAE), and in 2008 -2009 was recognized as the California Association Executive of the Year. Ingram also served on the Board of the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame from 2005-2019. He is a Certified Association Executive (CAE), and holds Masters’ degrees in Marketing and Management 

Ingram is a consummate industry professional with over 40 years of distinguished and ethical service to the international diving industry, and one of, if not the, most influential executives in the global diving industry. 

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