Todd Storey hails from Boardman, Ohio, but has lived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida since 2008. He has been SCUBA diving since 1989, and was trained to freedive in 2006 by PFI, with Kirk Krack and Mandy-Rae Cruickshank. He took their Advanced course in Grand Cayman in 2007, and even got to serve as a surface safety on Mandy’s World Record dive. Todd has also had several feature articles on Deeperblue.net.
Jason Washington is an internationally acclaimed underwater photographer specializing in ambient light photography. A 2017 International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame Hounee, Jason’s unique style of freediving photography coupled with his passion for ocean conservation have broken new ground in the world of underwater photography. His artwork can be found adorning the walls of villas and hotels from Europe to the Caribbean, reminding viewers of the importance of ocean conservation.
Among his many accomplishments, Jason is proudest of his role in spearheading and creating CULL, the Cayman United Lionfish League, a non-profit organization in charge of tackling the lionfish invasion problem on Grand Cayman. Over the years, CULL has removed tens of thousands of invasive lionfish from Cayman’s waters, all while educating the public on the importance of such ventures both locally and abroad. He is also credited with creating the demand for lionfish in the international restaurant scene, and for putting Grand Cayman on the map as the culinary lionfish capital of the world. Jason’s conservation efforts have been featured in multiple overseas media outlets promoting lionfish as a sustainable fish alongside some of the world’s greatest chefs in an effort to protect coral reefs from the invasive species. Jason is the owner of Ambassador Divers, one of Grand Cayman’s oldest watersports operators.
Rachel Novak is a mermaid performance artist, SAG-AFTRA stunt performer, freediving and mermaid instructor, and sailor based in Las Vegas, Nevada. She runs a freediving and travel vlog on YouTube called The Sailing Siren and owns Aquanauts Freediving LLC, which includes an athleisure clothing line for water people, freediving and mermaid courses, and customized mermaid and circus acts. Rachel’s interests in the diving community have been broad and varied, and she has explored the benefits of freediving for health and fitness, live performances and stunts for film, freediving competitions, and ocean conservation. Rachel is the current Miss Mermaid Nevada, a regular cast member on the Scuba Radio show, worked as freediving commentator for Vertical Blue 2021, and is a stunt performer in Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever. In her spare time, she enjoys adventure travel, trail running, rock climbing, and backpacking out to alpine lakes and other bodies of water with freediving buddies.
WillowMae Wise is a PFI Instructor living on the island of O’ahu. Growing up landlocked, she spent her childhood swimming in the scenic lake Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Diving from the docks of her family home, it was here she discovered her love of diving on a single breath. Falling down the rabbit-hole of learning ways to hold her breath longer and dive deeper without the aid of SCUBA equipment, she stumbled on the incredible world of competitive freediving. Finding an entire community of people equally as fascinated with the human body’s capabilities, she knew immediately that she would be dedicating her life to the sport.
Through her training with PFI, WillowMae discovered her love for teaching through wonderful teachers of her own such as Kirk Krack, Craig Gentry, and Tim Andrews. Believing the water to be one of nature’s finest teachers, she strives to create a safe space for divers of all levels to engage with the unique sport of Freediving through her PFI facility, Wise Diving.
Loving all things water, WillowMae spends her down time spearfishing, surfing, and open water swimming