Judges named for Innovation Awards

CHICAGO — The National Marine Manufacturers Association and Boating Writers International recently announced judges for the 2011 Miami International Boat Show and Strictly Sail Innovation Awards.

The awards are being presented during the NMMA State of the Recreational Boating Industry Breakfast on Feb. 17. The annual awards honor the most original boats and consumer products.

The Innovation Awards judging committee is composed of BWI members who perform product testing throughout the year and have specific expertise in marine products and equipment. The committee is chaired by Alan Wendt, editor of Marine CEO. The other judges are:

— Zuzana Prochazka, president, BWI; editor, TalkoftheDock.com; technical editor, Latitudes & Attitudes; and blogger for Boatermouth.com

— Diane Byrne, editor, Megayacht News; contributor to Superyacht Business, Super Yacht World, and Yachting; blogger for BoaterMouth.com.

— Roger McAfee, contributor to Pacific Yachting, Sea, Southern Boating, Lakeland Boating and ShowBoats International magazines.

— Robert Buller, equipment editor for Pacific Yachting.

— Lenny Rudow, content editor for EarthSports.com; electronics editor for Boat U.S. and Marlin, blogger for BoaterMouth.com; freelancer.

— Jack Horner, naval architect, certified marine surveyor, and contributor to BoatUS, SpinSheet, Offshore, Sailing, and Chesapeake Bay magazines.

2011 Innovation Awards’ categories include:

— Runabouts and Fishing Craft to 24'

— Cruisers (25' to 60' including fishing craft) & Cruisers (61' and up)

— PWC, Jet Boats, Pontoon Boats

— Sailboats (mono, multi-hull)

— Docking and Fendering Equipment (owner installed docks, boatwhips, boatlifts, davits, cranes, fenders or fendering systems, etc.

— Consumer Electronics and Software

— Consumer Personal Gear and Soft Goods

— Consumer Installed Non-Electronic Hardware (equipment must be non-electronic and may be deck equipment such as anchors, BBQs, blocks, winches/winch handles or interior hardware such as screens, vents, etc.)

— Water Sports and Equipment (fun, non-safety related products and fishing products)

— Outboard Engines

— Consumer Safety Equipment

— Trailer, Parts and Trailer Accessories

— Inflatables, Small Boats (up to 15') and Tenders

One product may also be honored with the Environmental Innovation Award, recognizing an environmentally friendly product that benefits the entire industry and consumers.

The 2011 State of the Recreational Boating Industry Breakfast will also include an analysis on the future of the boating industry by NMMA President Thom Dammrich, a look ahead at the national Discover Boating program and other industry updates.

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