ABYC expands West Coast focus

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The American Boat & Yacht Council recently announced the appointment of Kevin Ritz and Andy Tufts, co-owners of Cruising Essentials, LLC, as ABYC’s Pacific Coast representatives.

Ritz and Tufts are expected to provide local representation in a strategic geographical market for the areas of membership, educational services and standards-based technical assistance as coordinated with the ABYC headquarters in Annapolis, MD. Their territory will include: California; Oregon; Washington; Idaho; Nevada; Utah; Arizona; Alaska; British Columbia and Alberta, Canada; Baja, California, and Sonora, Mexico.

Both men are ABYC Certified Electrical and Corrosion Technicians, and are lifelong boaters. Ritz started Cruising Essentials, LLC in 1993, with a focus on quality marine product sales. Prior to this his experience was focused on retail sales and management in the consumer electronics industry.

Tufts is a former charter boat business owner. He holds a 100-ton, USCG Masters license, with a Near Coastal endorsement and has made many offshore trips up and down the coasts of Washington, Oregon and California. Cruising Essentials has grown from a marine sales-focused business to a full service electrical product installation and service company.

“Cruising Essentials was appointed in order to expand ABYC’s exposure along the West Coast of the North American Continent, and we are very pleased to have both Kevin and Andy as members of the ABYC Team,” said Skip Burdon, ABYC president. “Their knowledge and enthusiasm for the industry and ABYC’s mission is exceptional. Having them as a convenient resource and contact point for our current and potential members will greatly enhance the support ABYC can give to the West Coast region. Our long term intent is to set up a fully staffed West Coast office as we expand our presence and services in this important maritime region.”

“We are thrilled about this opportunity and look forward not only to being able to represent ABYC out here,” said Ritz, “but to have a hands-on working relationship with ABYC as they expand their operations, access and educational programs in a more concerted way to the Pacific Northwest.”

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