Our Team


Board of Directors

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Dr. Harry Dickerson – Chairman

Associate dean, College of Veterinary Medicine and professor at University of Georgia; Ph.D. medical microbiology; M.S., medical microbiology; B.V.Sc. Onderstepoort Faculty of Veterinary Science. Harry has a long relationship with sailing ships going back to his summers as crew on Shenandoah in 1968-9.


stever aubrey – Vice Chairman

Former cofounder & c.e.o., Dovetail Health; former president & c.o.o, Pri-Med; former executive v.p. & g.m., Holiday Hill Advertising; chairman, board of directors, Martha's Vineyard Museum; former board member, The Partnership; former board member, Trinity Boston Foundation.

“We have the ship designed, we have a boatyard that is ready to build it, we have craftsmen here on the island that are going to build the rig. It's not insurmountable. It's something that's very doable. In fact, it's necessary.”

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John Keene – director

Owner & president, Keene Excavation; BA, human ecology. John has 4 kids growing up in the Martha's Vineyard school system and has sailed on Alabama with Chilmark School on several voyages.

“The reason I think that the FUEL Program is so important and success with FUEL is imminent is because Captain Ian is incredible and his passion is infectious, and same with Captain Casey and Captain Bob.”


Tracey overbeck stead – Director

Award-winning Interior Designer; B. S. in Interior Design from the University of Texas School of Architecture. Tracey has 3 kids growing up in the Martha’s Vineyard school system and owns a Gannon & Benjamin built sailboat in Vineyard Haven harbor.


Board of Advisors


Captain robert douglas – advisor

Founder, The Black Dog Tavern Co.; Owner & President, The Black Dog Tall Ships; Master & Designer, Shenandoah; Master & Owner Alabama; Captain, U.S. Airforce; owner of a rare collection of over 50 wooden boats; holder of 100 ton U.S.C.G. master's license.

“Getting this ship built and program running ought to be highest priority for our island.”


Dr. Dan Garvey – advisor

President Emeritus, Prescott College; former President & Executive Director, the international Association for Experiential Education; former Vice President, American Youth Foundation; former Dean of Entering Students, UNH; former AmeriCorps Executive Committee member.

UNH Outstanding Teaching Award & Julian Smith Award recipient; authored over 25 books and articles about experiential education; former Trustee, National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS); former Director, Project Adventure; Trustee, The Institute for Shipboard Education; has sailed around the world six times as dean of Semester at Sea.

“I am eager to support FUEL because I know the value of experiential education. On a ship, learners are taught real lessons with direct, immediate consequences. There is no better investment to help reinvigorate education.”


Dr. Michael Gass – advisor, academic committee

Ph.D., experiential education; LMFT; Director, outdoor behavioral healthcare research center; Author, Effective Leadership in Adventure Programming and Adventure Therapy: Theory, Research, and Practice; Association of Experiential Education (AEE) Outstanding Experiential Teacher of the Year Award & Distinguished Researcher Award recipient; UNH School of Health and Human Services's Distinguished Career Research Award and Excellence in International Engagement Award recipient.

“This program will change students' lives and their way of learning.”


Dr. Anita R. Tucker – advisor, academic committee

Ph.D. social work; Associate Professor, Department of Social Work, UNH; Co-coordinator, UNH's dual masters degree in social work and kinesiology: Outdoor Education which prepares graduate students for careers in adventure and wilderness therapy.

Associate Director, Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare (OBH) Center for Research where she is responsible for the promotion of research, accreditation and risk management in OBH and adventure therapy programs. Dr. Tucker's research focuses on the process and outcomes of OBH (also referred to as wilderness therapy) and community based applications of adventure therapy.

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Captain cHris Sinnett (Uscg ret.) – Advisor

During his 30 years in the United States Coast Guard, Captain Sinnett served as the captain of the bark Eagle for 3 years. He has been the deputy commander of the Coast Guard Personnel Service Center where he oversaw all personnel services for the Coast Guard's 50,000 person workforce with a $4 billion annual payroll. He was awarded the Legion of Merit, gold star in lieu of third award, and a certificate of appreciation from the president. B.S. marine engineering, M.B.A. Florida University, M.A. national security and strategic studies.  

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captain Dan Moreland – advisor

Having completed 7 circumnavigations, 6 of which were on his sailing ship Picton Castle, Captain Moreland has most likely logged more miles under sail than anyone alive today. He is an expert on traditional sailing ships and deep water sailing, and has been recognized by both Tall Ships America and Sail Training International with the "Sail Trainer of the Year" award. Dan holds the rarest U.S.C.G. license issued which qualifies him to captain any vessel on any ocean.


captain Nat Benjamin – advisor

Owner & Co-founder, Gannon & Benjamin Marine Railway; designer of over 80 wooden vessels built under his guidance; Master, designer & builder schooner Charlotte, holder of 100 ton U.S.C.G. master's license.

“I've reviewed the plans several times...to me it looks like a great vessel to do this kind of work with young adults and get them off-shore.”


cynthia woolbright – fundraising consultant

President, The Woolbright Group; former Advancement Officer, The University of Rochester, The University of Vermont, Smith College, and Hollins University; M.A., public administration, Long Island University.


Our team has banded together to give learners an opportunity for discovery and growth onboard a world-voyaging sailing ship. Your gift makes this possible.


Have a question? Email FUEL’s president