Hometown: Alpharetta, GA
Education: University of South Carolina, BS, Mechanical Engineering
From 1995 to 2002, Martine worked as a technical sales engineer in the electrical and semiconductor industries. She mainly traveled the US to meet with customers and help provide innovative OEM solutions to electrical and heating problems. This work experience ingrained in her the ability to be highly organized, think long-term, and the importance of meeting objectives.
Over the last 10 years, she has also been very active in US Sailing as an RSA Representative of SAYRA and Singlehanded Championship Chair, a board member for a 2,500 home HOA, a local School Governance Council Chair, and Junior Director at Lake Lanier Sailing Club (LLSC). Often she is found coaching youth and adult sailing classes at Lake Lanier Sailing Club; however, her heart belongs sailing in her Laser and she truly looks forward to competing against 30 boats every Sunday in the LLSC Frostbite series.
An Interview with Martine Zurinskas:
– Why do you want to be a member of US Sailing’s Board of Directors?
I love sailing and I want to give back to the sport that has been so good to me. Sailing has provided my family a legacy sport that we all still enjoy today. I have always appreciated and respected the dedicated volunteers who make sailing happen at so many levels. I see the value in being involved to ensure this sport continues for generations to come. US Sailing goes beyond the Olympics and performance racing, it should support and foster the love of the sport for all levels and ages. I envision that US Sailing will continue to take a leadership role in the development of the Grow Sailing initiative and work to build relationships with clubs and organizations to meet the variety of program needs. I am honored by this appointment and moving forward my hope as a board member is to be a part of a strong team to reinforce and enhance the excellent programs within US Sailing and most importantly, grow sailing.
– How can community sailing centers, yacht clubs and other sailing organizations collaborate with each other more on key initiatives to grow sailing?
Communication and awareness of the programs available I think is the biggest focus that we can take away with. The clubs and RSA’s that have active leaders that get the information and take advantage of the programs within US Sailing rise up to help increase participation in the sport of sailing at ALL levels. This can only happen when we all communicate.
– How has US Sailing’s programs and services impacted your overall sailing experience?
I grew up as a junior Laser sailor in the South Atlantic region and my first experience sailing outside of the local lake clubs was flying to to the U.S. Junior Women’s Singlehanded Championship in Biloxi, Mississippi in 1989. I was thrilled that my parents took a huge leap of faith and stuck a novice Laser sailor on a plane to a regatta. Through a foundation, the travel costs were covered by my local RSA allowing sailors to experience these amazing events without the financial burden. This first experience of sailing gave me the taste of competition and Laser racing became my thing. The following two years I returned to this championship and in 1990 made the Junior Rolex Sailing Team.
Not every youth sailor is destined for the Olympics, but through this exposure to US Sailing and the variety of programs available I have been active in the training department as an Instructor Trainer, Regional Sailing Association Rep. and Championships Chair for the Singlehanded event. My goals as an RSA are to broaden the exposure to US Sailing and think of ways my local sailors might benefit from the different opportunities within US Sailing. That will continue with my position as a board member… There are lots of great foundations in place within US Sailing but sharing them for all to enjoy is the key.
– Is it important for sailors to be members of US Sailing?
I can only speak to why I find it important to be a member and I am sure many other sailors can identify with at least one of these points.
Because every racer loves fair & practical courses, square lines, proper RC decisions and fair reasonable judges.
Because the Level I instructors who teach within our program bring the skills learned at Level I and execute great lesson plans and make sailing fun while always staying safe for my junior sailors!
Because it is awesome to see area sailors qualify for the US Championships. We are the grass roots here in the South Atlantic and to see our sailor’s race all over the country is awesome!
Because as an avid sailor in both PHFR and one-design, I can understand the logistics of scoring and ratings. I appreciate the hard work it takes to define the metrics for that all to work.
I am the biggest fan of the GROW Sailing movement. Most sailors are not destined for Olympics or even Championship level sailing… for those 98% that are not – just getting out and loving being on a boat. Let’s show that love of our sport to others and get more involved at every level while creating new dreams of those that might go to the next level!