WATCH Adaptive Sailing Panel on The Starboard Portal

Diversity Equity & Inclusion Series: Adaptive Sailing

WATCH on The Starboard Portal

The next topic in the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Series focused on Adaptive Sailing. The Starboard Portal panelists shared their personal and professional perspectives on the Adaptive Sailing, how we can support growth in this important area of our sport, and provided practical recommendations for sailing organizations looking to expand their adaptive programming.

Meet the Panelists

Becky Keukla (Plymouth, Mass.) – Moderator

  • Motivational speaker and disability inclusion advocate
  • Disability Equality Index (DEI) Director at Disability:IN
  • Member of the Board of Advisors for the National Center for Disability Journalism (NCDJ) at Arizona State University
  • Former Marketing Director and Co-Founding Board Member of the Catalina Film Festival
  • Previously worked in the Equity & Inclusion Department at Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA)

Cristina Rubke (San Francisco, Calif.) 

  • Staff Commodore and Co-Director of Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors Keelboat program
  • Former Member of San Francisco America’s Cup Organizing Committee (America’s Cup 34)
  • Board Chair, Disability Rights Advocates
  • 2013 Access Class European Championship (1st Place, Liberty Servo Division)
  • 2013 Access Class North American Championship (2nd Place, Liberty Servo Division)
  • 2015 U.S. Disabled Sailing Championship (2nd Place, Doublehanded Division, Martin 16)
  • 2018 U.S. Para Sailing Championship/Clagett Regatta (2nd Place, Doublehanded Division, RS Venture)

Matt Chao (Newton, Mass.) 

  • Six-time U.S. Blind Sailing National Champion
  • Participated in eight World Blind Sailing Championships (Silver medal – 1997; Bronze medals – 2006, 2013)
  • Winner of the Gay S. Lynn Memorial Trophy in 2011 for his outstanding contributions to sailors with disabilities and to adaptive sailing.

Sarah Everhart Skeels (Little Compton, R.I.) 

  • Master’s Degree in Public Health from George Washington University School of Public Health.
  • Teaches courses in Disability Studies, Bioethics, Community-Based programming and Health Promotion at Brown and Tufts.
  • Informs and directs research on interdisciplinary research teams at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital who are focused on promoting health for those living with spinal cord Injury
  • Vice President of the Board of Directors of New England Disabled Sports, a non-profit adaptive sports organization in New Hampshire
  • Vice President of the Board of Directors of the C. Thomas Clagett Memorial Clinic and Regatta, a non-profit adaptive sailing organization in Newport, R.I.
  • Commissioner on the Rhode Island Governor’s Commission for People with Disabilities; Chair of the Employment Committee
  • Former athlete on the U.S. Para Sailing Team

WATCH on The Starboard Portal