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MRAA's Young Leaders Advisory Council
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In 2009, MRAA created the Young Leader's Advisory Council. At this time, MRAA realized that their board could benefit from some added input and manpower from the next generation of marine retailers to help move the organization forward into the future and build it into an even stronger network of marine industry professionals. YLAC is made up of 15 marine industry professionals, all under the age of 40, who have had at least 7 years experience in the marine industry. This group is driven by a mission to provide information and recommendations to the MRAA board on matters pertaining to the development and enhancement for the association.


Josh Vallely, Chairman
Vallely Sport & Marine, Bismarck, N.D.
Phone: 701-258-9223

Bio: Josh Vallely is the third generation to be involved in his family's marine and
powersports business. Founded in 1974, Vallely Sport & Marine is located in Bismarck
and Minot, N.D. Upon graduation from The University of North Dakota in ... Read more.
Jake Jostand, Vice Chairman
Oak Hill Marina, Arnold's Park, Iowa
Phone:
712-332-2701

Bio:
Jake Jostand got his start in the marine business at the age of 16, working the
gas dock and boat rental business at Oak Hill Marina. He got his toes wet in the
sales side of things by working a boat show during college and has
... Read more.
Natalie VelgerNatalie Velger, Secretary
Marathon Boat Yard Marine Center, Marathon,FL
Phone: 305-743-6341

Bio: Natalie first began her career at her family’s marina in 2004 where she built and structured their finance and sales department they still operate with today. She currently processes all vessel closings, financing applications, manages marketing and advertising for the ... Read more
Ryan Hebert, Immediate Past Chairman
Texas Marine, North Beaumont, Texas
Phone: 409-898-7632

Bio: Ryan Hebert was raised in the boating industry. His father, Mike Hebert, opened
Texas Marine in 1981 in Beaumont Texas. Having grown into a 3-location dealership
in and around the Houston Texas area, Ryan has been involved with ... Read more
Mike Alleva
Lighthouse Media Solutions, Boston, Mass.
Phone: 857-400-7888, ext. 128

Bio: As Vice President of Marketing & Client Strategy at Lighthouse Media Solutions,
Mike Alleva directs dealers and OEMs with their marketing strategy and execution
by providing a true understanding of what it takes for his clients to ... Read more.
Gordon Brittle

Smoker Craft/Starcraft
Phone: 705-321-6477

Bio:
Gordon Brittle came from a family of avid boaters before getting his start in the
industry by selling at the Toronto Boat Show. He took on a role at the dealership
and worked his way up before being named sales manager. As such, he ... Read more.

Stephanie Haywood
Blue Springs Boat Company, Kington, Tenn
Phone: 865-376-1472

Bio: Stephanie grew up working in the marine industry and has worked in it for more
than 20 years. In 2007 she and her husband bought Blue Springs Boat Company
from her parents. They continue to operate a family-run business where ... Read more.
Greg Knop
Family Boating Centers, Tampa, Fla.
Phone: 813-884-1395

Bio: Greg Knop started his career in the boating industry at the age of 5, when his
father and grandfather founded the family’s dealership. With one of his most vivid
childhood memories being that of selling boat catalogs at ... Read more.
Craig LeBlanc
Allen Harbor Marine Service, Harwichport, Mass.
Phone: 508-430-6006

Bio:
Craig LeBlanc grew up on Cape Cod around boating and fishing. He began his
career in the marine industry in Florida in the early 1990's and has been employed at
Allen Harbor Marine Service in Harwichport, Mass., since ... Read more.
Chad M. Taylor
Taylor's South Shore Marina, Wilmington, Ohio
Phone: 937-382-8701


Bio:
Chad began his career in the marine industry on the docks of Cowan Lake
State Park as a young man in middle school. He attended college at the Ohio
State University
and Wilmington College. After a two-year career ... Read more.
Jason Shallcross
Reed's Marine, Inc., Delavan, Wisconsin
Phone: 262-728-3055

Bio: Jason Shallcross was born into and had no chance of doing anything else other than work in the Boating Industry, nor did he want to do anything else.  His Grandfather purchased the business from the Reed family in 1970 ... Read more.

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