We are thrilled to announce our new 2024 PADI AmbassaDivers and would like to extend a warm welcome to each of them!
These talented individuals come from every corner of the globe and from all walks of life, but they share a passion, dedication, and commitment to the underwater world and marine conservation.
Our PADI AmbassaDivers inspire others through blogging, social media, public speaking, and community events to protect and preserve our oceans and the creatures that call them home. We’re excited to see how they’ll continue to make a positive impact in 2024 and beyond, so we’ll be sharing their stories and achievements throughout the year to see if they can inspire you, too.
Island Vaikaradhoo, Maldives
Born and raised in the Maldives, Mariyam is the first and only female scuba diving instructor from her island so far. After participating in a Discover Scuba Diving experience in 2021, she found her passion (and her husband!) in the ocean. Only six months after her Open Water Diver certification, she became a PADI Instructor and left her job in a call center to work as a PADI Pro.
Mariyam’s mission is to inspire more women, especially Maldivians, to take up a career in diving and become advocates for protecting the ocean.
Favorite marine creature: I love mantis shrimp and have knack to find them as well
Top scuba tip: Dive slow, and you’ll encounter creatures that you never thought existed, plus you use less air, too.
Follow Mariyam on Instagram: @happydiver_mv
Captain Jason Chambers
Jason gained fame as a superyacht captain on Below Deck and knows how to decompress from a high-pressure job. “When you’re underwater, it’s the ultimate escape,” he says.
As a father, captain, TV actor, professional athlete, and PADI Rescue Diver, Jason covers a lot of ground. Nearest to his heart is Classroom of Hope, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to rebuilding 100 schools damaged in the 2018 Indonesian earthquake with materials made from recycled plastic. “I fundraise to support an organization that not only empowers children to be environmental stewards but also offers them a safe and inspiring educational space where they can further explore solutions to global challenges like plastic pollution.”
His mission is to make a positive impact and contribute to the betterment of societies around the world.
Follow Jason on social media:
Poole, Dorset (Currently in London, England)
India is a content creator, broadcaster, and wildlife and marine conservation advocate, having taken part in marine and turtle conservation efforts worldwide. She’s also a part-time well-being mentor and physical therapist who works with young people with eating disorders and learning differences.
The water has always been a place of healing and growth for India, and she’s even paddled across the Alenuihaha Channel in Hawai’i with her Outrigging Club.
Most memorable dive experience: Definitely my first night dive. I felt a mix of excitement and nerves jumping in, but all that anxiety dissipated pretty quickly, and I was just completely mesmerized by all that goes on under the waves at night!
Top scuba tip: Breath control! Not only is it the most important rule in any kind of diving, but slow and steady breathing is what regulates your emotions both in and out of the water, turns being underwater into a meditative experience, and enables you to truly take in all the mesmerizing life around you!
Follow India on social media:
Radhika is a content creator and a full-time traveler who shared her compelling journey of traveling worldwide as a featured Ted-X speaker. She’s a certified scuba diver, paraglider, and skier and aims to inspire people to go outdoors and not be afraid to follow their hearts.
Favorite dive site: Melissa’s Garden Dive Site in Raja Ampat
What you wish more people knew about the ocean: That it is not scary; sharks are not scary either. You need to give it time and have a little bit of patience for the ocean to fully accept you.
Follow Radhika on social media:
- Instagram: @radhika_nomllers
- Facebook: @radhikanomllers
- YouTube: @Radhika_Nomllers
- X: @radhikanomllers
Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia (Currently in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
A PADI Divemaster and Mermaid Instructor with 17 years of dive experience, Leng wants to inspire people to know that, “It is never too late to be the person you wish to be. Live, Love and Act, with a purpose.” She’s also a Malaysia Government-Licensed Tour Guide, the face of several charity organizations, and has held the title of Asia’s #1 Female DJ for more than a decade.
Favorite dive site: Sipadan
Top scuba tip: Always breathe and stay within your limits.
Follow Leng on social media:
Siracusa, Italy (Currently in East Sussex, United Kingdom)
Giosue started scuba diving at 11 years old. As a watersport instructor, his mission is to spread awareness about the amazing wildlife found around the British coast that is so often overlooked. He’s also passionate about showcasing diverse shark species from around the world and helping change people’s views on these beautiful animals through his underwater videography.
Favorite dive site: Deep Turbo in Gili Trawangan, as it is where I saw my first whale shark!
What gives you hope for the ocean? The amount of people of all ages that are interested in learning about marine life through watching documentaries, videos online or through studying could definitely have a positive impact to the ocean by spreading awareness of what is out there and what needs to be protected.
Follow Giosue on social media:
Mariana Saad Vargas
Ponta Grossa, Paraná, Brasil
Mariana is a 10-year-old student who loves animals and nature, traveling, and outdoor activities, especially scuba diving. She also loves reading, painting, drawing, and art crafting. This Harry Potter fan is a PADI Junior Open Water Diver and wants to inspire young people to discover the underwater world.
Favorite marine creature: Beluga whale
Most memorable dive experience: Diving at Castor Wreck in Santa Cruz Cabrália – Bahia with my mom, where I saw my first grouper, sea turtle and moray eel.
What gives you hope for the ocean? People are starting to become aware of the importance of the ocean, and I hope they start taking care of it before it’s too late.
Follow Mariana on Instagram: @mari_on_bubbles
Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
Kritika is a content creator who turned her passion for travel and photography into a way of life. She wants to let her audience explore vicariously through her lens, and her mission is to inspire people to step outside their comfort zones and experience the beauty of this world.
Most memorable dive experience: The first time I dived back in 2014 in the Andamans in India. I was blown away by this new world that I was introduced to, and there was no going back.
Top scuba tip: Simple actions like proper buoyancy control and responsible interaction with marine life go a big way in preserving our underwater ecosystems.
Follow Kritika on social media:
- Instagram: @kritika_goel
- Facebook: @kritikagoelofficial
- YouTube: @kritikagoel
- X: @kritika_goel
- Website: www.kritikagoel.com/
California, United States (Currently living in a van in the USA and Mexico)
Sarah became a diver in 2012 and followed her dream to become a scuba instructor, starting Azul Unlimited as a dive business in Mexico and then Indonesia. Now Azul Unlimited is an online brand where she shares scuba lessons and van life adventures on YouTube, with a mission of building a supportive and fun community of safe divers and ocean protectors.
Follow Sarah on social media:
Madrid, Spain (Currently in Menorca, Balearic Islands, Spain)
Laura had always known she wanted to be a diving instructor and was certified as a Junior Open Water Diver at ten years old. She’s traveled the world as a PADI Instructor and has been sponsored by Cressi since 2019. Her mission is to show the world how to save the ocean and the animals that live in it and to educate her students in caring for the ocean. Her passion is macro life, and her favorite marine animal is the nudibranch.
Top scuba tip: Stop. Breathe. Think. Let’s scuba.
Fun fact you might not know: I always have a Lego piece with me (in my BCD) that a child gave to me during his Discover Scuba Diving experience 10 years ago. It’s my amulet.
Follow Laura on Instagram: @princesabalear
Harare, Zimbabwe (Currently in Cape Town, South Africa)
As a child, Kundai dreamed of becoming a Power Ranger. He channeled his love for superheroes into becoming a professional stunt performer, and his fascination with The Undersea Adventures of Captain Nemo piqued his interest in life underwater.
As an adventure athlete, Kundai engages in parkour, calisthenics, rock climbing, and scuba diving. His passion for adventure and human movement inspired his career as a certified fitness expert, TraceFit Method training system creator, and film stuntman.
His mission is to find his place as a citizen of the sea and inspire others to join.
Top scuba tip: Never let a pretty octopus come between you and your dive buddy.
Fun fact you might not know: I once showed Idris Elba how to do a handstand. I’m not sure he knows how to do one yet, but he was pretty keen to learn.
Follow Kundai on social media:
Teignmouth, Devon, UK (Currently in Cornwall, England)
Growing up in Devon and Cornwall in the UK, Kaileigh has spent most of her life by the ocean, cultivating a love for marine life and a passion for conservation early on. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Marine and Natural History Photography and a Master’s Degree in Marine Ecology, which have taken her on many adventures across the globe, using digital creation in her ocean conservation work.
Her mission is to continue showcasing the wonders of the underwater world and inspire future generations to connect with our ocean and help preserve it.
What gives you hope for the ocean? The younger generation. They are so switched on and knowledgeable about our oceans and the threats they face. The children of today really motivate me to continue being a voice for our oceans.
What you wish more people knew about the ocean: I wish more people knew about how incredible and diverse our UK waters are; I feel it is often overlooked for the tropical waters around the world, but there is so much to see off our little island.
Follow Kayleigh on Instagram: @oceanic.kayleigh
Pasto, Nariño, Colombia (Currently in Providencia Island, Colombia)
Karol is a PADI Divemaster, who aims to promote environmental awareness and the importance of sustainable practices in the diving community. As a specialist in sports training, she works to improve people’s lifestyles through sports, helping them build better daily habits that encourage them to find their happiness.
As a Reef Check and Reef Repair Diver, it’s only natural that her favorite fish is the blue parrotfish.
Top scuba tip: Don’t touch, just appreciate and feel you are flying free.
What gives you hope for the ocean? The sum of small efforts represented in the numerous conservation projects found worldwide, as in union, there is strength.
Follow Karol on social media:
- Instagram: @karolyela01
- TikTok: @karolyc1
- Facebook: @karoldesafiothebox2022
- YouTube: @karolyeladesafio
Bangalore, India (Currently in Dubai, UAE)
As an international DJ, Sara travels the world and spreads her enthusiasm for scuba diving everywhere she goes. She’s a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer (MSDT) and PADI AWARE Shark Conservation Instructor whose aim is to “protect sharks all over the world and introduce people to scuba diving with these magnificent creatures!” Sara is also a dive travel planner, and she organizes dive trips to many of the top dive destinations worldwide.
Favorite dive site: Marsa Alam in Egypt; it’s magical. It’s what made me fall in love with scuba diving and pursue a career in diving!
Why is the ocean so important to you? The ocean makes my heart happy. It makes me calm and gives me endless energy to follow my dreams and inspire the people around me.
Follow Sara on social media:
Geneva, Switzerland (Currently in Townsville, Queensland, Australia)
Katt is a science educator, scuba diving instructor, freediver, and marine photographer living and diving the Great Barrier Reef. From her first breath underwater at age 12 to her 11 years working in Cambodia, Comoros, and Australia as a PADI Instructor, her mission has been to protect the future of our blue planet. She created Ocean Pancake to empower ocean lovers and activists to create positive change through individual choices, which she does through her podcast and YouTube channel.
The biggest threat the ocean faces: People thinking that little actions cannot bring about change. Your choices matter!
Most memorable dive experience: I experienced an earthquake underwater when diving in the Comoros. It was incredibly loud!
Follow Katt on social media:
Benoni, Gauteng, South Africa
Jessica is a student majoring in Psychology and Anthropology and a passionate advocate for disabilities. Through social media, she shares inspiring, humorous, and everyday moments in the life of a blind girl, often highlighting the challenges and lack of inclusivity faced by individuals with disabilities.
Defying expectations, Jessica uses her heightened senses of hearing and muscle memory to excel in various sports, like show jumping, scuba diving, and playing multiple musical instruments. She shows that anything is possible regardless of one’s abilities, and her mission is “to prove that you do not need sight to have a vision, a vision that only you can set a standard of what capabilities you have.”
Most memorable dive experience: The time we had just started our descent, and just a few meters down, a Zambezi shark (bull shark) came swimming underneath us. My buddy and I had not discussed a tactile hand signal for a shark, so when we reached the reef, he started humming the theme song for the movie Jaws.
Favorite dive site: Crèche in Mozambique, knowing that I’m diving amongst endless amounts of schools of tiny fish.
Follow Jessica on social media:
- Instagram: @x_flyingblind_x
- TikTok: @x_flyingblind_x
- Facebook: @Flying1Blind
- Website: www.flyingblindsa.com
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada (Currently in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada)
Jillian is a wildlife scientist and ocean enthusiast currently completing a Master of Science on the Atlantic puffin, a bird that shares her love of the frigid North Atlantic Ocean. For work and in her spare time, she enjoys showcasing the rich biodiversity of the colder parts of our ocean. She believes that, “Conservation starts with the details: it is hard to protect a species unless you know the name of it.”
The biggest threat the ocean faces: Human indifference – a response of inaction to the damage we have caused is the worst thing we can do.
What you wish more people knew about the ocean: It’s not a garbage can! The ocean feeds us, regulates our climate, and generates most of the oxygen we breathe.
Follow Jillian on social media:
Henderson, Nevada, United States
Tyrell is relatively new to scuba, but he’s already hooked on its magic. His professional career as an NFL Offensive Lineman for the Detroit Lions was cut short by a severe spinal injury. After recovering from surgery, he discovered scuba diving as an alternative to football to provide both a physical challenge and mental clarity and found a new passion.
His mission is this: “Through the lens of both scuba diving and the pursuit of personal challenges, I strive to inspire others to embark on self-reflective journeys and uncover effective paths to mental resilience.”
Top scuba tip: Please use reef-friendly products.
Most memorable dive experience: When my fear of sharks transformed into a respect and appreciation towards them.
Follow Tyrell on social media:
Palampur, Himachal Pradesh, India
Also known as “Sky,” Aakash is an adventurer and travel content creator listed in Forbes India’s “Top 100 Content Creators 2023.” He has a passion for extreme sports, including skydiving, scuba diving, and snowboarding, and his mission is, “Encouraging Indian adventurers through immersive storytelling and professional education, fostering a culture of fearless exploration, and celebrating diverse landscapes to embrace thrilling adventures.”
Favorite dive site: Manta Alley, Komodo National Park
Why is the ocean so important to you? I come from the Himalayas; Oceans are where the altimeter begins – point 0. Shows no matter where, this is where life begins and ends.
Follow Aakash on social media:
Neuquén, Patagonia, Argentina (Currently in Miami Beach, Florida, United States)
Luciana first discovered scuba diving eight years ago in Indonesia when she was looking for ways to heal herself, and her life changed completely. She decided to leave her career at a sports TV network and move to Mexico to start her diving career, from Open Water Diver to Instructor.
Today, she continues to teach diving and collaborates with marine biologists and conservationists to create educational programs. She also contributes to local beach cleanups, marine animal rescue initiatives, and coral reef restoration projects, inspiring students to take action for ocean health. “As a scuba diver instructor, my mission is to inspire and educate others to explore and protect the ocean while promoting sustainable diving practices and fostering a love for marine conservation.”
Fun fact you might not know: I consider myself a super hyperactive person, but contact with water calms me down. If several days go by and I don’t dive, I start bouncing off the walls. 🤣
Why is the ocean so important to you? Because it changed my life; I’m a happier person after diving. It gives more energy, and because I am aware that the sea is what gives us life as humans. To take care of it, we must know it.
Follow Luciana on social media:
Mariam Al Saif
Growing up on the shores of Kuwait, Mariam inherited a deep-rooted connection to the sea from her pearl-diving ancestors. She found scuba diving in her twenties, and her passion for the ocean and conservation grew. This and her love of solo travel led her to found MER, a community uniting divers through meaningful travels and shared underwater adventures.
She’s a Garmin ambassador for Kuwait and has been named one of the Middle East’s most influential women in Marie Claire Arabia. Mariam’s mission is “to create a safe, all-inclusive community for divers to travel and dive together.”
What gives you hope for the ocean? The ever-growing dive community! I’ve definitely seen how getting started as a scuba diver has made people more conscious of the ocean.
What you wish more people knew about the ocean: Sharks are vital for healthy oceans. We would not be here without their existence.
Follow Mariam on Instagram: @Divewithmer
Prachi and Harsh
Prachi and Harsh are an adventurous couple of world travelers and explorers. Their mission is “to redefine exploration, infusing it with conscious purpose. Through sharing our adventures, we aim to inspire fellow Indians to discover the ocean for themselves and fall in love with it.” Through their social media account, “Two Tickets to Freedom,” they document their travels, scuba diving experiences, and conservation efforts. They’re also GoPro India Ambassadors and TEDx speakers, spreading their message in a talk titled “Make It Happen, Today.”
What gives you hope for the ocean? Watching someone take their first dip in the open waters and watching their face light up from feeling connected with Mother Nature.
Top scuba tip: Let go of all expectations and fears and be present in the moment. It’s hard to panic when you’re constantly reminded of how pretty the underwater world really is.
Follow Prachi and Harsh on social media:
Houston, Texas, and Yorkshire, England (Currently living on the road in a bright orange Land Rover Defender named Tango)
Mary Hannah and Andy are a husband and wife duo navigating the globe together in their Land Rover. Over the past five years, they’ve explored more than 45 countries in North, Central, and South America, across Europe to Turkey and Africa. They got Open Water Diver certified in Cape Town in 2023, and it’s quickly become one of their favorite on-the-road activities to do on their travels.
The mission they want to share is this, “We hope that by sharing our journey, we can inspire others to get out and take on their own adventurous dreams in the great outdoors.”
Top scuba tip: Go at your own pace and soak it up!
What do you wish more people knew about the ocean? We have the power to make a positive difference. The more people know and understand about the ocean, the more they experience it for themselves, and the more they will realize that our everyday habits have a huge effect on it. We have the power to make a difference in the long run.
Follow Mary Hannah and Andy on social media:
Nara, Japan (Currently in Okinawa, Japan)
Manami fell in love with the ocean after scuba diving in Okinawa and quickly became interested in environmental issues. She started by joining beach cleanups but soon realized the beauty of underwater cleanups as an activity that brings joy and purpose. She decided to open a dive shop, “Dr. blue,” to raise awareness further, raising funds through crowdfunding. Through her activities as a diving instructor, activist, writer, and speaker and her upcycling efforts, she wishes to prove that underwater cleanup is fun and that one step from a hundred people is more effective than a hundred steps from one person.
Manami’s mission is to “convey the joy, charm, and importance of underwater clean up.”
Follow Manami on social media:
Kanagawa, Japan (Currently in Izu Peninsula, Shizuoka, Japan)
Yumi first went scuba diving as a high school student in Sydney, and as a diver, she learned about the close relationship between garbage, environmental issues, and the ocean. This led her to found a non-profit environmental organization called “MORE Planning.” The name stands for “Mountain Ocean River Earth.”
Their activities include collecting trash illegally dumped in the mountains, cleaning up rivers, land, and shorelines, and even cleaning up underwater. Yumi also organizes exhibitions, lectures, and events for divers to spread the word about their activities. It runs the “MORE School,” where students can learn about environmental issues and the skills needed to conduct underwater cleanups safely.
Her mission is to “share and work with divers on what only divers can do and what we must do, because we are divers.”
Follow Yumi on social media:
Viridiana Alvarez Chavez
Viridiana is the first woman on the American continent to climb the five highest mountains in the world (Everest, K2, Kanchenjunga, Lhotse, and Makalu). She also has the Guinness World Record for the fastest ascent of the world’s three highest mountains using supplemental oxygen. After conquering all the major summits, Viridiana has turned her attention to the ocean, her next project in life.
Today, she is a speaker, co-founder of a non-profit organization for the education of women and children, and runs a consulting company. As an adventurous woman with a purpose, she advocates for women’s empowerment, promotes adventure, and raises awareness about climate change.
Top scuba tip: Know your limits and ENJOY.
What do you wish more people knew about the ocean? I fell in love with the ocean the first time I went diving; at that moment, I truly understood it. I hope more people can experience that connection. We can only protect what we love, and we only love what we understand.
Follow Viridiana on social media:
- Instagram: @virialvarezmx
- TikTok: @virialvarezmx
- YouTube: @ViridianaAlvarez
- Website: https://viridianaalvarez.com/mas-de-mi/
Hiroshi “KUMA” Sato
When the 2011 tsunami hit the coast of his hometown, and Hiroshi saw the devastation it caused to the sea where he worked as a scuba instructor, he decided he had to act. He founded Sanriku Volunteer Divers to collect the marine debris left behind by the tsunami and help clean up the seabed. Today, they’re still doing cleanups but have expanded their activities to include seabed restoration and seaweed farming. Hiroshi was named a 2023 Sea Hero by Scuba Diving magazine for his efforts in marine conservation.
These are the words that Hiroshi lives by: “There is a saying in Japanese that goes, ‘Constant dripping wears away the stone,’ meaning that even slow dripping raindrops, when dripped constantly over time, will be able to create a hole in a stone, which also means to never give up. I believe in this quote because revitalizing the ocean in my area after the Great East Japan Earthquake has become a lifelong work, and I will not give up.”
Follow Hiroshi on social media:
We’re grateful to count on this inspiring group of individuals as PADI Ambassadivers. We’ll continue to share their stories and celebrate their achievements in conservation, exploration, and adventure. Make sure you follow their journey to see how each one of them makes a difference by spreading their love for the ocean and making a positive impact on our blue planet.
Did you miss out on our PADI AmbassaDivers in 2023? Take a look at our previous AmbassaDivers here!