Meet Your Local Club Leaders
Dustin Tidwell is the membership executive responsible for both Naples and Bonita Springs club locations. An avid fisherman who enjoys sharing his love of the water with members of the Freedom Boat Club family through a fishing buddy group he established, Dustin takes pride in educating prospective members about the many benefits of club membership.
“We have a great group of people who boat out of our clubs in this area,” he said. “Our fishing buddy group is very popular and hooks up members with others who share the same passion.”
Dustin joined the club in July 2012 and earned top corporate awards in both 2013 and 2014 as “Membership Executive of the Year.” Besides spending time with his wife and two children, Dustin also has a heart for philanthropy and is involved in various charitable causes throughout the region.
Meet Your Corporate Leaders
John Giglio is President and CEO of Freedom Boat Club, the world’s largest and oldest private boating club in the nation now celebrating its 27th anniversary. With 15,000+ members in 125+ locations in the US and Canada and sporting a fleet of more than 1500+ boats, Freedom Boat Club offers an attractive alternative to boat ownership and delivers memories that last a lifetime.
A business graduate of Florida Southern College with an MBA from the University of South Florida, John was part owner of a 20-chain auto body repair firm prior to joining Freedom Boat Club in 2004 as operations manager for its corporate-owned stores, a post he held for three years. He was promoted to sales manager, and within six months, was named director of sales and operations. He and his former partner purchased the company in 2011 and John was named president of Freedom Boat Club LLC. Just a little more than a year later, in May 2012, he bought out his partner and became president and CEO, with direct responsibility for all franchise and corporate operations.
Freedom Boat Club is an ongoing, All-American success story. Since John assumed the helm, the company has doubled its growth since 2012 and has continued to receive multiple recognitions both within and outside the marine industry. It has been named to the Entrepreneur’s Magazine “Top 500 Franchisees” for the past five years; the Gulf Coast Business Review’s “Top 500 Companies;” and Inc. Magazine’s “Top 5000 Fastest Growing Companies.” Boating Industry Magazine named John to its roster of “Top 16 Movers and Shakers” in 2013. On a regional basis, the Venice Gondolier and Sun named John to its “Top 40 Under 40 Business Professionals,” while Freedom Boat Club is a multi-year winner of its “Best Boating Club” award. Leading boat manufacturer Nautic Global Group has named Freedom Boating Club to its Silver, Gold and Platinum Circle for outstanding sales performance.
Joe Bettley is an integral part of the Freedom Boat Club corporate team. As Chief Financial Officer, Joe actively leads the back office disciplines overseeing accounting and finance, technology and human resources. He is also actively involved in all strategic planning initiatives for Freedom Boat Club.
Joe earned his BS in Business Administration and his Master of Accountancy from University of South Florida and is also a licensed CPA. He has earned the CITP – Certified Information Technology Professional, and CGMA – Chartered Global Management Accountant, distinctions. Prior to joining Freedom Boat Club, Joe owned his own accounting practice and highly successful business consultancy. His goal is to help grow the Freedom Boat Club brand in size, profitability, sustainability and through technology.
Wanda Kenton Smith is Chief Marketing Officer of Freedom Boat Club. She brings 34 years of major marine industry editorial and marketing experience to the organization. She served as editor of two national consumer boating magazines and two trade publications, plus serves as the marketing columnist of the boating industry’s major b2b magazine, Soundings Trade Only, a perch she has held since 1998. She served as vice president of marketing for one the nation’s largest privately-owned boat manufacturers for 11 years, with global marketing responsibility. Wanda previously owned and operated a $20 million international and national award-winning advertising and public relations agency and later, a marketing consultancy, servicing more than 30+ leading global and domestic marine accounts, including many well established, iconic brands. Her marketing, advertising and PR work has been recognized with multiple international, national and regional awards, as well as many personal distinctions.
Wanda serves as president of Marine Marketers of America and is the national chairperson of the Recreational Boating Leadership Council’s New Markets Task Force. Immediately prior to joining Freedom Boat Club, she headed up marketing for the top ranked boat retailer in North America with multiple locations on the Gulf Coast of Florida.
Barry Slade is Vice President of Business Development for Freedom Boat Club and brings a wealth of senior level experience to this position.
He is directly responsible for expanding the Freedom Boat Club franchise network internationally, a task he is well suited to handle after directing and managing global sales and marketing activities for several leading boat brands.
Barry also is point on new marina acquisition initiatives, drawing from previous experience as COO for a marine management company.
Another major responsibility includes serving as liaison to the growing number of marine manufacturers and select vendors as part of Freedom Boat Club’s continued product expansion initiatives.
Barry has worked professionally in the marine industry since 1989 in several executive capacities. In addition, he is an avid boating enthusiast and a major fan of the boat club concept, having been an active boat club member prior to joining the Freedom Boat Club team.
David Aldrich is Freedom Boat Club’s Director of Franchise Sales. In this capacity, David focuses on targeting and further developing key markets throughout North America where the Freedom Boat Club model fits.
David brings nearly 30 years of sales and management experience to Freedom Boat Club, having worked with multiple major marine industry leaders. Former sales stints have included key positions at Brunswick Corp, Pro Line/Donzi, Bombardier, Chris Craft and Regal Marine, among others.
David is an active boater who has lived throughout the country and enjoyed cruising in many ports of call in New England, the Northwest, Mountain States, California and the Southeast. Today, he makes his home in Englewood, FL.
To contact David about franchise opportunities, call him directly at (843) 368-1103.
Greg Oakley is Vice President of Operations for Freedom Boat Club. In this capacity, Greg oversees the senior managers responsible for corporate dock operations, fleet operations and the corporate trainers. In addition, he is responsible for ordering all boats for the corporate fleet, managing boat deliveries and logistics to the corporate-owned clubs, serving as the product liaison to multiple boat and engine manufacturers, and directing ongoing fleet liquidation activities.
Greg is a true Floridian, growing up and still living in the small town of Englewood FL where he enjoys tarpon and triple tail fishing, and watching the Manta Rays play sports at Lemon Bay High School. Greg got his college education at Florida State University, majoring in science education and geography. He enjoys traveling to home football games to root on the Seminoles and to visit friends.
Mike Pratt is Director of Fleet Operations with responsibility for the corporate marine center, overseeing all the in-house technicians and service work activities. Mike brings more than 20 years of marine industry experience to Freedom Boat Club, having previously headed up service for one of the dealership facilities of the largest retailer in North America. Mike joined Freedom Boat Club in February 2012 and has as his goal to deliver a superb fleet of boats for members to enjoy. He earned his degree from Florida Southern College.
Nic Thomas joined the Freedom Boat Club team in November of 2014 and is currently the Director of Dock Operations. It's his goal to ensure that every member has their expectations met, all while providing a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Before starting with FBC, Nic received his Bachelors and Masters degrees with concentrations in Biology, Political Science and Medical Sciences. He also earned his USCG Captain's License for an OUPV. In his free time, Nic enjoys water skiing, wakeboarding, Scuba diving, surfing, and running marathons. He also loves to hike, mountain bike, and cruise on his motorcycle in the beautiful outdoors.
Captain Stephen Jacobs is Director of Training/Instructor for Freedom Boat Club. He is one of the oldest associates in the FBC corporate fold, having first affiliated with the organization in 2002, and becoming a full-time employee in 2004. Steve is responsible for both the corporate and franchise member training programs including the development of all customized training materials and ongoing delivery.
Steve holds a 50-ton United States Coast Guard Masters license, with towing and radar endorsements. He is also a certified Recreational Powerboating Association instructor.
Prior to joining Freedom Boat Club, Steve spent 25 years as a boat owner in the San Francisco Bay area. He enjoys all types of boating activities … powerboating, sailing and most recently, has become a stand-up paddleboarding aficionado.
Randy Underwood is Freedom Boat Club’s Corporate Membership Sales Manager. His first and foremost responsibility is to train and support his team of membership executives throughout the Southwest Florida region. He is responsible to provide the tools needed for the sales team to perform their job. He is also intimately involved in creating new systems and programs to facilitate a better experience for the sales team.
Randy is responsible for ongoing sales training for both the internal corporate team, as well as supporting franchise sales groups however needed. Prior to his promotion, Randy served in the trenches as an award-winning corporate membership executive himself, having won the “Membership Executive of the Year” five consecutive years. This hands-on experience working in the field allows Randy to bring a real world perspective to the position.
Gabrielle “Gabby” Hoover is our Corporate Director of Communications responsible for member and franchise newsletters, as well as serving as the assistant to Freedom Boat Club President and CEO John Giglio. Gabby previously managed special events for the 15 corporate-owned clubs as well as establishing community partnership programs. Today, she is the direct communications link to the franchise network and is actively engaged in a variety of support programs and initiatives.
Prior to joining Freedom Boat Club in February of 2013, Gabby graduated from the University of Central Florida with a marketing degree, and worked previously in major retail mall marketing
Martha “Marti” Wagley serves as Training Manager for Freedom Boat Club’s corporate clubs throughout Southwest Florida. In this capacity, Marti is responsible for recruitment and training of 25+ trainers, a job she is well qualified to manage. Marti has been with Freedom Boat Club since 2007 and in her tenure, has trained somewhere in the neighborhood of 1000 members. With a 100-ton US Coast Guard Masters License and years of boating experience under her belt, Marty brings plenty of experience and a boat load of enthusiasm to her job.
On a personal front, Marti is a passionate scuba diver and a PADI certified master diver/instructor who has managed shops and trained divers in exotic ports of call including Maui and several venues throughout the Caribbean. She’s also a former body builder and motorcycle owner/enthusiast. Her favorite role, however, is spending time with her daughter and grandkids, including the latest family production … her first great grandson!
As an integral member of the Corporate Marketing Team, Maurice Amaya is responsible for the development of targeted new multicultural markets for the nation’s largest and oldest boat club franchisor.
Maurice serves as the direct sales and marketing liaison to the multi-cultural communities within the SW Florida and Tampa markets and is responsible for strategic planning as well as multicultural engagement and education, involving all aspects of sales and marketing activities.
Prior to joining Freedom Boat Club where he served a stint initially as a membership executive, Maurice was employed as a successful account executive for both Verizon and Comcast Cable Communications. He also worked previously in key posts in Central America, including general manager and operations manager for DirecTV Latin America, as well as a regional marketing and sales manager for a leading satellite technology firm and a major cellular and internet service provider.
American-educated with a degree in marketing and minor in international business, Maurice is thrilled to put his sales and marketing experience to work in promoting the boating lifestyle to new markets.
Bill Bittner is the Creative Services Manager in the Corporate Marketing Department. Bill is actively engaged in and directly oversees the creative services team which is responsible for all corporate branding and advertising assets. He assists franchises in providing standard corporate-produced marketing materials for local market usage, as well as with custom marketing programs.
Chelsea Smith is the Corporate Special Events & Marketing Coordinator, responsible for planning and managing more than 100 social events and group activities for the 15 corporate-owned clubs in Southwest Florida, including monthly member parties, open houses and fishing seminars. In addition, Chelsea assists and supports the chief marketing officer in a variety of marketing tasks and special projects involving social media, advertising, media planning and PR. Chelsea is working toward completion of her degree in marketing/hospitality.
Prior to joining Freedom Boat Club, she worked for an award-winning advertising and PR firm in Central Florida, and also in the service industry.