Ocean Defenders Alliance
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Jeff Connor

I was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan in 1958, as one of seven brothers and sisters.  I left Japan for the first time in the early 1970s.  I was introduced to scuba diving when I was about 14.  I was a student at a school in San Diego that offered a class in scuba, and was taught by some local Navy divers.  I returned to Japan and continued to get in the water as much as I could.

I graduated high school in Japan in '77, and settled in California in the mid 80's, where I pursued a career in electronic  technology, as it was another interest growing up, taking things apart to see how they worked. Shortly after arriving in the states I attended Control Data Institute where I obtained further education on servicing and maintaining computer mainframes., I attended local colleges to obtain the education needed to secure jobs in the computer field, and initially secured  a variety of jobs as a electronics test Engineer to IT consultant.  

My attraction to the ocean led me to purchase a boat which contributed to a decade or more of hands-on experience in seamanship on both power and sailing vessels.  Sailing was something I did often during my visits to the US during the summer at the age of fourteen in Catalina. Diving was always a passion, and I took advantage when possible. In 1998 I decided to get certified under PADI, and bring my dive experience up to date. In the Mid 80's I decided to live in California and have been there since.  

I have PADI certifications in: Advanced Open Water, Dry Suit, EFR-Primary care, CPR& Secondary Care, Enriched Air Nitrox, Medic First Aid, Oxygen First Aid, Rescue Diver,.I get any where from 60-200 dives in each year.

In addition to diving in Japan, my dive experience has lead me to dives in, Honduras, Bermuda, Turks & Caicos Isl., Bali, Indonesia, British Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands, Akumal, Mexico, and Holbox, Mexico, to name a few.

One thing I discovered over the years was the environmental decay of the ocean. My first shock was in Japan when I found out that the canals I frequently came across contained rats the size of cats, and full of fecal material often dumped from the back of houses lining the thousands of canals in and around the city. Little did I know, until I was a little older, that those canals led to some of the beaches I was diving in.  I was also shocked when I dove in pristine locations only to come upon plastic garbage bags. Redondo Beach and Palos Verdes are frequent dive sites of mine, and I found myself collecting garbage frequently during my dives.

I was told by local divers that there was an organization, Ocean Defenders Alliance, whose sole focus is to remove debris from our local waters, and found it a perfect match to add to my dive experience and desire to clear the oceans of man-made debris.

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