BVI Voyage ...the real Backstory!
Captain Paul Mixon, an event planner from Richmond, California, and creator of the Black Boaters Summit (BBS).
"The name is a hook used to grab the attention of a group of people – those who had never sailed and those who had never been approached about sailing. But everyone is welcome at the Black Boaters Summit (BBS)."
The BBS didn’t originate with a group of black sailors but from a collaboration between a British Virgin Islands-based yacht company and Paul Mixon, a member of the National Brotherhood of Skiers. The company recognized two things: that African Americans were underrepresented in the sailing world, and that Paul Mixon was the man to market yacht sailing vacations to NBS members. For Cap’n. Paul, as he’s known to his friends, the Black Boaters Summit was a natural progression from his original outreach to members of the National Brotherhood of Skiers
To many people of color, the words “sailboat” conjure up images of a vessel leaning halfway into the "open" water with a crew working the winch like manic organ grinders. For BBS participants, nothing could be further from the truth.
In 1997, the First Annual Black Boaters Summit hosted a flotilla of ten yachts and one hundred participants. By 2005, the BBS set sail with a confirmed twenty-eight yachts and over two hundred sailing participants, of this total, most of whom are non-boaters -- many who did not swim for a "bareboating" experience of a lifetime!
A bareboat charter or demise charter is an arrangement for the chartering or hiring of a ship or boat, whereby no crew or provisions are included as part of the agreement; instead, the people who rent the vessel from the owner are responsible for taking care of such things.
Except for our "Crewed Yachts," all vessels are captained by African American men and women who can skipper a boat of forty feet 40` or larger. The Black Boaters Summit charters its yachts from The Moorings and VOYAGE Charter operators located on the island of Tortola, BVI.
In August "2007", the National Geographic Society chartered its own boats and documented our event with the Black Boaters Summit being featured in the December "2007" Winter Issue of their magazine with additional coverage within the Ameriprise Financial "LifeDREAMS" online webisodes.