Meet Lead Adult Program Instructor Samuel Swenson-Daly

hallie kopaldAll

Samuel hails from the great inland sea of Lake Michigan where the seagulls are much smaller, but the water’s just as cold. He grew up with stories of his Kiwi grandfather’s backyard boat-building and dinghy racing adventures. After a hitchhiking quest on Aotearoa—searching for those old boats and their stories—Samuel made his first blue water voyage from New Zealand to Hawaii. Several voyages later in 2013, Samuel joined the faculty at OCSC, a sailing school known for rigorous standards and a particularly challenging classroom. The Olympic Circle is the heavy weather training area on San Francisco Bay renown among racers for reliable afternoon winds that exceed 15 knots on most days. During the off-season, Samuel traveled for work as an officer-instructor and a mate on deliveries scribbling a course up and down both coasts from San Francisco through the Panama Canal, around the Caribbean and North to Nova Scotia.

Samuel’s sailing experience spans designs from modern racing sloops to colonial cargo sloops, authentic “Baltimore Clipper” schooners to cutting edge modern schooners. His skill as an educator follows in his family’s tradition and draws from a broad experience working in maritime education and marine trades, serving as a family crisis counselor, a conference and meeting facilitator, and as a creative communications consultant.

In 2016, our sailor careened life’s yacht on the eel grassy shores of Port Townsend where he’s been hard at work in the marine trades and making friends with otters, nudibranchs, and the occasional shorebird who’ll tolerate his singing.