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DEMA Member Spotlight 

Aqua Hands

Proud DEMA Member for Over 3 Years! 
(727) 359-0600

About You and Aqua Hands...

My name:
Thomas Koch

My job function in the company:

Years in business:
4 years

About Aqua Hands:
Aqua Hands was created in 2010 after founder Thomas Koch noticed a gap in scuba diving trips for people fluent in American Sign Language. Even though dive trips generally utilize underwater communications through gestures and written notes on slates, many Deaf and hard of hearing people are often left out in pre-dive instructions and post-dive activities. During Aqua Hands’ dive trips, participants, Deaf or hearing, are always given full access both underwater and above water. Aqua Hands takes divers on trips to the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea to discover unseen worlds under the sea. Clients also can learn to dive and become certified by taking classes with certified PADI MSDT/OWSI instructors who are deaf and fluent in American Sign Language. Aqua Hands provides training for a variety of certifications, including wreck diving, deep diving, enriched air diving, underwater navigating, and night diving. All Courses are taught in American Sign Language.

Goal(s) for 2013:
Certify 200 c-cards/ do at least two trips/ build relationship with deaf schools.

Greatest achievement in 2012:
Taught 54 certifications and had first trip.

About You, "The Professional"...

What I find most rewarding about my job:
I find it exciting that the deaf community has discovered there is a deaf company where they can get a direct communication with a scuba instructor. I got where I am though paper and pen. Seeing the deaf community be able to get their scuba certification with no communication barrier was a huge.

What I am most proud of (professionally):
Deaf company (in scuba business).

Greatest piece of business advice I ever received:
Make it fun!

Where I see myself and/or business in 5 years:
Lots of trips and lots of deaf divers within Aqua Hands Family

About You, "The Person"... 

Favorite place to dive:
Florida: Fort Lauderdale and Florida Keys for the business. Gulf of Mexico for Game fish.

Most memorable dive experience:
The day I dove in USS Spiegel Grove.

Favorite quote:
If you have not dive, then you haven't lived.

Something people would be surprised to learn about me:
I can not speak for other people... they would be surprise whatever they see.


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