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About You and Diving Unlimited International, Inc....
My job function in the company:
President & CEO
Years in business:
About Diving Unlimited International, Inc.:
Established in 1963, DUI is the world’s leader in keeping divers warm and comfortable in every underwater environment. DUI offers the largest selection of drysuit styles for men and women including made-to-measure and custom designs. Often copied, DUI invented crushed neoprene, the self-don telescoping torso, zipper guard, warm neck collar, RockBoots and most recently ZipSeals. DUI drysuit designs include the CF200, TLS350, FLX50/50, CLX450 and 30/30. Manufactured in San Diego, California, DUI is distributed through 400 dealers in North America and distributed worldwide to over 40 countries. In addition to recreational divers, DUI serves all branches of the US military including Special Forces, commercial, public safety, and research and scientific diving communities.
DUI’s obsession is the pursuit of excellence in the innovation, design and manufacture of highly specialized diver thermal protection. We are very proud that our factory is located in San Diego and that we are a part of our local community and have been for almost 50 years. A family owned business, many employees have been with DUI for over 15 years.
About You, "The Professional"...
How I was introduced to the professional diving industry:
I grew up with diving all around me. At 18, I wanted nothing more to do with diving or the family business and went out on my own. In 1995, I came back into the business "temporarily". I quickly learned what an incredibly positive impact DUI made in diving, with our customers and with our employees and their families. Not only did I want to be a part of that, I wanted DUI to continue far into the future. So my Dad and I made a plan to make that happen. We like to tell people that he had the first 40 years and I have the second 40. And it's been working great!
What I like best about my job:
The fact that I work in a business that is a hobby for most of our customers. I also enjoy the variety of what I do from designing products, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and overall business. I truly love having the opportunity to make a positive impact on so many people.
Words of wisdom for those starting their career in the diving industry:
To be the most successful, you need to treat your diving business like a business. If you treat it like a hobby, then that is all it will ever be. If you are in it for the money, go somewhere else. And last but not least - if this is what you truly want to do, submerge yourself completely in it. Be a walking billboard for diving!
Best way to keep a competitive edge:
Choose whether you want to be the best or the least expensive. You cannot do both. DUI is the world's best. Period.
Biggest change I have seen in the professional diving industry since I started:
Diving - at least in the US - is stagnant at best. The growth of the past is in the past.
Dick Long, Founder of Diving Unlimited International ... and my Dad!
About You, "The Person"...
Something you'd find on my bucket list:
A really sexy, expensive, luxury sports car!
What I am most proud of:
Taking this wonderful opportunity that is DUI from being not only my Father's legacy but molding it into my own. My Father and I are quite different people and while we do things in different ways, our dedication to our customers and employees could not be more alike.
How I like to spend my free time:
There is not a lot of that for us diving industry people! All kidding aside, I enjoy being with friends and yes, that includes diving! I like to be with my dog at home, enjoy being outdoors, etc.
Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. By Albert Einstein
Something people would be surprised to learn about me:
I'm a lot of fun! Come and join me at a DUI Demo Tour event or on a dive vacation.
My 5 dream Jeopardy categories:
Star Trek - the original series, Stupid quotes from stupid TV shows ..., "That's what she said," The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States, Tips for keeping your life organized