RAID International‘s Director of Diver Training, Paul Toomer, has announced that RAID colleague and Technical Instructor Trainer Olivier Van Overbeek has joined him at Diivng Matrix.
Here is a release about Oli joining the Diving Matrix team directly from the horse’s mouth:
We are proud to announce the arrival of the upgraded Diving Matrix V2.0.
As some of you are aware, Diving Matrix has been offering bespoke advanced diving education for the last however many years. It all goes by too quickly.
You may also be aware that I (Paul) decided, stupidly perhaps, to work for a training agency and then even stupider (!) start my own. Of course this shifted my focus away from offering diver training into a new arena.
It has always struck me as a shame that I have been unable to bring Diving Matrix into my Dive RAID family. I have missed my friends who have spent many a year listening to me teach and being at the end of my abuse when they tried to kill either themselves or indeed me.
The beauty of Dive RAID is that I get to meet incredible divers, instructors and trainers from across the globe. The person I’m about to introduce you to fits into all three of the categories above.
So it is with great pride that I introduce you all to the new face of Diving Matrix, Mr. Olivier van Overbeek, or OVO or Oli. Yes, he’s Dutch! No. he does not have a bicycle, or a long finger to stick in dykes and yes, he speaks English. Oli is a RAID Recreational Instructor Trainer, a Rebreather Instructor and Technical Instructor Trainer. Oli specialises in Sidemount and now Rebreather but also a pretty dab hand at twinset and has been spotted occasionally in a single tank setup as well.
Oli: “Although I actually started diving in The Netherlands, the bulk of my dive training was done in the UK, going through various trainers and agencies. I was initially introduced to Diving Matrix through Ian France, who provided an excellent Mine Diver Course, and it was through Ian I ended up meeting Paul and subsequently RAID about 3 years ago. During my time with RAID I’ve had the privilege to be involved with the re-writing of various technical programs as a Technical Consultant/Author, a process and opportunity that meant working with Paul and other amazing colleagues.
Since I began working with Paul behind the scenes at RAID I started working less on my own projects at Centurion (my dive centre), so when Paul offered a partnership in Matrix, I instantly knew it made sense, not just logistically, but also because of our shared passion for going the extra mile and general approach towards the customer!”
It is with some sadness I say goodbye to Centurion, and with great joy I embrace Matrix.”
Oli has rebuilt the Diving Matrix website completely, making it more user friendly and has basically given our little company a facelift. With me at the forefront, it surely needed one.
Of course I will don my Matrix hoodie from time to time and offer all levels of training as before.
Matrix will begin offering bespoke technical trips globally and will recruit and train it’s own Expedition Teams at various levels. This will be done in conjunction with the RAID ResEx (Research and Exploration) program.
To make this all official, booze will need to be consumed in the traditional Matrix way. We are planning on of our legendary parties in good old London town. Date – Place – Dress code (fancy dress?) – will be announced shortly.
Finally, we need to mention Ian France. There is no moving forwards into a ‘new’ Diving Matrix without recognising the amount of work, talent, and personality Ian France has put into this company over the last 6 years. Besides being an incredibly talented instructor and trainer, Ian has also been a kind and generous friend to both Oli and myself, offering continuous support and assistance.
Ian has been operating under his own banner, Ian France Technical, for some time now and although we wish him every success, he will be sorely missed at Diving Matrix.
He will be at the party, that is for sure.
Thanks for taking the time to read this and we look forward to seeing and diving with you soon.
Find out more about Diving Matrix at www.divingmatrix.co.uk.