On Thursday, November 17, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism (CIDOT) announced the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) as a 2017 Pioneer Award recipient for the CIDOT’s International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame (ISDHF) at the annual Diving Equipment and Marketing Association (DEMA) trade show in Las Vegas.
The Pioneer Award honours innovators in the industry and PADI will be officially inducted for its safety contributions to scuba diving during a special awards ceremony and dinner to be held in Grand Cayman on September 29, 2017.
PADI was founded in 1966 by John Cronin, a scuba equipment salesman for U.S. Divers (now Aqua Lung) and Ralph Erickson, an educator and swimming instructor. Cronin and Erickson, seeing the need for a formal association dedicated to recreational diving instruction and certification, spent more than two decades building their membership base and introduced the first PADI Open Water Diver certification course in 1972. Today, PADI is the world’s largest scuba diving training association and has awarded more than 23 million diving certifications and features more than 6,200 dive centers internationally.
To learn more about the 2017 ISDHF ceremony and inductees, click here.