Why adaptive sailing?

Smiling sailors in Martin 16

Board of Directors:


Jane Dunn


Kevin Wixom


Toni Turbyfill


Sylvia Bate-Swall


Gail Smith

Operating Team:

Sailing Curriculum/Training

Jane Dunn


Sue Taetzsch

Volunteer Recruitment / Training

Doug Shaw

Community Outreach

Tamara Airhart

Webmaster / IT

Doug Shaw

The US Census Bureau estimated that nearly one in five people in our country have a disability. Many of these people have had to learn to live with restrictions on their mobility and independence. Challenged Sailors San Diego’s adaptive sailing program is designed to minimize these restrictions for our sailors. Learning the skills to maneuver a boat throughout the waters of San Diego Bay provides a sense of confidence, autonomy, and accomplishment that can have a significant positive effect on many aspects of the sailors’ lives.

The volunteers and participants of Challenged Sailors San Diego have experienced the transformative nature of adaptive sailing personally. Some are very experienced sailors, some are beginners but all have seen a tremendous improvement in their lives through adaptive sailing.

Capt. Jack Sparrow - in Pirates of the Caribbean - said, “a sailboat is not just a mast or sails or a rudder; a sailboat is freedom”. For those with a disability that significantly limits their mobility on land, that statement is a reality.


Challenged Sailors San Diego provides therapeutic and recreational adaptive sailing opportunities for people with disabilities to enhance their dignity, well-being, and independence.


Challenged Sailors San Diego will become a nationally recognized center for adaptive sailing and related activities. We will grow to serve more sailors, learn and share new techniques, and add new boats to our fleet, which will be used to further our mission.


Challenged Sailors San Diego will be transparent in all we do, open with all of our stakeholders and follow our mission to the best of our ability. We will treat all of our participants with dignity and care.