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The Importance of Being Bob Hollis

By: Melinda Herndon

Bob Hollis Oceanic

I started in this industry around 25 years ago. Until then, I had never been diving. In fact, I was pretty sure it was some odd cult activity. I mean, divers have their own mysterious symbol that dons their cars’ bumpers and they all dress in stealth black for the event. Yup. A definite cult.

When I met my future husband, my desire to spend more time with him nudged me towards the process of obtaining dive training. As a student, I started reading industry magazines and asking my husband about the characters within this sport.

The main figure that fascinated me was not Jacques. He was sponsored. Bob Hollis earned my wrapt attention.

Here was a guy who just liked to dive and wanted to have equipment underwater that hadn’t been invented yet, and that didn’t slow him down a darned bit.

He just decided build the stuff that would allow him to have the optimal scuba experience & once a bunch of people wanted to buy that stuff, he figured out how to be a manufacturer & a retailer.

Bob Hollis Oceanic

As diving matured, he built his brand along with it and rolled big dice often, as he did with his sport diving closed circuit rebreather plan in the late 90’s.

So many of his gorgeous and innovative products went straight from his mind to your dive bag. This particular idea did not grow wings…but damned…this man dreams big.

After falling in love with Papua New Guinea, he decided to enter this wild place with a dive resort. He used the stake-hold as a way to easily dive when and where he wanted in PNG personally, but also, it allowed him to reward his top producing trade partners.

Of course his passion is design and innovation…but the fact that his fundamental motivation is grand adventure…well, Bob, my dive hood is off to you, dear Man. I thank u from the bottom of my heart for your unplanned influence on me and so many others and I thank u for your gorgeous, innovative brain.

You may be a company, but first and last you are a Man with a fantastic mind that desires to live adventurously well.