Jim Cleveland 1934-2021

Florida Water Ski Federation 2010 Hall of Fame inductee Jim Cleveland of Hawthorne FL passed away yesterday. (Jim’s HOF bio is in the Hall of Fame section of the website)

Jim was one of the founding members of the new FWSF in 1976 and has been a strong advocate for Florida water skiers for many years. He was also the Executive Vice President of the AWSA Southern Region in 1973-74 and a member of the AWSA Skiers Rating committee for many years.

He is survived by his wife and he was her faithful coach and companion, since they started skiing in 1965 on the Ohio river in Portsmouth Ohio.

Our sincerest condolences to Barbara.


U.S. water ski athletes Nate Smith and Regina Jaquess won respective slalom titles on Sunday at the 2021 Swiss Pro Slalom at the Swiss Waterski Resort in Clermont, Fla.

Regina Jaquess skiing in the 2021 Swiss Pro SlalomJaquess won the women’s title at the Swiss Pro Slalom for the seventh consecutive year, scoring 4-1/4 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off in the finals. She earned the top seed after scoring 2 buoys at 41 feet off in the first two rounds. She was the only women’s athlete to run the 39-1/2 off pass. Canada’s Jaimee Bull finished second (4 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off) and Australia’s Vennesa Vieke placed third (2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off). France’s Manon Costard (3-1/2 buoys at 38 feet off) and U.S. athlete Chelsea Mills (1-1/2 buoys at 38 feet off) rounded out the top-five placements.

Smith won the men’s slalom title for the first time since 2018 after a four-way runoff. Smith, Great Britain’s Freddie Winter, Great Britain’s Will Asher and Canada’s Cole McCormick each scored 3 buoys at 41 feet off in the finals. In the subsequent runoff, Smith clinched the title with a score of 1 buoy at 43 feet off, followed by Winter (3 buoys at 41 feet off), Asher (2 buoys at 41 feet off) and McCormick (3-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off).

Complete Results


The AWSA board of directors approved the following policy to reimburse all boat owners for towboat use in AWSA sanctioned events, effective for the 2021 season. A Local Organizing Committee (LOC) must reimburse a boat owner(s) for costs incurred due to use of a boat for any event (excluding Regionals and Nationals) on an hourly basis. This provision includes promo boats, individually owned boats, club boats, etc. The recommended minimum reimbursement rate is $25 (Twenty-Five dollars) per hour of use recorded from the boat’s hour meter. The boat must be an Approved Tournament Towboat with valid insurance as required by USA-WSWS. The boat owner has the option to decline reimbursement and/or make other arrangements.

All payments from the LOC to the boat owner are reimbursement for costs incurred and not compensation for tax purposes. Reimbursement by the LOC to the boat owner is separate from any consideration a towboat owner may receive from a manufacturer.

The board asked the Risk Management Committee and our USA-WSWS general liability insurer if a boat owner receives reimbursement as outlined above could the boat owner’s insurance be adversely affected? Our USA-WSWS general liability insurer believes that the $25.00/hour reimbursement for expenses should not create an insurance coverage issue, however they suggested that you confirm with your insurer that any reimbursement for expenses will not affect your insurance coverage.  Separately, we confirmed with Global Marine that the Geico Policy which specifically provides coverage for boats used in AWSA sanctioned events is not impacted if compensation or remuneration is provided to the boat owner if the policy incudes USA-WSWS as an additional insured.

As a reminder, every boat owner providing a towboat for use in an AWSA sanctioned event must have a valid insurance policy as described below.

Insurance Requirements (for motorized boats used during USA Water Ski & Wake Sports sanctioned events):

Each boat owner shall provide and maintain, at the boat owner’s expense, the following insurance for claims arising out of the use and operation of the owner’s boat in connection with a USA-WSWS sanctioned event:

(i) Watercraft Liability insurance with limits of not less than $500,000 each accident for bodily injury and property damage arising out of the use and operation of the boat. Said policy shall include the following parties as Additional Insureds: USA-WSWS, its sponsors, directors, employees, volunteers, members, clubs, associations, sport disciplines & divisions.
(***see Note 1 below regarding excess watercraft liability insurance benefit for boat owners through USA-WSWS***)

(ii) Watercraft Physical Damage insurance covering the boat, motor(s), trailer and any additional equipment (such as electronics) on an agreed value basis in the event of theft, loss or physical damage. The boat owner may elect to self-insure this exposure at the boat owner’s sole risk and expense. (***see Note 2 below***)

All such insurance required above shall be (1) primary to and non-contributory with any insurance maintained by USA-WSWS for losses arising out of use and operation of the boat in connection with a USA-WSWS sanctioned event; and (2) shall be written by insurance companies with ratings of “A” or better in the latest edition of the A.M. Best key rating guide.

Certificate of Insurance
Prior to use of any motorized boat in connection with a USA-WSWS sanctioned event, the boat’s owner must provide a Certificate of Insurance to the Club (or Local Organizing Committee) and USA-WSWS certifying that the appropriate insurance is in place and that the policy meets the insurance requirements as set forth above. Certificates should include the following:

Certificate Holder:
USA Water Ski & Wake Sports, Inc.
2701 Lake Myrtle Park Road
Auburndale, FL 33823-9360

Additional Insureds:
USA Water Ski & Wake Sports, Inc., its sponsors, directors, employees, volunteers, members, clubs, associations, sport disciplines & divisions.

The boat owner shall provide at least thirty (30) days prior written notice to USA-WSWS if any of the required coverage is cancelled or materially changed.


By Nate Boudreaux, Executive Director | April 06, 2021, 9:58 a.m. (ET)

The water ski season is nearly upon us. Given the challenges everyone faced in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I know you are eager to get back on the water. Our headquarters office and each of our sport discipline organizations have been diligently working behind the scenes to plan safe events for our members in 2021.

Additionally, USA Water Ski & Wake Sports (USA-WSWS) is committed to providing a safe and positive environment for all members on and off the water and promoting an environment free from abuse and misconduct.

On Feb. 14, 2018, the U.S. Senate signed into Federal Law, S534, the Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017. The bill imposes general requirements on youth-serving amateur athletic organizations which include prevention training for adult members who have regular contact with minor athletes.

Given the family nature of our sport, there are very few events that exclude children. Therefore, it was approved by the USA-WSWS Board of Directors on March 17, 2021 to require all USA-WSWS active members 18 years old and older to complete annual Safe Sport online training beginning in 2022. There is no cost for the training. USA-WSWS now joins 15 other USOPC National Governing Bodies (NGBs) that also require Safe Sport training for all members as a requirement for membership.

The goal of the training requirement is for USA-WSWS members to recognize and eliminate areas where potential abuse and misconduct could occur. We all have a role to play to ensure our members, especially our young ones, are safe.  We are all part of the solution.

Although the requirement does not start until 2022, we are encouraging all USA-WSWS active members 18-years-old and older to take the SafeSport™ Core training now. To take the course for the first time, Click on this Link and enter access code: TVQQ-GZNL-SEBT-INS8.

Since Safe Sport works with all NGBs, any member who has already completed training for another USOPC affiliated sport (soccer, swimming, gymnastics, hockey, etc.), will have satisfied the initial requirement with USA-WSWS (although refresher training will still be required each year as explained below).

We will soon be rolling out a new membership system that has an enhanced Members Only dashboard with a direct connection to the Safe Sport database allowing you to manage/view your Safe Sport status.

As of today, 1,477 USA-WSWS members have already completed the SafeSport™ Core training. This training consists of a 60-minute course focused on safeguarding athletes from bullying; harassment; hazing; physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, and sexual misconduct. The SafeSport™ Core training is valid for one year and must be completed every four years. In the intervening three years, members must complete a 10-minute refresher course annually to remain compliant.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2022, if you have not completed the SafeSport™ Core training or required refresher course, your USA-WSWS membership status will appear as “inactive” in our system; and you will be unable to participate in sanctioned events or practices until the training is completed. New members and those renewing their membership will have 30 days upon registering to complete the training. Membership status during this period will appear as “pending” until the training is completed. If, after 30 days, training is not completed, membership status will become “inactive” and you will be unable to participate until training is completed.

By educating all members, we can provide a safe environment for all our participants. The U.S. Center for SafeSport was created to address the issue of abuse in sport. The Center is an independent organization that works with NGBs, including USA-WSWS, to enforce the Safe Sport Code and the Federal Safe Sport Act.  The Center receives reports, conducts investigations, determines sanctions and informs NGBs of sanctions against any persons for violations of the Center’s Safe Sport Code. The Center employs specially trained personnel to conduct its investigations.

Since 2018, the Center has investigated a total of 7,209 cases among all NGBs, including 17 cases involving USA-WSWS members.  There have been eight membership suspensions and two probations for violation of the Safe Sport code. Five cases currently remain open and are being investigated. View the USA-WSWS Suspended Member List.

For additional information, please check out the Frequent Asked Questions about Safe Sport located on our website.

By taking the SafeSport™ training, you are joining a movement across all sports to support a new culture of athlete safety. Look for continued communication about Safe Sport via our website, e-newsletters and social media channels throughout the rest of this year.

Thank you for your membership and support of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports. If you have any questions regarding Safe Sport, please email compliance@usawaterski.org.

– Nate Boudreaux

Florida Water Ski Federation Scholarship


USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation Announces the Establishment of the Florida Water Ski Federation Scholarship

Florida is known around the world as the home of water skiing and now the Florida Water Ski Federation is making an investment in the future of three event water ski student-athletes with a new college scholarship through the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation.

The $1000 Florida Water Ski Federation Scholarship is open to three event water ski athletes who compete in the Florida State Water Championships and are currently registered students in a college or university. Applicants of this annual scholarship must be U.S. Citizens and apply online at USA-WWF.org/Scholarships.

The Florida Water Ski Federation (FWSF) is a Florida Not For Profit Corporation which was formed to promote and coordinate the sport of water skiing in the State of Florida. The FWSF coordinates the scheduling of all American Water Ski Association (AWSA) tournaments in the state, hosted by affiliated USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Clubs (USA-WSWS.)

Established in 1968, the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports Foundation preserves and celebrates the history of all towed water sports and promotes these sports through our Scholarship Programs and the Water Ski & Wake Sports Hall of Fame.

For questions, please email scholarshipadmin@waterskihalloffame.com