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New 2024 PADI AmbassaDivers Announced to Inspire More Superheroes for the Ocean

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PADI® announces the newest AmbassaDivers™ on the 2024 team, selected for their passion and dedication to protecting our shared blue planet. 

“In each of their own unique ways, our new AmbassaDivers stand out and lead by example, inspiring others to step up, pursue their passion, and be superheroes for the ocean,” says Julie Andersen, Senior Director of Brand for PADI Worldwide. “They are shining examples of how to protect what you love – and inspire others to do the same.

Sea to Sky

Initially launched in 2015, PADI’s AmbassaDiver program aims to amplify the personal stories of exemplary divers who inspire others to love and care for our ocean planet. PADI AmbassaDivers are part of a global team committed to bringing awareness to social and environmental issues facing our planet and encouraging more people to experience, explore, and protect the underwater world. 

Earlier this year, the exceptional duo of award-winning Indian actress Sonakshi Sinha and her dive buddy Indian actor and businessman Zaheer Iqbal were announced as some of this year’s newest PADI AmbassaDivers™inductees.  Now over twenty other passionate scuba divers join the ranks. 

Liquid Diving

“This year’s esteemed group highlights the diversity and commitment that it will take to safeguard the world’s largest and most important ecosystem. From adaptive divers proving the healing powers of the ocean to young children showing you are never too young to make real change in your communities, they are all true advocates for our blue planet and will help us create one billion PADI Torchbearers™,” continues Andersen. 

PADI welcomes the following individuals to the 2024 AmbassaDiver roster:

  • Mariyam Firusha (Island Vaikaradhoo Maldives): born and raised in the Maldives, Mariyam is the first and only female scuba diving instructor from her island so far. After participating in a Discover Scuba Diving experience in 2021, she found her passion (and her husband!) in the ocean. Only six months after her Open Water Diver certification, she became a PADI Instructor and left her job in a call center to work as a PADI Pro.                                                                              
  • India Black (Poole, Dorset): a content creator, broadcaster, and wildlife and marine conservation advocate, having taken part in marine and turtle conservation efforts worldwide. She’s also a part-time well-being mentor and physical therapist who works with young people with eating disorders and learning differences.                                                                                                           
  • Radhika Sharma (Delhi, India): a content creator and a full-time traveler who shared her compelling journey of traveling worldwide as a featured Ted-X speaker. She’s a certified scuba diver, paraglider, and skier and aims to inspire people to go outdoors and not be afraid to follow their hearts.                                                                                                                                       
  • Leng Yein: (Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia) a PADI Divemaster and Mermaid Instructor with 17 years of dive experience, Leng wants to inspire people to know that, “it is never too late to be the person you wish to be. Live, Love, and Act, with a purpose.” She’s also a Malaysia Government-Licensed Tour Guide, the face of several charity organizations, and has held the title of Asia’s #1 Female DJ for more than a decade.                                                                                          
  • Giosue Reale (Siracusa, Italy): started scuba diving at 11 years old and is now a watersport instructor, his mission is to spread awareness about the amazing wildlife found around the British coast that is so often overlooked. He’s also passionate about showcasing diverse shark species from around the world and helping change people’s views on these beautiful animals through his underwater videography.                                                                                                                            
  • Mariana Saad Vargas (Ponta Grossa, Paraná, Brasil): a 10-year-old student who loves animals and nature, traveling, and outdoor activities, especially scuba diving. She also loves reading, painting, drawing, and art crafting. This Harry Potter fan is a PADI Junior Open Water Diver and wants to inspire young people to discover the underwater world.                                                            
  • Kritika Goel (Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India): a content creator who turned her passion for travel and photography into a way of life. She wants to let her audience explore vicariously through her lens, and her mission is to inspire people to step outside their comfort zones and experience the beauty of this world.                                                                                                                                
  • Sarah Miller (California, United States): became a diver in 2012 and followed her dream to become a scuba instructor, starting Azul Unlimited as a dive business in Mexico and then Indonesia. Now Azul Unlimited is an online brand where she shares scuba lessons and van life adventures on YouTube, with a mission of building a supportive and fun community of safe divers and ocean protectors.                                                                                                                                   
  • Laura Quesada (Madrid, Spain): has always known she wanted to be a diving instructor and was certified as a Junior Open Water Diver at ten years old. She’s traveled the world as a PADI Instructor and has been sponsored by Cressi since 2019. Her mission is to show the world how to save the ocean and the animals that live in it and to educate her students in caring for the ocean. Her passion is macro life, and her favorite marine animal is the nudibranch.                                    
  • Kayleigh Slowey (Teignmouth, Devon, UK): has spent most of her life by the ocean, cultivating a love for marine life and a passion for conservation early on. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Marine and Natural History Photography and a Master’s Degree in Marine Ecology, which have taken her on many adventures across the globe, using digital creation in her ocean conservation work.                                                                                                                                                           
  • Karol Yela (Pasto, Nariño, Colombia):  a PADI Divemaster, who aims to promote environmental awareness and the importance of sustainable practices in the diving community. As a specialist in sports training, she works to improve people’s lifestyles through sports, helping them build better daily habits that encourage them to find their happiness.                                                                       
  • Sara Gojer (Bangalore, India):  as an international DJ, Sara travels the world and spreads her enthusiasm for scuba diving everywhere she goes. She’s a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer (MSDT) and PADI AWARE Shark Conservation Instructor whose aim is to “protect sharks all over the world and introduce people to scuba diving with these magnificent creatures!”                              
  • Katt Andryskova (Geneva, Switzerland): a science educator, scuba diving instructor, freediver, and marine photographer living and diving the Great Barrier Reef. From her first breath underwater at age 12 to her 11 years working in Cambodia, Comoros, and Australia as a PADI Instructor, her mission has been to protect the future of our blue planet. She created Ocean Pancake to empower ocean lovers and activists to create positive change through individual choices, which she does through her podcast and YouTube channel.                                                   
  • Jessica Pita (Benoni, Gauteng, South Africa): a student majoring in Psychology and Anthropology and a passionate advocate for disabilities. Through social media, she shares inspiring, humorous, and everyday moments in the life of a blind girl, often highlighting the challenges and lack of inclusivity faced by individuals with disabilities. Defying expectations, Jessica uses her heightened senses of hearing and muscle memory to excel in various sports, like show jumping, scuba diving, and playing multiple musical instruments.                                                                                  
  • Jillian Taylor (Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada):  a wildlife scientist and ocean enthusiast currently completing a Master of Science on the Atlantic puffin, a bird that shares her love of the frigid North Atlantic Ocean. She enjoys showcasing the rich biodiversity of the colder parts of our ocean and believes that “conservation starts with the details: it is hard to protect a species unless you know the name of it.”                                                                                                
  • Tyrell Crosby (Henderson, Nevada, United States): relatively new to scuba, but he’s already hooked on its magic. His professional career as an NFL Offensive Lineman for the Detroit Lions was cut short by a severe spinal injury. After recovering from surgery, he discovered scuba diving as an alternative to football to provide both a physical challenge and mental clarity and found a new passion.                                                                                                                                      
  • Aakash Malhotra (Palampur, Himachal Pradesh, India): also known as “Sky,” Aakash is an adventurer and travel content creator listed in Forbes India’s “Top 100 Content Creators 2023.” He has a passion for extreme sports, including skydiving, scuba diving, and snowboarding, and his mission is “encouraging Indian adventurers through immersive storytelling and professional education, fostering a culture of fearless exploration, and celebrating diverse landscapes to embrace thrilling adventures.”                                                                                                                        
  • Luciana Maldonado (Neuquén, Patagonia, Argentina):  first discovered scuba diving eight years ago in Indonesia when she was looking for ways to heal herself, and her life changed completely. She decided to leave her career at a sports TV network and move to Mexico to start her diving career, from Open Water Diver to Instructor.  Today, she continues to teach diving and collaborates with marine biologists and conservationists to create educational programs.                          
  • Mariam Al Saif (Kuwait): inherited a deep-rooted connection to the sea from her pearl-diving ancestors while growing up on the shores of Kuwait. She found scuba diving in her twenties, and her passion for the ocean and conservation grew. This and her love of solo travel led her to found MER, a community uniting divers through meaningful travels and shared underwater adventures.                                                                                                                                              
  • Prachi and Harsh (Mumbai, India):  an adventurous couple of world travelers and explorers. Their mission is “to redefine exploration, infusing it with conscious purpose. Through sharing our adventures, we aim to inspire fellow Indians to discover the ocean for themselves and fall in love with it.” Through their social media account, “Two Tickets to Freedom,” they document their travels, scuba diving experiences, and conservation efforts. They’re also GoPro India Ambassadors and TEDx speakers, spreading their message in a talk titled “Make It Happen, Today.”                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Expedition Rove (Houston, Texas, and Yorkshire, England): Mary Hannah and Andy are a husband and wife duo navigating the globe together in their Land Rover. Over the past five years, they’ve explored more than 45 countries in North, Central, and South America, across Europe to Turkey and Africa. They got Open Water Diver certified in Cape Town in 2023, and it’s quickly become one of their favorite on-the-road activities to do on their travels.                                                             
  • Manami Azuma (Nara, Japan): fell in love with the ocean after scuba diving in Okinawa and quickly became interested in environmental issues. She started by joining beach cleanups but soon realized the beauty of underwater cleanups as an activity that brings joy and purpose. She decided to open a dive shop, “Dr Blue,” to raise awareness further, raising funds through crowdfunding. Through her activities as a diving instructor, activist, writer, and speaker and her upcycling efforts, she wishes to prove that underwater cleanup is fun and that one step from a hundred people is more effective than a hundred steps from one person.                                                            
  • Yumi Shirai (Kanagawa, Japan): first went scuba diving as a high school student in Sydney, and as a diver, she learned about the close relationship between garbage, environmental issues, and the ocean. This led her to found a non-profit environmental organization called “MORE Planning.” The name stands for “Mountain Ocean River Earth.”  Their activities include collecting trash illegally dumped in the mountains, cleaning up rivers, land, and shorelines, and even cleaning up underwater.                                                                                                                      
  • Viridiana Alvarez Chavez (Aguascalientes, Mexico): the first woman on the American continent to climb the five highest mountains in the world (Everest, K2, Kanchenjunga, Lhotse, and Makalu). She also has the Guinness World Record for the fastest ascent of the world’s three highest mountains using supplemental oxygen. After conquering all the major summits, Viridiana has turned her attention to the ocean, her next project in life.
  • Hiroshi “KUMA” Sato (Sanriku, Japan): when the 2011 tsunami hit the coast of his hometown, and Hiroshi saw the devastation it caused to the sea where he worked as a scuba instructor, he decided he had to act. He founded Sanriku Volunteer Divers to collect the marine debris left behind by the tsunami and help clean up the seabed. Today, they’re still doing cleanups but have expanded their activities to include seabed restoration and seaweed farming. Hiroshi was named a 2023 Sea Hero by Scuba Diving magazine for his efforts in marine conservation.
  • Captain Jason Chambers (Canberra, Australia):  he gained fame as a superyacht captain on Below Deck and knows how to decompress from a high-pressure job. “When you’re underwater, it’s the ultimate escape,” he says. As a father, captain, TV actor, professional athlete, and PADI Rescue Diver, Jason covers a lot of ground. Nearest to his heart is Classroom of Hope, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to rebuilding 100 schools damaged in the 2018 Indonesian earthquake with materials made from recycled plastic. 
  • Kundai Murapa (Harare, Zimbabwe): as a child, Kundai dreamed of becoming a Power Ranger. He channeled his love for superheroes into becoming a professional stunt performer, and his fascination with The Undersea Adventures of Captain Nemo piqued his interest in life underwater. As an adventure athlete, Kundai engages in parkour, calisthenics, rock climbing, and scuba diving. His passion for adventure and human movement inspired his career as a certified fitness expert, TraceFit Method training system creator, and film stuntman.

Learn more about the PADI AmbassaDiver team here. Follow PADI on FacebookInstagram, and to keep up to date on their ongoing projects, dive adventures, and conservation efforts throughout the year.



About Author

PADI® (Professional Association of Diving Instructors®) is the world’s largest ocean exploration and diver organization with a global network of 6,600 dive centers and resorts and more than 128,000 professional members worldwide. Issuing more than 28 million certifications to date, PADI enables people around the world to seek adventure and save the ocean through underwater education, life-changing experiences and travel. For over 50 years, PADI is undeniably The Way the World Learns to Dive®, maintaining its high standards for dive training, safety and customer service, monitored for worldwide consistency and quality. With a longstanding commitment to environmental conservation, PADI is leading the way for millions of people to actively explore, steward and protect the ocean through its course offerings and partnerships with like-minded, mission-driven organizations. PADI embodies a global commitment to ocean health with its mission to create a billion torchbearers to explore and protect the ocean. Seek Adventure. Save the Ocean.SM

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