About the Lake of the Ozarks Captains Association

Captain Bob May and Captain Doug Beck are both members of the Lake of the Ozarks Water Safety Council. In 2015 the wake issue was of discussion with the Lake of the Ozarks community. Both Bob and Doug were part of a discussion group to offer ideas to minimize the cause and effects of large wakes. It was at that time Bob and Doug approached the Lake of the Ozarks Marine Dealers Association (LOMDA) to see if licensed United States Coast Guard Captains could offer boating education to new boaters as well as any boater who may need a refresher on skills. In January 2016, the Lake of the Ozarks Captains Association (LOTOCA) was formed.

LOTOCA seeks to promote safety, education work in concert with the Lake of the Ozarks Marine Dealers Association, Lake of the Ozarks Water Safety Council, Missouri State Highway Patrol Water Patrol Division and the United States Coast Guard.

LOTOCA Captain’s credentials range from small passenger vessels to 100 tons, such as tour boats, water taxis, towboats and private charter boats. Some also work as delivery captains for transportation of various vessels.

Merchant Mariner Oath

46 USC

I do solemnly swear or affirm that I will faithfully and honestly, according to my best skill and judgment, and without concealment and reservation, perform all the duties required of me by the laws of the United States. I will faithfully and honestly carry out the lawful orders of my superior officers aboard a vessel.

Code of Ethics

For a regular member to maintain his/her Lake Of the Ozarks Captains Association (LOTOCA) membership in good standing, it is required that they comply with the following operating practices and professional standards as adopted by the Association.

  1. To operate a safe vessel which complies with all applicable Federal and State laws and regulations for a vessel of her size and purpose.
  2. To maintain the proper levels of insurance for the vessel and crew to ensure appropriate protection for the vessel, crew, and passengers. It shall be made known to crew- members what they are and are not covered for regarding medical, liability and accident coverage.
  3. To abide by the International and Inland Rules of the Road while underway and at anchor, giving first priority to the safety of passengers and crew.
  4. To be in full compliance with the random drug testing program, thereby ensuring the competency of crew and Master
  5. To operate to the highest ethical standards when operating and/or interacting with other passenger carrying vessels and companies.
  6. To promote and support the objectives of LOTOCA, Officers as they apply to developing a strong and healthy organization.

Should a member be found in non-compliance with the above standards, he/she may be removed from membership for cause in accordance with LOTOCA By-Laws.

What Floats the Boats?

We all know what “floats our boats.” It’s America’s waters, from tiny farm ponds and skinny water streams to lakes as large as Lake Superior and mighty rivers such as the Mississippi. The boats vary, as well. From tiny kayaks to yachts, over a third of all Americans hopped on or in some sort of boat last year to spend time afloat.

A comprehensive study just released showed in the neighborhood of 142 million Americans went boating in 2016. That’s a big neighborhood representing 36 percent of all U.S. households are boating families or at least has one boater under its roof. This is according to the 2016 Recreational Boating Participation Study, released recently by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF) and Discover Boating. When the last comprehensive survey was taken five years ago the participation rate was only 29 percent. This increase is great news to the boating industry showing the affects of the recession on their businesses has taken a turn for the better.

Of the 142 million individuals, half were children (under the age of 18) showing boating is definitely a family friendly activity and 17 million individuals were first-time participants showing an increasing interest by non-boaters to go boating.

The study is interesting to most boating enthusiasts, but important from a business standpoint for marine manufacturers and purveyors of boating equipment. It gives the boating industry a better grasp of the breadth of recreational boating in the United States and the opportunity for ways it can get more Americans on the water and ultimately buying boats. The data in the report will help the marine industry explore emerging markets, demonstrates the need to reach younger boaters and to encourage people marginally active in boating to pursue boat ownership.

The study makes clear one common sense concept: The more time spent on the water, the more likely someone is to become a boat owner. This points the way to the industry’s future success. It needs to help people spend more time on the water and facilitate the boating and boat-buying process-whether that’s through working for improved access and infrastructure, nurturing active boaters through marketing or providing more accessible ways to try boating through such things as classes or rental opportunities.

There’s also a clear link in the report connecting fishing participation, recreational boating and conservation programs. These links reinforce the need for early introduction to both boating and fishing to grow both sports. The insights from this report support a healthy and thriving participation level for boating, creating more customers for the industry, more fishing license and boat registration purchases and increased tackle and equipment sales.

Here are some other key facts I found interesting:

  • On average, active boaters spend an average of 71.5 boating hours per season. First-time boaters spend much less time – an average of 23 boating hours each year.
  • Common sense dictates and the survey results agree, the proximity to places to boat and affordable, easy to use facilities increases boating participation. The perceived ease or difficulty of going boating coincides with the number of days active boaters spend on the water. Just 20% of those who said that going boating is difficult spent more than five days on the water during 2016.
  • A large number of Americans boat with friends, families or on rental or chartered boats. Of course the boating industry encourages this, but are hopeful these “non-owner” participants become potential buyers. The survey found families and individuals who considered purchase of a boat during 2016 averaged over 13 days on the water during the year. Those who boated but did not consider buying spent less than seven days afloat and the amount of time spent boating each time out was much less.
  • New potential boat buyers are more likely to be those who participated in active activities while afloat like water sports or fishing than those who boated simply for relaxation, spending time with family, friends or enjoying nature. Especially strong is the connection between fishing and boating. Over 80 percent of active anglers were also active boaters.

– By Mike Schoonveld

Join us

Do you have a current U.S. Coast Guard captain’s license, from OUPV (six-pack) to 50-ton, 100-ton, or all the way up to unlimited, all-oceans? Or do you have a USCG Document of Continuity?

If so, we hope you’ll consider joining us. You don’t have to be working as a captain or crew member to join LOTOCA. Just holding a valid license or a Document of Continuity and being interested in maritime issues is all we require.

Fees are listed below.

Sign up online

Fill out and submit the LOTOCA Membership 1-year subscription form.

  • Once you’re a member, you will have access to the members page Captains Helm of the website, Link to your website
  • Membership of National Association of Charter Boat Owners (NACO)
  • Support of the Water Safety Council, CVB
  • Other members’ support & networking
  • Captains meeting once per quarter
  • Speakers and continuing education
  • Discount for classes and license upgrades
  • When you’ve filled out the, scroll to the bottom of the form and click the submit button. You will be redirected to the PayPal website. You’ll be notified when your membership application and payment has been processed by LOTOCA.

It takes up to 72 hours to process an application for membership and to send you your login credentials and instructions.

Fill out my online form.

Lake of the Ozarks Captains Association Board Members 

Captain Doug Beck

Captain Doug Beck


Doug has been boating since the age of 14, the first boat was a Sears 14ft semi-V powered by a 1/ 2 horsepower outboard. From there the boats continued to increase in size. Moved to the Lake 18 years ago Owned and operated an environmental company, in which he took part is several environmental emergency responses of on the water fuel spills. Doug has taken and continues to take boating education classes, in 2002 completed a US Coast Guard Class by World Wide Marine to earn his OUPV, and vessel assist USCG License and the following year upgraded to a 25 Ton grade Master.  Currently holds a 100 Ton Master. Doug does charter work driving personal boats to water taxi,  Celebration, The Lake Hopper and  Playing Hooky as well as providing boating lessons for Freedom Boat Club Members. Doug is an active member of the Water Safety Council, assists with the Lake Race, and Shootout.

Captain Bob May

Captain Bob May

Vice President

Bob’s wife and he rented a boat at Bridgeport Marina in the summer of 1974 shortly after they were married. Two weeks later they had our first boat! The 14-footer became 20, then 21, 25, 27, and now they own a 36 Carver Aft Cabin Motor Yacht (1989). Bob has taken many boating education courses including those offered by the Coast Guard, several states required courses, and in 2013 Bob took the eight-day class from World Wide Marine Training to earn his OUPV USCG License. Bob’s summers have been filled with charters, both rental boats and personal boats from 20ft Pontoons to many hours in training aboard the Celebration vessels. he also took the Master Upgrade course in late 2015 and now hold a 50 Ton Master. Bob is an active member of the Water Safety Council here at the Lake for 8 of the 10 years that group has been around. Bob is also the host and producer a weekly Radio program about Boating on the Osage Beach News Talk KRMS Radio.

Bonnie Wood

Bonnie Wood


Email Address: bdwood2@gmail.com

Captain Terry Lay

Captain Terry Lay


Gerry Mantia

Gerry Mantia

Board Member at Large

USCG Master Captain Gerry Mantia is passionate about sharing the boating experience at  the beautiful Lake of The Ozarks.  Gerry is dedicated to safety while providing entertaining and fun filled charter memories for your family and friends.


Captain Hal (Dusty) Wood

Captain Hal (Dusty) Wood

Dusty first got interested in boating at about 12 years old when a boy scout trip took him to Wisconsin where he learned how to ski. He vacationed at the Lake of the Ozarks with his now wife’s family in 1968, driving their boat and loved it. In 1972 he bought a 15-foot Starcraft Tri-hull, then upgraded to a 19, 21, 25, 27, up to a 32-foot Powerquest. He now owns a 27-foot pontoon.

After boating on the Illinois River many years, Dusty became an active member of the Spring Valley Boat Club where he took boating education/classes whenever possible. He moved to the Lake of the Ozarks in 2013. Then decided he wanted his Captains license with the US Coastguard, so completed the 8-day course and test in December 2015. He currently holds a 50 ton Masters with towing endorsement through the US Coastguard.