Meet Shelby

Shelby – General Manager

Hello everyone!  My name is Shelby and I am a PADI IDC Staff Instructor and the general manager of Silent World Dive Center. I am a life long Floridian and I spent the ages of 0-10 living on a sailboat with my family in Coconut Grove, Fl. I love everything that has to do with the ocean and the majority of my time is spent scuba diving, snorkeling, kite boarding and sailing. It is an amazing feeling being surrounded by the beauty and structure of our underwater ecosystem, and nothing brings me more joy than introducing new divers and snorkelers alike  to my favorite place on earth!  When I am not on the water my passion is working with animals in any capacity. I have raised, rescued, rehabilitated and re-homed all types of animals including dogs, cats, opossums, iguanas, birds and turtles. Luckily in the Florida Keys we are surrounded by amazing wildlife and diving everywhere you turn, so it has been the perfect place for me to call home. I look forward to seeing you at Silent World Dive Center and cannot wait to hear about your own ocean adventures. 

Favorite Dive Site

City of Washington! I love diving on older wrecks and trying to imagine what the ship looked like and how she sunk. Having sunk in 1917 the City of Washington still has a lot of identifiable wreckage such as sections of the ship where the port holes are still visible and some gallows. It is generally a great dive site to see rays and schools of fish. 

My dive gear

Depending on if I am diving at home in beautiful Key Largo, or traveling for a dive trip I have two favorite dive gear packages..

My local diving gear – The BCD is an Apeks WTX harness with 18 single wing bladder.  For 7 years now my basic gear has been the Atomic Split Fins, Atomic SV2 Snorkel and Oceanic Mini Shadow Mask. My 1st & 2nd stage are an Atomic B2, and I use the SS1 for my alternate. I have a standard pressure gauge and my dive computer is an OCL (oceanic light), but I am upgrading to the Garmin Descent MK2S soon!

My Travel gear – My favorite travel BCD of all time is hands down the is the Oceanic BioLight! It folds up small enough that I can roll my regulator, dive computer and BCD into a carry on back pack. I complete the travel friendly set up with Aqua Lung Storm fins and Omer Wolf low volume mask. 

Color coordination is always important, and helps divers identify me underwater. So when you see a 5’2 fish in all teal in purple know its me! 

How & why did you start diving?

Despite spending the majority of my life either living on or near the ocean, I somehow made it to the age of 24 before trying Scuba Diving! It was given to me as a Christmas gift and I actually took my final PADI Open Water Course dives with Grove Scuba on the day of my birthday. Needless to say I fell in love instantly and pursuing a career in the Scuba Industry became not just a pastime but my dream career! Since obtaining my Open Water certification I went on to become a divemaster, instructor, master instructor and now IDC Staff instructor and have managed two dive centers. I love having a job where we are given the opportunity to show others our love for the ocean, offer people life long memories whether it is a day of diving, dive vacation or scuba course –  and help educate each person we meet on how to protect and care for our oceans. And who knows, maybe I will persuade you to start down a path towards the scuba career too! 

What is your dream dive vacation?

Whoa tough question… this would have to be a tie between Truk Lagoon in Micronesia and the Thistlegorm wreck in Egypt. 

Favorite place to visit in the Florida Keys?

The Turtle Hospital on Marathon Key. There are a lot of boaters which visit the Florida Keys every year and unfortunately some do not watch out for or respect the wildlife as we would hope. The Turtle Hospital does an amazing job rescuing, rehabilitating and releasing the majority of the injured Turtles they take in. The Turtles they cannot release back to the wild they keep safe and happy, as well as provide educational tours and school trips to educate the youth and public to hopefully prevent less accidents in the future! 

If you aren’t scuba diving where can we usually find you!

If this question was for a bet you would certainly win with the answer “You will find Shelby hanging out with her rescue dog Layla”.  Now if that answer was just too easy, a strong second guess would be on a Sailboat. Whether the sailboat is sitting at a dock, out on the bay or under construction might vary – but there is no better place to be than on a sailboat dreaming of the sea!