Meet our team…

 

President / Chief Strategy Officer 

Stacy Steinzeig Smith is our President and Chief Strategy Officer (and let’s be honest, our occasional “boat-rocker”). She earned a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology at the University of Arizona then (inexplicably to her parents) after taking her LSATs, decided not to go to law school, ran off to Hollywood, and spent the next decade working in the film and television industry. (And if you’re wondering what Cultural Anthropology had to do with being a lawyer, her parents wondered the same thing. Stacy knew it didn’t really matter – the Ultimate Guide to Pre-Law admits as much – so she chose something she found interesting and would keep her going to class.)

After her stint in Hollywood, she eventually put her creative skills to work, creating a media company with her husband, Dale. Since moving to Alaska in 2012, Stacy worked for a boutique cruise line and spent many years working for a regional health consortium providing her writing and strategic skills in PR, communications, content, social media. When the “stars aligned” (as they say) making Sea Lion Tours & Adventures possible, she and her husband didn’t hesitate.

 

Vice President / Chief Operating Officer (COO)

Dale Smith is our VP & COO. He spent the early part of his career as a business owner then found great success in sales and marketing. As a founder and partner of a media company (along with his wife, Stacy), the cumulative experience gained positioned him perfectly to handle our company’s operational responsibilities.

But wait, there’s more. All of that fantastic experience didn’t all happen in Alaska.

A diagnosis of late-stage cancer can flip someone’s life and plans upside down, as you might imagine. So, after surviving stage IV b cancer, Dale had something adventurous in mind for whatever was to come afterward and found it in Alaska. A job offer brought him and his wife to Juneau in 2012, where he first put his skills as a publisher to work, and later his expertise in sales and marketing for one of the largest tour operators in the area before starting the Sea Lion brand.

 

Captain Luke Holton

Originally from the high desert of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Luke traded the dry basins and tumbleweeds for the rainforest and green ocean shores of Southeast Alaska in 2012. He transformed into a full-blown seafarer almost immediately.

It won’t take you long to discover Captain Luke loves sharing his knowledge of all things wild in the area. His love of ocean adventures motivated him to complete four Level-1 kayak expeditions in Alaska (that’s a total of 1,700 miles in case you’re wondering), a crossing of the Atlantic Ocean in a 24’ rowboat, and years of guiding passengers to find the majestic marine mammals of the Inside Passage.

Experienced in toponymy (he knows the names of the places around here and their origins) and outdoor survival, Luke also has credible experience in brown bear guiding. (FUN FACT: All grizzly bears are brown bears, but not all brown bears are grizzly bears.). Oh, and If you like whales and nerds (his words, not ours), you’ve hit the jackpot! Captain Luke is THE captain for you as he is a “Whale Nerd.” If you want him to stop talking for a minute so you can hear the whales, the safe word is “Balaenopteridae Rorqual.”

Captain Luke has had extensive training and earned several certifications including

  • USCG Captain’s License 50-Ton
  • First Aid/ CPR
  • Nevada Firefighter 1 Nevada Wildland Firefighter 1

We’re thrilled to have this “Whale Nerd” as part of our team!

*** FULL DISCLOSURE: Luke is still working on his “Whale Nerd” certification.