crew

the captain

With more than 10 years working together on Starfire as a team, Captain Carl Sputh, Captain Richard Fuher, and Captain Paul Duncan have jointly maintained the helm of this popular charter yacht’s operation, carrying on the tradition of guest satisfaction and seamless service instituted by Captain Carl more than 15 years ago, who continues to organize and oversee guest bookings and trips, ensuring complete continuity of the now-famous Starfire Experience.

Captain

Paul Duncan (Canadian, Age 40)

Paul grew up in Toronto, Canada, on the beautiful shores of Lake Ontario. Through high school Paul worked as a lifeguard for both the city and the Royal Canadian Yacht Club. This led to the beginnings of his career in the yachting industry. At the age of 20, Paul headed south to the Caribbean. His first stop was Grand Cayman, where he worked on sailing catamarans, taking guests out to Sting Ray City in the North Sound of that island.  After that he moved on to St. Maarten, racing retired America’s Cup boats for guests, and at the age of 23 began crewing on large sailing yachts. Rising to the position of mate on the sailing side of the industry, Paul then made the switch to large motor yachts after being offered an officer’s position cruising the Middle East. Since then Paul has continued to work his way up in the yachting industry, and has travelled extensively all over the world, both coastwise and overland. From the Gulf of Aden to the Gulf of Mexico, and the Himalayas to the veldts of Africa, Paul likely has a story to share if you’re interested, and wants you to know that STARFIRE’s comfortable bridge sofas are always available as a great place to converse while the world slides past at 12 knots. Paul holds a Master 3000 ton license and has been on STARFIRE for 10 years. His hobbies include surfing, sailing, and open water swimming, and he is a dedicated runner, having recently completed two marathons. When he isn’t onboard Paul can be found in Kent, England, living the rural life with his wife Hannah and two children, Kipling and Deia.

Captain

Richard Fuher (American, Age 46)

Richard grew up in Pagosa Springs, Colorado, and alas, his position on M/Y STARFIRE is not exactly typical of someone who grew up surrounded by snow–peaked mountains and 3 million acres of national forests! An avid snow skier since youth, Richard’s all–around love of the outdoors ultimately led him to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in 1991.
Richard spent his undergraduate years at the Merchant Marine Academy not only gaining his knowledge of marine engineering and navigation, but also participating as a Varsity member and Fleet Captain of the Offshore Sailing Team. He still enjoys racing sailboats when time permits; and yet, since his departure from the Academy, he has applied his skills & knowledge to a variety of professional marine positions on sailing and motor yachts.
After logging 130,000 nautical miles in deck and engine cadet positions on unlimited tonnage cargo ships, Richard eventually found his way to the yachting industry in 1996. He has since worked on many high–profile sailing and motor yachts, not only in First Mate and Engineer positions, but also as a Captain. With a U.S.C.G 1600–Ton Upon Oceans Master ticket under his belt, Rich’s sailing experiences have taken him all over the world. From South America to Alaska, Egypt to Singapore, Turkey to Norway, and throughout the Caribbean and Eastern shores of the U.S., Richard has certainly made the most of his career at sea.
Richard obviously has a passion for sailing…but his talents don’t stop there. He is also a PADI certified diver, and he shoots rifles, pistols, and shotguns competitively. His time off ship is spent with his wife Jemma & children Aniya, Saskia & Frankie, either in their native New Zealand or on the family ranch in Nevada, minding their Longhorn cattle.

THE DECK CREW

You, as a Guest, might notice them climbing the mast to change the courtesy flag, polishing the stainless handrails to a blinding gleam, or assisting the Captain with moving the vessel… ultimately, the mission of STARFIRE’s Deck Crew is to provide you with safe passage from port to port in total comfort throughout your stay.

The Deck Crew can also be counted on for some fun in the sun. They will facilitate your entertainment with jet skis, wakeboards, kayaks, ski bobs, STARFIRE’s Hinckley tender or a cocktail on a secluded beach. They are the keepers of the hidden island gems… the secret beach hideouts.

First Officer

Marcus Bay (Fijian, Age 38)

Marcus comes to us from Lami Town, Fiji. He grew up in a house on the water in the Bay of Islands with his three brothers and many friends whom he spent time sailing, surfing, diving, fishing and kayaking with. He attended school at the International School in Suva, Fiji, completing his IB Diploma and afterwards attended the University of the South Pacific studying Management and Tourism.

At the age of 21 He moved to Australia and obtained his Bachelor’s Degree. Marcus has traveled the South Pacific, including Australia, New Zealand, Tonga, Vanuatu and the Fiji Islands extensively, as well as by boat. Marcus has been on Starfire for over eleven years and looks forward to a long career in the yachting industry.

bosun

Jake Rosenberg (South African, Age 30)

Jake comes from the east coast of Durban, South Africa where living near the warm Indian Ocean, he learned his passion for bodyboarding. Jake took part in the World Tour for Bodyboarding and has travelled extensively around the world competing.

It was in Hawaii that he first discovered the yachting industry, helping a friend who taught him everything he knew.

Jake has a background in Film & Media studies and aspires to further his career in the yachting industry. He holds his Yacht Masters Offshore Certification and has his Officer of the Watch certification. Jake loves playing soccer, watching rugby, and making new friends everywhere he goes. He looks forward to being a part of your numerous adventures here on M/Y STARFIRE.

Deckhand

Liam Roos (South African, Age 25)

Liam hails from the sunny shores of Durban, South Africa where he grew up surfing and spear fishing. His first job was a beach lifeguard at a nearby resort where he developed into a strong swimmer and his love affair of the ocean only grew from there.

He started his yachting career as temporary delivery crew on sail boats which led to joining motor yachts. Liam has found his transition into the lifestyle completely natural and in his short career he has already attained his RYA Yachtmaster Offshore, RYA Powerboat Lvl 2, among many other certifications and experience. His career goal is to work his way up to the Captain’s Bridge in the future.

Liam enjoys an active lifestyle and besides watersports he also enjoys skating, playing football, and any form of exercise. He is eager to help ensure you have the time of your life with us here on STARFIRE.

Deckhand

Joanna Kolacki (American, Age 34)

Joanna comes to STARFIRE from South Florida, and attended college at The University of Florida. There she received her Bachelor’s of Science in the school of Journalism and Communications with a degree in Advertising.

After she graduated, Joanna moved to New York City to work professionally in the field of Media and Advertising until the pull of warmer winters drew her back home to South Florida. Her yachting career began once back home when an opportunity arose to join a 45’ catamaran chartering through the Exumas for one season. She joined STARFIRE soon after and hasn’t looked back!

Joanna thoroughly enjoys the nature and is highly active in all environments. Her interests include surfing, snowboarding and hiking photography, cooking
and maintaining an herb garden. She looks forward to making you feel at home here on STARFIRE.

THE INTERIOR CREW

While onboard STARFIRE, you might perceive a hint of magic … your bed is always perfectly made, your clothes are always put away and your glasses are always in reach. Flowers and chocolate decorate your bed at night, a glass of champagne magically appears in your hand before dinner and your favorite song suddenly resonates throughout the sundeck. What appears to be magic is the result of great collaboration between the members of STARFIRE’s spot-on team of Stewardesses. It is their pleasure to accomplish the impossible on your STARFIRE holiday!

Chief Stewardess

Leslee Williams (American. Age 32)

Leslee was born in Southern California just outside of San Diego. She has always had a strong pull to travel and has seen much of the world including Australia where she lived for five years of her life. Leslee has a fascination for medicine and is a licensed EMT with plans to shift into nursing.

She heard about yachting through a sailing captain friend while she was working day sail charters in the San Diego harbor. With her love for the ocean and travel it was a natural and exciting transition. She has now been in yachting just over three years and loves it for the challenge, variety, and opportunities it offers as well as all of the incredible people she has been lucky to meet.
Leslee furthermore enjoys water sports, diving, yoga, rock climbing, hiking, fine dining, and trying local cuisine in all of the countries she visits. She hopes to make your stay with us a memory of a life time.

Stewardess

Aimie Keech (Australian, Age 28)

Aimie was born in NSW Australia, growing up in the outback and moving to Canberra/Sydney to study where she obtained a degree in architecture and interior design respectively. Upon graduation she believed in order to become a well-rounded and knowledgeable designer you must experience the world firsthand. This concept led her to commence a career in yachting in 2017, where she has been able to travel and work extensively, experiencing cultures all around the world and interacting with many amazing people. Though she is one of the newest crew members of Starfire, Aimie has experienced seasons in both the Mediterranean and Caribbean, allowing her to offer well-rounded knowledge of the areas. She also has extensive cocktail, bar and barista skills, and enjoys bringing her creative design driven personality into the world of yachting when possible.

Stewardess

Kelly Motzouris (South African, Age 22)

Kelly comes from a small town in South Africa where she grew up with her brother and two sisters, one of which is her twin. There, her father worked as an engineer and a deep sea fisherman, and Kelly’s love for boats begun.

Once finished with school, Kelly moved to Durban to focus on dance. In Durban, she ran a dance studio as a qualified teacher and a professional freelance dancer.

In yachting since 2018, Kelly loves the industry and aspires to be a chief stewardess and have a long and fulfilling career. In her spare time, Kelly enjoys reading and literature. She is also an avid runner and loves everything that involves sport and fitness.

Stewardess/Masseuse

Madison Basil (American, age 26)

Madison comes from the beautiful and hilly Appalachian mountains of West Virginia. At the age of 18, she decided to pick up and leave the small town life and pursue massage therapy in the city at the well-known Cortiva Institute in Chicago, IL. There she had the the opportunity of learning a variety of modalities including but not limited to: deep tissue, trigger point therapy, Swedish, prenatal, sports, Myofascial release and hot stone massages. She is continually educating herself in the ever-advancing world of massage in order to remain a skilled and passionate therapist.

She worked for over 4 years in top rated spas and renowned restaurants Chicago before the pull of travel took her to the capital of Ecuador where she had the opportunity to co-manage a restaurant and hotel in the beautiful, pristine, Galápagos Islands.

She lived there for over 2 years, becoming fluent in Spanish and it is there that she fell in love with the ocean vowing to always be near it!
In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, surfing, swimming, soccer, hiking, adventures and loves all animals, especially marine life!
Madison’s positive energy, care and experience will ensure you are in great hands while aboard M/Y STARFIRE.

THE CULINARY CREW

While pondering the idea of chartering STARFIRE, you might dream of white beaches, turquoise clear waters, a luxurious cabin and sun-soaking relaxation and fun. Yet, when you leave STARFIRE all you can think about is getting that oh-so-divine recipe from STARFIRE’s talented culinary Chefs!

Special requests are always met with rave reviews. STARFIRE’s Chefs will only be satisfied if they fulfill all of your personal dietary dreams.

Chef

Stuart Chambers (Irish, Age 37)

Stuart hails from Cork, Ireland. Starting to cook at an early age, Stuart opened his first restaurant at the age of 18. Following a two year professional chef’s course, Stuart returned to college and completed a four year degree in business and finance.

After college, Stuart’s love of traveling and adventure brought him to work in up market ski chalets in Canada and France which in turn led him into the world of yachting.

Stuart has been in the yachting industry for seven years, working on sailing and motor yachts and as a personal chef for a famous Formula One driver.

His plans for the future are to remain in the yachting industry for a few more years before opening his own restaurant again. In his spare time Stuart enjoys sampling the local cuisine during his travels and loves to hike and snowboard.

Sous Chef

Anya Shevtsova (Ukrainian, Age 29)

Anya was born and raised in Kharkov, Ukraine where she attended the National Technical University to gain her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. Anya worked for two years in Social Services helping various families and children throughout Kharkov. Anya travelled to the United States and to the Caribbean where she discovered the Yachting industry and along with it her passion for cooking.

She travelled back to the Ukraine to attend the Culinary Academy of Hector Jimenez Bravo, (a Canadian Chef of Columbian origin). He is also a TV presenter as well as a Judge on the “Master Chef Ukraine” & “Ukraine’s Got Talent” Shows. Anya has apprenticed under Chef Stuart for three years now and her talents grow exponentially year by year; giving M/Y STARFIRE not just one, but two amazing chefs. Anya loves bringing happiness to people through food. She looks forward to serving you!

THE ENGINEERING CREW

As you first step onboard STARFIRE, you will briefly meet the engineers, then you might only see them once more when you are just about to step off STARFIRE for the very last time. When you do, you might think to ask them where they have been for all this time… They will laugh and say “don’t mistake it, we have been around”. STARFIRE is a technical wonder of mechanical, electrical and navigation systems. the engineers maintain every system so that you, STARFIRE’s Guest, remain safe and comfortable. They rotate in a 24 hour watch schedule to make sure that STARFIRE is always running at a level of peak performance.

Chief Engineer

Nick Edwards (New Zealander, Age 31)

Although born in South Africa, Nick spent most of his childhood growing up in Auckland, New Zealand. There he received his Bachelors of Engineering, and then moved on to work for Fisher and Paykel Healthcare designing and building manufacturing machinery.

Nick also worked in Ireland for Johnson and Johnson Healthcare, installing and commissioning production machinery. Needing a change and missing the sea , Nick transitioned to the yachting industry. His interests include fishing, photography and kite surfing .

Chief Engineer

Graham Ellis (English, Age 52)

Graham is from Sutton, South London, in the UK. Having graduated from University as an Engineer, and worked for several businesses, Graham set up his own successful company in England. A client of his happened to work as an engineer on a yacht, which pricked Graham’s interest & off he went to the South of France to obtain his Y2 engineers ticket. His job search then took him to Panama where he joined his first yacht in 1999. Since then he has worked aboard many vessels, both motor & sail, in the Caribbean & Mediterranean.
Graham is a keen sportsman and depending where he is, loves to ski, fish, wakeboard & play squash. He has a motorbike license that he uses wherever he is and enjoys time in the kitchen in his spare time.

2nd Engineer

Dylan Rowe-Clark (Saint Martian, age 32)

Boats have always run in Dylan’s family. His earliest memories are of the English shipyard where his father was building a sailing catamaran. At the age of 5 his family moved aboard and sailed across the Atlantic to live in the Caribbean. Dylan was raised living aboard the boat on the island of St. Maarten. He apprenticed to an electrician before moving to America to attend Stanford University for civil engineering. Missing the ocean, he returned home and quickly found his calling in yachting. He has spent 8 years aboard a variety of yachts sailing throughout the Caribbean and Eastern United States. In his free time Dylan enjoys scuba diving, snowboarding and off-road motorcycle trips.