Employee Spotlight: Owen Brown | NW Explorations


Employee Spotlight: Owen Brown

This month’s spotlighted employee is our Service Manager, Owen Brown, who’s been with us since 2015. Hailing from Nova Scotia, Canada, Owen moved to Bellingham in 2008 and lives aboard his 44’ sailboat, which was delivered all the way from Mazatlan, Mexico. Owen holds his USCG OUPV Captain’s license and is an integral member of our Service Team!

1. Tell us about yourself.

I grew up in Nova Scotia, Canada. I always thought I’d end up living there again but when I visited the west coast for the first time in 2008, I knew this is where I belonged.  I met my wife of seven years and now have a beautiful two-year-old daughter. Working with NWE really suits my lifestyle and passion for boating.  It’s a great team here and I’m really enjoying my new position as Service Manager.

2. How did you get involved with NW Explorations?

We live aboard our sailboat and I walked past an ad for Marine Technicians. I immediately printed a resume and walked in the door and met Jenna Stevens. She had me in for an interview and was turned down for the tech position but I was offered a position as the Service Coordinator. I, of course, accepted and now I’m filling her shoes. It’s funny how things work out. I’m so fortunate I had her as a mentor before jumping fully into my current role.

3. What’s your boating background?

My love for sailing started when I moved to Bellingham. Growing up on the Bay of Fundy, all I saw was canoes and aluminum ribs. It’s hard to sail when the tide goes out for miles. Since then, I’ve been an avid sail racer. I’ve done the TransPac, PacCup, Newport to Cabo (x2), and other ocean races.  Also, I sailed in the Farr40 one design fleet.

4. What’s your favorite boating spot?

I really love Catalina Island but for different reasons than the Pacific Northwest.  I’ve only been able to explore the San Juans so far, but I’m planning on a trip to the Gulf Islands and Princess Louisa Inlet in 2018.  I’m sure I’m going to find a new favorite spot.

5. What do you appreciate most about your job?

The team. The work ethic of the Service office, as well as Charter and Admin, is really motivating.  It’s nice to see everyone on the same page and striving to really do a top-notch job.  I’ve never had the pleasure of working anywhere with the core values really instilled in all its people, like at NW Explorations.

6. What’s your favorite NWE story?

When we managed to swap a transmission in a 52’ Grand Banks in less than three days. In 2017, we added a new boat into the fleet that came to us from Florida.  After a ton of effort and a huge job list completed to bring the boat up to our standards in time for the charter season, the boat was taken out on a sea-trial.

Needless to say, it was short and limped back in on the port engine alone.  After determining the issue, our team managed to source a replacement, remove, and install the transmission within 72 hours.  That’s how we do it!

7. What are three words that describe working at NWE?

Fast paced, challenging, and fun.

8. What’s your favorite quote/motto?

Don’t sweat the small stuff.

So many people can get wrapped up over the silliest things. I like facts, get the answer, and move on. As long as I always learn something from the experience.

9. What’s your dream vacation?

South Pacific on my sailboat.


10. People would be surprised if they knew . . .

That I play a few instruments and am really passionate about audio. I used to work in the music industry and film. I studied Audio Engineering for a number of years.

11. What’s your favorite book?

Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

12. What’s your favorite movie?

That’s a tough one… Saving Private Ryan.

13. Anything else you’d like to add?

Thanks for providing an awesome place to work and be part of NWE!

One thought on “Employee Spotlight: Owen Brown”

  1. I am Owen’s father. I witnessed my son to grow up to be who he is today. My wife and I had 2 values we wanted to instill in our 2 boys. They were to “respect other people and “to respect other people’s property” We thought if we could do this everything else in parenthood and life could be accomplished. Right or wrong we are proud of both of our sons. Owen took many turns in his first few years of adulthood which made him who he is. He was always interested in mechanical stuff, making a how to video in grade school on how to change the oil and filter in a car without help from anyone and to replace a roll-up window in a car because he was responsible for breaking it and knew that was the right thing to do. . He was and is a sponge, absorbing information from anyone who will share it. Because of his personality and experiances he has met many fine people in his travels continually adding to his network of resources.. He was always a hands on guy and has learnt allot because of it. I realized how much he loved sailing and his knowledge of boats when he asked me to sail with him from Mazatlan Mexico to L.A. when they purchased PooBah (Their sail boat). I never sailed nor do I swim but I did it. What an experience. We had many real life sailing/boating highlites that a book could be written on. This is when I realized how much my son has developed into a professional experienced sailor. A year later he asked if I would sail again with him from L.A. to their home, Bellingham. Thru both 2 week trips I never felt unsafe or threatened by the weather. seas or our mechanical misfortunes due to his level head and methodical thinking. His experience as a leader has led him to his present job. I see those early taught values, not only in him, but thru conversations of those he met when we visit him on the west coast as they have so many nice things to say about him. My wife and I could not be more proud of our son, a father and a husband.

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