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Meet the Team

The Dynamic Team behind Lady Of The Sea

Lady Of The Sea Diving Academy is a dynamic and active scuba diving facility that provides the highest level of scuba instruction, has an active dive club and is able to provide you with clear advice and guidance for all your equipment needs.
Kahren

Hello & Welcome!

It has been a true privilege to enjoy a lifetime of underwater adventures and I want to introduce everyone to the magic, the mystery and the incredible beauty of our precious underwater world! What a buzz it’s been introducing thousands of people to this intriguing world of adventure... a place I call my office.
See more below.

Kahren Forrest
Director - Lady Of The Sea
PADI Course Director
John

Let's go diving!

As an instructor for over 20 years I have been fortunate to introduce many people to the amazing world of recreational scuba diving. A lifestyle that lets you enjoy the incredible marine life, social activities and local and international diving adventures. Join us for a lifetime of incredible opportunities... and maybe some international travel :)
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John Forrest
PADI Master Instructor
Service Technician
Bill

They call me Papa Smurf!

I am passionate about the underwater world and the excitement and adventure that it provides and I am excited at the opportunity to share this enthusiasm with you.
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Bill Knox
PADI instructor
Service Technician
Operations Manager
Megan

Chief Fun Master!

As Lady Of The Sea Diving Academy's self appointed Chief Fun Master, it is my goal to make sure that your experience with diving is positve, exciting and fun!

See more below.

Dr Megan Head
PADI Divemaster

 

Welcome to our world, our office, our playground! We live a life of excitement and adventure, enveloped with mystery, a little serenity if we seek it, and plenty of silence. We spend our days in a place where we become addicted to the repetitive sound of our exhalation and the tickling sensation of our bubbles as they brush past our faces, and where no two dives are ever the same. We, the dive professionals with Lady Of The Sea Diving Academy, are committed to ensuring that your underwater experiences are the very best that they can be. If you dream about diving shipwrecks, we can take you there…..if you love being at one with nature….come with us because that is one of our specialties! Perhaps you would like to contribute to protecting the future of the planet, making a difference for the magnificent yet fragile aquatic creatures, all of whom are vulnerable to the crippling effects of modernisation, civilisation and increasing levels of pollution? Join us in our on-going battle to save this precious, irreplaceable world and it’s delicate yet well-adapted inhabitants. Perhaps you are fascinated with sharks or nudibranchs? The great news is that we are too. Come with us… for the adventures of a lifetime. Come with us to explore the other two-thirds of our amazing planet earth – the last frontier – the liquid world we have made our own. Join our tribe…. become one of us... if you don’t love nudibranchs yet, you will from now on… and cuttlefish… and sharks and the octopus….

Perhaps you’re a ‘techie’ who is addicted to computers, ‘apps’, and online interaction. We have the online training materials, technical dive equipment and underwater computers for you! Perhaps you yearn to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and insurmountable chores, of endless repetitive routine? This is another of our specialties... we have an allergic reaction to routine, to stress, to mediocrity, to monotony… if you need action, adventure and excitement – the underwater world has plenty of that too! Some deep diving with a little wreck exploration thrown in should suffice here. Does your soul need to re-connect with itself and the world at large? There is no better place than the underwater world for this… come diving with us – let us share the intriguing, hypnotising, unpredictable, mysterious adventures of our magnificent underwater world with you.

About Kahren

The deep – where time stands still. All that surrounds is the majestic silent crystal-like beauty, characteristic only of our magnificent underwater world. Kahren has had a lifetime of exploring the wonders of this magical undersea world and she has been truly privileged to spend her days diving and introducing others to the wondrous world of water through the luxury sport of diving. Kahren began snorkelling at age of four, and was lucky enough to scuba dive at the tender age of seven, the start of a lifelong love affair with the sea.

Kahren was born into a diving family: her parents are the pioneers of scuba diving in the Fiji Islands, her place of birth. Living an idyllic island lifestyle that many dream about, Kahren spent her junior years frolicking in the Pacific Ocean and it was inevitable that she would advance her diving experience while still very young. She began night diving at the early age of eleven, assisting in her parents’ dive store from the age of 12, and helping out as a diver-guide around the age of 15. She experienced her first sighting of a fast-moving shark at the age of eight, the beginning of a lifelong fascination for the ‘Monarch of the Sea’ that she now passes on to her students through the Shark Diver Specialty course.

Kahren became qualified as a diving professional at the age of twenty-one, only stopping above water long enough to obtain her private education and her degree, a B.A. in Communications (P.R.) in Australia.

Kahren spent several years focussed on diving in Fiji, working as a Public Relations Officer and Chief Instructor for her parents’ dive operations, Beqa Divers and Scubahire Ltd. Kahren’s teaching experiences led to her conducting scuba classes in Malcolm Forbes’ own private pool on the mountain top at Laucala Island, and on board the P&O cruise liner ‘Fair Princess’, teaching scuba on the high seas.

After years of teaching in Fiji, Kahren decided it was time to experience different styles and locations of diving so at the age of 25, Kahren set up her own diver-training facility in Canberra, only a few hours drive from the South-East coast of Australia and began to explore the world of temperate diving, an environment that until now had remained a mystery to her.

In 1990, Lady of the Sea Diving Academy was born, the name “Lady of the Sea” derived from a newspaper article written about Kahren when she was only 23 years old. Through the academy, Kahren fulfilled a life-long dream by offering the general public a high quality, exclusive level of scuba tuition, her greatest love being to introduce people to her beloved underwater world, it’s magical creatures, its mysteries and its endless beauty.

Kahren has written regularly for publication about the underwater world over the past 30 years, sharing with the dive industry and anyone else who will listen, her fun experiences with her students and club members. She also established a conservation team “Ambassadors of the Ocean” and worked with fervour to educate young ones all over the region about the fragility of the underwater world and its inhabitants, teaching school students about the importance of working to protect our intricate and delicate aquatic ecosystems.

With over 40 years of diving experience, including working with the International Association of Handicapped Divers to share the magic of the underwater world with the physically challenged, Kahren has pursued her professional teaching career to the highest level, becoming a PADI Course Director in 2000, enabling her to teach to instructor level and beyond, another of her passions.

Kahren spent six years diving the magical waters of the Indian Ocean around Christmas Island, and has now returned to the cool temperate waters of the south east coast of Australia to share her deep love for all things aquatic with anyone who is keen to explore the wild blue yonder. Perhaps what makes Kahren unique as a professional educator in the field of scuba diving is a combination of her endless dedication to high quality instruction, her powerful commitment to diver safety, her deep love for the underwater creatures, her devotion to the conservation ethic and her unequalled enthusiasm for all aspects of diving and diver-training. Kahren’s life-long obsession with the underwater world is highly contagious and many of her students over the years have pursued the luxury sport of scuba diving with a similar passion.

Scuba Diver Magazine profile article
Lady Of The Sea - the story behind the business name

About John

A confirmed water baby, John has had a strong association with the water since his early childhood, his talents leading him to numerous swimming carnivals where he competed avidly. Every year of his secondary schooling saw him representing his school and zone by competing in the ACT School Swimming Carnival, for which he was awarded many medals and certificates. Upon leaving high school John took with him 10 school swimming records some of which remain undefeated to this day. In his younger years, while filling in his spare time during school holidays, he figured that there must be more to water than just swimming laps. His attention turned to water safety. He began lifesaver training with the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia (RLSSA), the start of a very satisfying recreational activity for John. He collected many certificates for his outstanding achievements, the highest being the Distinction certificate, reserved only for those who have shown an eminent ability in the area of life-saving. John’s fascination with the water and lifesaving presented him with the opportunity to represent the ACT many times, and the privilege to compete in the Australian Championships on two occasions, the first of which was an open event with no age grading. It was at this event that John became the youngest Australian to compete at such an event, a credit to him for his dedication and commitment to lifesaving. John simply couldn’t get enough of the water, and in his efforts to become one with the elements, he became an avid and committed wind surfer and wave jumper.

John’s special connection with the water coupled with the fascination and excitement he felt for the mysterious and magical underwater world, meant that it was only a matter of time before he became involved in the sport of scuba diving. Once he became a diver, John worked his way through the PADI system to become a PADI instructor, gaining many valuable memories, much underwater experience and many recreational and professional certifications along the way. John currently holds the prestigious Master Instructor rating with the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI), he is a Master Scuba Diver Trainer and an IDC Staff Instructor, which enables him to assist Kahren with specialty and instructional level training.

John is a highly enthusiastic and dedicated PADI instructor and scuba equipment service technician, heavily committed to the PADI system of diver-training and, like Kahren, he is a strong advocate for conservation, with a heavy inclination toward the protection and preservation of the delicate aquatic life beneath the waves. John works tirelessly with Kahren to emphasise through diver -training, the beauty and fragility of the underwater world and its inhabitants, encouraging all Lady Of The Sea divers to learn more about the fascinating, delightful and captivating life forms beneath the sea. John strongly believes in providing the highest quality scuba tuition possible for his divers, and he works closely with his diving students to ensure the highest level of skill development and the maximum level of enjoyment during their time underwater. It is difficult to complete some form of diver training with John without taking away at least some of his love and excitement for scuba diving, not to mention his infectious passion and appreciation for the beauty of the underwater world.

About Bill

Born in the quaint country town of Braidwood, Bill moved to Canberra as a youngster, and being several hours inland from the ocean, it would be safe to say that scuba diving was not on his radar.

Bill was as interested in learning to scuba dive as he was about jumping out of perfectly good aeroplanes, which means not at all. He began diving in February 1993 as a favour to a friend, reluctantly and with no better option at the time, unbeknown to him that it was the start of something so amazing that it would significantly change his life. Exchanging ‘goggles, flippers and oxygen tank’ for ‘a mask, a pair of fins and an air cylinder’ Bill ventured into the wild blue yonder with Lady of the Sea more than 2 decades ago. Bill anticipated entering a military type of training course, expecting scuba diving to be a bit of a boys own club, all gung-ho and bristling with spears.

Not only was he pleasantly surprised, he was impressed that his instructor, Kahren Evans, was and still is, very focused on safety, skills, knowledge, more safety, fun and environmental awareness. Kahren's enthusiasm was/is infectious and lo and behold there was not a gung-ho or a spear to be seen anywhere!

Bill claims that he was hooked after his very first dive, a self-proclaimed ‘cult diver in the making’, all this eventuating at the Merimbula Wharf, on the far south coast of NSW. As most people do, he asked himself why he hadn't done this sooner. Making up for lost time, within 8 months he had completed 100 dives, begun his training as a Divemaster, and in November 1994 he qualified as a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor with Lady Of The Sea Diving Academy.

When asked why he became a scuba instructor, he answered that it was “because of Kahren and the training I had received. I wanted to be able to introduce people to diving, to share my experiences and joy of the marine environment in exactly the same way as I had been taught. To provide a level of training that will allow divers to be safe, their skills honed so that they can then have fun and enjoy their diving, where ever their travels may take them. On a more selfish note, nothing beats the reward of the smiles on the faces of new divers after their 1st open water dive”.

Bill was lucky enough to experience diving in the unique environment of Tasmania, untouched and teeming with temperate life, dive sites revealing grand rock formations that resembled Cathedrals and other mighty structures. It was the freedom that diving provided, the escape from the mundane mediocrity of ordinary everyday life that got Bill even more hooked on these amazing underwater adventures, on the magic of this liquid playground – oh, and then there are the cephalopods – the super-intelligent, colour-changing masters of camouflage, the octopus, and their country cousins the truly mesmerising cuttlefish and squid, each with their own unique behaviour and spectacular talent for disguise.

About Megan

Megan has had the good fortune of being a scuba diver for most of her life, having qualified as a PADI Open Water diver at the tender age of 16, and moving forward to qualify as a PADI Dive professional at 18. Megan also obtained the prestigious rating of Master Scuba Diver, all of her diver-training conducted by Lady of the Sea Diving Academy, including the Shark Diver specialty certification at Montague Island off Narooma with the colony of Grey Nurse sharks. Megan is one of the fortunate few who spent her safety stop on the deep dive of her Advanced Diver course with two adult dolphins and a baby - this was only her 7th dive to date at that time! Megan is also one of the few divers who was lucky enough to dive on the ‘Provincial Trader’ prior to its removal and delivery into the unattainable depths beyond the Continental Shelf. Megan’s extensive diving background is partnered with her passion to share her underwater experiences with new divers, and her heavy commitment to safety and the PADI system of diver education.

When asked to describe her favourite dives, she advised: “I LOVE night diving, so anywhere where it’s safe to night dive is a winner for me. One of my favourite night dives - I didn’t even see a single fish, but there was so much bioluminescence in the water it felt like swimming through the opening credits of a Star Wars movie! That was cool! One of Megan’s favourite places to dive is Lake Jindabyne “…it’s so amazing to swim over houses and the water was surprisingly clear!”

What makes Megan so special? Her deep love for the ocean and all it’s wonderful inhabitants, her heavy commitment to conservation, her undying desire to protect this beautiful world and all the work she has done in the conservation arena. Megan has been an invaluable member of our conservation team ‘Ambassadors of the Ocean’, and we will be forever grateful for all the time and effort that Megan has so generously sacrificed to assist us with this important work. Megan’s hard work in the field of conservation helped Lady of the Sea Diving Academy and Ambassadors of the Ocean to secure a world-wide award from the PADI Hallmark of Excellence for its accomplishments. Megan’s love for all things ocean is so strong that for quite a long time she had green hair, a great talking piece in the dive club! People who haven’t seen Megan in 20 years, still remember ‘the diving lass with the green hair’.

Like Kahren, Megan worries that it won’t be long before there is nothing left to see and the underwater communities will get all out of balance. She is a biologist who studies the evolution of animal behavior. She loves to watch all the quirky things that animals do and is afraid that in years to come we could lose all that diversity.

When asked why she loves to dive with Lady of the Sea Diving Academy, she answered that she “loves hanging out with like-minded people who are there to have fun and enjoy themselves”. So what floats Megan’s boat about diving? “I love the peacefulness of being weightless underwater, I also love the sense of adventure, never knowing what you might see but knowing that you will definitely have some kind of encounter that not many people get to experience”

Locations on Megan’s bucket list? “The rift lakes of Iceland – I was right there but didn’t have time between flights. I have to get to Palau to dive the lake inside the island with all the non-stinging jelly fish. They migrate across the lake each day to maximize their time in the sun. I am keen to dive in the magnificent kelp forests of Tasmania – this would be the most amazing experience and they are disappearing so may soon not even exist.”


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