My NAUI Bio
Jim Pearson has been diving since his teens, has logged over 10,000 dives and continues to be active underwater both personally and professionally. Jim successfully completed the first instructor course of the Southwest Council Instructors Program (SCIP) in 1963 in Dallas, Texas (instructor #54). He has instructor certifications from NAUI, PADI, L.A. County, CMAS and TDI, including a variety of specialty and technical instructor ratings in surface-supplied, open-circuit, and closed-circuit apparatus. Jim developed a love of teaching and has served as guest speaker at numerous diving educational conferences and seminars. His articles and photographs have appeared in several periodicals. Jim continues to teach underwater activities and guide divers to locations in California and throughout the world. In his diving career, he has received several honors, including;
United States Spearfishing Championship Team (Southwest Council, 1965)
SCIP Underwater Instructor of the Year (1971)
Theodore Vail Medal of Heroism (AT&T, 1973)
U.S. Presidential Lifesaving Commendation (President Gerald Ford)
Honored as SSI “Pro-5000 Diver” for diving industry contributions
Los Angeles Times calls Jim “a diver whom the experts label an expert”
From as early as 1962, Jim worked in both volunteer and sworn capacities in training public service rescue and recovery units. He has a Criminal Justice degree and a Master’s License for 100-ton watercraft. He was a U.S. Navy Diver in the Seventh Fleet, serving in Southeast Asia and Vietnam.
As a law enforcement officer (1975-1984), he wrote documents which initiated the Los Angeles Police Department Underwater Unit and served as its first Divemaster and Training Director. Cross-training and multi-agency operations were facilitated with the U.S. Coast Guard, LAPD Air Support Division, LA Port Police, Drug Enforcement Agency, FBI, U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Navy SEAL Teams. In 1981, Jim received the LAPD’s Meritorious Service Award for his work with the unit.
Jim is currently active with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary as Flotilla Commander, District Staff Officer of Surface Operations and Commander of the Coast Guard Dive Casualty Investigations Team (Sector Los Angeles/Long Beach) in the investigation of underwater accidents.
Jim owns Cinema Rentals, Inc and CineMarine Aquatics, providing motion picture production support equipment and service in two divisions. The Stunt Camera division, dating to 1966 with over 3000 titles, provides specialty cameras for “high risk” situations; crash stunts, explosions, car chases, underwater and unmanned remote-controlled aerial filming. In 1994, Jim’s company was nominated for an Academy Award in Technical Achievement (AMPAS) for work with remote-controlled aerial filming. The CineMarine Aquatics division provides nautical and underwater coordination, safety, training and stunt actors for film sequences. Jim has served as Expert Consultant on Underwater Activities to the American Screenwriters Guild West since the early 1980s. He has served the motion picture industry as a Technical Advisor, Underwater Cameraman, Underwater Coordinator, Marine Coordinator, cast and crew Underwater Trainer and Safety Coordinator. He is a member of the IATSE Marine Local 80, the Screen Actors Guild and AFTRA. His credits include commercials, music videos, television shows and feature films such as “Apollo 13”, “The Italian Job”, “G.I. Jane”, “Next Action Star”, “Bourne Identity”, “U-571”, “U.S. Marshals”, “Men of Honor”, “Face Off”, “Star Trek Generations”, “Charlie’s Angels”, “24”, “JAG” and many others.