Captain Bill Washington
USCG 100-ton Master
I’m originally from New York City and learned how to sail as a teenager spending my summers in Sag Harbor, New York. I moved to the D.C. area in 1970 and have been on the Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay ever since.
After serving in the Army from 1967 to 1970, I landed here and had various jobs ranging from the Federal Government, private industry and District government, from which I retired in 2001. All involved the graphic arts in one form or another and ultimately computer graphics and the web. I met my wife here in 1970 and we’ve been together ever since, with two children and four grandchildren.
I received my initial license more than 21 years ago and have owned three boats of my own, including a commercial assistance towboat, which I operated on the Potomac River during the early '90s. While working for the D.C. government, as well as after I retired, I operated a number of tour boats, charter yachts (both motor and sail) and private yachts on the Potomac. I also created a website called Black Mariners, which gives a history of African-Americans on the oceans and waterways. It is still a work-in-progress (http://www.blackmariners.com). I was fortunate to sail as Second Mate aboard the Half Moon (a square-rigger) on the Hudson River in 2005. This was a nine-day trip from Verplanck, New York to Albany. We had 11 middle school kids, three teachers and a crew of eight. Did I mention there was only one head and no showers? Great trip!
Currently, I have a 100-ton Masters with towing endorsement. I was one of the senior Captains for Capital Yacht Charters/Fort Washington Potomac River Tours, LLC. They operated four yachts ranging in size from 72 feet to more than 100 feet LOA and 49 to 149 passengers. We did everything from birthdays, weddings and anniversaries to corporate outings and special event cruises. I’m a certified wedding officiant so I can actually perform wedding ceremonies as well. In addition, I handled all the media material for the company (brochures, business cards, videos, commercials, websites, etc.) and assisted in the marketing.