An ex-professional yachtsman with many ocean crossings under his belt, Geoff Holt was paralysed in a swimming accident in 1984. Since then, he’s committed much of his life to supporting the concept of sailing for people with disabilities and was the inaugural Chairman of the charity RYA Sailability.
A marketing specialist by profession but more recently an author and motivational speaker, Geoff was the first disabled person to sail single-handed around Great Britain in 2007. In 2009/10, Geoff became the first quadriplegic to sail the Atlantic Ocean unassisted in all aspects of the sailing. He currently sits on the national RYA Council representing disabled sailors in the UK and also sits on the Paralympic Steering Group which is responsible for finding our Paralympic sailors for 2012. Geoff is also a committee member of the British Paralympic Association representing sailing in the UK. In 2004 he was awarded the RYA Award for “Services to Yachting”, in 2007 he won the BBC South Sports Personality of the Year and in 2009 he was awarded the RYA’s Francis Elkin Award for “Services to Disabled Sailing”.
Geoff Holt became an inspiration to many when he completed his ‘Personal Everest’ challenge. Geoff sailed 1,445 miles, solo, around Great Britain in a fragile 15-foot dinghy in 2007. Hailed an extraordinary, courageous achievement, Geoff is a passionate, talented yachtsman who uses a wheelchair. Paralysed from the chest down after a swimming accident, Geoff secured another place in the history books when he became the first quadriplegic sailor to sail across the Atlantic in January 2010. As someone once joked, Geoff Holt is now the most admired disabled sailor since Nelson! He was Yachtsman of the Year 2010
In 2012 Geoff was invited to take part in the Royal Flotilla for the Queen’s Jubilee. Geoff will sail “Wetwheels” one of the elite wheelchair accessible powerboats on the River Thames on Sunday 3rd June 2012. He will be part of the biggest flotilla in modern times, with rowing boats, working boats and pleasure vessels of all sizes all highly decorated.
He currently services on the Paralympic Committee. Geoff is the first Ambassador for the Disabled Powerboating Trust launched in 2012.
Geoff is a truly inspirational motivational speaker and recent comments on his presentation includes: “feedback has been overwhelmingly positive” Barclays