2022 Marine Woman of the Year
Published on December 15th, 2022
Nikki Storey, President of the Great Lakes Boat Building School (GLBBS), has been named the 2022 Darlene Briggs Marine Woman of the Year. Storey is the 36th recipient of the award named after the late Darlene Briggs of Wayzata, MN who was admired for her tireless dedication to the marine industry.
The Marine Retailers Association of the Americas (MRAA) and Boating Industry magazine together present the award annually to an outstanding woman who is actively involved in the marine industry at any level. It recognizes long and devoted service, untiring commitment, and the advancement of women in the marine business.
Storey, who didn’t grow up in the boating industry or on the water, has been President of GLBBS since 2020, leading a team of professionals committed to providing students with exceptional, hands-on instruction focused on developing the broad knowledge and skills required for careers in the maritime industry.
The school’s mission is to “prepare students for rewarding careers in the marine industry” with the vision “to be the leader in marine workforce development”. The school has posted a 100% graduate employer placement rate for the past five-years.
A native of Pickford, Michigan, Storey graduated from Lake Superior State University with a BS in Business Administration with a concentration in Management and Human Resources. Her professional career began at her university and later at War Memorial Hospital. Since joing GLBBS in 2015, she quickly rose from Business Manager to Executive Director a year later, to her current leadership role.
Storey championed the school through a national accreditation process which facilitated Federal Title IV, HEA financial aid opportunities for students, added the Marine Service Technology program in 2019 and forging a partnership with Mercury University to offer Mercury Marine Service Certification. In addition, GLBBS now offers the opportunity to test for ABYC Certifications along with teaching the hands-on skills development component.
Her goals moving forward are to continue to expand industry relationships with manufacturers, dealers and marinas as well as to seek more GLBBS students by expanding the facility and doubling their ability to prepare students for the marine industry and building an enhanced pipeline of talent.