A Professional Captain And Crew To Serve You
MIKE O’NEILL (South African)Captain
Now into his 19th year as a charter yacht captain, Mike brings the Katharine program a wealth of knowledge and experience along with a professional attitude and meticulous eye for detail. Mike started his maritime career straight out of school by joining the Navy as a submariner where he served for 5 years before moving across to the Superyacht industry. In the early days he worked as an engineer before obtaining his masters license and has since taken command of some of the industry’s well know yachts such as “Penny Mae”, “Princess Mariana”, “Majestic” and “Lady Michelle” resulting in many highly successful charter seasons in the Mediterranean and Caribbean. He leads an experienced and seasoned crew aboard “Katharine”, ensuring guests experience the cruise of a lifetime. When not working, one will probably find Mike scuba diving or out taking photos ashore somewhere.
ROSEMARY FINN (South African)CHIEF STEWARDESS
Rosey grew up on and around the water in the coastal town of Knysna, South Africa. She learned to sail at an early age and fell in love with the ocean. Spending every spare moment on the water, hobby became passion and she began representing her country at international regattas. Entering the yachting industry after finishing high school, she spent the last three years aboard “Penny Mae” before joining “Katharine’s” program. In her spare time, you will find Rosey exploring her surroundings, hiking, sailing or enjoying the arts, drawing and painting.
SAMANTHA BLANE (South African)CHEF
Samantha was born in South Africa where sailing and a love of the ocean has always been a part of her life. She began her yachting career about 10 years ago in the Caribbean, previously on “Sunrise” as Sous Chef and then later joined “El Jefe” as Chef. Because of her passion for cooking she decided to further her career in the yachting industry as a Chef, completing her National Chef Diploma in 2009. After taking some time off after her Chef course, Samantha later worked as a Sous Chef in a 5 Star Safari Lodge in the Famous Kruger National Park. But, having a love for the ocean, she was soon back on the water as a sous chef on “Majestic” before joining “Tuscan Sun” as a charter chef in the Bahamas and most recently “Penny Mae”. Sam has now joined “Katharine” as Chef and looks forward to delighting you with her various creative culinary talents.
CLEUNICE NEITZEL (Brazil)2nd STEWARDESS
Cleunice was born and raised in a small town in Brazil, but grew up knowing she wanted to explore the world. She followed her passion and after school hopped on- board the cruise ships that have taken her to some of the most picturesque destinations in the word. She worked for Royal Caribbean International Cruise Liners for five years, managing the art gallery and bar services. Her dreams ultimately brought her to the Superyacht industry where she has spent the last 3 years. In her spare time, you will find Cleunice reading, at yoga or volunteering at local community projects.
MEAGAN GROENEWALD (South African)STEWARDESS
Megan was born in southern Africa, in the landlocked country called Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is known for its dramatic landscapes and diverse wildlife and it is here where Megan spent her childhood, fishing with her family in some the country’s finest lakes and dams. Her love for travel developed at an early age, and after completing school she spent several months au-pairing in the United States, before returning home to obtain her diploma in Early Childhood. She then spent two years teaching at a nursery school before joining yachting in 2016. Megan is looking forward to furthering her knowledge and skills in hospitality while travelling to some of the most beautiful destinations in the world. In her spare time, Megan enjoys fishing, hiking, photography and diving.
VICTORIA SHCHERBACHUK (Russia)STEWARDESS
Victoriia grew up in Russia’s second-largest city, Saint Petersburg. She graduated with a Management degree and Master’s degree in Sociology at the Higher School of Economics University in Russia. Travel has always been a passion of hers and she takes every opportunity to see new places, meet new people and try new things. Victoriia joined the Student Working Program and spent her summer holidays working and exploring the USA and Canada. After completing her studies, she joined the cruise liner industry working on Celebrity Cruises for two years before joining the team onboard Katharine. In her spare time, Victoriia enjoys playing basketball, dancing, singing and cooking.
MICHELLE EVANS (Canadian)STEWARDESS
Michelle was born in the province of Manitoba Canada, but raised in the beautiful harbor town of Port Moody, British Columbia. After completing school, Michelle decided to pursue a career in hospitality and moved to Whistler to experience this and the life of a resort community. Here she spent three years working at Whistler Blackcomb, acting as a ski-instructor during the winter months and a hiking tour-guide during the summer period. Michelle loves art and spending her free-time outdoors, her favourite activities include: hiking, kayaking and of course skiing.
EMMA-LYNE VAN JAARSVELD (South African)STEWARDESS
Born and raised in the Garden Route of South Africa, Emma has grown up surrounded by the ocean. After completing school, Emma’s love for the water and desire to travel drew her to yachting. After spending two years cruising the Mediterranean and Caribbean waters, she then returned home and completed her Commercial Fixed Wing Pilot License and Flight Instructors Rating. Emma wishes to continue her world travels and recently returned to yachting. She is looking forward to her upcoming voyages onboard “Katharine”. In her spare time, you will find Emma enjoying a game of field hockey and squash, flying a light aircraft, hiking the nearby mountains or scuba diving.
CLAIR LEATHEM (South African)SOUS CHEF
Clair was born and raised in one of South Africa’s popular seaside towns, called Plettenberg Bay. She spent her childhood horse-riding and after completing school dedicated a year to studying formal horse education before furthering her studies at Stellenbosch University, where she graduated in Geography and Environmental Studies. However, it did not take long before her love for cooking and the ocean drew her to the yachting industry and after training as a chef at the South African Chefs Academy, Clair completed a season in the Mediterranean before joining Sam in the galley onboard “Katharine”. Clair is looking forward to her first season cruising the Caribbean waters and when she is not in the galley, you will find Clair horse-riding, swimming, hiking or reading.
NAYDEN MITEV (Bulgarian)CHIEF ENGINEER
Nayden was born in the small city of Shumen, Bulgaria, near the Black Sea. After graduating from an Economics College in 2000, he went on to graduate from the Bulgarian Naval Academy with a Master’s Degree in Engineering. His engineering career began in the Bulgarian Naval Force, serving on Fire Fighting ships for a few years before joining the Cruise Liner industry where he has worked on some of the largest cruise liners in the world. Joining M/Y Katharine is Nayden’s first challenge into the Super Yacht industry. Not only an engineer, but a family man too – Nayden has two sons (10 and 5 years old). In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with loved ones, fishing, swimming and playing football with his son’s.
BOZO RADULOVIC (Croatian)2ND ENGINEER
Bozo was born in one of Croatia’s largest cities called Zadar. Croatia is known for its mountainous landscapes and deep-blue seascapes and it is here where Bozo spent his childhood, surrounded by the water and sailing. Already at an early age he was preparing for a life-time career in yachting. Bozo obtained his Ship Mechanic and Ship Engineer title, followed by studying Marine Engineering at secondary school. A few years later he decided to further his studies and enrolled into a ship engineering program, allowing him to enroll into the University of Marine Engineering in Zadar. In between studying he has worked and gained experience on a range of boats and industries, including: catamarans, cruise ships, fishing vessels and eventually joining the superyacht industry. He is looking forward to his upcoming adventures onboard Katharine. In his free-time, Bozo enjoys breaking a sweat at the local gym and playing some beats on his drums.
VLADIMIR NIKOLOV(Bulgarian) FIRST OFFICER
Vladimir was born near the Black Sea in Bulgaria. In 1998, he graduated from the Economic College, majoring in Accounting and Trade. Then, in 2003, he graduated from the Bulgarian Naval Academy with a Master’s Degree in Navigation. He worked as a deck officer on cargo vessels until 2007, whereafter he began his career in the yachting industry. For the last 9 years he has worked as a Chief Officer on various size yachts. In addition to his love for the water, from an early age, Vladimir was drawn to the spirit and philosophy of martial arts and is currently a black belt instructor of Aikido and Ju-Jitsu. Vladimir is a family man with a 7 year old daughter and a 3 year old son who live in the Canary Islands. He always has a smile on his face and approaches everything with a positive attitude.
MATTHEW BARRETTE (Canadian)2ND OFFICER
Matthew grew up in a small town in Emeryville, Ontario, Canada. His childhood days were spent outdoors engaging in various sports, in particular hunting and ice-hockey. Matthew joined the air force at an early age but shortly after joined yachting. His yachting career began in the engineering department but his love for the outdoors drew him to the exterior team. He has recently completed his Chief Mate certificate and hopes to run his own vessel in the near future. In his free time you will find Matthew watching hockey, playing a round of golf, diving and reading the daily news.
RONIE RIOS (Filipino)SENIOR DECKHAND
Ronnie was born in San Jose, Philippines. After graduating from Maritime School, he found his first job on Container Ships in 2007, a role which he enjoyed for 3 years. After that, in 2010, he began his yachting career onboard MY “New Sunrise”, where he has worked for the past 6 years. Ronnie loved cruising the Mediterranean onboard “New Sunrise” and particularly enjoyed spending time in Italy, with its tasty food and beautiful scenery. He is excited to join the “Katharine” program. His hobbies include playing basketball, football and swimming.
MARK SCALES (South African)DECKHAND
Mark was born in Johannesburg and grew up on the South Coast of South Africa. He spent a few years hand-rearing cheetahs and tigers in South Africa before moving to the United States in 2003. He has always had a love for the outdoors and pursued this passion by studying biology in the United States. After university, he spent several years working in bio-medical research and as a research facility manager before joining yachting in 2016. This is the ideal industry for him as he loves visiting new places and meeting new people. In his down-time, Mark enjoys rugby, soccer, surfing, diving and snowboarding.
ISABELLA JANSE VAN VUUREN (South African)DECKHAND
Isabella grew up in a small country town, in the Northern Province of South Africa. She spent her childhood by the ocean, deep-sea fishing along her father’s side. Isabella studied Education at the University of Northwest, but her fond family memories at sea and desire to travel led her to the yachting industry. Isabella is very happy to be part of the Katharine team and looks forward to sharing her knowledge and experience of the ocean and fishing to all our guests. In her free time, Isabella enjoys baking up a storm in the kitchen, fishing, reading and has recently discovered the joys of scuba diving.