From the Flybridge- Episode #4 Jen Copeland, Debbi David, and Jeff Creary- World-Class Anglers Dominating the industry
HMY Yachts “From the Flybridge” is back with podcast episode number four. Listen in as we talk about granders in Lizard Island, secret fishing spots in The Keys, and unique perspectives in the fishing industry. We welcome Debbi David co-owner and master female angler of L&H Charters, Capt. Jen Copeland senior editor of Marlin Magazine and female sportfishing captain, and Jeff Creary World Record fisherman and broker at HMY Yacht Sales.
Here is a preview of the podcast below. For the whole episode, click here.
Alexie Creary: I want to know from Jen and Debbi, if you could give a woman getting into this industry one piece of advice, what would it be?
Capt. Jen Copeland: So much advice to give. Always be humble. I see a lot of people. Me, me, me, me, me, no.
Debbi David: And keep your clothes on.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Clothes on, mouth closed, always be humble.
Debbi David: But stop and think, you know, just like I was explaining with Laurel, what do you want out of it? What are you looking for? What do you want to do with it? How do you want to be respected? How do you want to be known and then go with that? And you know, again, with Laurel, with anybody, if you're going to do it, be the best and go and kill it, Be the absolute best. But you have to earn it.
Capt. Jen Copeland: I had so much advice, as you know, you have one mouth and two ears, so use the ears.
Alexie Creary: That’s right.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Ask questions, be humble. It's not about you. It's a team, you know, all of it.
Alexie Creary: I love it. Tell me how you cross paths. Jen. Debbi, how do you know each other?
Debbi David: Stalker.
Capt. Jen Copeland: I'm a stalker, I’m a stalker. Well, I'd be fishing at Ocean Reef, we could hear everything that was happening in Islamorada, if I wasn't fishing in Islamorada. You know, there tournament days and we're out there and it is here right now. Debbi David right now. Debbi David. Debbi David. I'm like Dang it. Who was Debbi David? I got to know. So I stalked her on the Internet, basically. And I actually only met her recently. Well, a couple of years ago. Jen Dudas, the girl that runs Marlin University. She used to be in charge of the BBC and whatever. So we were messing around one night at dinner, and we're talking about Marlin University and trying to come up with cool ideas. And then we were talking about ladies fishing. And I'm like, How come we don't have a ladies-only Marlin University? She's like, Well, we don't have any Lady instructors. I said, Well, I'll be one. And she goes, Well, we need more than that. And I'm like, I'm calling Debbi David. Didn't know her phone number, but I knew her husband’s.
Debbi David: And at which time Jen was probably like, Well, I know Debbi like, Yeah, the Dudas family used to own the L&H.
Alexie Creary: So when they were looking for suggestions, you were like, right now for Debbi David right now.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Yes. Absolutely. Yep. I definitely called her right up. I was like, Can you do this, I love it.
Alexie Creary: But I like, that women empowering women. You can identify talent, another woman when you're way at the top, you recognize. I want to say, personally, when I walk up to somebody, like, within five minutes, I can tell. Did you earn your spot? Like, How did you get here? Are you the real deal? Are you here for the right reasons? I feel like you two can absolutely identify that, right.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Yeah.
Alexie Creary: I would call a women's intuition that you can tell, you know...
Capt. Jen Copeland: Well, you can tell who the hard worker and who's just riding coattails or whatever.
Alexie Creary: And clearly, men can see that, too. You know, you saw that in Jen.
Jeff Creary: Absolutely. And everybody might not know what Marlin University is. So I think you should talk about that because it's something that goes on in our industry now.
Alexie Creary: I want to know more about it.
Jeff Creary: Obviously, you have to have a tremendous amount of knowledge to get certified.
Capt. Jen Copeland: I like to explain it. And maybe Debbi can chime in also. But I think it's like charter fishing on steroids. Kind of. You're not. I mean, you go to these amazing places, you have to go where you're going to get bites, or it makes no sense to try to teach someone how to angle or hook, fish, or whatever. So we go to these great places, Costa Rica, Guatemala, you know...
Debbi David: Wherever Jen plans.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Wherever Jen Dudas plans.
Capt. Jen Copeland: We charter the best boats there. How we structure it is there's four students to one instructor, and it's hands-on. It's totally hands-on.
Debbi David: So you're actually learning.
Capt. Jen Copeland: Not just hook and hand or whatever.
Debbi David: Or as just an average charter, you know, you don't always take the time to teach your charters. I mean, you show them the basics, especially somebody, you know, with little experience. But for people who have a little bit of experience, but they really want to enhance it and learn is you're actually learning. You can ask questions, you'll get them answered.
Capt. Jen Copeland: And the best thing about it is that the people that are there really want to learn, they're into it. They're not just like these in and out people that are like, Oh, I want to catch a Blue Marlin or I want to catch a sailfish or whatever. They really want to do it because they want to do it more. They want to hook the fish, they want to know how to they want to know. Well, anybody can reel in a fish if you hand it to them already attached.
Alexie Creary: Correct.
Capt. Jen Copeland: The hard part is getting him connected at the beginning, right?
Alexie Creary: So what I'm hearing is this is a sink or swim program in a good way. As far as we're going to throw you in, you're going to be with some amazing people and we're going.
Debbi David: It's side by side, it's one on one. I mean, I know when we did it with the ladies, if this should come up and you're coaching them, you're in their ear.
Capt. Jen Copeland: They ask so many questions.I was like, at the beginning, I'm like, This is how you hold the reel. This is what you do when you feed. No thumb. If you backlash, whatever backlash is fine. That's how you learn not to backlash. They were just full of questions. Well, what did I do wrong? What can I do next? You know, what happened to her fish? Her fish jumped off by the end of the thing. By the end of the four days, these chicks were killing it.
Debbi David: Everyone had hooked their own fish by the end and some had never hooked a fish.