Oasis Marinas' Leading Ladies of Baltimore

Mid-Atlantic
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June 2021
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By
Alexa
Zizzi

According to superstitions about bringing bad luck onboard, women on the water have been historically taboo among sailors and seamen. Thanks to the movers and shakers who bucked those ancient ideals, women's strengths shine now more than ever. We'd like to pay homage to Baltimore's leading ladies making waves in this historic seaport.

Tonja BristowBaltimore Regional Manager

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Tonja Bristow - port person - marinalife

Tonja Bristow[/caption]What's your favorite memory while working in the marina industry?Watching so many team members grow with Oasis. I've seen many dockhands flourish into general managers, and it makes me proud.

What do you like most about Baltimore?The different neighborhoods at our marinas: Canton, Fells Point, Federal Hill and Harbor East. The promenade surrounding the harbor makes it so much fun and easy to see all the city has to offer.

Who's the biggest inspiration, advocate or mentor in your life?Eric Bradley, Oasis VP of operations, because he has guided me for many years. His knowledge, teaching ability and dedication have inspired me to be a better manager.

Where is your favorite body of water to anchor and relax?Cocktail Cove on the Severn River best place to hang out, swim and chill.

What words of advice would you recommend to women just starting off in this industry?Listen, take notes and learn everything you can. Once you master each skill —from tying a proper knot to being a great teacher the sky is the limit.

Sandra FrangosGeneral Manager, Inner Harbor Marina

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sandra - port person - marinalife

Sandra Frangos[/caption]

Who's the biggest inspiration, advocate or mentor in your life?My dad. He came to the United States from Greece with very little and built a successful life for my family. He was a hardworking man and would usually work 12 hours a day, six days a week.

If you weren't working at the marina, what job would suit you best?I would love to work in a wildlife sanctuary with lions!

Have you faced challenges as a woman in the marina business?You are often underestimated, especially going into a new property. Assertive behavior comes off as demanding and being passionate comes off as too emotional. Look past the people who believe that to be true.

What are the advantages of being a woman in this industry?Women in the marina industry network together and learn from each other. You join a lifelong family of amazing men and women who stick up for you and support you through your journey.

Where is your favorite body of water to anchor and relax?I'm going to stick with my hometown area and say Hart Miller Island.

Tammy McGradyAssistant General Manager, Inner Harbor Marina

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Tammy - port person - marinalife

Tammy McGrady[/caption]

If you weren't working at the marina, what job would suit you best?I must be around the water. (Hello, Scorpio!) So, I would go back to operating boats, maybe even in a warmer climate.

What is your favorite Baltimore attraction?Fort McHenry is a beautiful place to sit and watch the boats go by and have a nice picnic.

What challenges have you faced as a woman in the marina business?My skills are questioned more than male colleagues. It's challenging to earn respect when people are accustomed to interacting with men in these roles. It's difficult to maintain a high level of hospitality when we're seen as eye candy and not valuable team members.

What famous person would you most like to meet?Mayim Bialik, the American actress and film director. She is brilliant, so relatable, and seems like a normal person you could sit down with and have a meaningful chat.

Who has inspired or mentored you in life?I admire anyone who strives to better themselves, and I'm inspired by anyone who colors outside the lines.

Molly SteenAssistant General Manager, Harbor East Marina

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Molly - port person - marinalife

Molly Steen[/caption]

What's your favorite memory while working in the industry?My favorite memory was when megayacht ARIENCE docked at Harbor East Marina. I had never seen a boat so big. It's probably the prettiest vessel I've ever seen. The crew was super friendly and taught me a lot about the megayacht industry.

If you weren't working at the marina, what job would suit you best?I recently graduated with my BA in criminal justice and will be completing my MS in counterterrorism. So, I would pursue a career with either the FBI or DHS.

What are the advantages of being a woman in the marina business?I'm able to bring new ideas to the table and a different perspective on challenging situations. I connect with boaters and help make their experience remarkable.

If you could walk in anyone's shoes for a day, who would it be?Bindi Irwin. I grew up watching her father, and I would love to make an impact in animal conservation like she does.

What is your favorite thing about Baltimore?The National Aquarium. I love animals and particularly sea life. It is really cool to see such beautiful creatures up close.

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