Instructors

Anna is a South Tampa Scuba Instructor at Adventure Outfitters Dive Center

Anna Blevins

Anna became certified at the beginning of 2004 along with her two sons and husband in order to dive while taking a trip to Puerto Rico. She is an Army veteran and served as a litigation paralegal for several years.

In 2014, she took over the leadership for Adventure Outfitters with her son, Alex and is committed to implementing safety into a diver’s education. She is also the champion of a city-wide dive moment to help clean up our marine environments working with Project AWARE’s Diver Against Debris and Keeping Tampa Bay Beautiful.

“When I started diving, I was a nervous Nellie and that is what encouraged me to take additional dive classes. Questions such as: Why is enriched air better? What’s that “random” number on my dive computer for? Why can’t I properly find the boat and have to swim back to it? were finally answered! As I continued taking classes I began to appreciate all what the underwater world has to offer and gained a better understanding of dive theory – why things work the way they work underwater.  Most importantly, I understand what the nervous diver is going through and the best part is, the more training you do, the better diver you become. I make sure that classes are only as large as the individual diver can handle. We don’t do cattle calls and we always make sure that safety is top-of-mind.”

Anna currently is full-cave certified and is able to teach a variety of courses including divemaster, cavern, advanced, master diver, open water and many more specialties.

Anna has an unsurpassed passion for teaching people how to dive safely and to enjoy all what the underwater realm has to offer. At Adventure Outfitters we take great pride in ensuring that each dive student feels fully confidant and has master every skill. We don’t hurry our students and will take as much time as needed to ensure that they will be a strong, confident, safe and happy diver.

Alex Blevins

Alex Blevins is a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer instructor who loves to spearfish and freedive in the Gulf any chance he gets. You will often find him perusing tide tables to see if he can squeeze in a quick freediving or spearfishing trip.

Prior to opening Adventure Outfitters with his mother, Anna in 2014, Alex worked with USAA and United States Social Security Administration. Alex graduated from the University of Missouri in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a minor in Mathematics. He is a newlywed and is married to Jennifer Lane Blevins who is also his life-long dive partner.

Alex is Adventure Outfitters’ equipment and gear guru and has a passion for rebuilding and collecting old regulators. He enjoys the challenge of fixing and repairing them and the craftsmanship of their design. He also has a wide knowledge of technical diving and the gear that goes with these specialty activities. Ask him about sidemount, double or trimix diving any day!

Alex also loves teaching, especially when he is working with new scuba divers and helping them to become more confident divers. Alex also teaches many of the PADI specialty courses including Enriched Air, Equipment Specialist, Wreck Diver, Search & Recovery Diver but probably his favorite activity, is teaching others to hunt, spear and fillet their fish!

Alex Blevins is a South Tampa Scuba Diving Instructor at Adventure Outfitters Dive Center
Derek-Akers-1

Derek Akers

Derek Akers is a PADI IDC Staff Instructor who has been teaching SCUBA since 2016. When not teaching, he is usually diving anything from caves, to fossil dives in the rivers throughout Florida, or paddleboard fishing. He began diving in 1997 when his parents who were stationed in Guam, purchased him a PADI open water SCUBA diving course for his birthday.

Before becoming an instructor, Derek joined the Army in 2004 as a field artilleryman and then later changed paths to be a combat medic. After the military, he worked as a manatee tour guide in Crystal River, working on his divemaster and conducting eco tours and safe wildlife interactions. He attended the University of South Florida for a Bachelor’s in Biology and would like to continue his education in the physics and engineering field. He is married to his wife Nancy and has a daughter, Ashleigh.

“While serving in the Army I was able to teach soldiers combat lifesaver courses and CPR/ first aid. I think this is what gave me the drive to instruct as I enjoyed sharing my knowledge with others. Although I am fortunate enough to teach diving for a living, I am constantly developing new skills and I believe that continuing education is important as there is always something new to learn.”

Some of Derek’s favorite courses to teach are underwater hunter, cavern, and anything with lots of dive theory. Derek teaches a variety of PADI as well as TDI/SDI courses such as intro to technical diving and solo. He would eventually like to begin teaching more technical programs such as cave, advanced wreck, and rebreather.

Robert Blevins

Robert is a certified PADI dive instructor for Adventure Outfitters. He is also a retired U.S. Army Reserve veteran participating in Operation Desert Shield/Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Robert has been married to Anna since 1984 and is a graduate of Colorado State University and Regis University in Denver. He enjoys all aspects of diving including recreational diving, spearfishing, cave, and deep trimix diving. He also is a Handicapped Suba Association (HSA)instructor, able to train handicapped and disabled divers as well as their buddies. Robert will gladly share any aspect of diving and dive training with any interested student.

“Since my early years in Fort Lauderdale I’ve always wanted to dive and spent time in the ocean swimming and snorkeling. We started out in the muddy lakes of Missouri and northern Arkansas, but since then I have enthusiastically pursued all types of diving and underwater recreation. I enjoy diving in perfect, gin-clear waters of a Florida spring or on a reef in the Caribbean as much as I do in poor visibility of a winter shore dive in the Gulf or exploring a silted wreck.”

Robert Blevins is a South Tampa Scuba Instructor at Adventure Outfitters Dive Center
South Tampa Scuba Instructor Jenny Blevins - Adventure Outfitters Dive Center

Jenny Blevins

Instructor #366548

How long you have been diving:

I was certified in 2011 and have always loved the water. Growing up in Missouri, we often went to the Lake of the Ozarks to swim, snorkel, boat and fish. Since getting certified, I have continued on, to become a divemaster and in early 2018, an Open Water Instructor!

What you like most about diving/what type of diving you like to do:

Once we moved to Florida, I fell in love with the Florida springs, they are truly a hidden gem in Florida, and did my Cavern with Anna Blevins! I then continued on to get my full Cave certification. When I am in the Florida caves, I am the most relaxed I have ever been. I also really enjoy spearfishing, freediving, fossil diving, tech diving and seeing big, beautiful wrecks. 

What do you do outside of diving – what do you do for a living:

I have had lots of passions, including dance and musical theater. Before I started working at Adventure Outfitters full time, I was a Marking and PR Manager for a commercial real estate firm. 

Outside of diving, I really enjoy hanging out with our pup, BMO and our new baby girl, Athena, who is the love of my life! 

What is your next dive class and/or your diving goal?: 

I am currently working on my rebreather training and focusing on more technical diving courses. Eventually, I would love to share my love of cave diving with others and that the caves are more than dangerous, dark tunnels but beautiful, windows into Florida's past!

Monica Miller

Instructor, MSDT #276958

How long you have been diving:   

Been diving since 2001!  Certified in Texas the weekend after 9/11!

What you like most about diving/what type of diving you like to do: 

I like being on/in the water!  Love cave and tech diving but also love looking at the pretty fish!

I love to hang out with family and my friend doing just about anything outside!  

What do you do outside of diving – what do you do for a living: 

Work for DIA at MacDill Airforce Base.

What is your next dive class and/or your diving goal?: 

Next class is (hopefully) scooter and rebreather!  If all goes well!

South Tampa Scuba Instructor Monica Miller - Adventure Outfitters Dive Center
South Tampa Scuba Instructor Suze MacDonald - Adventure Outfitters Dive Center

Suze MacDonald

Instructor, MSDT #364431

How long you have been diving: 

I started diving in 1986 during a vacation to the Virgin Islands. My mom hated the resort course, I took to it like a fish in water (pun intended). After I returned to Colorado, a place without a lot of diving, I tried hard to get re-assigned anyplace in the water and I began to learn what I could from books on the sport of diving. Finally, the Army sent me to MacDill Air Force Base in 1989 and the first thing I did was seek out a diving instructor. I dove for the fun of diving every place I could recreationally. 

What you like most about diving/what type of diving you like to do: 

The friendships, the cool places and simply being in the water kept me sane. While working for an extended time in Homestead, Florida my sons, who were teenagers at the time, wanted to learn to dive. At the end of the summer I realized I had two junior open water divers, maybe I should up my game and I took the next step of rescue diver. I was convinced by someone who I will not name, to take the Divemaster training and I have not looked back. 

What is your next dive class and/or your diving goal?: 

The more I learn about diving the more I want to learn. I began teaching in 2015 and specialize in what I like to call "floatation therapy", I have a tremendous amount of patience, enjoy supporting others as they struggle with some fears, find multiple ways to connect to the sport for all new drivers. My bucket list of where I want to dive is endless and the additional training is just as long.

Carlos Miguel Colón, III

How long you have been diving: 

I received my PADI open water certification while attending the University of Tampa for college credit and have been continuously scuba diving since 2012.

What you like most about diving/what type of diving you like to do: 

I love to dive recreationally! What I love most about diving is that I’m able to explore a world that few people get the privilege to explore!

What do you do outside of diving – what do you do for a living: 

I am a Mobile Expert for T-Mobile

What is your next dive class and/or your diving goal?: 

Currently I am a certified PADI Assistant Instructor and eventually I would like to push myself and become a PADI Open Water Instructor!

South Tampa Scuba Instructor Carlos Colon - Adventure Outfitters Dive Center
South Tampa Scuba Divemaster Ed Nester - Adventure Outfitters Dive Center

Ed Nester

Divemaster

How long you have been diving: 

I taught Red Cross swimming from 1992 to 1997 at the Princeton YWCA. Going into the Army my love for the water was put on hold for a few years. I got into diving in 2015 and have not stopped.

I started with a SCUBA class from the Vicenza Italy ODR shop for open water, then the Advanced Open Water.  I worked as a Training Assistant through that shop, diving in Italy and Croatia.  I decided to continue my diving education after attending cleanup dives sponsored by Adventure Outfitters.

What is your next dive class and/or your diving goal?: 

The family atmosphere, professionalism and best quality of teaching is what made me want to become a divemaster.  I enjoy all sorts of diving and try to ensure the people diving with me have a great experience.  I also have a love of kayaking, snorkeling, and gardening.  I’m looking forward to becoming a PADI SCUBA Instructor this year.