Running for USPA National Director

Mission

To serve the sport which has given so much to me. My mission is to help continue moving the sport forward by utilizing my unique and diverse skill set and aiding the communication and promotion of our sport within and out of the industry.

melissa lowe skydiver runs for uspa naitonal director

ABOUT ME

I was born into a skydiving family. I grew up on the drop zone, surrounded by the hum of engines and the rustle of parachutes. The place has always felt like home and the jumpers have always felt like family. From early on, I watched my dad inspire new jumpers, motivate those moving forward, and challenge the experienced jumpers by organizing world records. However, if truth be told, in the beginning, I never knew if skydiving was for me. 

Unlike others, I never really had dreams of flying. Perhaps, it is because flight was simply an everyday reality for me. The takeoffs and landings of aircrafts about as natural seeming as the rising and setting sun.  I wasn’t afraid of skydiving. Like any rebellious teen, I just wanted to do and be something different than my dad. 

For me, my first tandem skydives weren’t especially memorable. I feel like there’s enough photos and old jumpers still around that tell the story of my first jumps that I feel like I remember it. Everything changed at 16, when I made my first solo jump AND I LOVED IT!  Despite skydiving’s undeniable draw, I was a teen. I was hooked, but also distracted with school, and well, boys!

Even with my early start, I slowly progressed in the sport. It wasn’t until I was 19 when I was hired for my first load organizing gig and was paid for fun jumping that I knew the direction of my life was set. I knew, then, I would tirelessly pursue this sport and follow wherever it would take me.

melissa lowe indoor skydiving at age 8

IN BETWEEN

I have had the honor and privilege of organizing and competing around the world and experienced our sport through a variety of roles. Here’s a snapshot of those experiences:

  • AFF Instructor from 2000 – present
  • Load Organizer from 2001 – 2014 (organized at: Skydive Elsinore’s Chick’s Rock, Skydive AZ’s Holiday Boogies, Skydive Carolina’s Carolina Fest, Skydive Chicago’s Summerfest, Skydive Ramblers Sky Sisters, Skydive Puerto Escondido’s Holiday Boogie, and more)
  • Inspired manufacturers to make hard housings in risers mandatory after a hard pull cutaway incident in 2001
  • Dropzone Owner of Skydive Chicago from 2003 – 2006
  • Stunt woman for several TV shows (nationally & internationally)
  • 2011 Recipient of the Stefan Banic Award for contributions to the sport of skydiving
  • In conjunction with Ben Lowe, responsible for the update, rewrite, and implementation of new training videos for the Skydive Chicago Advanced Freefall Program in 2011 & 2012. 
  • USPA National Freestyle, Freefly & 10-Way Champion
  • Events & Marketing Coordinator at Skydive AZ (2014-2016)
  • Served as 2016 Mondial Sponsorship Liaison
  • Organized 3 USPA National Championships (behind the scenes; 1 at Skydive Chicago, 2 at Skydive Arizona)
  • Organized 8,10,12,14,16,18,21,42,63,65-Way Women’s Vertical World Records
  • Plane captain for 108, 138 & 164-Way Vertical WRs
  • Speaker at PIA and APF Conferences about marketing, event promotions, and world records

OTHER

NOW

In short, I now have 11,000+ skydives and 23 world records. Here’s a snapshot:

  • 11,000+ skydives
  • 23 World Records (in Formation Skydiving, Vertical Formation Skydiving, Vertical Sequential Formation Skydiving, Upright World Records, and Wingsuiting)
  • USPA Safety & Training Advisor
  • Member of WSN ‘s Highlight Pro Skydiving team (an all-female demonstration team)
  • Organizer for 2 upcoming World Records (2-Point VSWR; and 100-Way WVWR)
  • P2 Paragliding Pilot
  • Private Pilot
  • Yoga Alliance ERYT Instructor amassing over 1000 teaching hours of yoga
  • Qualified Yoga Alliance Lead Trainer
women's vertical world record 65-way photo by jason peters

Why USPA National Director?

I have had the privilege of engaging with the sport of skydiving in a variety of roles, and I believe this gives me a unique perspective of the sport. Over the decades, I have not only witnessed great changes to the sport, but I have also played an active role in inspiring changes within the sport to improve the safety of its participants and to encourage increased competitive participation through developing, hosting, and organizing events in newly emerging disciplines. At this point, I am still active within the sport and continue to travel as a skydiving ambassador nationally for events, world records, and demos. I intend, while continuing to be active in the sport, to shift my attention to dedicate the time and effort required to properly serve the skydiving community as the USPA National Director. I feel my diverse experiences, and active role in the sport would make me a great candidate for the board, especially a national director position!

How to Support my Candidacy?

Elections will be at the end of the 2021 season through USPA’s website. To support, I would appreciate you sharing this blog post, telling friends about my candidacy, and of course, voting for me!

I’ll post a link here when voting is live. Only current USPA members are eligible to vote.

Thank you, I sincerely appreciate your consideration!

MORE ABOUT MELISSA