Aloha (Also Means Hello)


John Virata

John Virata – Managing Editor

Veteran Sea Magazine Managing Editor Mike Werling, who steered this ship for the past 10 years, has decided to jump, but not without training me to take over his duties these past few weeks. Bon voyage, Mike! And good luck at your next port of call!
Born in San Francisco and raised primarily in Southern California, I am the son and grandson of U.S. Navy veterans. My grandfather served on the USS Navajo, a tug whose sailors helped with the salvage operations after Pearl Harbor, and my father served in communications on various U.S. Navy ships, and on Midway Island in the late 1950s.

As a navy brat, I’ve had the opportunity to live in a few places: California, Utah, Hawaii and the Philippines. With a family summer home in Hawaii, I often hang out with my friend Mark Guerin on his Albin 36, moored in the Ala Wai yacht harbor. I’ve also cruised Manila Bay and of course, Newport Harbor, where I spent many a summer fishing as a kid; as an adult, I’ve often cruised the harbor on my Seaswirl Striper. For most of my life, I have lived close to the ocean, as it is where I feel most at home.

My conservation and advocacy work includes coastal cleanups and writing for Clean our Oceans Project, a non-governmental organization based in the Philippines that works to reduce the amount of plastics that end up in our oceans. CoOp collects, cleans and segregates plastic water and soda bot tles, shampoo and coffee sachets, and other plastic recyclables, and then upcycles them into durable goods such as school desks and chairs.
In recent years, I’ve learned to scuba dive as well, seeing the world below the surface that most of us cruise and recreate on top of. Some of the sea life you see underwater is just breathtaking.

I worked as a writer and editor during the early days of the desktop computer and digital camera revolution, handled some fairly large constricting snakes as the web editor for REPTILES magazine, and even smoked some Cubans while managing the website for Cigar & Spirits magazine.

I look forward to the opportunity to get out on the ocean on the latest class of 45-footers and call it a job (Thanks, Mike!), and learn more along the way about what is arguably one of the most interesting industries in the world. I anticipate this ride to be challenging and productive, and a “hull” of a good time (not too late!). I look forward to working with the freelancers, manufacturers and icons who have helped shape the pages of this soon-to-be 112-year-old storied magazine. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to drop me a note at I look forward to hearing from you. Mahalo!


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