Do you know Chiefy?
Jim “Chiefy” Mathie is a locally-known lobster slayer for more than 30 years and author of “Catching the Bug, The Comprehensive Guide to Catching the Florida Spiny Lobster-second edition” and “Catching the Spear-it! The ABC’s of Spearfishing.”
Chiefy has been written about in the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel & Miami Herald newspapers and featured on the Paul and Young Ron Morning Radio Show and ScubaRadio for his expertise in lobster hunting. He is a weekly contributor to the WINZ 940am Nautical Ventures “The Weekly Fisherman” with Eric Brandon and Steve Waters.
Jim is featured in the “Dive, Dock and Dine,” television show seen on Fox Sports Sun and NBC Sports New England as part of the ScubaNation series. He is also the host in a weekly YouTube series “Cooking the Local Catch” where local chefs prepare delicious recipes as “Chiefy” engages and entertains the viewing audience. In 2014, Jim hosted for the City of Deerfield Beach a monthly YouTube channel series titled “Hot Spots,” with the sport fishing episode going viral with over 1.2 million views.
Presently, Jim writes a weekly column “Catching the Ocean View” for the New Pelican Newspaper and is a featured blogger and Brand Ambassador for Force E Dive Centers. Prior to these duties, he was the Editor-at-Large for the Deerfield Beach Magazine and featured “On the Waterfront” columnist in the Lighthouse Point, Pompano and Deerfield Beach Magazines. Additionally, he’s been a blogger and “Chief Enthusiast Officer” for the snorkel and scuba page for www.hellosunny.org, the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau. He established the Observer weekly Newspaper “Nautical Views” column in 2012, promoting a variety of outdoor marine activities for four years.
Jim was given his Chiefy nickname by his dive buddies while spear fishing off South Florida in 2004 after he encountered and survived a shark frenzy witnessed by his friends. Later that evening, for entertainment, they watched “Jaws.” During the movie, boat captain Robert Shaw, who later gets eaten by the Great White, nicknames Police Chief Roy Scheider “Chiefy.” At the time, Jim was a Division Fire Chief, so a new Chiefy legend began.
During his career, he obtained an associate degree in Fire Science from Broward Community College, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Public Administration from Nova Southeastern University and has completed numerous courses toward a master’s degree in Adult Education from Florida International University. He also spent 25 years as an Adjunct Faculty member for the Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedic program at Broward Community College. In 2010, he received the Broward County Fire Chiefs’ Association Lifetime Achievement Award.
Jim first encountered underwater adventures in the 1980’s while instructing a group of dive instructors for the Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) on their private island at Great Stirrup Cay, located in the Berry Islands in the Bahamas. This was an outreach program lasting many years through Broward Community College and its goal was to have the dive instructors become Emergency Medical Technicians. While Jim shared his emergency medical knowledge, the dive instructors taught him how to freedive and hunt underwater. Gradually, SCUBA was added as he obtained his Open Water, Advanced, Rescue Diver and Nitrox Certifications.
Retiring after 30 years of service in 2007, his newly acquired 29-foot SeaVee was documented with the Chiefy name. All Chiefy crew members were given hats and additional attire. CHIEFY, LLC was formed in 2011 and a complete line of CHIEFY apparel, equipment and publications are now available to the dive and marine industry. The CHIEFY brand was federally registered as a trademarked ® in 2011.
The web site www.chiefy.net was established to showcase numerous Chiefy adventures, keeping the legend alive!