Chris Willis - Owner/Captain
For over 25 years Capt. Chris Willis has owned and operated Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach. Prior to Sea Tow, Capt. Chris owned and operated East Coast Marine. With over 30 years of towing and recovery in Wrightsville Beach he has become a staple in the boating community.
Starting with a used Grady White and a few borrowed dollars, Capt. Chris has built Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach into one of the 4 largest Sea Tow franchises in world. He has since moved from that single Grady White to a fleet of Twin Vee boats equipped with state of the art features such as the latest in navigation equipment, GPS vessel tracking, and on-board cameras.
As a recipient of the 2007 Franchise of the Year Award, Capt. Chris has left his mark on the Sea Tow community. He is a pioneer when it comes to the development of towing vessels, being the first to test the Triumph and Twin Vee as tow boats. He has lead multiple captains towards owning their own franchises and becoming part of the Sea Tow International management team. Capt. Chris is known for his dedication to the excellence and professionalism Sea Tow stands for.
Capt. Chris is a lifelong resident of Wilmington and a graduate of New Hanover High School. He continues to be active in the daily operations of Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach. Capt. Chris has been a USCG Licensed Captain since 1987.
Scott Collins - General Manager/Senior Staff Captain
Capt. Scott represents the "new generation" of captains in the marine industry. A native of Gaithersburg, Maryland he began his marine career at age 19 working a wide array of jobs prior to his Sea Tow career. A veteran, serving 6 years in the United States Coast Guard, and another 6 years on a research vessel that specialized in sub-surface moorings. Capt. Scott graduated from Cape Fear Community College's Marine Sciences and Technology Program. He has also served on the board of directors of CPORT (Conference of Professional Operators for Response Towing).
Capt. Scott's role at Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach has grown over the years from being a staff captain to his current role as manager. In his off time you can find Capt Scott surfing, fishing and spending quality time with his wife and daughter.
Over recent years, Capt. Scott has become known as the face of Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach. He's easy to spot, always accompanied by the famous Charlie Brown, his chocolate Lab. While everyone knows and respects Scott, Charlie Brown is the star of the Sea Tow show. Capt. Scott holds a USCG 100 ton Master License as well as a SCUBA certification.
Ryan Saporito – Assistant Manager / Senior Staff Captain
Capt. Ryan’s love for the water started when he was a child going fishing on his Grandfather’s boat on the south shore of Long Island. He started working on the fishing boats out of Captree, NY in 1998 and has worked in the maritime industry ever since. After completing a two year program for small engine / marine mechanics, Ryan worked in several boat yards as a rigger and mechanic. In 2003 Ryan enlisted in the United States Coast Guard and steadily rose through the ranks to become a Chief Boatswains Mate. After four years of serving as a Staff Capt. Ryan’s Coast Guard background as a manager, vessel operator and training coordinator has allowed for a smooth transition to his current role as the Assistant Manager. Ryan has held a 100 ton Master license since 2008 as well as a SCUBA certification since 2017. In his spare time he enjoys spending time at the beach and fishing with his wife and daughter.
Capt. Ryan is always accompanied by his yellow Lab Tuna and you can usually find them visiting Masonboro Island early in the morning while they are waiting on a call.
Frank Lyons – Dispatcher
Frank is no stranger to the water as a native of Greenlawn, NY. In his high school days, he served as a Lifeguard at Robert Moses State Park and at Jones Beach, Long Island, NY. After high school, he attended Spring Hill College, in Mobile, Alabama before enlisting in the United States Coast Guard from 1971-1975. Frank served as a Quartermaster onboard the USCG Cutters Lilac (Buoy Tender) and Alert (Medium Endurance Cutter) before working for the Captain of the Port in NY, NY as a Hazmat/Pollution Investigator. After leaving the Coast Guard, Frank attended Cape Fear Community College receiving his AS Degree in Marine Construction Engineering Technology. In the summer of 1976 he returned to his Lifeguard roots in Carolina Beach, NC. From 1977-2000 Frank worked worldwide in Marine Seismic Exploration as Senior Vessel Manager. During this time, he worked with Teledyne Exploration, Simon Horizon Ltd., Horizon Exploration and Eagle Geophysical. Frank has been the voice of Sea Tow Wrightsville Beach since 2000 and has been a very integral part of our staff. We simply could not do it without him. If you call us Friday through Monday, chances are that you will speak with Frank. He is ready to assist you anytime that you need us!