Our Team

Meet our team

Charlie Zechel

Executive Director

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 12
Email: [email protected]

Charlie has served CBI as Executive Director since 2002. He helped develop the Universal Access Program (UAP) in partnership with the Mass. Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), and successfully advocated to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for a complete replacement of the pier and dock facilities at CBI in 2011. He also helped the Junior Program integrate STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) learning including an emphasis on the environment of the Charles River.

He feels the greatest accomplishment during his time at CBI is the steady growth and improvement of CBI’s management team and staff and the quality of the programs that CBI delivers. As Charlie says, “CBI is fortunate to have such a dedicated and talented staff. I can’t imagine working with a better crew.”

Charlie and his wife Mari sail their Contessa 35 sailboat in Narragansett Bay. Charlie has sailed extensively along both east and west coasts, and the Caribbean. He especially loves sailboat racing, from frostbiting Lasers to Informal Friday nights on the Charles.

Andrew Alletag

Director of Operations

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 13
Email: [email protected]

Andrew Alletag first began sailing at Community Boating back in 2000 and has served in a variety of roles from Junior instructor and Junior Race Team Coach to Adult Program Dockstaff and a member of the maintenance staff. Since 2011, Andrew has directed the adult sailing programs, volunteers, and front office operations at CBI. Additionally, he coaches high school sailing in his free time. When not at work or sailing, you can usually find him stand up paddleboarding or hiking with his dog Aldous.

Sidaulia Benson

Office & Communications Director

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 19
Email: [email protected]

Sidaulia first began working at CBI in 2010 as a Front Office staff member. After briefly serving in the fashion industry she returned as the Front Office Manager from 2013-2016. Since the end of 2016 Sidaulia has served as our Office & Communications Director as well as our Marketing & Event Coordinator. When not at work, Sidaulia enjoys going on adventures with her dog Floyd while trying to make him Instagram famous.

Sam Peirson

Adult Program Director

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 16
Email: [email protected]

Sam’s parents put him in a wooden optimist pram at age four, he grabbed the tiller and never looked back.  Sailing and boats have been a major part of his life ever since.  Hailing from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and summering on Cape Cod, he’s been afforded plenty of opportunities to pursue his first love.  He spent his high school years at Tabor Academy on Buzzards Bay racing FJs and 420s while also serving as a Watch Officer on the 92-foot schooner Tabor Boy II, assisting in its return from the Caribbean back to the United States.  Sam graduated from Eckerd College with a major in political science and a minor in law.  He also continued his competitive sailing at the college level.  Sam’s summers have been spent coaching, instructing, or managing instructors at several different Cape Cod summer programs, including Wianno YC and Beverly YC.  Prior to joining CBI, he served as a racing coach at Lauderdale Yacht Club in south Florida.  Sam is a Level 3 certified instructor with the U.S. Sailing Association and possesses a U.S. Coast Guard license.  Sam enjoys team racing, skiing, and big boat racing on Cape Cod.

Niko Kotsatos

Youth Programs Director & Junior Program co-Director

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 22
Email: [email protected]

Niko learned to sail and race in Marion, MA as a 10-year-old child of non-sailors. He competed in high school (at CBI) and undergrad in addition to summer sailing. While dabbling in architecture Niko found his passion for sailing kept him coming back to the river, and he transitioned from a CBI member to avid racer and volunteer, to an employee in the shop. After coaching the Summer Program Race Team for two years, he partnered as JP co-Director beginning in 2019. He brings a breadth of knowledge from junior programs in West Dennis, Marion and Noroton, as well as from racing and sailing around the country and overseas.

Fiona O’Connor

Junior Program co-Director & Instructor-In-Training Coordinator

Phone: (617)523.1038 ext. 22
Email: [email protected]

Fiona started at CBI as a junior member in 2008, spending five summers sailing and volunteering with the Instructor-In-Training program. After working for two years in our Youth, Adult, and Universal Access programs, 2020 will be her third year as Summer Program co-Director. As a graduate of Fordham University where she sailed and studied International Relations, she brings a breadth of institutional knowledge as well as experiences from around the world to her favorite place. Fiona also returns for her third year as  IIT Coordinator, endowed by the Priebatsch Family Fund.

Ying Chen

Staff Accountant

Phone: (617)523.1038 extension 15

Ying immigrated to the United States in 2007. She had worked in an accounting firm as a certified public accountant for 10 years when she was in China. In 2013, Ying joined Community Boating as the new accountant. She enjoys working with the dedicated CBI staff at the best location in all of Boston.