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Our Crew

Meet the Crew

Volunteer Princess Cruises is a small, family owned and operated business consisting of five full-time employees and several part time employees that work as crew. Each family member (plus Devon) works year-round and performs multiple duties on an everyday basis to make sure the Volunteer Princess offers a unique and memorable experience for its guests. 

The captains of the Volunteer Princess are Coast Guard certified and licensed professionals whose highest priority is the safety and security of our passengers. Each possess a 100 Ton Masters Coast Guard License.

All ship employees and wait staff are professionally trained by our captain to perform all necessary safety drills. Nowhere else will you find a staff and crew so dedicated to both your safety and enjoyment on-board.

Walter LeMasurier, PresidentWalter LeMasurier, PresidentWalter, our English boss man, has lived around the world! Coming from London, he has shared his English quirks with Ontario, Peru, Miami and Kuwait. How he ended up in Knoxville is a mystery, but we’re glad to have him! You can find Walter in three different places: greeting each and every guest that arrives, washing dishes in the galley with his wife, Beverly, or taking a nap in one of our leather chairs. If you discover him sleeping, make all the noise you want, he won’t wake up. He is a successful business man, with his experiences in finance and property taxes.  His favorite yacht cuisines are the shrimp and cheesecake, though not necessarily together (we hope). Walter is determined to keep the Princess operationally sound, as well as meet every person on board.
Beverly LeMasurier, Vice PresidentIf there is one person on the Princess that you should get to know, it’s Beverly. She is our cooking, cleaning and event planning extraordinaire. The crew knows not to mess with her; I mean, she IS the one that feeds the poor college crew members! Heads up crew: she’s wanting to introduce new menu items! Coming from Chicago, San Francisco and Ft. Lauderdale. Beverly knows her way around. She has also worked in Pigeon Forge before finally settling in Knoxville with her hubby, Walter. Her hobbies are volunteering, shopping and spending time with friends, but you’ll most likely find her in the galley cooking up a storm! Guests should stop by and peak their head in to say hello. This friendly lady is all about talking and meeting new people. She might even give you an extra bite of her gourmet meals!
Chris LeMasurier, Captain and VP Operations and WebmasterChris LeMasurier, Captain and VP Operations and WebmasterChris is our all-American, southern-bred captain, wake-boarder and professional water tuber. He graduated at University of Tennessee in 2006 with a Business Management degree, but decided to attain his US Coast Guard 100 Ton Master Captain’s license in 2007. Who could blame him? He works on the river everyday with his wife, Nikki, and parents. Chris is always ready for a challenge, whether that be docking the boat in windy weather, working on our yacht’s engines in the 100-degree engine room or being the coach of the unruly VPC softball team. Though his short-term goal is a bit unattainable (wakeboarding behind the Princess... yeah right), his plan to keep the yacht in ideal condition is quite successful.
Nikki LeMasurier, Cruise CoordinatorNikki LeMasurier, Cruise CoordinatorNikki was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee and moved to Knoxville in May 2003 to work towards her degree in Early Childhood Education at the University of Tennessee.  She completely changed courses after graduating and marrying her captain charming, Chris LeMasurier.  Nikki is now our Cruise Coordinator on board and loves to plan events, interact with our guests and give her mother-in-law, "Chef Bev" as Nikki likes to say, a helping hand in the galley.  Nikki's short term goal is to find the time to get her Captain's License.  This way Captain Chris will stop making her refer to him as Captain or Master (as he has his Masters Captain's License).  When asked about working with clients, Nikki says, "By the time their event rolls around, they have become my friend and literally a part of our VPC family."  She like to evaluate a cruise based on the number of hugs she gets as people disembark. So please, give her a big bear hug before you journey home! 
Devon Swanson, Event Coordinator and Marketing ManagerOur always cheerful and stylish team member, Devon (often referred to as the Devonator), started working for the Volunteer Princess in January of 2012. She graduated from the University of Tennessee in May of 2013 and joined our staff full time. She lives by the quote, "if you love your job, than you'll never work a day in your life." That is why she fits so perfectly here at the Volunteer Princess. Devon is not related to the LeMasurier family by blood but has already become a treasured member of this tight-knit family. Her absolute favorite event to coordinate is a wedding, which did not come as a surprise to us. She has planned her whole wedding out on Pinterest and pretty much spends most of her free time on there! She has also admitted to being a sap when it comes to weddings. Devon will cry at the drop of a hat, if the groom or father of the bride cries, during the father/daughter dance, and even if the toasts are really sweet. In addition to being our official wedding expert, Devon is also the self-proclaimed team cheerleader and mom for our softball team. This involves bringing orange slices, oatmeal craisin cookies and Capri Suns!
Max Archey, First Mate/BartenderBeing from the outdoorsy town of Chattanooga, TN, Max loves anything to do with water and athletics. Seeing as though he's worked on the VPC since December of 2010 he has put in his sweet time on the Princess' stairs all while working on the water (perfect fit!). Max is the one employee that has been with us for the longest time. This is why he has been entrusted as first mate and Captain Chris even allows him to drive our stretch golf cart. Rest assured that you are in good hands when Max is on board. Not only is he our go-to guy when it comes to yacht safety and proper docking, but Max is clutch when it comes to mixing up cocktails. This might be attributed to his being a senior at the University of TN, but he sure can make a righteous Margarita and his one arm mixing is sure to impress you next time you are on board. Max is majoring in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management and when asked what his short term goals are, her responds, "right now I'm just kind of in college and going with the flow." That's Max for you, a go-with-the-flow kind of guys that mixes up excellent cocktails!
Kevin Nowell, Bartender, Crew Member, ServerTo put it shortly, Kevin is our personal comedic relief. Brother to our events coordinator, Nikki, Kevin has worked for VPC from the very beginning. He has been with us for the longest out of any of our crew so he should be the one to answer any of your questions. By day, he’s an insurance agent, training to be an actuary. By night, he is one of our master bartenders. His social hobbies include tennis, camping and paddling. His solo-hobbies include reading and going to the movie theater by himself, really he prefers it this way! Kevin is great at posing for camera pictures (check out our Facebook albums), discussing the latest pop culture and getting everybody to enjoy their time on the yacht! Kevin's short term goals are to get on the ever popular show, Big Brother, and take home the W! Then he can quit his job and go hike the Appalachian Trail. When asked what he thinks our guests should know about the VPC he says, "That we do have life jackets and they are available for rent. You should also know that I am only kidding."
Lisa Nowell, Server, Bartender, Crew MemberYes, my friends, this is Kevin and Nikki's little sister, Lisa! You might hear her brother and sister refer to her as Left Ear Lisa or Lisaeatsapizza. She has worked with the Volunteer Princess off and on since she moved to Knoxville for school in August of 2007! Lisa is a UTK logistic grad and after working for almost a year in that field she decided to switch career paths and go back to school to become a PA. She is currently taking prerequisites to get into the PA school of her choice. She spends her days studying and sitting in class, so when she works on board she is ready to mix, mingle and show our guests a great time. Lisa can do everything on the yacht and on your next cruise you can find her behind the bar as your friendly bartender, tying up the yacht as your trusted crew members, serving you dinner as your attentive server, or in the galley as your dedicated sous chef. However, Lisa's favorite time to be on the yacht is when she comes on board as a guest! She says, "I love to sit in the comfy chairs and drink mimosas while tailgating with the Vol Navy before a UT home game!"
Rachel Crisp, Server, Bartender, Crew MemberRachel calls Farragut, Tennessee home. She is currently a Junior at the University of Tennessee studying Marketing and Logistics. Rachel is one of our employees that has been around for awhile and has become an invaluable asset to the VPC team. We really can not say where you will find Rachel when you step on board because she does it all. All I can tell you is that if Rachel is on board you can rest assured that you will be taken care of. I believe she fits in so perfectly on the water because when asked what type of animal she would be she says a dolphin. What a great choice considering she is always on the water! She is also trained in life guarding safety so if there happens to be a man overboard...she will race out to make sure you are safe. Now if only we can get her to put her Logistics major to good use and figure out the best way to sail the yacht down to the Bahamas!!

Valerie Foley, Server/ Catering Staff

We first met Valerie as a photographer on many different weddings we  held on board.  She instantly fit in to our tight knit group and once she decided to go back to school and become a physical therapist, we were her first call to get some part time work.  Now I don't know what we would do without her on our team.  Valerie is either serving and chatting up our guests or slaving away in the 100 degree galley slinging food and washing dishes.  We love when Valerie is working a cruise because she makes sure everyone stays on task.  When a crew member or server doesn't know what to do, Valerie doesn't hesitate to pitch in with a suggestion.  This is probably a direct reult of her being a fabulous mother to two teenagers of her own.  We still like Valerie to utilize her amazing photography skills whenever we can...so if you purhcase a package with a photo you could have a professional photographer taking your picture for you! 

Mallory Miller, Server

One of the sweetest and fastest crew members out of the lot, Mallory is a vital asset to VPC.  From the time she worked her first cruise, Mallory felt like a part of the family and fit in perfectly.  She jumped right in and picked up our serving and hospitalioty protocols without direction.  Mallory is on top of everything and pitches in where ever she is needed.  She is currently working on her master's degree in elementary education from the University of Tennesee and wanted to teach young children.  This is so apparent in everything she does however you can really see it in the jokes she tells.  One of her favorites is, "What do you call a dinosaur with no eyes? Doyouthinkhesaurus (do you think he saw us?).  Next time you are on board make sure and ask her to tell you a joke.  She has quit a few up her sleeve. 

Taylor Burns, Server

 Taylor Burns started working for us as our Fall Intern in 2012 and has never left! Taylor grew up in Colorado Springs, Colorado. She moved to Knoxville, TN to study Public Relations at the University of Tennessee. If you ever see someone dancing around the yacht, you can bet it is our dance expert, Taylor! She has been a competitive gymnast and dancer her entire life, specializing in contemporary, lyrical and hip-hop dance. One of Taylor's short term goals is to graduate college, which she should do at the end of this year! She also strives ot maintain an excellant GPA. In the future Taylor would like to work in the hospitality/entertainment industy. Her favorite part about working for Volunteer Princess is the luxurious and loving family environment. After events, she loves to chow down on the Princess's salad, chicken and chocolate cake while relaxing on the top deck.

Makenzie Franklin, Server

One of our newest crew members might be a little hard to spot at first but after you get to know her, Makenize is one to remember.  Reigning from Northern Virginia, just outside of DC, this little ball of fire is witty and very outgoing!  This comes in handy working here at the Princess as well as at her other job as a part of the the UTK Vol Team who host new football recruits.  The more you talk to Makenzie the more you will want to keep talking to her as you find out she has so many layers!  She wants to study abroad, work at a summer campt in Alaska, do mission work enter the air force as an officer in the medical field and eventually become an orthopedic surgeon.  Man this girl has dream and goals! On top of it all she plays the guitar and loves to sing (she is really good at them both too!).  If you really ask sweetly I am positive you could get her to sing or perform for you.  I know this because once you all depart the yacht and it is just the crew remaining, she likes to turn up the music and blare rap as we clean!

Katie Browner, Server

Meet Katie, or KTB! Our life loving crew member is a pleasure for all to work with. Everytime we see Katie she has a smile on her face and brings such joy to all she encounters! Her lifetime goal is to become an Occupational Therapist but right now is content with cruising on the yacht and working as a transcriptionist in a doctor's office.  This explains why she arrives in scrubs to the boat.  She still wants to study abroad and will have to go into graduate school, so making great grades is important to her. Katie loves working on the yacht becuase, "it is a unique environment that most of our guests have never experienced before." She also wants to give you all advice on three things you must know about the yacht and that is, "where to find the life jackets, the liquor and the loo." 

Emily Straquadine, Server

She says to call her Em but on the boat she is Emily! Born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA Emily has the travel bug and she can not stay in one place for long.  She has lived all over the United States like, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinos, Florida and now East TN! I don't know what she has against the western US but I sure am happy that she loves the East Coast because that means we get to have her here with us.  Emily is cruising with us for the time being to help put herself through grad school.  Her goal is to become a physical therapist assistant and she is well on her way.  She is always ready and willing to chat so if you see her on board make sure you direct all your questions to her, especially if they involve bone, muscle or joint recovery.  Emily wants you all to know that the best thing to do on board is to visit with Captain Chris in the pilot house and if you are lucky drive the yacht! 

Jake Smith, Server

Meet Jake, one of the few male employees here at the Volunteer Princess! He was born and raised in Maryville, TN and attends the University of Tennesee majoring in Supply Chain Management. He is rather intelligent so you might not understand his sense of humor. For example his favorite joke is, 'A neutron walks into a bar. He asks the proton bartender for a drink. The neutron says, "How much do I owe you?" The bartender says, "for you, no charge." The neutron says, "Are you sure?" The Proton bartender says, "I'm positive." In addition to his being able to tell corny jokes on board Jake says that he likes to work for us because he loves the outdoors and as he puts it, 'being on the river for work is pretty awesome'.  He actually owned up to the fact that he likes boss man Walter the best out of the family of LeMasuriers...was that wise, maybe so, he does write the checks! 

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