Year Inducted: 1999
Lad Handelman worked as a hands-on diver offshore California from the early 1960s. At the time 75% of all diving work off the California coast was oil and gas related. Teaming up with World Wide Divers and a Canadian firm Can-Dive, Handelman merged his small business, California Divers with the others to form Oceaneering International. As president and CEO, Handelman oversaw several major innovations in underwater technology including deep diving decompression techniques and atmospheric diving suits for drilling, construction and production operations. These innovations have had a significant impact on the development of the offshore industry.