The pinnacle of diving & leadership
When success is critical, the absolute best is necessary.
The Navy Master Diver

When a Navy Diver earns the Master Diver (MDV) qualification, they have reached the pinnacle of military diving. Navy Master Divers are responsible for all facets of military diving, to include; training divers, developing doctrine, procedures and tactics, and ensuring the safe execution of diving operations across the full spectrum of military diving. We operate with US Navy Divers, SEALs, EOD, Marine Corps Special Operations, submarine divers, and assist the Coast Guard and Air Force. The MDV is built from the ground up, starting as a junior diver until they have the knowledge, experience, rank, and leadership acumen to earn the coveted MDV ‘Fat-Pin’. We care deeply about the missions we oversee, and care even more about the brave men and women that we put in the water.

The Experts
Our Team

Proven leaders with vast experience leading high-risk military diving operations, building and training teams, and flat-out getting it done. 



Jon is a retired U.S. Navy Master Diver with over 28 years of diving and salvage experience. After starting as an enlisted diver in 1992, Jon rose through the ranks as a diver and as a sailor to become a Master Chief (E9), Master Diver. He has served all over the globe and in diving specialties such as salvage, submarine-rescue, special warfare dive training, underwater-ship repair, as a Command Master Chief, human resources lead for all Navy Divers, and in various staff positions. Upon retiring from the Navy, Jon's desire to serve never went away. He took his passion for diving and training and co-founded the premier diving and maritime consulting company where he evaluates, trains, and refines diving teams around the country. He couples his passion for diving with his desire to serve our nation's brave heroes through charitable work with veterans and first responders. See our "Insights" page for more on the impact that Copper Collar Group has in our communities.



Jess is a decorated Navy veteran of over two decades. A fierce and proud Yeoman, she led Sailors through many deployments and in faraway places in support of a host of Naval missions. Her experience spans Naval Aviation, several ships, Naval Special Warfare, Naval Expeditionary commands, and work for the Deputy Chief of Naval Personnel. Her administrative and business acumen are second to none and we are thankful that she is here to keep this group of old divers straight (no easy feat)! If we can't find Jess, it's because she is out pounding the pavement instead of us. Her running prowess is legendary and she routinely runs circles around those half her age. She is an avid ultra-runner, and gym-rat whose boundless energy and positive attitude is infectious. As if being the President of a company and an ultra-runner wasn't enough, Jess is also a mother of 3 beautiful children (4 if you include Jon).


Director of Business Development and Sales

Josh is a retired U.S. Navy Deep Sea Diving, Independent Duty Corpsman with over 25 years of operational experience in the marine industry that includes US Navy Special Warfare, Commercial Diving, Saturation Diving, Atmospheric Diving Suits (ADS) and Submarine Rescue Systems. For almost three decades Josh has been at the cutting edge of operational medicine and dynamic rescue operations in the most austere environments. Considered one of the very best in the game, we at CCG are ecstatic to have him on the team! As part of his responsibilities at Copper Collar, Josh is heavily involved with ongoing strategic planning to promote consistent growth and market response in new maritime ventures, leading research as well as directing sales initiatives as part of our Business Development Team. “Continuing to ‘press the fight’ by focusing CCG initiatives on our warfighters and Public Safety Divers (PSD) is a dream position come true. I’m damn lucky to have this opportunity”. Josh has a Bachelor of Science from Thomas Edison State University and is pursuant of a Masters in Homeland Security. He is a CMMC registered practitioner.


(USN Capt. Ret) Principal Consultant

Mark Helmkamp is a retired Navy Captain with over 39 years of open-ocean towing, diving and salvage, ship maintenance, ship management and associated budget planning and execution experience. Mark has been involved in every aspect of diving and has led organizations that include the Office of the Supervisor of Salvage and Diving where he was the chair of the Navy Diving and Salvage Executive steering Committee, an organization that calculates and implements salvage system requirements for the U.S. Navy. As the former Salvage Ship Class manager at Military Sealift Command, he successfully led the effort to combine the Rescue Salvage Vessel (Safeguard Class ARS) and Fleet Ocean Tug (Powhatan Class ATF) recapitalization programs into one program which is now known as the Navajo Class ATS. Mark also served as the Commanding Officer of the Naval Diving and Salvage Training Center Panama City and the USS RECLAIMER. It’s an honor to have him (and his epic Mustache) on our team!