Rard says his career in the marine industry began thanks to a spike in oil prices. In the early ’70s, he was working as a crew chief on a helicopter team that was paid to fertilize Oregon and Washington’s sweeping timber forests, but the job came to a surprise landing when oil prices — and, as a result, fertilizer prices — became prohibitively expensive. Fortuitously for Rard’s career track, this was around the time that his yacht dealer in Seattle noticed his marine-diesel skills — a rarity in that era, as most vessels still used gasoline-fired engines. Rard was soon renting the dealer’s workshop, and Marine Servicenter took its nascent steps. “I was looking for an adventure, and sailing came to mind,” remembers Rard of his transition to the still-fledgling marine industry. Since those modest beginnings, Rard and his team have built Marine Servicenter into a trusted dealership, brokerage house and full-service repair yard, with two locations in Anacortes and one in Seattle. Along the way, the company has sold more than 400 new sailboats and some 1,600 brokerage boats, while helping countless other sailors with issues ranging from dead starter batteries to extensive refits.