Jon’s fascination with diving and the underwater world began in 1959 when he made his first open water dive at 10 years of age. It has manifested into over 50 years experience in the Commercial Diving Industry.
In 1968 he was employed by the Underwater Service Corporation as a Diver/Tender working on a variety of inspection and repair projects. To increase his skills, he attended and graduated from the Diver’s Training Academy in 1969. He then founded Commercial Diving Services, Inc. (CDSI) later that same year. CDSI was a full service diving company serving the Great Lakes and inland waterways. The company performed inspections, maintenance and installation projects for municipalities, consulting engineers, industrial plants, utilities and government agencies.
Hazelbaker joined the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners (U.B.C. and J.) Union, Local #2 Cincinnati, Ohio as a Diving Apprentice. In 1969 and in 1972 he became a journeyman “Hard Hat” diver for the U.B.C. and J. Piledriver/Divers Local #2 (Cincinnati). He maintained that relationship until his retirement in 2003.
Beginning in the late 70’s, Jon and his two working partners steadily evolved Commercial Diving Services, Inc. into a specialty marine construction and contracting company. He managed the company. Additionally, he also worked in the field diving on deep air, deep penetration and other technically demanding jobs. Commercial Diving Services, Inc., joined the Association of Diving Contractors in 1989 and Jon served on the Board from 1990 to 1998. In 1990 Jon Hazelbaker along with Tom Devine were challenged and assigned the task, by President Andre Galerne. The task was to strengthen the Association nationally and internationally by forming the West Coast and Midwest Chapters. Hazelbaker was the founding Chair of the ADC Midwest Chapter. He served from 1990 to 1994. He also served as Chairman of the ADC adhoc committee on Underwater Bridge Sub-Structure Inspection standards from 1990 to 1994. This committee initiated the Underwater Bridge Inspectors Training course in conjunction with New Mexico State University’s Civil Engineering department. They contributed in the writing of Chapter 17, “Underwater Inspection”, in the Bridge Inspection Training manual/90 published by the US Dept. of Transportation Federal Highway Administration in July 1991.
In 1994, Commercial Diving Services, Inc. was acquired by American Oilfied Divers, Inc., and later acquired by Stolt Offhore, Inc. Hazelbaker served as VP/General Manager of Stolt Offshore-General Contracting Division until 1999. In 2002 Jon was awarded the ADCI Tom Devine Memorial Award. And, in 2005 was inducted to the ADCI Commercial Diving Hall of Fame. In 2014, Jon received the ADCI Presidents “Award of Excellence”. He was also appointed to the Underwater Intervention Advisory Board in 2016.
Mr. Hazelbaker resides with his beautiful wife in Summerland Key, Florida. He provides consulting services for the Commercial Diving and Marine Construction industries, nationwide.