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Anne Kolker, of New York City, is the winner of the Cruising Club of America’s 2023 Charles H. Vilas Literary Prize for her article, XX Sailors, appearing in Voyages magazine. Anne recounts the story of her early sailing experiences, the long steps she took on the way to becoming a competent offshore captain of her own 52-foot yacht Etoile, and then her transition from learning to teaching and motivation. 

The Voyages Editorial Committee awards the Vilas Prize to the CCA member who makes an outstanding contribution to the magazine, previously called The Cruising Club News, which Charles Vilas edited for 20 years. 

Anne Asea

Anne’s article, published this winter, shares how various women from family members and friends to Nobel Prize winning scientists had enabled her and motivated her.  Family and friends made it possible for her to learn about sailing and encouraged her to seek more adventure.

Anne passed on that motivation and capability by recruiting all-female crew for her races to Bermuda on which everyone gained a well-rounded experience, ranging from running and repairing the boat to handling the navigation. Anne’s experience and drive for excellence also led her to become a lecturer and mentor at Safety at Sea programs. 

In 2023, based on her efforts as a captain and an instructor, Anne earned the Leadership in Women’s Sailing Award from the Boat Owners Association of the United States and the National Women’s Sailing Association.

Recipient Name
Anne Kolker