Starfish Marine offers boaters electrical and electronic work

Marine electrician Jim McCorison with his work van for Starfish Marine.

Recreational and commercial boaters in need of electrical or electronic work have a new option in town: Starfish Marine. Owner Jim McCorison and his wife Jan moved to the island in 2008 to be with Jim’s parents, Peter and Babs, and brought his successful marine fixit service along.

“Boats are about dreams,” said Jim, an avid lifelong boater who grew up in coastal New England and spent his days navigating the waters around Massachusetts. He and Jan have lived happily aboard their 38′ DeFever trawler, Mañana, since 2002, taking year-long cruises to Mexico in 2003 and 2007.

Along with sailing the deep blue sea, “I’ve been playing around with electronics most of my life,” he said.

Jim ran his marine services business successfully in southern California for three years before moving to Orcas. His two full-time California employees declined island life, one of them taking ship on a cruise to Mexico and another moving to Seattle to start up his own company. But Jim brought his working van, along with a hefty investment in specialty nautical diagnostic equipment.

Services offered by Starfish Marine include jobs like replacing a float switch on a bilge pump to completely rewiring boats – and anything in between. Jim does battery testing and replacement, replacements of electronic systems, installs marine radios, chart plotters, radars and sounders, rewires AC electrical systems, installs new panels and wiring, and more.

Prior to turning marine electrician, Jim started and ran a computer consulting business with seven full-time employees in Seattle.

“I have a background in running successful small companies and I take the business aspect of it very seriously,” he said. “Customer satisfaction… really is important.”

A member of the American Boat and Yacht Council, the National Marine Electronics Association and the Orcas Island Yacht Club, Jim is certified as an advanced marine electronics installer. He invests regularly in continuing education and will be learning the new electronics communication protocol NMEA 2000 this March. He also carries full liability coverage for himself and his vehicle.

Jan McCorison now works as the office manager for West Sound Marina. Jim is a member of the local San Juan County Amateur Radio Service group, which recently provided support for the Orcas Island 50k run and is on standby to provide alternative communication for the islands in the event of a communications breakdown.

For more information about Starfish Marine, contact McCorison at 376-3108 or visit his Web site at