John Ernst, from California, is the first and only American to win World Spearfishing Championship individual twice, both 2nd places in 1971 & 1983. He also holds 3 Worlds 2nd place team Championships in 1971, 1975, & 1983, and 2 Worlds 3rd place team Championships in 1963 & 1965. John won the Athlete of the Year Award twice, in 1963 and 1996. John Ernst won 14 US National Championship individuals, more than 3 times his closest competitors. He won 20 National 1st Team Championships. John’s reign started in 1964 and ended in 1996.