Bowman began his career as an ocean lifeguard with the
City of Huntington Beach in 1954. He advanced through
the ranks of Lifeguard Lieutenant, Captain, Assistant
Director, Deputy Director, and subsequently in 1984,
to Director of the Community Services Department. Retired
in 1990 with 36 years of public service, Max forged
a legacy of accomplishments as a lifeguard, director,
and as an ambassador to world lifesaving.
Transforming the beach patrol into a year-round, professional
marine safety operation, Max helped refine the Perimeter
Defense System designed to safeguard the public through
preventative actions. Max was instrumental in acquiring
2 miles of beach area to the control of city government
and represented the city as a keynote speaker at numerous
professional forums. Advocating the Junior Lifeguard
Program designed to educate our youth and recruit future
ocean lifeguards, Max also headed many international
lifesaving educational tours.
Bowman in uniform approximately 1966
in physically designing and building the original
tower zero structure in 1963"
Charter Member in the local, regional, national, and World
Life Saving Associations, Max served all as an Executive
Member from 1964-1995. Mirroring his career with the city,
Max advanced through the organization’s officer
positions and culminated his career as President of World
Life Saving, 1988-1993. For his dedicated term, he was
recognized as an Honorary Life Member in all four organizations.
Conferred in 1994 a Grand Knight in the Order of Life
Saving by the International Life Saving Federation, Max
is well known in lifesaving circles around the globe from
England to Australia as an “ambassador to world
lifesaving.” His leadership significantly shaped
a profession that is respected for its heroism and commitment
to public safety.
This dedication is significantly symbolic in that Max
was instrumental in physically designing and building
the original Tower Zero structure in 1963. Max along with
city staff raised Tower Zero on the pier to stand as the
focal point for ocean rescues for almost 40 years! For
these historical reasons and for his extraordinary commitment
to the advancement of the profession as an “ambassador
to world lifesaving,” may this dedication constitute
a fitting and respectful tribute to a most deserving champion
of public safety.
In loving memory to Max’s wife
Judith Dee Bowman
who perished aboard the Egypt Air crash on Oct. 31, 1999