Scalli began diving in 1953, after his discharge from the Army and attended the first national YMCA Skin and Scuba Diving Instructor Certification programme in 1959. He went on to become a scuba diving instructor and member of the boards of directors of the YMCA, NAUI and PADI, all at the same time.
He established and operated diver and instructor programs at twenty-two New England colleges and universities, including Harvard, M.I.T., and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis.
In 1956 Scalli joined the Boston Sea Rovers, later becoming their president and a founder of the Boston Sea Rovers’ annual Underwater Symposium, which served as a model for other diving groups.
Scalli joined U.S. Divers in 1961 as East Coast Marketing and Promotional Director. He transferred into sales in 1963 and received an award from U.S. Divers for attaining $1 million in sales per annum. In 1969 Scalli became National Sales Manager, a position he held until retirement in 1985. For his long dedication, he has received many awards and honours, including: the NOGI Award for Distinguished Service from the Academy of Underwater Arts and Sciences (1972); the Reaching Out Award and induction into the DEMA Hall of Fame (1992); and the Distinguished Service Award by the Cotting School for Handicapped Children.