Category Archives: events

surfing events

Shred Talk featuring Tomo


Shred Nation this is it: Interview the worlds most impressive surfboard designers. Filmed in front of a live audience at Shaper Studios. Create something even better than Ted Talks; this is Shred Talks. (more below)

Shred Talks by Shaper Studios is an interactive event with Q&A sessions in front of a live audience with some of the industry’s most successful and creative surfboard shapers.  The event is hosted by Chris Grow, of the popular YouTube channel “Shred Show”, who delivers a charismatic interview with a surf icon and follows up with live audience questions.  The filming takes place on various Tuesday nights at Shaper Studios San Diego – 4225 30th Street San Diego, CA 92104.

The Cornice


For Immediate Release – Jan 2015

THE CORNICE proves that the whole is always greater than the sum of its parts.


“I remember a casual conversation with Paul Naude over two years ago encouraging Firewire to explore a side cut design, so when Eduardo Cenzano, Managing Director and lead engineer at Trinity Technologies in Spain approached us with the idea, we decided to pursue it”, said Firewire CEO Mark Price, “The original Trinity design showed immediate promise and with Eduardo’s consent, we brought long-time Firewire collaborator Dan Mann into the design process and the final version represents a synthesis of everyone’s input”.

Eduardo explains the principles behind the enhanced performance of side-cut technology, “

“Trinity has significant computer resources due to our work designing products such as wind turbine blades and modeling how they perform in different conditions. I believe this is the first time anyone has applied that much computing power and engineering expertise to determine the functionality of a surfboard design. After countless months of computer modeling, we’re convinced that the side-cut design offers significant performance advantages”.

Eduardo continued, “Firstly, the water flows more smoothly through the ‘waist’ of the board rather than buffeting against it. The way the board fits into the flow of water, reduces the water pressure from the wave, allowing the board to respond intuitively to maneuvers. The overall effect is the sensation of travelling on rails, and a feeling that you have complete control over the most radical turns”.

“In addition, the side-cut shifts the majority of the board’s volume from the mid-point towards the ends, and in the Cornice outline in particular, towards the tail, leading to a most effective area in contact with the water. The board literally displaces less water, leading to minimal friction and in surfing terms, increased speed that is noticeable.”

The Cornice from Firewire Surfboards on Vimeo.


Dan Mann adds, “Reviewing Trinity’s original design, what grabbed me immediately was how this challenged what we all think a high performance board should look like. It shows how radical you can go and still have that familiar feeling of a regular board, but with in my view notably increased performance.”“While we’re not the first to explore side cut on a surfboard, the challenge was to make it work with predictability in a wide range of surf. The rocker, bottom contours and fin clusters are tried and true through all my designs. Obviously the outline is the design’s biggest feature and after a couple waves it all made sense… it takes less force and time to tip the board on its rail. That fast twitch sensitivity, especially on late drops or hollow waves, is where you feel the side cut really engage, and the wide tail still allows for speed in the flats”.On that note, to overcome the possibility of exaggerated slide from such a wide tail, THE CORNICE incorporates a Step-Rail design through the tail, creating a blade-like profile in the tail rail, which acts like an additional fin in some respects.Dan continues, “as Eduardo mentioned above, the design shifts most of the boards volume and planning surface well behind center, which is a significant departure from today’s widely accepted foam and volume distribution ratios, and tips its hat to the 1980’s McCoy Lazer Zap in some respects. This essentially places most of the planning surface under your back foot so you have a sensation of riding an even smaller board with total control and responsiveness, and the ultra narrow nose makes it even faster through turns”.Firewire CEO Mark Price added, “Dan Mann, Chuy Reyna (Firewire’s Marketing Director and ex pro surfer) and I have been riding THE CORNICE in a wide variety of conditions, and we’re absolutely convinced that the design has a legitimate place alongside other high performance designs in the market today”.Firewire will showcase THE CORNICE at the January Surf Expo and deliver boards to market shortly thereafter.

Firewire believes that minor refinements to the shape of today’s modern surfboards can only produce incremental performance benefits.  Exponential improvements in performance require the ongoing development of new materials, construction methods and radical shape, which, in turn, will fuel new design success.

In addition, with the increased eco-consciousness of today’s consumer, Firewire is constantly refining our raw materials to decrease the environmental impact of our boards.  Currently our surfboards emit only 2% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that conventional polyurethane boards do throughout their lifespan.

Mitch Parkinson Test Rides the Hashtag

Mitch’s comments:

“I really got to test the Firewire in a variety of conditions. I rode it in a solid, overhead, shifty left. I rode it in four-to-six foot punchy rights and I also rode it in four-foot racy lefts.

After a while I really started to get the feel for it. Initially I think I was over-surfing it. But then when I slowed it down a bit and just let things happen, I felt like I could string my turns together and I started to really get it flowing.

They’ve got a reputation for being pretty strong. The stringer runs along each rail – it’s what gives them their distinctive look, the woodgrain visible along each rail, and they’re glassed in epoxy which is lighter and stronger than traditional polyurethane resin. I knew it was such a strong board, it’s not like your normal surfboard … so every time I tried a big air and I over-rotated or landed in the flats, I knew it was gunna be sweet. I went for one Hail Mary alley-oop which I almost landed. Any other board I reckon would have buckled. At the end of the trip, there’s not even a foot indent in the Firewire, not one depression.

The other cool thing about the Firewire is if you find a board model that you really like, you can have it replicated. That can be hard to do with a lot of other board brands.”

Read more here:


Discover Tomo’s Vader

“Harmonizing established principles of Fluid Dynamics with a design ethos that reduces the modern surfboard down to its purist essential elements.”


Considered by many to be one of the most creative surfboard companies today, Tomo Surfboards is releasing the Vader design in the USA next week and the model is now available in Australia, with a global launch in early Spring 2015.

Designed by Tomo Surfboards founder and designer Daniel ‘Tomo’ Thomson, the Vader represents the first Tomo-only branded model that will be available through surf retailers around the world, and additional releases are planned for 2015.

Dan ‘TOMO’ Thomson explains his design philosophy, “surfing inspires all of us on a much deeper level than just a sport. The Ocean is our daily communion with the purity of its natural elements. With that in mind, my goal with surfboard design is to allow us to express ourselves freely, harmonizing design to maximize the waves energy”.


Dan continues,” TOMO Surfboards blend the well-established principles of Fluid Dynamics with a design ethos that reduces the modern surfboard down to its purist essential elements. The result is a free-flowing sensation of speed, intuitive maneuverability, and a natural inclination towards a more ‘creative’ approach to surfing”.

“The goal is to create a higher level of performance readily available to every surfer with an open mind, and willing to unlock their own performance potential”.

Previous designs such as the Vanguard and V-4, which are built and distributed by Firewire, were colab projects with both Tomo and Firewire logos.

2-Year Partnership

“Firewire and Tomo have already enjoyed a successful 2-year partnership”, explained Firewire CEO Mark Price,” Co-lab models will continue to be introduced, but the long-term goal was always to develop Tomo into a stand-alone brand in its own right, allowing Dan’s full creative potential to flourish, while leveraging Firewire’s vertical platform to bring the designs to market around the world”.

For more on the Vader: Click Here

Timmy Wins Mr. Price Pro Ballito


Tim Reyes (USA), 31, etched his name into the history books with the biggest victory of his career, defeating Australian Matt Wilkinson, 25, in six-to-eight foot surf at the ASP Prime-rated Mr Price Pro Ballito in South Africa.


Back in the water just two weeks after a shoulder injury, Reyes’s razor-sharp performance saw him pocket US$40,000 and 6,500 rankings points. His victory rocketed him from No. 131 on the Qualification Series (QS) rankings to a remarkable No. 5, and opens the door for potentially requalifying for the WCT in 2015.

Timmy built house in the opening minutes of the final to take an early lead, but Wilko bust the door wide-open with a massive 9.20 with 13 minutes remaining. The ball was in the Australian’s court following that big score, but Timmy, needing a 7.54 to re-take the lead, hooked into a running right-hander with seven minutes remaining. A series of critical turns completed with total control were rewarded with an 8.27 by the judges. This handed the 2014 Mr Price Pro victory to the Californian – his first professional win for a decade.

“I had a dream a few days ago that I should just sit wide, be patient, and the wave would come to me,” Reyes said of his strategy. “Almost every heat I had, the same thing happened and that’s what happened on my 8.25 in the final.”



“I had a dream a few days ago that I should just sit wide, be patient, and the wave would come to me,” Reyes said of his strategy. “Almost every heat I had, the same thing happened and that’s what happened on my 8.25 in the final.”

Asked at the prize giving if he was eyeing-out a return to the Dream Tour, Timmy replied, “I’m taking it one contest at a time, one heat at a time. We’ll see what happens. It’s going to be a long year.”

“This is definitely the biggest win I’ve ever had in my life,” continued Timmy. “It’s been so cool to get the support from the locals. Thank you, guys!”

Chuy Reyna, Firewires Team Manager stated ”Timmy’s free surfing has been amazing despite his shoulder injury” which happened two weeks prior to surfing the 6 star prime event ”It’s a real testament that all the hard work and training with coach Wade Sharp has all been worth it” “We are stoked for Timmy and look forward to his possible return to the WCT, he loves good waves and the WCT is where he belongs”

Firewire Embraces Sustainable Surf’s ‘ECOBOARD Project’ Program 100%

For Immediate Release July 2014

SS_newsletter_graphicAn early adopter of the ‘ECOBOARD Project’ program through the release of its TimberTEK construction 18 months ago, Firewire is pleased to announce that it has converted 100% of all surfboard production to Entropy Resin’s ‘Super Sap’, a bio-based (low/zero VOC) epoxy resin. This shift now qualifies all Firewire surfboards to carry the ECOBOARD Project “verified”  label – the first global brand to do so.

The ECOBOARD Project, a program created by nonprofit Sustainable Surf, is an important environmental initiative focused on the adoption of dramatically more sustainable (and less toxic) materials by the surfboard manufacturing industry. Sustainable Surf is dedicated to shifting the global surfing culture toward more ocean-friendly living, and helping surfboard builders transition to more ocean-friendly materials and business practices, with the ultimate objective of lowering negative environmental impacts on the world’s oceans and coastlines.

ER_newslettter_graphic“As a wise person once said that a journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step”, said Firewire CEO Mark Price, “so while we’re got a way to go before offering a sustainably built surfboard, the only way we’re ever going to get there is by constant, incremental steps in the right direction. To that end, the 100% adoption of Entropy bio-resin is an important milestone and we’re proud of that progress”.

Sustainable Surf’s Co founder and Partnerships Director Michael Stewart added,” If Astronaut Neil Armstrong were a surfer, he might say it was – one small slash for Surf, and one giant hack for Surfkind. And while that’s obviously over simplified, Firewire’s ability to shift towards using these more sustainable materials is a clear indication that other board builders (regardless of their size) can make the same change.”

Firewire believes that minor refinements to the shape of today’s modern surfboards can only produce incremental performance benefits.  Exponential improvements in performance require the ongoing development of new materials, construction methods and radical shape, which, in turn, will fuel new design success.  

In addition, with the increased eco-consciousness of today’s consumer, Firewire is constantly refining our raw materials to decrease the environmental impact of our boards.  Currently our surfboards emit only 2% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that conventional polyurethane boards do throughout their lifespan.

Media Contact: [email protected]

Firewire and Tomo Go Soft………….Goods!

ET_photo_NLAfter almost 8 years of near total focus on surfboards, Firewire has released a concise collection of Firewire and Tomo T-shirts featuring lightweight, slim-fit silhouettes, and focussed on logo adaptations of each brand.

“For years we’ve steered clear of the usual product extensions that surfboard brands tend to take on”, said Firewire CEO Mark Price, ”preferring instead to remain focussed on designing and building the best surfboards possible. However, after repeated requests from both our retailers and customers for additional product categories, we felt it prudent to offer a very tight collection of T-shirt and hat designs”.

Price continued, “Its an opportunity to flesh out Firewire’s branding as opposed to a first step on the road to a cut and sew offering. And given we’re also handling the global production and distribution of the Tomo brand, it made sense to take that step as well”.

The designs are currently available in the USA, Australia, Europe and Japan, and will be updated from time to time. While both the Firewire and Tomo collections are primarily logo driven, the Tomo designs also feature some of the sacred geometry design elements that Daniel ‘Tomo’ Thompson uses as inspiration for his innovative surfboard designs.

Firewire believes that minor refinements to the shape of today’s modern surfboards can only produce incremental performance benefits. Exponential improvements in performance require the ongoing development of new materials, construction methods and radical shape, which, in turn, will fuel new design success.

In addition, with the increased eco-consciousness of today’s consumer, Firewire is constantly refining our raw materials to decrease the environmental impact of our boards. Currently our surfboards emit only 2% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that conventional polyurethane boards do throughout their lifespan.

Firewire and Pyzel Surfboards Collaborate

For Immediate Release – June 2014

Firewire and Pyzel Surfboards Collaborate


Jon Pyzel

After the successful collaboration with Tomo Surfboards, Firewire has entered into a similar arrangement with Pyzel Surfboards.

“Jon Pyzel is clearly one of the best short board designers around”, said Firewire CEO Mark Price, “and we are excited about the opportunity to combine his high performance designs with Firewire’s innovative flex technology”.

Jon Pyzel commented,” Looking at past and present surfboard technologies, I believe that Firewire is ahead of the curve, utilizing some of the most advanced and groundbreaking types of alternative construction available today”.

Jon continued, ” I also really appreciate the fact that they are committed to keeping the environmental impact of their board building process to a minimum through the use of bio-resins, citrus based cleaning products (in place of Acetone), and recycled packing materials. Furthermore, Firewire is run by a bunch of surf stoked people who love what they do and are just as excited about surfboards as I am”.

Firewire is introducing two Pyzel colab models this year. In addition, Firewire teamriders can now get Firewire technology in custom designs from Jon. The recent World Tour wins by Sally Fitzgibbons and Michel Bourez on designs by Nev and Jon is a perfect example of how the Pyzel Colab broadens the range of options for Firewire’s current riders and future team prospects.

The first Firewire/Pyzel release will be the Pyzalien, hitting retail mid-2014, while the Slab will be introduced around September 2014.

Firewire believes that minor refinements to the shape of today’s modern surfboards can only produce incremental performance benefits.  Exponential improvements in performance require the ongoing development of new materials, construction methods and radical shape, which, in turn, will fuel new design success.  In addition, with the increased eco-consciousness of today’s consumer, Firewire is constantly refining our raw materials to decrease the environmental impact of our boards.  Currently our surfboards emit only 2% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that conventional polyurethane boards do throughout their lifespan.

Media Contact: [email protected]

Timmy Missions – Winter 2013/2014 Highlight Reel

“Winter is Timmy’s time to shine and he prides himself on surfing perfect uncrowded waves. He doesn’t do it for the money, nor the fame, just pure love for riding waves. So, throw yourself in the shark tank or take a jet-ski on a slab hunting mission. Whatever it is make sure you watch this clip, it might make your day.”

Video from O’Neill/Nick Green

Historic Day for Firewire Surfboards

Firewire Teamriders Dominate ASP Rio Event

In unprecedented affirmation of the performance characteristics of Firewire’s parabolic rail, EPS/Epoxy sandwich construction, Firewire teamriders Sally Fitzgibbons and Michel Bourez won their respective divisions at the 2014 Billabong Rio Pro.

“This is a very big deal for both Sally and Michel and we are so stoked for them,” said Firewire CEO Mark Price,” and I’m equally stoked for Nev Hyman and our entire product development and production team who continue to produce some of the best performing surfboards in the world”.

Price continued, ”When Firewire first came on the scene there was understandably a lot of skepticism about the technology, but I think that today’s result cements Firewire’s credibility as a viable alternative to the traditional center stringer polyester surfboard. And that bodes well for future development around new materials and construction methods”.

Firewire believes that minor refinements to the shape of today’s modern surfboards can only produce incremental performance benefits.  Exponential improvements in performance require the ongoing development of new materials, construction methods and radical shape, which, in turn, will fuel new design success.  In addition, with the increased eco-consciousness of today’s consumer, Firewire is constantly refining our raw materials to decrease the environmental impact of our boards.  Currently our surfboards emit only 2% of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that conventional polyurethane boards do throughout their lifespan.

Share The Stoke Foundation-Peru Follow-Up 2014

In 2013 we were a part of helping start the girls Chicama Surf Team. Since the inception they have gained 10 girls. The team meets twice a week to work on all aspects of surfing. They are a proud group of girls who take pride in calling the Chicama Surf Team their home. In April of 2014 we had a chance to go to Peru and catch up with the girls and spend lots of time with them. We were absolutely impressed and proud to call them family.

Michel Bourez Wins Drug Aware Margaret River Pro

Author: Chris Cary
Video: ASP

In the day of the “heat analyzer” we all get to play scientist, sportscaster or critic, watching heats over and over at live speed and in slow motion until our daily lives pull us back to reality. To those fanatics who live and breathe surfing, the accounts below that date back to November of 2012 will be familiar. For the second year in a row, California played host to its second World Tour event with the O’neill Cold Water Classic. Something happened though that was totally unexpected: Michel Bourez DOMINATED the somewhat soft and small conditions with power surfing that had recently taken a backseat to the air game and people kept talking about it long after the festivities wrapped up.

Fast forward to the 2013 World Tour stop in Bali and its annual visit to Lower Trestles and the aggression that snapped people out of their “aerial honeymoon” reared its mean face again. In waves that airs were expected to pave the road to the final, Michel dropped 9-point ride after 9-point ride by keeping his rail in the wave and throwing the lip into the stratosphere. The power display was so gnarly it became difficult to imagine anyone else on tour matching it. To those keeping tabs, it was obvious, Michel had figured something out. His raw aggression had become calculated power.

After Michel’s 6-Star Prime win at Haleiwa in November of 2013, his inaugural World Tour victory got reclassified by the surf gods from “possible” to “inevitabile”. At Margaret River, judges were thirsty for power and Michel gave it to them. The early round saw tricky conditions at the main break, hollow conditions at the box, before finals day brought a deeper swell and the best waves of the event, setting the stage.

Michel cruised through his quarterfinals heat against good friend Nat Young to find himself up against King Kelly in the semis. Slater had a stranglehold on the heat up until the dying minutes, when a multi-wave set marched towards the reef and crossed the wires of the 11x World Champ’s competitive super-furnace. Kelly swooped on the first, which left Michel free to bag the wave of the heat, connecting three big maneuvers and earning a 9.37 to tip the scale. The momentum carried the Spartan past Josh Kerr in the finals and landed him the historic spoils of being the first men’s competitor to lay a World Tour victory on the historic Margaret River.

It was Michel’s day. The day he gathered his first world tour win. And the day that the surfing world collectively realized that there is a new permanent member of the top 10.

Taylor Jensen Wins the 2014 Australian Longboard Surfing Open

tjkingy-205 Photo: Mike Pinneo

ASP Press Release

The final day of the 2014 Australian Longboard Surfing Open saw the sport’s top rated surfers do battle in the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Longboard Qualifying Series (LQS) divisions with Taylor Jensen (USA) winning the Legendary Pacific Coast Men’s Pro and Jen Smith taking out the Pretty Shady Women’s Pro.

Jen Smith, two-time ASP Women’s World Longboard Champion (2007, 2009) was dominant in the final against Rosie Locke (Sunshine Coast, Australia). Smith clocked 17.83 out of a possible 20 while Locke struggled to find the better waves in the final.

“This is the first ASP event I’ve done this year so to win it is really good, it’s a good set up for the rest of the year,” said Smith. “It’s a confidence booster – it makes me feel good about riding my single fin as I’ve never surfed an ASP event on a single fin before. To bring it out here and win this event is promising. The surf today was really fun, the tide was low and it was pretty ideal for longboarding.”

The Legendary Pacific Coast LQS Open Pro final was fiercely contested between two former ASP World Longboard Champions Taylor Jensen (2011 & 2012) and Harley Ingleby (Coffs Harbour, NSW/AUS) (2009). The American surfer Jensen came out on top even though he only pulled three waves during the 30 minute final for a combined two wave total of 16.10 (out of a possible 20). Current title holder Ingleby, pushed hard all the way through the final and only just failed to secure the win with his last wave falling 2.4 short of what he needed, giving him a total of 13.74.

“It’s my first serious event this year so it has got the ball rolling,” said Jensen. “I feel good and I’m in command. There’s some big events later in the year so I’ll just stay focused. I love the surf here, the water and the people are super nice and it’s just fun.”

The festival is located in the world-class surfing destination of Kingscliff, only 10 minutes drive from Snapper Rocks. Running from March 26 – 30, 2014 ALSO pays homage to the history of longboard surfing with surf vehicles and classic car display, the Miss Beach Girl competition, surf films, surf yoga, art and lifestyle stalls.

For more information click here

Free Radicals Blog – Featuring Daniel Thomson and a Focus on Design

Daniel Thomson and Richard Kenvin got together to assemble a creative blog that focuses on the evolution of surfboard design and progression of performance. There isn’t meant to be much structure, rather quite the opposite. The collective purpose of the posts and content is to foster thought and creativity and do it in a fun way. Check the video below of Daniel shredding a few small ones and the letter about their vision from Richard Kenvin. You can visit the blog here

“Welcome to Free Radicals, where highbrow meets lowbrow on the Salty Seas of Then and Now–meaning content for a variety of attention spans. Captain Daniel Thomson is steering this ship, I’m keeping the log. We’ve been on a voyage for the past ten years, and now we’re gonna start making dispatches here. Any authoritative voice on this blog is meant to acknowledge someone or something in a relevant context, and perhaps be educational. We are not assuming that you don’t know it already.

I suppose if this blog has a mission it is to document, explore, and inspire a new design paradigm in high performance surfing. To geek-out on new boards that have evolved through a deep connection to the past, and bear witness to some next level shredding on next level surfboards. Maybe drop a few relevant and inspiring historical nuggets here and there.

I first met Daniel in Australia in 2004 through his dad, Mark Thomson. I shared a couple of Steve Lis style fish boards with Dan, and he really took to the design. Daniel ripped fishes like short boards. Fast, smooth, and powerful, but the lines he drew were a little stretched out and horizontal compared to a thruster. Which was aesthetically very pleasing. Both Daniel and I were (are) dyed in the wool thruster surfers, with undying respect for Simon Anderson. That being said, we (like a lot of surfers) were looking for a way to create designs that combined the speed and flow of a fish with the technical precision of the thruster. We found that the dual keel hydrodynamic planing hull designs of Bob Simmons from the 1940s helped point the way to achieving this goal.

10 years after those first fish sessions in Australia, Daniel is closer than ever to realizing this elusive blend of speed, control, and maneuverability in his designs. He calls his new boards modern planing hulls, which is a direct nod to Simmons. Daniel’s Vanguard, Vader, and Nano designs (which are now being produced under license by Firewire and therefore accessible to a lot of surfers) are the boards most people are familiar with. They evolved out of an extensive survey and study of dual-keeled planing designs of the past, particularly the planing hull designs of Bob Simmons from the late 1940s. By laying off conventional short boards and spending the last 10 years riding Simmons inspired designs, in all kinds of conditions, Daniel, like me, began to see board design from a new perspective.

Now, at this point, there is so much to tell I don’t really know how to do it without writing a hundred thousand words. Sweeping generalizations don’t suffice, and there are too many details. That’s what this blog is for, to fill in the details along the way, over time, from the distant past to right now, today. Not from second or third parties, but right from the source.”

Richard Kenvin
San Diego, California,
March 2014


SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., Feb. 22, 2014—The Surfrider Foundation’s Board of Directors and Staff gathered at the Talega Golf Club in San Clemente, Calif., to honor its 2013 Wavemakers. During this annual awards ceremony the Foundation recognizes individuals and companies for their outstanding volunteer efforts and support to fulfill Surfrider’s mission of protecting oceans, waves and beaches.


The Surfrider Foundation’s 2013 Wavemaker Award recipients:

Chapter Leadership Award (West)
Peter Snell
When approximately seven tons of crab gear and boat remains washed ashore at Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area (a marine protected area), Peter determined that the need to remove the debris was immediate, given the nature of the sensitive habitat and federally protected species that would be nesting in the area soon. Working quickly and efficiently, he organized numerous cleanups over dangerous and rocky terrain for three months. More than 2,000 volunteer hours were logged in the removal of all seven tons of debris from the protected area through successive cleanups.

Chapter Leadership Award (East)
Steve Tamar
Steve is the Vice Chair and Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) Coordinator of the Rincón, Puerto Rico Chapter. The chapter’s BWTF program is the largest in the Surfrider network. In 2012, volunteers tested 534 water samples accounting for nearly 20% of all tests performed nationwide. He has led the program since 2006 and writes and sends weekly, bilingual water quality reports to a list of 1400+ recipients. Under Steve’s seven years of leadership, the chapter has established itself as an authority in Puerto Rico providing some of the only beach water quality data available island-wide.

Development Award
Kay Treakle
Kay is the Executive Director of the Harder Foundation and has been actively involved in Surfrider’s efforts to promote healthy coasts in Washington since 2007. Among our funders in the Pacific Northwest, she is the strategic leader and central organizer, identifying needs and providing financial resources for important and underfunded projects. She frequently advocates on our behalf and on the value of grassroots organizing in achieving coastal conservation. Kay works tirelessly to connect us with new funders and other NGOs to create new partnerships and increase our effectiveness.

Environmental Leadership Award
LA Bag Ban Crew: Graham Hamilton, Juli Schultz, Craig Cadwallader and Alan Walti
These four activists led the efforts that resulted in the Los Angeles City Council voting 11-1 to ban plastic checkout bags at grocery stores and large retailers. The ban made LA the largest city in the nation to ban single use bags and is expected to eliminate a significant portion of the billions of bags that were consumed in the city each year that were creating a blight of litter in open spaces including parks, beaches, streets and rivers. Graham and Juli represented the West Los Angeles/Malibu chapter while Craig and Alan handled matters on behalf of the South Bay chapter. Their collaboration and the coordination between the chapters helped to ensure a victorious outcome.

Distinguished Legal Service Award
Senior Members of the Legal Issues Committee: Kris Balliet, Marc Chytilo and Steve Shipsey
These three attorneys and former Board Members helped to found the Legal Issues Committee (LIC) in 2007 and still serve in this critically important role. Each of them donates their time and provides insight and advice on litigation, legislation and federal policy. Their expertise includes beach access law as well as all state and federal environmental law. As the support structure for Surfrider’s Legal Department, the LIC offers technical knowledge, strategic advice and moral support. They are an integral part of the Surfrider family and a key force in advancing the organization’s legal campaigns.

Corporate Partner Award
Volkswagen of America
Volkswagen of America has been a proud supporter of Surfrider since 2012, donating generous funds for the Foundation’s clean water efforts and helping raise awareness through their Think Blue. initiative. As a supporter of our Clean Water campaigns, their donation has helped to fund the Blue Water Task Force (BWTF), Know Your H2O and Ocean Friendly Garden programs, all of which help to educate the public on improving water quality. Additionally, Volkswagen provided two, Surfrider branded, support vehicles for staff use at education, community and social events the organization attends throughout the year. Together, Surfrider Foundation and Volkswagen of America, Inc. are encouraging individuals across the country to Think Blue. by making positive changes in their lives to ensure our nation’s oceans, waves, beaches and waterways are clean and healthy for future generations to come. They recently signed on to partner with us again for 2014.

Outstanding Contribution Award
The Surf Channel
The Surf Channel Video On Demand television network is found on cable, satellite, telco and digital. They went out of their way to produce several videos leading up to the most recent Trestles hearing in San Diego. They pushed action alerts encouraging our members to attend the meeting and then spent all day (nearly 8 hours) at the hearing culminating in the creation of a video capturing the victorious hearing outcome.

Surf Industry Partner Award
Rarely do performance, conservation and sustainability come together. Firewire has done this in their product, which could be said to share the core elements of Surfrider’s mission of “protection and enjoyment.” Mark Price and the Firewire team have worked with us to drive engagement in our mission via membership offerings, social media contests and deeper connection with our surfing roots. They are now expanding this highly successful partnership to all of continental Europe.

Coastal Impact Award
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse
Senator Whitehouse is an ardent supporter of coastal and ocean protection. He has argued before the US Supreme Court to protect Rhode Island’s public wetlands from development, and led an investigation into a devastating oil spill in Narragansett Bay; he made sure the fine resulting from that spill, which was the largest in the state’s history, was used for conservation. He founded the Senate Oceans Caucus to promote creative, bipartisan policy solutions that protect our oceans, our coasts, and the people and economies that rely on them. He has worked diligently to protect the ocean and coast from unnecessary oil exploration. A true ocean champion, Senator Whitehouse’s contributions in 2013 include his outspoken support for continued BEACH Act Funding and his current work to protect the National Ocean Policy and NEPA process through Congressional deliberations on the Water Resources Development Act Conference Committee.

2013 Surfrider Foundation Board of Directors
Chair, Sean Ahlum; Vice Chair, Walter Wilhelm; Secretary, Meredith Blascovich
Meg Caldwell; Lisa Pierce Fiedelholtz; Mike Harmon; Rick Kuykendall; Jim Lindberg; Michael Marckx; Steve Rabineau; Tony Radaich; Brooke Smith; Shaun Tomson; Rob Wells; David Wilmot

Recognition of Staff
20 Years: Michelle Kremer and Chris Keys
15 Years: Lori Booth
10 Years: Steve Blank, Nancy Hastings and Laura Lee
5 Years: Kyle Lishok

Firewire Launches Linear Flex Technology (LFT)


For Immediate Release
January 2014

Firewire’s product development is focused on three things: exclusively using epoxy resin and EPS foam cores, achieving lighter and stronger surfboards through sandwich construction, and optimizing flex to enhance performance. Though LINEAR FLEX TECHNOLOGY (LFT) may appear to be a simple construction employing familiar design philosophies found in traditionally built surfboards, nothing could be further from the truth.

LFT incorporates Firewire’s new SPRINGER HD, a 0.75” (18 mm) wide aerospace composite that runs down the centerline of the board, representing the next generation in our SPRINGER technology. Unlike the original balsa SPRINGER build which only added stiffness under the front foot, the SPRINGER HD runs the entire length of the board and plays a pivotal role in optimizing flex from nose to tail.

Inserting a high-density material down the center of the board does create engineering hurdles. For example, deck compression over the SPRINGER HD would be less than the surrounding EPS core. Over time, the deck would develop a raised area adjacent to the SPRINGER HD, akin to the ‘ridging’ effect on a PU surfboard as the surrounding foam collapses on either side of the stringer.

We addressed this issue in two ways. Firstly, the SPRINGER HD stops approximately 3mm below the top deck, ensuring that the surrounding EPS compression will not lead to ‘ridging’. Utilizing our proven sandwich construction methodology, we also added an extremely durable material to the top deck of the board. This ‘deck-skin’ now serves as an additional buffer against the ridging effect while simultaneously working in tandem with the SPRINGER HD to optimize the overall flex pattern of the LFT build. The end result is a durable surfboard with lively flex patterns that will maintain its hi-performance characteristics over time.

Firewire believes in the continued improvement of modern day surfboards through the optimization of flex, the development of new technologies and the inclusion of greener raw materials to reduce environmental impact.

For more info, please visit our LFT page here.

Sales Contact US: [email protected]
Sales Contact AUS: [email protected]
Sales Contact International: [email protected]
Media Contact: [email protected]

Surfrider Foundation Holiday Gift Membership Season


This year, the Surfrider Foundation Holiday Gift Membership Package is all about giving the gift of enjoyment. When you give a Holiday Gift Membership, you directly support our mission: The protection and enjoyment of our oceans, waves and beaches. Your favorite beach enthusiast will also receive a year’s worth of our digital, interactive newsletter, Making Waves, two Surfrider Foundation membership stickers, 20% off any purchase on…and more!

Along with a Surfrider Foundation membership, you’ll give an even greater gift of enjoyment when you choose from one of these unique gift packages:

For only $49, your loved one will receive a $50 voucher to, the top online surf shop that brings you the very best from established surf brands, and 2 on-demand movie downloads from The Surf Network, the largest and most extensive collection of premium surf video content on the internet.

2013_31_Holiday_Membership_Product_Pack_Gift_Cards_2 More info on $49 bundle.

For $149, you can treat your loved one year-round with a 1 year subscription to The Surfer’s Journal, bi-monthly digital issues, access to TSJ’s online archive and your choice of a Masters of Surf Photography book. The Masters of Surf Photography series is a landmark series of elegant, oversized, landscape format coffee table books, each presenting a selection from the life’s work of a single master surf photographer. You can choose from: Ted Grambeau, Art Brewer, Tom Servais or Warren Bolster.

2013_31_Holiday_Membership_Product_Pack_SJ_2 More info on $149 bundle.

We think you’ve been very good this year. So, when you give a Holiday Gift Membership*, you’ll be entered into a drawing to win a brand new Firewire surfboard! Do YOU have the Golden Ticket? Go to on December 18th, 2013 to see if you won!