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)
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 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.
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