JEAN-FRANCOIS SAVARD AKA JF
Jean-Francois moved to the West coast about 9 years ago from Montréal. He fell in love with the beauty and energy here and now calls Vancouver Island home (sorry JF’s mom). Having spent a lot of time in and out of the water on the island, JF feels the duty to repay more to this amazing place than what it has given him. He believes change starts in our own immediate environment and then the energy spreads further away like the ripples from a stone on a pond.
Erin Willows has been an active volunteer with Surfrider Vancouver Island since 2012. Holding a BA in Anthropology/Archaeology from UVIC, and working as a professional archaeologist on the BC coast for the past 12 years, Erin is very knowledgeable to the environmental changes our coastline has undergone in the past 10,000 years. She is a strong supporter of environmental advocacy and believes that through education and outreach, we will be able to preserve and protect our coastline from man-made impacts for future generations to enjoy.
Darcy joined the Vancouver Island Chapter in 2012. He is stoked to be involved as the Chapter Treasurer. Darcy is a Certified Management Accountant and brings this experience to Surfrider. Next time you see him in the line-up say hi!
Combing the Coast Coordinator and BCU team lead
Lynn starting surfing in 2012 and fell in love with the sport! She has been volunteering with the Vancouver Island Surfrider Chapter since 2013. Lynn enjoys being outside and can even be seen cleaning up beaches on her lunch break. Lynn’s passion to keep our oceans, waves, and beaches clean stems from wanting to protect what we have now and for the future. With two daughters, she wants to make sure they have something to enjoy when they are older too! Last year Lynn volunteered to be one of the Combing the Coast Coordinators and has found it a very gratifying position as she gets to watch others enjoy cleaning beaches too!
Rachael has helped with organizational development for our Chapter for over 2 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and has an extensive background in management and strategic leadership. Along with the team, she presented at the 2014 Pacific Northwest conference and has lead Chapter workshops for our volunteers. Rachael is passionate about the ocean, environmental conservation and activism. Not only does she live by her values, she inspires others to do the same. Rachael enjoys surfing and is keen to go out in any conditions. She is excited to help support and train our growing volunteer base.
BWYTF Program Coordinator
Emrys Prussin holds a Master’s of Science degree in Geography and water quality monitoring from UVic and is currently a pre-service secondary teacher. Emrys has been involved with Surfrider Vancouver Island for the past three years and is excited to lead the Blue Water Youth Task Force program.
Over the past seven years, Gillian has been an active chapter volunteer and has helped with Chapter growth and development. Originally from New Mexico, she moved to Victoria in 2006 to be closer to the ocean. Gillian holds a BA in Liberal Arts, Advanced Diploma in Human Resource Management, and a Certificate in Business Management. Gillian’s commitment and dedication to the mission and objectives of the organization, the environment, our community and to surfing, is paramount to the Vancouver Island Chapter. She is excited to take on the new role as Chapter Manager.
Steve Murray is one of Surfrider’s most passionate volunteers. He has been involved with our Chapter since the beginning. Steve is a huge part of our remote beach cleanups and helps run the Clean Water Classic, the largest annual amateur surf contest in the Pacific Northwest. Steve’s stoke keeps volunteers going at contests or at cleanups no matter how cold and rainy it is outside. He is a true environmental activist, leader and gentlemen with a heart of gold.
Will is a local shaper and owner of Barracuda surfboards and is extremely passionate about handcrafted boards. Barracuda surfboards are not only works of art, but also make you a better surfer! He has been a member of Surfrider for many years and supports our local Chapter at events such as the very popular Wave Hunt surf competition.
Mike Redpath is a longtime surfer here on Vancouver Island and has been a member and supporter of our local Surfrider Chapter since the beginning. Mike is involved in our Rise Above Plastics program, helping spearhead our Karma Bag, a reusable bag initiative. Mike is the owner of Coastline and is extremely knowledgeable with helping select the right board for the right surfer.
Bryson Robinson holds a PhD in Coastal/Environmental engineering and is the co-founder of OceanGybe. He is also a longtime volunteer and member of Surfrider. Bryson believes that Ocean Gybe was a natural progression from the Surfrider Foundation. OceanGybe was a 2 year sailing and research expedition around the world. During the OceanGybe expedition, Bryson was able to access thousands of uninhabited beaches and assess the plastic pollution on a global scale. Their team was able to get a global perspective on the scourge of single use plastics, and utilize the fantastic network of Surfrider Foundation chapters to help us spread the word about our findings AND work towards preventative solutions.
Dan is one of SFVI’s most devoted members and has been volunteering with the chapter since 2006. He has helped with the organization of the Wave Hunt since its inception. He co-led the Remote Beach Clean Up Campaign in 2014 and helped produce the CtC film that was created that year. Dan is committed to keeping our beaches clean and accessible for everyone for years to come.
Mick is one of Surfrider Vancouver Island’s biggest supporters, hands down. While Mick is consumed by the responsibility of running one of Victoria’s core surfshops, HtO, he never fails at finding ways of getting involved with Surfrider. Whether it’s at a chapter meeting discussing local coastal issues, or volunteering at events like the Paddle Out, his enthusiasm is ever-present. Mick also goes out of his way to include the chapter in various HtO sponsored events, such as surf film premieres, helping us gain valuable exposure in the community. Having an advocate like Mick behind us coordinating various sponsorships has allowed Surfrider Vancouver Island to increase our profile and gain lots of momentum.
Social Media Coordinator
From the moment Annie was put on a beach as baby in the Maritimes, she has gravitated toward the ocean and any another body of water nearby including streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, ponds and pools. As the years passed, she’s being picking up more and more garbage there along the way. When she discovered that people at Surfrider do too, and that they are trying to protect these places for generations to come, she had to join in! She has been sharing her experience from working at local markets to table at events around Victoria. Come by our tent and say “Hi!”
DANNY CHICO AMATO
Chapter Advisory Committee
Danny (Chico) Amato is one of the founders and original Chairpersons of the Vancouver Island Chapter. Over 12 years ago, Danny and a small team of volunteers helped develop a framework for the Chapter that was based on grassroots activism and being a voice for the local surf community on environmental and public access issues. The spirit of activism that Danny fostered in the Chapter early on continues today and has guided the Chapter to high levels of success. Danny continues to volunteer on a regular basis and has been a key part of the Combing the Coast remote beach cleanup program and is the lead organizer of the Wavehunt surf contest.
Chapter Advisory Committee
Lucas Harris is a former Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and Secretary for the Chapter and has been an active volunteer for almost 10 years. In his role as Chairperson, Lucas was instrumental in developing a strategic focus for the chapter. He spearheaded the creation of the Combing the Coast program, which continues to be one of the most widely recognized marine debris response and monitoring programs in the province. Lucas also focused internally and implemented systems for the Chapter and its Executive Committee, which have helped grow the Chapters organizational capabilities and capacity. Lucas continues to be involved in the Chapter and is currently leading a surf etiquette sign project for surf spots on the South Island.
Without the help of our sponsors, the endeavours that we have set out to achieve would not be possible.