MISSION

The Surfrider Foundation is a grassroots environmental non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.

HISTORY

The Surfrider Foundation was started in 1984, by a group of visionary surfers from Malibu, California. Today, the organization maintains over 250,000 members, supporters and activists with 84 chapters in the United States and affiliates in over 20 countries worldwide. Surfrider Foundation chapters and affiliates are now established throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, Brazil, Argentina, Peru, Jamaica and Morocco. Our global headquarters is based in San Clemente, California.

GLOBALLY

Surfrider is involved in a variety of programs aimed at protecting our coastal ecosystems, based on the parameters outlined in our mission statement. Our campaigns and programs are developed to support our strategic goals and initiatives: Clean Water, Beach Access, Beach Preservation, and Protecting Special Places.

LOCALLY

With nearly 70 miles of coastline to protect, the Surfrider Foundation San Diego County Chapter is one of the largest and most active chapters in the world.  We are a grassroots organization, which means the people working to protect our local oceans, waves and beaches are volunteers who care about San Diego and want to make a difference.

USE YOUR VOICE

We strive to be a strong voice in the community, and we are even stronger when we have more voices. If you are interested in getting more involved, please do! Your local beach and break deserve your input and the Surfrider Foundation is the perfect vehicle for your voice. Even if you don’t have a lot of time to help, simply joining really helps our cause.

Volunteer Now

OUR LOCAL TEAM

Julia Chunn-Heer

Policy Manager

Julia is a graduate of UCLA, and has been working with the Surfrider Foundation since 2007, including a venture as the General Manager of Surfrider Australia. She grew up surfing in San Diego, giving her a passion to protect the coastline for future generations.

Caroline Canter

Chapter Coordinator

Caroline began her career in the nonprofit realm with a river conservancy while working on her Environmental Management degree from UNC-Asheville. She has since worked for a variety of enviro nonprofit organizations, bringing a strong background in environmental, nonprofit and volunteer management to the Chapter.  Caroline is an avid kayaker, rock climber and all around outdoor enthusiast.

Dana Williams

Development Manager

A Canadian native, Dana joined Surfrider in late 2016 after an extensive career in fundraising, cause marketing and sponsorship activation.  Dana is passionate about the environment and doing her part to protect it for future generations. One of her favorite quotes is: “If not us, who? If not now, when?” When she’s not helping individuals and companies make an impact, she loves hanging out with her husband and two daughters, ideally at the beach.

Jake Sneeden

Executive Committee Chair

Jake is a native New Englander who moved to San Diego in 2014 after being drawn to the region by its 70 miles of beaches and rich surfing history. He was elected to Surfrider San Diego’s Executive Committee after two years working with the Beach Preservation Committee on public engagement and media outreach campaigns.

Sunshine Johnson

Executive Committee Vice Chair

Sunshine is a second generation San Diego Native, and has been a part of Surfrider’s powerful activist network since 2006. Whether working with students as a professional during the day, or just meeting someone for the first time, Sunshine shares her passion of the importance to protect our oceans, waves, and beaches with everyone she meets.

Brian Slattery

Executive Committee Secretary

Brian is a Captain with the Fire Department where he has worked for the past 13 years and prior to that was a Project Manager in Commercial Construction.    His passion for the ocean and environment inspired him to become an activist with Surfrider so all future generations can share in the diversity and health of our oceans.

Michael Torti

Executive Committee Member

Michael was born and raised in San Diego where he developed  an interest  and compassion for the environment living along the Cleveland National Forest. After studying Political Science at SDSU he discovered Surfrider’s Rise Above Plastics Committee and was immediately drawn to the mission. In two years Michael has had the support of Surfrider volunteers to work on and succeed in passing local plastic bag and  Polystyrene ordinances in San Diego County cities, as well as worked with the RAP committee to develop the Ocean Friendly Restaurants program.

Udo Wahn

Executive Committee Member

Udo grew up in the small village of Sayville along the shores of the Great South Bay separating Long Island, NY from Fire Island and the Atlantic Ocean. His environmental activism dates to the time of the 1969 Santa Barbara Oil Spill. This horrific event sparked a great movement in environmentalism. He joined Surfrider Foundation in the 80’s. Udo is a retired physician. He penned the Cabo and Coral series of books with aloha for the ocean-minded child. These books are chock full of environmental messages. He is also a supporter of Reef Check Foundation, Heal the Bay, and the Helen Woodward Animal Center.

Seth Schechter

Executive Committee Member

Seth is a lifelong surfer and ocean lover. He is passionate about protecting and keeping the ocean clean and safe for future generations. Seth has worked extensively with thought leaders in the nonprofit space, and he has lead teams that have made transformative impact on health and research.  Seth currently works at the Scripps Research Institute and the Jackson Hole Technology Partnership. He previously held leadership roles the J. Craig Venter Institute and the Salk Institute.  Seth began his career serving as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, and then as an attorney for the Sidney Frank Foundation. Seth has a B.A. from Cornell, at J.D. from Cal Western, and a LL.M. from the University of San Diego.  Seth lives in Del Mar with his wife and two children, and you can find him surfing all over North San Diego.

Christa Lim

Executive Committee Member

Christa has been participating in Surfrider beach cleanups since high school.  Born and raised in Southern California, she is a lifelong ocean and beach enthusiast, and demonstrates her commitment to coastal and environmental protection through her involvement in Surfrider’s events and development activities and as an energy and clean technology professional.  

Mitch Silverstein

Executive Committee Member

Mitch is a native Californian with a love for all things ocean, wave & beach-related.  As an activist, he a.) strives to raise awareness of how our everyday choices affect the ocean & planet, and b.) advocates for sensible environmental policy at a local level.  His ultimate goal is to see good environmental stewardship become mainstream, even “cool.”  Mitch previously led the Rise Above Plastics committee, where he helped achieve several policy victories and expanded the Ocean Friendly Restaurants program. When not fighting the good fight, Mitch is usually dancing around on roller skates, catching waves, or generally acting like a giant manchild.  But don’t let the goofy exterior fool you; the dude is dead serious when it comes to protecting the ocean for future generations to enjoy!

Ryan Espinoza

Executive Committee Member