National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) Founders Join Prestigious Honor Roll During 30th Anniversary Year
HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. – The Huntington Beach Surfing Walk of Fame, the nation’s first sidewalk monument to honor surfing, has announced its fifteenth class of inductees; an eclectic mix of surfing icons that features Andy Irons, Rich Chew, Lynn Boyer, Wayne Lynch, Buzzy Trent and Drew Kampion. The six founding members of the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) will join the Walk of Fame’s coveted Honor Roll.
The Surfing Walk of Fame’s annual ceremony to honor those individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport and culture of surfing will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Thurs., July 24th in front of Jack’s Surfboards (located on the corner of PCH and Main St.). Later that morning, the inductee class of 2007 will join with select honorees from the past 14 years to be feted at a Gala Luncheon.
“In the 15th anniversary year of induction, the sidewalk surrounding Jack’s is now covered with more than 100 granite stones representing the champions, heroes and legends of our sport,” said 1976 ASP World Champion Peter Townend.
This year’s honorees include:
Andy Irons (Surfing Champion): Reared on the dangerous and shallow reefs of Kauai, Irons’ was a standout amateur in the 90s. While he may have struggled after turning pro in 1998, Irons hunger for victory led him to win three consecutive ASP World Titles, four Vans Triple Crown awards, two Pipeline Masters crowns and two U.S. Open of Surfing titles, the first of which came 10 years ago (1998) making him eligible for the Walk of Fame ballot.
Wayne Lynch (Surf Pioneer): An Australian goofy-foot and articulate spokesman for the sport, Lynch broke the regular-foot stranglehold on progressive surfing in the late 1960s. He gained a reputation as a progressive, experimental surfer who did things going backside that no one else could do. Lynch is among a small group credited with pushing the sport from the longboard stateliness of the early ’60s to the shortboard performance revolution of the ’70s.
Buzzy Trent (Surf Pioneer): Trent was a fearless adventurer who fought bulls in Tijuana, boxed and attended USC on scholarship before gaining fame as one of the legendary pioneers of big-wave surfing. He shot to the forefront of the Hawaiian big-wave frenzy in the late 1950s, earning a heavy reputation among the heaviest in the business. Goodwin Murray Trent Jr. passed away on Sept. 26, 2006.
Rich Chew (Local Hero): Legendary pro surfer, lifeguard and ocean artist, Chew grew up in Seal Beach with boyhood surfing buddy Rich Harbor and attended Huntington Beach High School. Winner of several California contests and invitee to the prestigious Duke Kahanamoku Invitational, Rich recently retired from the San Clemente Lifeguards following three-plus decades of service.
Drew Kampion (Surfing Culture): The dean of surf scribes, Kampion is the first journalist to enter the Walk of Fame. Surfer, writer, editor and photographer, his distinguished body of work includes Editor-in-Chief of Surfing magazine and editorial stints and contributions to Surfer, The Surfers Journal, and current editor of The Surfer’s Path along with penning The Book of Waves, Stoked! and A History of Surf Culture.
Lynn Boyer (Woman of the Year): Boyer set the women’s standard for fearless power surfing in big waves during the 1970s and ’80s, and along the way she won two world championships and engaged in titanic matches with fellow Hawaii surfer Margo Oberg. An accomplished artist, the long-time islander often captures the beauty, serenity, and power of the Hawaiian landscapes and seascapes in her works.
The Walk of Fame adds to its rich “Honor Roll” tradition this year by honoring the founding members of the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA). Launched in 1978, NSSA originators included Tom Gibbons (President), Dr. Laird Hayes (VP), Holly Allen (Secretary), Chuck Allen (Treasurer), Rob Hill (Competition Director) and John Rothrock (Publicity Chairman). The NSSA is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2008.
Created in 1995, the Honor Roll pays tribute to those individuals who have contributed to surfing and its culture and are deserving of recognition, but might not qualify to receive a stone on the Walk of Fame. The Honor Roll is the only category voted on by all the board of directors.
The Surfing Walk of Fame selection process is unique among surfing-related historical institutions in the U.S. An international panel of surf affiliated voters cast their votes in each of the five categories (a committee selects the Honor Roll recipient). This prestigious event coincides with the Honda U.S. Open of Surfing Presented by O’Neill, the world’s largest professional surfing competition. Both the Surfing Walk of Fame and the U.S. Open were founded in 1994.
Founded on May 28, 1994 by honoring Duke Kahanamoku as the Father of Modern Surfing, the Huntington Beach Surfing Walk of Fame marked a historic addition to “Surf City USA.” Each year, the Walk of Fame’s selection committee conducts ongoing research through surf associations, museums and media venues around the world to compile a comprehensive ballot of qualified candidates. Every inductee receives a granite stone embedded in the sidewalk (PCH side) in front of Jack’s, the Surfing Walk of Fame Patron. More information is available at SurfingWalkofFame.com.