My letter to the Editor....
Im not sure I agree with your "most influential" list. Most of these people are the "best" in their sports, but the truly influential people in our sports are at the local level.
I am proud to have a dedicated team here in Chicago that has opened up a once closed lakefront. We now enjoy surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, SUPing, boogie boarding, and kayaking all along our great lakefront. I'm sure each surf community around the country has a similar story.
Without the dedication of these local riders / activists the surf industry would still be back in the 1960's. We bring the surf to spots where there was no surf and where there were no surf shops.
We have no trophy's and no big cash prizes to show for it. However, seeing a Stand-Up paddler cruising along the once prohibited lakefront is truly a priceless reward.
My volunteers who gather petition signatures, call their elected officials, and give their free time to support surf activities will always be on my list of most influential surfers.
2007- Naish Thorn, Torch 16/12, 2008 10M Alliance. '07 Naish Thorn 144 Cape Doctor. Naish Midwest Team. GoPro Cameras! Red Helmet and Fashionable Football Shirt.