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Board of Directors & Committees

Board of Directors

Patti Paniccia – Co-Chair

Patti Paniccia still calls Waialua, Hawaii home, even though she moved to Southern California in 1985. She continues to spend a significant amount of time at her Waialua home on the North Shore of Oahu, surfing her favorite spots with family, friends and neighbors. Patti was one of the top-ranked surfers during the 70s and early 80s, and was one of six women who competed on the first women’s world pro tour in 1976. In the early 70s, she co-founded the Hawaii Women’s Surfing Hui, and as competition director, established a qualifying contest system for Hawaii’s pro contest invitations to women. She then worked with Fred Hemmings, alongside Randy Rarick, to launch the women’s and men’s pro tour for International Professional Surfing (IPS), the first pro surfing tour and precursor to the ASP and today’s World Surf League (WSL). Patti Paniccia is an adjunct law professor at Pepperdine Law School in Malibu where she teaches Employment Discrimination, Gender and the Law, and First Amendment Law, and founded the Patti Paniccia Law Scholarship to assist law students parenting minor children. She is also a hearing officer for the Los Angeles Country Employee Relations Commission. She is a former CNN correspondent and received an Emmy nomination for an investigative series on the court system’s failure to deal adequately with infant abuse. In 2000, she was sent on a nationwide book tour by Ballantine/Random House for her book, Work Smarts for Women: The Essential Sex Discrimination Survival Guide and continues to be regularly interviewed in the media on issues of workplace and gender discrimination. She is currently general counsel for the Radio & Television New Association of Southern California (RTNA) where she addresses issues of free press and media access, and is past chairman of the board of Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, which performs with the LA Phil and LA Opera. She and her husband have two daughters – one who sings opera and the other who is a business executive. She tried hard to get them to cut school and go surfing.

Randy Taylor – VP – Treasurer

Randy Taylor (RT) Board Member. Chairman of SHACC Annual Golf Tournament. Native Californian moved to Dana Point in 1961 and began surfing Doheny and Poche at age 10. Moved to Northern Calif. near Santa Cruz for 9 years, but returned to Southern Cal in 1970 for warmer water and hotter chicks! Mr. Taylor holds a B1 General Contractor’s license and built homes to sell in the late 70’s, changed career paths and went into Health Care Administration for 11 yrs. In 1998. Mr. Taylor decided to dedicate more time to serving others and began a 21 yr. journey with OC Goodwill of Orange County. RT’s current position is VP of Facilities and Operations. Mr. Taylor holds a BA and Master’s Degree from Columbia Pacific University and currently serves on 3 Boards. He has contributed his time, support and expertise to fundraising events for over 30 years. Mr. Taylor loves the ocean above and below the water, surfing, scuba, fishing, all tropical beaches, golfing and world travel. Member of the Hawaiian Surf Club.

W. Scott Griffiths – Secratary

Scott Griffiths is currently CEO of 18/8 Fine Men’s Salons and Griff’s Ace Grooming & Shave Bars, 100 unit chains of fine men’s salons (www.EighteenEight.com) and premium barber shops (www.GroomLikeGriff.com). Griffiths’s passion has always centered around surfing and surf culture.  He grew up in Southern California, attended Servite High School, where he was on the water polo and swim team.  Five days a week he would drive with his buddies to surf Trestles, Church’s, and Old Man’s, were armed with a very important card, a military dependent’s card, he would have direct access to the beach. Later in life, Griffiths applied his beach heritage to his business interests. In 1980 He conceived, co-designed and produced “Air Powered, The Art of the Airbrush” for Random House that sold 250,000 copies in hard bound. In 1990, he created a microbrewery called Rhino Chasers, inspired by Greg Noll and the big wave riders. He opened a Rhino Chaser brewpub at LAX and built the brand nationally to become number eleven in gross volume (the brand was sold to Gallo in 1997).  In 2006, Scott led the financing and joined the Board for H2OAudio, a firm that designs waterproof housing for iPods for athletes to use in watersports (Laird Hamilton joined the Advisory Board in 2008). Griffiths has created, built and re-engineered more than one hundred products and brands in the food, beverage, sports, leisure, technology, hospitality and entertainment industries for twenty years. Griffiths is also an ongoing instructor at The Art Center College of Design where he teaches advanced product designers how to take product concepts and develop go-to-market strategies.

Cathey Curtis – Board Member

Growing up on the East Coast, after graduating from Penn State, Cathey Curtis found her way west—and the business of surf is lucky she did. After garnering some experience in the garment industry, in 1996 Curtis began her career with Quiksilver. First serving as the Vice President of Sales for Quiksilver Boys, in 2004 she took on the challenge of opening up retail opportunities in Mainland China for the Quiksilver brand. Initially starting with three stores, by the time she moved back stateside in 2011 she’d overseen the opening of 75 retail locations within Mainland China and Hong Kong. Back in Orange County, she settled in as Senior Vice President at Roxy before eventually moving over to work at Billabong Women’s as Senior Vice President of Global Marketing. Today, she’s been an integral member of the team that is overseeing the union of Quiksilver and Billabong in the Boardriders merger. When not buried in the surf biz, Curtis lends her time to the Sakka Foundation, which she founded and helps provide shelter, education, and medical assistance to children from impoverished communities in Cambodia.

Greg Dillion – Board Member

Greg Dillion, Board Member and Founding Partner, grew up in Ohio but took up many of his favorite sports later in life after moving to California — skiing at 25, scuba at 30, surfing at 34, snowboarding at 40, wakeboarding at 45, wake surfing at 48, kiteboarding at 50, cattle roping and roundups at 52, dirt biking at 55 and snow motorcycling at 61. Greg is never happier than when sharing these pastimes with his wife, five kids and friends. Locally, Greg’s surf spots range from Oceanside to Bolsa Chica, but he also likes to safari each year and has surfed a number of locations in the Indian Ocean, the South Pacific and Central and South America. Greg obtained his B.A. from Cornell University and his law degree from the University of Texas. In 1984 he co-founded Newmeyer Dillion. Since then, the firm has grown from three lawyers to over 70 and has become a full-service law firm with offices in Newport Beach, Walnut Creek and Las Vegas. Greg has been named by Best Lawyers in America® as Lawyer of the Year for Orange County in the fields of real estate and construction litigation and insurance and construction law. He has been named as one of Orange County’s top 50 lawyers and one of Southern California’s top 100 lawyers by Super Lawyers®.

Bill Eddy – Board Member

Bill Eddy, Board Member. Founder, The EDDY Company, LLC, an international retail real estate consultancy..Providing strategic retail planning, development, merchandising, marketing and leasing services.Writer – ‘Aloha’ Eddy Line..A personal email newsletter about the business world, my travels, my clients, my life in Hawaii, and the spirit of Aloha, that is the essence of relationships and mutual respect and affection of others..Books – Wrote and published: ‘Loves Life & Laughter’…..the highly enjoyable journey of Bill ‘Aloha’ Eddy

Robert C. Mardian – Board Member

Robert C. Mardian, Board Member, former President and Founding Partner, is a graduate of Stanford University and earned his M.B.A. at Pepperdine University. Mr. Mardian operates restaurants in California, Hawaii, and Texas and has surfed the coasts of all three states. He has finished in the top 30% of the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii. He served on the Finance Committee for the 1988 U.S. Olympic Committee. Bob is a lifelong surfer and member of the San Onofre Surfing Club since 1954. Like his father before him and his son and daughters now, he continues to surf at San Onofre and on occasion, all three generations are in the water at the same time.

Don Meek – Board Member

Don Meek comes to SHACC with immense experience in the surf world. Serving as a beach lifeguard in his formative years, as his career path evolved he found himself working in broadcast television, where he notably worked developing and managing a portfolio of sports event properties that were owned by Prime Ticket Network–including the U.S. Open of Surfing–gave him valuable, hands-on experience across an array of disciplines, including programming and production, brand development and management, integrated sponsorship development and more. Utilizing those experiences, Meek then went on to help launch a host of international television networks at Sony Pictures, heading up sales and marketing for one of the pioneering online video platforms at iFilm, as well as leading the number one action and adventure sports media company as president of Primedia’s Action Sports Group (owner of Surfer and Surfing magazine) and serving as head of digital at Tribune Company. Besides being a board member at SHACC, he also chairs the content committee. When he’s not working, he spends his time enjoying his family, surfing the local Orange County breaks and swimming obscenely long distances in the ocean.

David Scibal – Board

David began surfing at 10 years old on the southeastern shore of New Jersey. He began competing at an early age, initially through locally sponsored contests and then through the ESA. According to Peter “PT” Townend “Scibal owned” Ocean Cities 7th Street and regularly surfed all the southern and central New Jersey hotspots. In 72 David relocated to Cocoa Beach, studied Business Administration, enjoyed surfing Sebastian Inlet and many of the area breaks. He traveled extensively surfing Huntington Beach, Santa Cruz, and the North Shore after being invited to the 1974 Smirnoff Pro/Am.

While traveling between the North Shore, Santa Cruz and Cocoa Beach he co-founded Thomas Surfboards with Santa Cruz shaper Joey Thomas and worked with Pete Dooley and the crew at Natural Art surfboards. In the late 70’s he began his business career in the family’s insurance risk management company and went on to building his own businesses in the insurance, real estate development, retail and hospitality industries in Florida, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Virginia. David continues to mentor insurance and hospitality professionals as he did with emerging young surfers in the 70’s and 80’s.

He now resides with Charlene on their farm “Windholme” located in Orange, Virginia where they tend horses and a brood of Irish Wolfhounds, they also are owners and operators of “The Inn at Willow Grove”, an internationally acclaimed boutique resort-hotel, all located in the Virginia Foothills. David has never given up his love for surfing and the East Coast. He joins the Surfing Heritage Advisory Council as its first East Coast representative with goal of building the East Coast branch of the Smithsonian of Surfing, Surfing Heritage and Culture Center.

Paul Strauch – Board Member

Paul K Strauch Jr., Board member, Former Executive Director, was born and raised in Hawaii and began surfing at 4 in Waikiki. Following Punahou High School and the University of Hawaii majoring in business management, he spent 20 years as a 3rd-generation real estate broker in Hawaii, and is a former member of the Waikiki Surf Club, Outrigger Canoe Club, Liliuokalani Trust Child Welfare Department advisory board, Governor’s Advisory Committee to Waikiki Beach Improvement, and Honolulu Mayor’s Water Safety Committee. Past president of the Hawaii Amateur Surfing Association, he is a founding member of the Duke Kahanamoku Surf Club, often traveling with Duke. His event titles include the ’63 & ‘68 Peruvian International Championships, Hawaii State Surfing Champion, ‘65 & ‘66, ‘69 Makaha International Senior Men’s Champion, ‘82 Hawaii Modern Longboard Men’s Champion, and ‘84 Hawaii Nose-riding Men’s Champion. He is the only person to have a surfing maneuver, the Paul Strauch Cheater Five, named after him. Currently an active member of the Hawaiian Surf Club of San Onofre.

Candice Woodward – Board Member

In 2004, Candice Woodward first discovered the Surfing Heritage and Culture Center. A lifelong surfer, it piqued her interest. She began going to exhibit openings and other special events before signing up as a member. Today, she sits on the Board of Directors and is helping take SHACC to new heights. Inducted into the Hermosa Beach Surfer’s Walk of Fame in 2018, Woodward has been pushing boundaries her entire career. One of the pioneers of the women’s movement that took hold of the sport in the 1970s, her first international contest was the 1977 WISA Malibu Hang Ten International Pro, where she finished 3rd behind Lynne Boyer and Margo Oberg, who placed 1st and 2nd, respectively. After a number of contest victories and some well-earned time in the spotlight, Woodward pursued a career as a physical therapist and board-certified professional ergonomics (BCPE, CIE). She is also the owner of two companies: Woodward Ergonomics Consulting, Inc. and Wedge-Ease, which designs, fabricates and sells ergonomic support products for microscope users and bench workers in the electronics industry. “Surfing has always been my life’s passion,” says Woodward. “I love the SHACC mission to preserve, promote and present surfing’s heritage and cultural impact. Our world has opened up in so many ways that I couldn’t have imagined and to so many people and different cultures. I’m honored to be a part of this exciting, evolving journey. I’m also thrilled to be part of this dynamic team of like-minded individuals!”

Bill Blackburn – President Emeritus

Bill Blackburn, President Emeritus and Founding Partner, started surfing in 1950 and comes from a family that spent nearly 40 years at San O. (There are now four generations of Blackburns that surf.) Bill is married, has three grandchildren, attained a degree in history from Stanford in 1965. He worked for Dean Witter & Co. until 1973, joined the family business located in Oceanside in 1973 and moved to Laguna Beach where he still lives. Bill owned and operated Hobie Sunglasses (purchased from Hobie in 1989) from 1989- 1996. He currently spends most of his free time surfing ’Nofre and skiing/fly fishing in Idaho or Colorado.

Steve Pezman – Board Member Emeritus

Steve Pezman, Board Member and Founding Partner, began surfing in 1957 in Orange County, CA. Surfed the 1962-’63 winter season on the North Shore, then returned to California to lifeguard, sail in the merchant marine, build surfboards and co-own Creative Design Surfboards, a Huntington Beach surf shop through the late 1960s. In 1967, Steve began freelance writing for surf magazines, in 1969 becoming associate editor at Petersen’s International Surfing magazine. Moved to Surfer magazine as Assoc. Editor in 1970, later that year becoming Publisher and serving in that capacity through 1991. Currently Co-founder and publisher of The Surfer’s Journal, various surfing books, and executive producer of The Surfer’s Journal on Outdoor Life Network. Steve has helped found various surfing organs, currently serves on the advisory boards of the Surfrider Foundation and the Surf Industry Manufacturers Association.

Jay “Sparky” Longley – Board Member Emeritus

Jay “Sparky” Longley, Board Member Emeritus and Founding Partner, is a surfer, hang glider, skier, biker, and snowboarder. When he decided to overcome his fear of heights and surf the world, he bought a plane and learned how to fly. In 1975 Sparky located to San Clemente to officially set up shop, where Rainbow sandals are still hand made today. Now the former one-man, six-sandal-a-day garage production has had to expand overseas to keep up with the 5,000 pair-a-day demand. Once worn only by surfers, Sparky’s sandals now have a nationwide following.

Fred Hemmings – Board Member Emeritus

Fred Hemmings, Board Member Emeritus, was born and raised in Hawaii and began surfing at the age of 8 at Waikiki. Four years later in 1958, Fred began competing in surfing events. That year he placed 3rd in the Makaha International Surfing Championships in the junior men’s division. Three years later he won that division (1961) and followed up with a first again in 1962. In the Senior Men’s division he took 1st Place twice (1964 and 1966). He continued to enter surfing contests taking him as far away as Peru, where he won the Peruvian International Championships in 1964. Four years later in 1968, he became the first surfer from Hawaii to win the World Surfing Championship, held that year at Rincon, Puerto Rico. Simultaneously with surfing, Hemmings was a champion canoe paddler. He was the steersman on four Molokai to Oahu championship teams in 1967, 1968, 1975, and the Masters in 1984. After winning the World Championships, Hemmings retired from competitive surfing to focus on creating a new sports industry: promoting and marketing surfing as a viable professional sport. He is the founder of the professional surfing circuit and the Triple Crown events and has been referred to as “the father of professional surfing.” He later served Hawaii as a State Senator from 2000 to 2010. Currently, Fred is a much sought after keynote speaker highlighting the history of Hawaii and the sport of surfing.

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