Business people : Imagine Surf has named internationally-known big wave rider and stand up paddle board pioneer Dave Kalama as vice president of design and innovation
The appointment of Dave Kalama signifies the company’s new direction since it was acquired by The Pryde Group last January, and its overall strategy to be a leader in the stand up paddle industry. Kalama is known for popularizing big wave, tow-in surfing, hydrofoil surfing and stand up paddle surfing, and brings knowledge and insight of the industry to a new age at Imagine Surf.
“It has always been our mission to be a leader in stand up paddling,” explained Gregg Chisolm, President at Imagine Surf. “Dave popularized stand up paddling and made it possible for all of us to enjoy this great sport. He is an innovator in the true sense, and it will be an honor to work with him toward our goal of achieving innovation in our products and growing the sport of stand up paddling globally.”
Dave Kalama is a Hawaiian waterman who comes from a lineage of surfing champions. He began as a world champion windsurfer and has evolved into one of the premiere big‐wave riders of our time and one of the pioneers of tow‐in surfing and most recently, stand up paddle surfing and racing. Dave along with friend and fellow waterman Laird Hamilton, re-introduced the ancient Hawaiian sport of stand up paddling to the public in the mid-1990s. In 2005, he launched KALAMA KAMPS (www.kalamakamp.com), a customized, one‐on‐one training program that embodies Dave’s training regimen. “It’s a way for people to experience an authentic waterman’s lifestyle,” Kalama said. Dave also shares content on his blog (www.davidkalama.com), writing about “A Waterman’s Journal: Adventures in Stand Up Paddling, Surfing, Ocean Voyaging, and Life.” He is also a contributing writer for Grind Media’s SUP Magazine (www.supthemag.com).
Since his early days in big wave, tow-surf, windsurfing and especially in stand up paddling, Dave has constantly worked with the top shapers in the world to design the highest performance and quality boards. Dave’s been designing and shaping his own boards for the past few years, and is excited to expand it into a full line.
“It is important to me to team up with a company that not only shares my philosophy, ethics and authenticity, but also my goal of designing high performance and accessible equipment,” explained Kalama. “With support from Imagine I will have access to resources that I can use to develop and experiment with new designs, construction methods and all of the elements that go into designing innovative boards that are performance driven, easy to ride and fun.”
In 2013, Imagine will debut the first of the Kalama-designed boards: a long board design, and a progressive short board style design. Both boards will be available in two sizes. Stand up paddle surfing enthusiasts and action sports retailers will get a sneak preview of both boards at next month’s Outdoor Retailer Expo in Salt Lake City, UT.