About Us:Team

amberAmber Jones, Chair – Born and raised in Southern California, Amber moved to Santa Cruz about 12 years ago. When she encounters something that sparks her interest she is off and running. She’s a certified life coach and owns a small local business that helps children and families. Her biggest accomplishment and what she is most proud of is becoming a mother to her wonderful daughter ten years ago. Amber loves being a mom and all that it entails. She’s an active volunteer at her daughter’s school through teaching life lab, field trip coordinator, and classroom parent. Family and being active in the community are very important to Amber. She also has a deep love for the ocean and marine life. If you ask her she will tell you the ocean is her second home. When she’s not on land you will find her in the water surfing, kayaking, sailing, or snorkeling. Her connectivity to the ocean in all these ways keeps her happy and compels her to want to help protect and preserve it. education@santacruz.surfrider.org

Matt Kuhn, Vice Chair – Growing up in Santa Cruz, Matt has been affiliated with Surfrider since he started surfing at the age of 13. Spending the last 12 years in Santa Barbara, San Diego, and most recently Austin, TX, Matt became an active member of the Central Texas Chapter (yes there is surf in Texas) holding the Volunteer Coordinator position and revamping the Chapter’s website, social media campaigns, and outreach. Matt is passionate about protecting our oceans, waves, and beaches, and is always reducing his carbon footprint however he can. He is incredibly stoked to be back in his Santa Cruz, and when he is not spreading awareness for the protection of our beaches he works as a Customer Success Manager for an enterprise software company. Matt loves spending time with his young son Kasen, wife Leyla, and enjoys surfing trips to Mexico and living happily ever now! vicechair@santacruz.surfrider.org

Jenny Campbell, Secretary – Jenny is a lifelong water girl who fell in love with Santa Cruz while getting her master’s at UCSC. She has been surfing for almost 20 years, and recently fell in love with kiteboarding, which now takes up most of her ocean play time. Kiting gives her a new way of experiencing her other life passion of adventure travel, having traveled to over 50 countries, and kited on 5 continents. When she’s not on the water, Jenny works full time as a health economist to bring better health care to developing countries and with any extra time she designs bikinis for water sports. secretary@santacruz.surfrider.org

Sarah Mansergh, Program Coordinator – It’s the ocean. Sarah loves it. It keeps us healthy so Sarah returns the favor. What better way than cleaning it up, protecting it and dipping in as often as she can. Sarah has never lived more than 20 minutes away from the beach, and her career as a Marine Biologist ensures that will probably be the case for the rest of her life. Although she is not a surfer (sacrilege, she knows), Surfrider allows Sarah to be active in the community and keep this magnificent back yard healthy for all of us to enjoy. Sarah became active in the chapter in 2008 as a water sampler; quickly moved on to running the lab and coordinating our BWTF, and then got involved in our executive committee and took over treasurer duties for awhile. Now, between remodeling her house, traveling the world and finishing her masters, she is constantly amazed at the enthusiasm and spirit of the volunteers that join our group. Sarah is excited and loves having so many passionate and friendly partners to help us keep our ocean healthy. chair@santacruz.surfrider.org

Phil Chowaniec, Volunteer Coordinator – Phil assumed the role of Volunteer Coordinator in early 2013 after moving to the San Francisco Bay Area from New York City in Fall 2012.  Phil loves to surf, and he is passionate about keeping the beaches in Santa Cruz clean and strengthening the greater community.  Phil received his Bachelor’s Degree of Business Administration from Gonzaga University and worked as an investment banker in Palo Alto, providing advice and assistance to companies in the Technology sector, then on the Merchant Growth team at OrderAhead, a technology startup focused on mobile ordering.  Today, Phil works on the Marketing & Sales team at Looker, a data discovery software tool that uses data to allow for better decision-making across organizations. vc@santacruz.surfrider.org

Sam ThumbnailSam Blakesley, Blue Water Task Force Coordinator – Sam is an ocean enthusiast from Oceanside, CA, who moved to Santa Cruz four years ago and began volunteering with Surfrider Foundation. He is currently pursuing his Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies at UC Santa Cruz, focusing on sustainability and conservation, and coordinating the Blue Water Task Force is a perfect compliment to what he is studying. Whether it is surfing, kayak fishing, or just swimming, Sam is on the water any chance he gets. Thus, he is passionate about the health and well being of our waves, water, and all that it provides for us, and he coordinates a team of weekly water quality testers who feel that same way. BWTF@santacruz.surfrider.org

Sheridan Bowman, Treasurer – Sheridan has been entranced by Santa Cruz since the 60’s, when her family would spend days on the Main Beach during holiday breaks.  She braved Hwy 17 as a teen driver to be on the beach with friends and finally made a move from “over the hill” to Santa Cruz in 2012 (a life-long dream realized).   Looking for a stellar organization to pursue her passion for water conservation & preservation, she found the perfect organization to foster her efforts:  Surfrider Foundation.  Living in our beach community enables her to stand up paddle board, sail, kayak, ocean fish and beach comb.  It’s impossible for her to walk her two dogs on the beach without picking up garbage now that she’s part of Surfrider.   Being outdoors near or on the water is a healthy balance to her high tech sales career, so she’s thrilled to have access to the beach every day. Treasurer@santacruz.surfrider.org

AudreyAudrey Lambidakis, Beach Clean Up Coordinator / Social Media Manager – Audrey was born and raised right here in Santa Cruz. Her mom, who was a Santa Cruz Lifeguard, would paddle around the Santa Cruz Wharf with two year old Audrey on the front of the board. After returning from university in Seattle, Audrey rediscovered how fantastic it is to live on the ocean in Santa Cruz. This new found joy with the ocean has lead her to a new passion: capturing and sharing the beauty of the sea and those whom play in it, specifically through photography. Which in turn, has fostered a desire to protect our bay. beachcleanup@santacruz.surfrider.org

Jerry Freeman, Member at Large – Jerry is the newest addition to the Surfrider Santa Cruz team. Jerry has been an active member since joining the chapter last year, sampling for the BWTF and being one of the people you can call to help at a beach cleanup or to table at a surf contest . Jerry is a retired Fire Captan, an attorney, and a lifelong surfer. He grew up in Hawaii and Northern California and moved to Santa Cruz in 1979. He is married to Kyoko and has two adult sons Patrick and Christopher. Jerry is stoked to be a part of Surfrider because it’s a way to play a small role in a much bigger fight to protect the ocean and everybody’s ability to enjoy it.

Trey Highton, UCSC Campus Liaison – Trey is a contemporary nomadic scholar. He has studied at four universities on both coasts of the continental U.S. and moonlights as a professional surf guide in Indonesia and Central America when he isn’t buried under books. Born and raised in Virginia Beach, VA, Trey moved to California in ’03 and has been migrating between San Diego and Santa Cruz since ’06. He currently teaches Creative Writing at UC Santa Cruz, where he also acts as a liaison between the local Surfrider Chapter and the campus community, helping to raise awareness and foster activism among the student body.

Jim Littlefield, Member At Large – Jim has been an active member of Surfrider since 2001, a chapter activist since 2003, a former Chapter Chair, and has held several key positions in chapter operations, including drafting chapter letters for many years and speaking for the chapter at public meetings. Jim is on the National Board of Directors of Surfers’ Environmental Alliance and is Chair of the Local Stewardship Council for the Santa Cruz World Surfing Reserve.