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    May 2002

    Channel Islands Surfboards Founder Al Merrick Is Inducted Into The Surfers’ Hall


    Santa Barbara, Calif. (July 27, 2007) - Channel Islands Surfboards today announced that Founder Al Merrick has been inducted into the Surfers’ Hall of Fame as part of their 10th Anniversary celebration in Huntington Beach, Calif.

    “I am extremely excited and feel honored to be inducted into the Surfers’ Hall of Fame,” says Al Merrick.

    Also inducted today were Martin Potter, Bruce Irons and Channel Islands’ own Sofia Mulanovich, former world champion and the youngest surfer and first South American to be presented with the honor. Says Sofia, “I feel great. I’m so honored. All of the past inductees are my heroes so this makes it very special. And those that I’m being inducted with, I really respect and look up to.”

    Since 1969, Al Merrick has been shaping Channel Islands surfboards in a local shop in Santa Barbara. His first big break came when Shaun Tomson won the world title on a Channel Islands board in 1977. Soon after that, he started shaping boards and mentoring Tom Curren, who became one of surfing’s greatest legends. Al now shapes boards for his current team, which includes some of the world’s best surfers, such as Kelly Slater, Bobby Martinez, Dane Reynolds, Taylor Knox, Rob Machado, Sofia Mulanovich, Lisa Anderson and Rochelle Ballard.

    “It’s great to see Al being recognized for working so hard and doing really inspiring things for the sport of surfing,” says Tom Curren, surf legend and former world champion. “He is just such a good person, and I’ve been personally blessed by him in so many ways.”

    “There aren’t words to express the appreciation I have for Al, not only as a shaper, but more so as a friend and a person,” says Kelly Slater, eight time and current world champion. “Since I met Al when I was 16 years old, he has influenced my surfing, choices and me as a person in the most positive way. Al, thank you for everything. It can’t all be spoken here. Love, Kelly.”

    “I just want to congratulate Al on being inducted into the Surfers’ Hall of Fame,” says Jake Burton, Founder and Chairman of Burton Snowboards. “It’s been a learning experience working with someone as talented, humble and dedicated as Al. When you think about how many surfers like Sofia have enjoyed the fruits of his labor, it’s clear how deserving this award is.”

    About Channel Islands Surfboards

    Founded by Al Merrick in 1969 and based in Santa Barbara, California, Channel Islands Surfboards shapes for many of the world’s best surfers. For more information, please visit:

    source: Shana Frahm
    Director, Global Public Relations
    Burton Snowboards
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