Bill Morris – Chair: Bill has been an active member of Central Texas Surfrider since 2005 and a member of the Executive Committee since 2007. He began surfing more decades ago than he’ll admit to when his family lived briefly in the Corpus Christi, Texas area. Another move took him to West Texas, far from the ocean and surfing. The water remained important, however, and he was a successful competitive swimmer for many years, moved to Austin in 1971 with a swimming scholarship to the University of Texas, and went on a few years after graduating to become a Divemaster and then a Scuba Instructor. Along the way he and his daughter Jennifer (also a former Executive Committee member before she moved to Florida) began surfing together, and Texas beaches became a regular part of Bill’s life again. In Austin, Bill represents Surfrider in partnership with Keep Austin Beautiful by hosting six clean-ups each year on Lady Bird Lake. He is also a consistent part of beach clean-ups in the Port Aransas area – always a great way to help protect Texas’ Gulf shore, and a reason to spend another weekend surfing and playing at the beach.
Manny Alvarez – Vice Chair: Manny rejoined the executive committee in the Fall of 2011, after a two year hiatus, and currently holds an officer position as Vice Chairman. Prior to this position, he served as Secretary and Committee Member-At-Large. Manny joined Surfrider Foundation as a member in 2005 because of his strong interest in ocean conservation and protecting Texas’ beaches. Manny has been an avid surfer since he was about 12 years old. Originally from South Texas and now living in Austin, he tries to get down to the coast as much as possible to surf. When he’s not surfing or working as a tradesman, you can find him kayaking, hiking or target shooting.
Nick Wiersema – Treasurer: Nick is the current Treasurer of the Central Texas Chapter, and resided as the Chairman of the Central Texas Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation from 2008 to 2011. Prior to that Nick served as the Volunteer Coordinator and an at large executive committee member. Having become aware of the Surfrider Foundation in San Diego in the 90’s, he has been an active and outspoken member ever since. When not fighting for the good cause, Nick spends most of his time building and designing surfboards, paying down the mortgage with environmental consulting projects and entertaining his best friend Siena (Chocolate Lab). His love of surfing and oceans started at an early age of 12, and after years of competition on the local level, attempted a fun, but relatively unsuccessful bid as a professional. Other hobbies include hiking, biking, fly fishing, swimming, wood-working, hunting, and all things mechanical.
Kristina Schlegel – Secretary: Kristina has been a part of the Centex Surfrider family since 2006. Originally from Northern Mexico, a move to the US made South Texas home base and South Padre Island her backyard. As an early teen – begging her older brother to let her join him on dawn patrol – she spent hours in her brother’s VW pop-up camper van reading every issue of Surfer, Surfing, & Surfing World magazine cover to cover. Encouraged by her surfer sibling, ocean conservancy and environmental stewardship redefined her interest in the sport. After years of never quite getting her sea legs, redemption was found at last with Standup Paddling. Kristina can often be spotted on Town Lake, or with her SUP board strapped onto her red Volvo. When not on the water, you can find her at the American Institute of Architects or hanging with her adorable and exceedingly handsome canine companion, Falcor.
Rick Thomsen- Executive Committee: Since grade school Rick has been surfing in Texas from Meecom’s Pier to Boca Chica. He joined the Surfrider Central Texas Chapter in 2000 and has previously served as vice-chair and chairman. He has helped lead our successful membership and fund raising campaigns in the past and also to develop the chapter relationships with the Texas Parks and Wildlife and their popular annual Expo event, the Barefoot Wine cleanups, and Jo’s Coffee events.
When home in Austin he might be found swimming laps at Barton Springs, running the trails at Lady Bird Lake, or fishing just about anywhere. Contact Rick at email@example.com if you have questions about Surfrider, or if you just want to discuss surf forecasting.
Former Chairmen and ex-officios have included Theron Stanley, Keeton Turner, Jennifer Morris, Randy and Lila Hillin, Jamie Mitchell, Meridith Kohut, Randy Martin, Karen Thorwaldson, and Seth Houdeshell to name a few. All of which we owe a debt of gratitude.