Jonno Wells, CEO, joined Surfline/Wavetrak Inc., Buoyweather's Fishtrack's parent company, as CEO in 2002. Previously, he held positions as Publisher and Managing Director of International Sales and Licensing, at CMP Media, a division of United Business Media: (UBM.L). In addition, he has served as Vice President of Client Services Broadchoice.com and was involved in early stage team of On2 technologies, which later sold to Google. Jonno holds a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He grew up in Newport Beach where he learned to surf, dive, sail, and fish. He enjoys every chance he can get to be on the water with his wife and two boys.
Will James, Will serves as Brand Development Manager for Fishtrack. Will grew up on Maryland's Eastern Shore and holds a degree in Economics. An All-American sailor while in college, he picked up kitesurfing in 2001 because he thought it would help him pick up girls. It didn't, but it did allow him to avoid a real job for 8 years while traveling and competing as a professional kitesurfer at the world cup level and surfing and fishing on Oahu's North Shore during the off season. At the age of 30, and considered a senior citizen by professional kitesurfing standards, he got a job with Kaenon Polarized, focusing on marketing to the fishing and marine markets before joining Buoyweather and Fishtrack in early 2011.
Mark Willis, Chief Meteorologist, received his Bachelor's degree in meteorology from Florida State University and Master's Degree from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He served as the East Coast forecast manager for Surfline in the early 2000's before spending the better part of the next decade working for NOAA's National Weather Service. While in the NWS, Mark spent time as a forecaster on both the East and West Coasts, the National Hurricane Center, and eventually became the Marine Program Manager for NWS's Eastern Region Headquarters. During his career, he has authored several papers on marine forecasting, implemented several marine forecasting tools into operations, and has been in the thick of several high impact weather events ranging from tornadoes to winter weather to hurricanes. When Mark isn't looking at weather charts or surfing, he enjoys spending time with his family and convincing himself that this is the year that FSU football gets back to where they were in the 90s.
Dan Martin, Forecast Director, has been developing weather web sites since 1995. In 1998, the "Virtual Buoy" was created. It was the first program of its kind, dynamically converting weather model data into a web page forecast. This laid the foundation of Buoyweather, a global weather company. Dan has a degree in Economics and started his career life in the financial industry programming stock and futures trading systems. After moving to the middle of the ocean (Maui), Dan decided to focus on weather programs to help plan his ocean activities. Dan has been an avid sailor and water sport enthusiast his whole life. His time off is spent fishing around the Hawaiian Islands with his family...weather permitting of course.
Robin Walker, Vice President of Advertising sales. After working as a Financial Advisor/Rule 144 Specialist at Morgan Stanley during one of the deepest and longest bear markets in recorded history, Robin Walker joined Surfline Inc./Buoyweather/Fishtrack to sell ads, catch a few waves and party with the Foster's Girls. In addition to having been an All-Big West Selection tennis player, Robin is a self-styled go-getter who does not understand the word "No" -- so don't even try using it around him. Robin likes light beer, warm-water point breaks and "selling stuff." PLEASE CALL FOR ADVERTISING RATES!
George Roletter, Vice President Subscriptions and Product Marketing, leads the subscription business and products, marketing, product marketing, and customer service functions for the company. Prior to Surfline, George was an executive at consumer Internet media and e-commerce company Autobytel. At Autobytel, George led a team to create and launch a new auto entertainment and buying site MyRide.com. Prior to Autobytel, George was leader of the consumer web Studio at AOL. During his AOL career, George led product management, web development, content, photography, and video operations. George's career passion and motivation is extracting value and creating monetization opportunities by analyzing consumer behavior and markets. George grew up on Oahu's west side, and earned a degree from Michigan State University.
Brian J. Mezger, Vice President of Technology, leads the company's efforts on infrastructure, development and innovation. Previously, he was Director of Interactive Services at Airborne Media, a multi-platform media company, and Director of Interactive Product Development for Freedom Communications, Inc. His extensive experience comes from leading teams in the development and successful executions of enterprise-level interactive products and solutions ranging from complex content delivery systems, ad operations and systems, web analytics, search and large-scale SEO, user-submitted content tools, and third-party solution integration. Brian holds a B.S. in Business Administration from CSUF, born and raised in Southern California, and couldn't imagine not living close to the ocean.
Graeme Rae serves as Chief Scientist for Surfline, Buoyweather and Fishtrack. Since 1993, Rae served as the manager, developer and creative source behind Surfinfo.com, a popular surfing Internet site focused on the East Coast of the United States. In 2000 he joined Surfline.com overseeing all aspects of data collection, creation, verification and dissemination. Rae holds a Ph.D. in Ocean Engineering and served as an Assistant Professor of Ocean Engineering at Florida Institute of Technology from 1993 and as a Visiting Professor of Ocean Engineering at Florida Atlantic University through 1997. His British accent is often mistaken for Australian, which pisses him off. He also steadfastly refuses to admit that 204's doesn't have waves.
Charlie Levine, Editor of Fishtrack.com, grew up boating and fishing in the Northeast. Summers were spent chasing striped bass and bluefish from the local jetties and working with his father aboard the family's charter boat, Good Times. After attending college in Colorado and earning a degree in English and journalism, Charlie found his way back to the East Coast where he landed a job at Soundings Magazine. That led to editorial positions at The Fisherman, Sport Fishing Magazine and Marlin Magazine. After more than a decade working in print, Charlie followed the mass migration online and took a post as Editorial Director of BDoutdoors.com. He led a rebranding effort and relaunched the forum as an online magazine. In 2013 Charlie joined the Fishtrack team as editor, and works with contributors around the globe to provide readers with timely, entertaining articles that fuels their passion for fishing.
Board of Directors
Jeff Berg is Chairman of the Board and chief pilot of Surfline, Inc. He is also Chairman of NTN Buzztime, Inc., a publicly traded provider of interactive games. From 2002 to 2007 Berg was on the Board of Surfrider Foundation. In 1999, he co-founded Swell, a direct marketer of surf apparel and accessories, which was sold to Billabong in 2009. Between 1995 and 2000, Mr. Berg was Chairman of AccentHealth, a network that provided segmented, patient education-oriented TV programming to over 10,000 medical waiting rooms. Mr. Berg has over 20 years experience as a professional investor, having founded Matador Capital Management in 1993, and before that working for 9 years at Raymond James Financial as an institutional securities analyst. He pilots an Aero Commander throughout the Caribbean, Central America and Baja in support of the company's R&D and quality control programs.
Kevin O'Connor - O'Connor Ventures Co-founder and formerly the CEO and Chairman of DoubleClick, Inc (Nasdaq: DCLK). DoubleClick was sold in July of 2005 to the private equity firm Helman & Friedman for $1.1 billion and was recently acquired again by Google.
Kevin was a "hardcore coder" that helped launch other software entities including ICC and Internet Security Systems (Nasdaq: ISSX). He created one of the first products to allow PCs to tie into local area networks in 1989. ISSX was acquired in 1992 by DCA where Kevin became Vice President of Research. DCA merged with Attachmate in 1995. ICC was sold to IBM in 2006 for $1.3 billion. In addition to being a serial entrepreneur, he was a wrestling coach at Cincinnati Moeller from 1988-1992, now one of the top wrestling programs in the country.
Today, Kevin is focused on O'Connor Ventures providing seed capital to startups. He is currently CEO and co-founder of FindTheBest. FindTheBest is an objective comparison search engine that allows you to find a topic, compare your options and select the best choice for you. Ultimately, FindTheBest's search engine allows you to make faster and more informed decisions by allowing you to easily compare all the available options. Kevin sits on a number of private company boards that he has invested in, including 9 Star, Travidia, FoundValue and Procore. Kevin is also the author of the book, "Map of Innovation: Creating Something Out of Nothing". Guest lectures at universities including U of M, Harvard, NYU, Columbia, MIT, UCSB, University of Colorado, and Westmont.
He holds a Bachelor's Degree in electrical engineering from the University of Michigan with honors in 1983 and received an honorary doctorate from his dad's alma mater, Lawrence Technological Institute and sits on the Board of Trustees at Crane Country Day School. Kevin loves to surf, ski, lift and play basketball and still coaches his kid's soccer, basketball and wrestling teams. He's happily married with three great kids.
Josh Litwin is one of the Founders and Principals of Memento Press, a retailer of books, calendars and journals that captures customer's photos and texts; their most precious memories. Before Memento, Josh was the Chief Operating Officer for Ofoto, the world's leading online digital photo services company. Prior to Ofoto, Mr. Litwin provided strategy consulting and executive coaching services to a number of online businesses through Protrero Advisors. From 1998 to 2000, Josh was head of operations for Babycenter, the leading baby products superstore on the web. Prior to its acquisition by Etoys in 2001, Babycenter won top industry awards including the 2000 Webby Commerce award, unseating Amazon's three-year run. BabyCenter remains the leading company in its category, now owned by Johnson and Johnson. Josh holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and graduated cum laude with a degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Princeton University. Josh is a sailor and a surfer.
Philip N. Kaplan - Philip N. Kaplan has been active since 2008 as an operating partner to private equity firms, currently serving as CEO of dbtech, a healthcare IT company that provides billing and administration systems to hospitals and other healthcare organizations. Phil also serves as a board member of a Surfline.com. Previously, Phil served as an executive officer of three different NASDAQ-listed technology companies since 2000, most recently as a board member and then Chief Operating Officer of healthcare IT company Quality Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: QSII) from June 2008 to June 2010.
From February 2007 to June 2008, Phil served as Chief Strategy Officer of Internap Network Services Corporation (NASDAQ: INAP), which acquired VitalStream Holdings, Inc (NASDAQ: VSTH) in February 2007. Phil co-founded VitalStream in 2000 and served as its President, Chief Operating Officer and a member of its Board of Directors. VitalStream provided software as a network service that enabled enterprise and media clients to deliver video and audio experiences to global online audiences. Prior to VitalStream, Phil was a co-founder and owner of two other successful technology businesses.
Phil is active philanthropically, currently holding the positions of immediate past Chairman of Jewish Federation and Family Services of Orange County, CA and board member of the Comedy Cures Foundation of New York, NY. Phil has serves as an adviser to several other non-profit organizations, including Chabad and Hillel. He surfs in California and on Long Island, NY.
Tyler Collins, oldest son of Sean Collins, is principle Founder and CEO of Swell Marketing Inc, a fast growing internet marketing firm focused on analyzing, planning, & executing ROI driven online marketing programs for small and large websites. In 2010, Collins launched Orange County SEO, a search engine optimization agency based in Huntington Beach, Ca. Orange County SEO helps business owners and professionals maximize internet visibility and revenue through search engine optimization, paid search advertising, and website conversion optimization.
Collins is a C-Level search marketing consultant for Hurley International, SWELL, Daz3D, and over a dozen other Fortune 500 and startup ventures. He manages multiple cross-functional teams of professionals for developing, launching, and delivering online marketing initiatives. He possesses strong knowledge of Internet marketing & advertising platforms, web technologies, organic search optimization, social media marketing, web development process and delivery, content management systems, and best practices.
Outside the professional sector, Tyler is a life coach and mentor to young adults, and gives regular motivational talks at high schools. He is an avid surfer and environmentalist, loves chasing waves in Baja, and often starts the morning reading Google's latest organic search algorithm patent, washed down with some strong black coffee.