Surfrider’s new National Campaigns Manager Damien Cole steering the ship during the Fight For the Bight. Pic: Jarrah Lynch
17 June 20
If you came down in the last shower you’re may only be aware of Sean Doherty through his keep-the-bastards-honest Instagram page @seano888 – but most ocean lovers will know him from decades of writing about surfing, biographies on the Bra Boys and Michael Peterson, stints as editor of Tracks and SW, and in recent years, his environmental activism.
An inspired choice to take the national chair at Surfrider, as is the new Campaigns Manager, the dynamic conservationist Damien Cole. There’s a team!
A WORD FROM SEAN DOHERTY:
Just a quick note to let you guys know that I've been elected as Chairman of Surfrider here in Australia. It's a big job... and I'm stoked. It's a huge honour to work with a group that has done so much over the years to protect Australian coastlines and oceans.
But these Australian coasts have never faced greater challenges than they do right now.
All around the country, commercial development, population pressure, coastal erosion, offshore oil and gas expansion, pollution, plastic and weakened environmental protections threaten great swathes of our coast and the marine life that calls it home. And then sitting just over the horizon is the big one... the looming spectre of climate change.
The Australian coast will be an environmental frontline in the years ahead and a new kind of activism will be needed to save it.
During my work on the Great Australian Bight campaign I met thousands of Australians right around the country who care deeply for their local stretch of coast. I also saw the power they have when they turn up together to defend their home beaches. The Bight win has created a huge opportunity for surfers and coastal people to be heard on big issues like never before. Vested and commercial players will always speak up for their interests... Surfrider needs to be the voice for the Australian coast.
I'd like to thank the outgoing Chair, Susie Crick for all her hard work over the years, and at the same time welcome Damien Cole who has come on as Surfrider's National Campaigns Manager. In recent years nobody has thrown themselves into the defence of the Australian coast more than him.
For Surfrider to be strong - to be heard on big issues and to secure wins for local communities - we need a big membership base and I'd strongly encourage you to go online and sign up as a Surfrider member. Then, when the time comes, I'd encourage you to show up in defence of your local beach... or someone else's. It's time for the people of the Australian coast to mobilise in its defence. - Sean Doherty
SEAN’S INSTAGRAM: @seano888
DAMIEN COLE’S INSTA: @damienmcole
SURFRIDER INSTA: @surfrideraus