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jettygirl online surf magazine's second annual new year's feature

Shannon Switzer, Second Annual Jettygirl New Year's Feature, 2009. Jettygirl Online Surf Magazine

Presented by Blue Surf Sanctuary

shannon switzer photo by chris grant

JettyGirl: While faltering economies, political turmoil and energy issues dominated most of the headlines during the past year, much of 2008's good news slipped through the cracks. What's the best thing that happened to you in 2008 and what are you most hopeful for in 2009?
Shannon Switzer: I have to say the best thing that happened to me was witnessing the peaceful change of power that accompanied the elections this year. Whether one voted for Obama or not, I think we can all agree it was a historical and momentous election that broke barriers. After living through Kenya's elections and watching the country being torn-apart by violence and death due to a similarly pivotal change in power, it struck me just how much I took for granted that our political process -although flawed- is generally peaceful and not followed by death and destruction. I previously just assumed that's how it was but now realize I am truly lucky to live in this country, and I am thankful to our founding fathers for crafting such an ingenious political system.

JG: Tell us about the first time you ever stood up on a surfboard. Where was it and what were you riding?
SS: I was at Grandview in Encinitas on a yellow waterlogged 6'4" Donald Takayama that my dad rode back in the day. I was by myself with a big grin.

JG: What is your current favorite board? In 2009 do you have any plans to experiment with different surfboard designs, materials or fin configurations?
SS: My shaper, Sean Reilly, just made me a sick 6' 3" Bonzer...I'd never ridden one until now, and I'm in love! I hope to surf it on a variety of waves and try to get it more dialed in.

JG: Do you have any heroes? If so, who and why?
SS: C.S. Lewis, because he has a brilliant intellect AND incredible passion for knowing God. Fatima Ahmed Ibrahim, because she has been brave enough to risk death and take a stance against the Islamic Fundamentalists in her native country of Sudan, who are responsible for the horrible genocide going on in Darfur. And, my parents of course!

JG: In 2009 we'll see the best single maneuver ever done by a female surfer. Who do you think will pull the move and what do you think it will be?
SS: I think its gonna be a rodeo backflip Jordy-Smith-style, and I'm banking on local ripper Lauren Sweeney pulling it off.


Next Surfer: Silvana Lima  


For those of you who like to jump around instead of going one by one, here's the complete list of surfers...

Alizee Arnaud Elizabeth Pepin Silva Kassia Meador Nicole Grodesky Schuyler McFerran
Amee Donohoe Erica Hosseini Kelly Nicely Nikita Robb Serena Brooke
Anna Garaway Frieda Zamba Kim Mayer Nikki Brooks Shaney Jo Darden
Anne Beasley Weber Heather Hudson Crummer Kim Mearig Paige Hareb Shannon Switzer
Ashley Lloyd Heather Jordan Kyla Langen Pam Burridge Silvana Lima
Bethany Hamilton Holly Beck Kym Campbell Pauline Ado Sofia Mulanovich
Betty Depolito Jacqueline Silva Lauren Sweeney Pauline Menczer Sormarie Nieves
Chanelle Sladics Jenna Balester Laurina McGrath Prue Jeffries Stacey Guy
Christa Alves Jenni Flanigan Layne Beachley Rebecca Woods Tammy-Lee Smith
Claire Bevilacqua Jessi Miley-Dyer Leah Dawson Rochelle Ballard Yvonne Mendel
Cori Schumacher Josie Drude Lynne Dickinson Rosy Hodge  
Courtney Conlogue Julie Cox Marissa Graham Sage Erickson  
Danielle Beck Kaitlin Maguire Mary Osborne Sally Fitzgibbons  
Darlene Conolly Karin Kendrick Megan Abubo Sam Haddad  
Donna von Hoesslin Karlee Mackie Nicola Atherton Sara Taylor  


Image Caption: Picture someone swimming with sharks, climbing trees with chimpanzees, driving down war-ravaged streets in a faraway land...what image comes to mind? Meet Shannon Switzer, San Diego surfer-girl-turned-worldwide-adventurer. Shannon's one of the most inspirational people I know...someone that dreams big dreams and turns them into larger realities...and she has a heart of pure gold too. Photo: Chris Grant /

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Additional Resources:

Shannon Switzer Photography

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