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Lisa Still Surfs Better Than You

Orange County-based surf icon Lisa Andersen is just plain cool.


No Orange County surfer is more iconic than Lisa Andersen. There are other local athletes who have higher name recognition, but none has been as transformative as Andersen. With her run of world titles in the 1990s, she single-handedly raised the profile of women’s surfing to a global level, shattered stereotypes of female surfers, inspired a whole generation of women to get in the water, and was the face that sold a million board shorts for the Roxy brand.

13 Andersen’s age when she began surfing.

16 Andersen’s age when she arrived in Huntington Beach in May 1985 as a runaway from Ormond Beach, Florida.

$210 The amount of money Andersen had when she left home.

“I’m not a bad person. I did not commit a crime and I will not be treated like this. I’m leaving and I’m going to be the number one surfer in the world.”
— The contents of the note Andersen left for her parents, a few months after her father destroyed her only surfboard.

Bundaberg Rum Surfmasters The name of the first contest Andersen won in 1990.

21 The total number of Andersen’s contest victories. The victories came at events in Australia, France, Indonesia, Japan, Portugal, South Africa, and the USA.

$322,660 Andersen’s career contest earnings.

“Lisa defined a new era for women’s surfing and changed what men thought of how women surfed. She’s the young girl that grew up too fast in one way, but couldn’t wait to get there and never wanted to look back.”
— Eleven-time ASP World Champion Kelly Slater

5 The number of weeks between the birth of Andersen’s daughter Erica and her reaching the final of an event during the 1993 season.

2 The number of women listed in Surfer Magazine’s “25 Most Influential Surfers of the Century” in 1999. Kathy Kohner, a.k.a. “Gidget” was one; Andersen was the other.

76 Andersen’s ranking in Sports Illustrated for “Greatest Sportswomen of the Century” in 2000.

Billabong Pro France The name of the last contest Andersen won in 2000.

Global Brand Representative The job title Andersen currently holds at Quiksilver/Roxy.

“I have admired Lisa since I was a little girl and began surfing. She has inspired and coached me.  She has helped women’s surfing gain respect. Lisa represents our sport with power, beauty and style.”
— Courtney Conlogue, ASP Women’s World Tour surfer from Santa Ana

Fearlessness The name of Andersen’s biography by Nick Carroll.

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