Meet our Teen Camp Staff, with an introduction by founder and director Dustin Tester:Dustin Tester, Surf Camp Founder and Director
“Each year I’m amazed at the quality of camp staff that we bring together every summer. We are so blessed to have over half of our surf camp staff return year after year. And this year we are stoked to have a 100% alumni staff or campers apart of our dream team! Our 16 year veteran camper and staff member of MSG, Lucy Woodward, is taking a sabbatical from MSG this summer. She will be so missed by our staff and campers alike, but commend her for her years of loyalty and hard work building our surf camp to where it is today! We will also miss Raye, who is taking the summer off to raise her new little ‘surfer dude’ – congrats Raye!”
Assistant Director: Heather Nelson
Heather “H-Bomb” Nelson has been a surfer for the past 21 years. Since 1993, she has worked as an outdoor educator, taking groups to encounter the mountains, forests, and oceans as a guide and naturalist. She was blessed with meeting one of Maui’s greatest water women, Dustin Tester, at Ho’okipa Beach in 2004, and worked as an MSG instructor for 3 summers. She currently lives in Santa Barbara with her husband and 9-year-old daughter, Nalani, and is the 5th-grade teacher at the Waldorf School of Santa Barbara.
Surf Instructors:Meet Kelly!
Kelly has been a part of the MSG team since 2004. She is a professional surfer, an exceptional surf instructor and a proud prAna ambassador. Kelly’s graceful and innovative long boarding style serves as inspiration on the water, and her amazing spirit and zest for life is contagious to everyone she meets. Kelly also spends a lot of time giving back to the community, by hosting events such as her free Kelly Clinics and the annual XOXO event, empowering girls and women to come together through the sport of surfing.
Gina is also known as MSG’s “ambassador of aloha”. She goes above and beyond to ensure that all our students and their families have top-notched customer service. She’s been with MSG since 2011 & has been many roles with us. She teaches our surf lessons, helps run the surf school during our busy seasons, and teaches and mentors our teen girls at our summer surf camp. Everyone loves Gina’s approachable and compassionate personality both in and out of the water.
Kiki is our Brazilian powerhouse, gracing our girls with excellent surf coaching and heartfelt mentorship. This will be her 3rd summer as a lead surf instructor with MSG. Kiki brings out the best in our campers, while her passion and enthusiasm for empowering teen girls through surfing is infectious. Kiki also teaches year around at our surf school in between surfing all the best surf breaks in Maui. She’s a talented short boarder who moved from Brazil to Maui sixteen years ago.
Meet Natalie (with two of her surf students)
New to the MSG team this year, Natalie is from California where she grew up snowboarding in Lake Tahoe. “I used to come on vacation with my family as a child to Hawaii. I would sit on the beach and watch the surfers and told myself that one day I am going to move to Hawaii and become a surfer. When I first moved here after college, I did not have a surfboard but would borrow boards and go out on my own as much as I could. After many wipeouts I finally got the hang of it. My love for surfing grows everyday. Surfing has made me a better person. It has made me more humble, patient and loving. When I teach I get so excited when someone catches a wave because I know the stoked feeling that they are experiencing.
Chef: Krystine “Krys”
This will be Krystine’s second year with Maui Surfer Girls! She was born in Japan, grew up in Oahu and moved to Maui seven years ago. Her passion for food started in her senior year of high school, which carried on to college where she graduated from University of Hawaii’s Maui Culinary Academy. She is currently working at Tommy Bahama in Wailea. When she’s not running around in a kitchen, you can catch her running after her three-year old daughter, Naiya. “I’m looking forward to spending another summer with the campers and staff!”
Logistic Coordinator: Montana Rynda
Montana, who worked as a CIT for the last two years, and was a camper for the two summers before that, will serve as Heather’s assistant and logistical coordinator. Montana, from Toronto, Canada, is currently a student at the University of Ottawa, studying in psychology. “I am excited to meet the new campers and reunite with the returning campers. Every year girls come in with new stories and ideas that always make the camp a better place!”
First Aid Attendant: Meghan Daoust
Meghan attended women’s surf camp in January and is excited to return as our summer camp first aid attendant! Meghan lives, works, and surfs on an island in northern British Columbia (near Alaska) called Haida Gwaii. She also coaches girls high school volleyball, hikes and sometimes runs long distances, enjoys camping, and dabbles in the yarn arts. “Can you think of a better way to spend your summer than with MSG? I am SO excited to spend my summer surrounded by inspiring women and girls, to be outside, to be in the sun, to be a part of the cohesiveness and silliness and openness that camp brings.”
Van Driver: Kat Lipp
Kat worked as our assistant chef in the summer of 2013, and she joins us this year as a van driver and afternoon activity leader! Kat grew up in Cleveland, Ohio but now lives in Alaska and works as a fisheries biologist. She’s most looking forward to the ‘Surf, Sun, Sand and Costumes!’
Van Driver: Nicole Nakamura
Nicole is flying in from Boulder Colorado to join us after four summers as a camper, and one summer as the art director!
We can’t wait to meet all of our new campers and reconnect with all our returning campers this summer! See you soon!