About Us

Our vision is for a healthy coastal culture.
We promote surfing as a positive lifestyle and engage in the surrounding community, ultimately building a stronger coastal community.

Learn about membership
Meet the WBLA Board

WBLA’s founding members identified a need for the camaraderie they found in the ocean to expand to the shores, as some fellow surfers were facing rough waters in their lives. By coming together, they were able to lift their fellow surfers up during troubled times.

WBLA continues to spread the stoke among surfers in the Wrightsville Beach area by having fun together while continuing to assist families in need – with meals, financial support, and educational scholarships.

Paco Strickland Scholarship
WBLA Photo Album
In Memorium

Executive Board

  • President – Shawn O’Donnell
  • Vice President – Heidi Ziehm
  • Secretary – Jen Gallo
  • Treasurer – Wes Robinson
  • Sergeant of Arms – Herb Walker

Former WBLA Presidents

  • Billy Curry   Aug 3,1999 – Aug 1, 2000
  • David Wilson   Aug 1, 2000 – Aug 7, 2001
  • Billy Curry   Aug 7, 2001 – Dec 3, 2002
  • David (Scoop) DiBlasi  Dec 3, 2002 – Oct 5, 2004
  • Michael Whitmore  Oct 5, 2004 – Jan 2, 2007
  • Robert Choate  Jan 2, 2007 – Aug 5, 2008
  • John Beausang  Aug 5, 2008 – Feb 3, 2010
  • Laurance Bergman  Feb 3, 2010 – Apr 4, 2011
  • Shawn O’Donnell  Apr 4, 2011 – Jan 5, 2016
  • Stan Plotner  Jan 5, 2016 – Aug 6, 2018
  • Laura Shearin Walsh  Aug 6, 2018 – Aug 1, 2022
  • Shawn O’Donnell  Aug 1, 2022 – present

In Memorium

We cherish our members who are no longer with us.

Michael Whitmore

Aug 16, 1950 – Aug 26, 2015

Mike Whitmore

Michael grew up surfing Cocoa Beach. He was drafted into  the Vietnam War and received 2 Bronze Stars. He lived in the Pisgah Mountains and pursued traditional furniture design and construction. He was asked to show his chairs at the Smithsonian but he walked away from that to return to his humble life by the beach.  As the Godfather of the North End, he could be found there or home in his shop working on a new board design.

William “Paco” Strickland

Nov 15, 1952 – Jan 21, 2013

Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association Paco Strickland
Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association Paco Strickland

Paco was a man of many talents. In addition to music, which he performed for more than four decades; he was an avid athlete who ran numerous marathons, swam, cycled, and led popular spin classes and extreme workouts. He took up surfing in his fifties and was in the water with fellow Wrightsville Beach Longboarders almost daily until his diagnosis.

Michael Malone

Sept 18, 1948 – Jun 21, 2010

Mike loved surfing for the joy and freedom it gave him, and for the community of fellow surfers. We lived in Wilmington for 20 years, some of his happiest years because he could surf even if the waves were only one foot high. He was well loved and always missed.

Tiko Losano

Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association Surf Tiko Losano
Tiko Losano
Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association
Tiko Losano

He was the most selfless, genuine person that ever walked this earth. He gave to strangers as he would his own family. Always trying to spread a positive vibe. He played hard and loved even harder.

Donate by mailing to:
Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association
P.O. Box 541
Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480

Thanks for your support!