I know there are more beloved surfers in San Diego – think Skip Frye. I know there are more decorated surfers in San Diego Rob Machado comes to mind. There are more historically significant surfers from San Diego – how about Phil Edwards or Bob Simmons. 

But for my money Joe Roper really personifies San Diego surfing. Maybe it’s his blue collar work ethic – he’s a hard worker; and he had to work hard to establish himself in the rough territorial waters of  1970s  era Big Rock and Windansea. 

Maybe I’m a bit bias; as a young surfer in San Diego in the late 70s I devoured Surfer magazine old and new; and joe roper — along with the other Joe – Joe Buran — were San Diego’s finest representatives in Hawaii. 

And the camera doesn’t lie; the guy absolutely charges meaty barrels. 

Soul – defined by Merriam Webster dictionary is “a strong positive feeling as of intense sensitivity and emotional fervor”. Taken a little further the concept of Surfing soul–a still rather vague idea; and ambiguous…hard to put your finger on it; but we’ve all heard somebody say of another surfer, “that guy has soul” – Rabbit Kekai comes to mind. And you know it when you experience it, when you’re around someone like that. Yes, I know that surfing soul sounds rather trite and cliché – but if you know Joe Roper you know that his spirit permeates San Diego’s surfing soul. 

The Boardroom Podcast with Joe Roper. Let us begin.  


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