Press Releases

TitleRenowned Surfer Paul Strauch Opens USD Aloha Lecture Series on Surfing
ContactLiz Harman
Contact E-mailharman, at
Contact Phone(619) 260-4682

Renowned surfer Paul Strauch will share his surfing experiences at the University of San Diego in a lecture “Lessons I Learned from the Duke,” Thursday, March 22 at 7 p.m. in USD’s Manchester Auditorium in the Manchester Executive Conference Center. The event is free and open to the public.


Winner of the 1963 Peru International, Strauch developed his freestyle surfing skills under the guidance of the late Duke Paoa Kahanamoku, known as the father of modern surfing. The talk is part of an undergraduate anthropology course at USD, “Surf Culture and Modern History” that exposes students to the Oceanic traditions of Aloha (respect) and Ohana (family).


The following day, Friday, March 23 at 8 a.m., Strauch will participate in a surfing event sponsored by the Pacific Beach Surf Club. Participants will gather in the parking lot of Tournaline Surfing Park at the foot of Tournaline Street.  


According to surf journalist Matt Warshaw, author of The Enclyclopedia of Surfing (2003), Strauch is credited as the first surfer to execute bottom turns in bigger waves, and is the creator of the “cheater five” or “stretch five” stance, sometimes called the “Strauch crouch.”

In the early 1960s, Duke Paoa Kahanamoku assembled some of the best young Hawaiian surfers to promote his surf wear and other products.  Team members included  Strauch, Joey Cabell, Fred Hemmings, and Butch van Artsdalen, each of whom went on to become well-known watermen and surfers. Strauch has been known throughout his life as the “gentleman surfer,” and remains today a true ambassador of aloha spirit.


The University of San Diego is a Catholic institution of higher learning chartered in 1949; the school enrolls approximately 7,500 students and is known for its commitment to teaching, the liberal arts, the formation of values and community service. The establishment of the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies will bring the University’s total number of schools and colleges to six.  Other academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences and the schools of Business Administration, Law, Leadership and Education Sciences, and Nursing and Health Science.



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