Board & Staff

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  • Nik Strong-Cvetich
    Nik Strong-CvetichExecutive Director

    With many years of experience leading innovative conservation projects, Nik’s mission is to help provide coastal communities with the tools they need to be effective in valuing, protecting and managing their own natural resources.

  • Nick Mucha
    Nick MuchaDirector of Programs

    Nick comes to Save The Waves Coalition with over 7 years’ experience in the nonprofit sector of Santa Cruz, drawing on a skillset that includes executive leadership, development, and program delivery.

  • Gavin Comstock
    Gavin ComstockOperations and Program Manager

    Gavin Comstock is a graduate of Christopher Newport University, in Newport News, VA, with a BS in Biology. Originally a teacher who transplanted from the east to the west coast, he worked for both Santa Cruz and San Mateo county environmental education programs …

  • Amie Miller
    Amie MillerEvents Coordinator

    Amie joined Save The Waves as the Events Coordinator in 2013, after participating as a volunteer in organizing for the annual fundraiser Life is a Wave for many years. As a lifelong environmentalist and activist, working for Save The Waves combines her skill set for organization and passion for conservation.

  • Trey Highton
    Trey HightonSave The Waves Film Festival Director

    Born and raised in Virginia Beach, VA, Trey grew up around Hobie Cats and fishing boats and made frequent surf trips to the islands of the Outer Banks, NC. He followed an unconventional path of studies as an undergraduate that saw him through four universities on both coasts of the United States.

  • Lauren Parrino
    Lauren ParrinoCommunications Coordinator

    Originally from Ventura, Lauren is a graduate from UC Santa Cruz with a BS in Film Arts with Production and Sociology. She started working for Save the Waves as a local events volunteer, eventually joining the team for the #LobosPorSiempre campaign and coordinating communications.

  • Mara Arroyo Rodriguez
    Mara Arroyo RodriguezReserve Manager, Bahía de Todos Santos WSR

    Mara Arroyo grew up in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. She studied Architecture and completed a Masters Degree in Conservation of Architectural Patrimony at the Universidad Michoacana (UMSNH). 

    • William E. Rinehart Jr.
      William E. Rinehart Jr.Fundraising Coordinator

      When not in the ocean, William E. Rinehart Jr. aka Albino Rhino is a positive and entrepreneurial activist who helps campaigns, early stage start ups and nonprofits win public support. After six years in North Carolina helping an unknown law professor from Illinois become the President of the United States, William now lives in California and is often found in Hawaii. Eternal optimism, zest for life, love for others and Tecate all keep a smile on his face.


      • John Morley
        John MorleyRisks and Controls Manager

        John recently joined Save the Waves after retiring as the Director of Corporate Customs at Intel Corporation. He brings with him over 20 years of experience in leadership in a very complex and high paced environment. John’s passion for the ocean and surfing makes this next step with Save the Waves ideal. He plans to leverage his skills and experience to help Save the Waves to continue to drive positive environmental changes along our cherished coast lines.


        Board of Directors

        • Ted Chin
          Ted ChinTreasurer

          Ted graduated with honors from U.C. Berkeley in 1994, and received his MBA from the Haas School of Business, U.C. Berkeley in 2001.

          • Mark Thomas
            Mark ThomasBoard Member

            Mark has been trying to surf since 1970 when a wave bounced sideways off the Oceanside jetty and knocked out his front tooth.  Since then he’s not only figured out how to stand up, but also how to duck better.

            • Gregory A. Jones
              Gregory A. JonesBoard Member

              Greg Jones currently works for Google as the Global Director of New Business Sales.  As a “serial entrepeneur,” Greg is also an angel investor and early-stage advisor to several Internet companies.

              • Fernando Aguerre
                Fernando AguerreBoard Member

                Fernando Aguerre was born and raised in the coastal city of Mar del Plata, Argentina where, along with his brother and lifelong friend, Santiago, he got involved with surfing

                • Chad Nelsen
                  Chad NelsenBoard Member

                  Chad Nelsen is the CEO at the Surfrider Foundation where he has worked since 1998.

                  • Greg Benoit
                    Greg BenoitBoard Member

                    Greg has over 14 years integrating coastal and marine planning and policy with science and technology.

                    • Ryan Seelbach
                      Ryan SeelbachSecretary

                      Ryan is an Environmental Remediation Project Manager for the Presidio Trust, a federal government corporation created to administer and manage the Presidio of San Francisco.

                      • Will Henry
                        Will HenryBoard Member & STW Founder

                        Will Henry founded Save The Waves Coalition in 2001, in an effort to protect threatened waves on the island of Madeira. A regular visitor to Madeira since 1995, he was drawn to the island’s unique big wave spots and stunning natural scenery.

                        • Dean LaTourrette
                          Dean LaTourrettePresident

                          Dean was a founding board member for Save The Waves, helping grow the organization from its infancy, and served as Executive Director from 2007-2012.

                          • David Haynes
                            David HaynesInterim Board President

                            David Haynes is currently Managing Director for Greenmont Capital Partners, a venture capital firm located in Boulder, Colorado, which focuses on investing in green consumer products companies.