Surf Instructors

Meet some of our BCASI certified Instructors. We’re friendly, down to earth, and really fun to learn from!

Krissy. AKA Surf Momma.krissy2

As the owner of Surf Sister, this girl has put her heart and soul into this place, and you can tell. The amount of dedication, passion, motivation and respect she has for her customers and her staff is out of this world! Walk into the shop and she’s there greeting you with a smile ready to help you in whatever way possible. If you’re lucky enough to have her as your surf instructor you’ll sense the passion and knowledge oozing off of her. Take her out of the shop and you’ll discover she applies those same values to friendship and life. Known for owning one of the best tickle trunks, being the life of the party, and always knowing how to have a good time, you’ll definitely want to hang out with this girl!

Having grown up on the island she discovered surfing while in highschool. As soon as she could her and her 3 friends packed up the car and made the move to Tofino. Never to look back. When not working, you’ll find her socializing, surfing, on the beach walking the Mexican Dog Cartel, hanging with her main man Griz or gone on some crazy adventure somewhere.


Steph!BB poster chilts steph

The girl with style and mad skills. Put a guitar or fiddle in her hand and she’ll sing and twang and make you dance all night long. That’s just what her band, the Little Saturdays, tend to do! Put a surfboard under her feet and she will dominate the water and surf better than most of the boys. Having competed in pretty much every contest that’s happened in Tofino, she’s the one to watch out there. She’ll say that the pinnacle of her competitive career was getting a first place finish at the first and only Soft Top Challenge of 2006. How can one top that! She wasn’t always that good. In 2003 she first braved the waters in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, teaching herself on a 6’4 rounded pintail with a sick flame paint job. She may have looked cool, but it was the most inappropriate board to learn on. It didn’t matter. She was hooked. She moved to Tofino, joined forces with her friends at Surf Sister and it’s been home ever since.



Our English mate. She loves horses, adventuring, traveling, dirt biking, golfing, fighting fires and playing guitar. Especially her air guitar. Ask her to show you her Alice Cooper imitation! She’s been surfing since she was 19 – and is more or less pro. She did win the Womens Longboard Division in the 2015 Tofino Ripcurl Pro after all. When not in Tofino, you’ll find her traveling and working in places like Mexico or Morocco, putting a smile on every surfer-in-training’s face with her killer corny jokes and infectious positive attitude. A Surf Sister since 2005, and a proud permanent resident of Canada since 2013, she’s not going anywhere! And we’re glad. Because she kicks butt not only in the water and as an instructor, but as a friend, and sister. We are lucky to have her!


shezzaSherrie. Shez. Shezza.

Our traveling gypsy Surf Sister who loves to travel the world and share her passion for surfing, adventure and life everywhere she goes. We were lucky enough to have her make her way to Tofino in 2009 when she decided to take a break from the snow/ mountain life to get back into the water. Having grown up surfing on the East Coast of Australia, she had to do a little adjusting to the cold but that hasn’t stopped her from coming back summer after summer! When it’s cold, rainy and dark here you’ll find her instructing in places like El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Mexico. This girls got sick style and can (wo)manhandle her longboard like nobody’s business. She’s damn good on a short board too! A great partner in crime for any type of adventure, Shez is passionate, inspired, motivated and driven and it shows in everything she does! Please Canada. Let us keep her!


Emily aka ET.

This girl has been working at Surf Sister since she started walking. A real Tofino local (they are hard to find in this town), who has been lucky enough to grow up with this paradise as her backyard. When not working, studying or surfing, she’s out running with her dog Ellie. She’s not just another pretty face. This girls got brains and will soon be all grown up and have a real job as a nurse. But she will always be a Surf Sister at heart.



Nicole started surfing while she was living in Australia back in 2004 and like the old saying goes ‘it was on like Donkey Kong’. Since then her passion for the surfing has taken her around the globe. Nicole’s passions are surfing, traveling, living abroad, good adventures, napping, dinner parties, games nights, hazelnut tortes, chocolate and nutella. Her dislikes are windshield wipers going when there’s no rain, hair on soap, olives, and tomatoes (all though she’s trying to get over all that). Nicole is an avid yogi and is trained in the Feldenkrais Method. She also recently created a dvd series called Fit to Rip, which is all about refining the movements you do while surfing. Check out her site at



A mountain girl who finally listened to the calling of the ocean and officially moved to Tofino in 2014. It wasn’t only the waves and clean water that drew her here. It was the beauty, the empty beaches and the opportunity to be salty and sandy all day long! An avid car camper, she’s got the best camping kitchen set around and knows how to make the best gluten free camping crepes you’ve ever had. If you want to impress her, build her a fire and cook her a hotdog. She loves hotdogs. Watch for her out there in the ocean. She’s the one charging on the soft top, training to be the World Softtop Champion!


Emily. AKA Grubber.emily

This girl is super passionate and stoked to share her knowledge in anything to do with nature, the ocean and surfing. She’s our big nature lover who will probably save the world one day. Originally from Ontario, she started surfing when she first moved to Tofino in 2011 and has lived on the ocean ever since. After spending 2014 traveling and teaching surfing in New Zealand we snapped her up to join the Surf Sister team and we’re not letting her leave! She rips on her shortboard, and loves to push herself and get after it. If she’s not out in the ocean, she’s busy exploring the beaches, rivers, lakes and forests, getting all geeky in a cool way. If you see berries on your walk down to the beach, ask Emily if you can eat them and she will give you the thumbs up or thumbs down!



Our little sister, who often keeps us all in check and acts like our big sister! Born and raised here in Tofino, she became interested in surfing when she was 15. When she’s not busy taking photos, studying and going to university we are blessed with her presence here at Surf Sister. She educates all us old girls on the ways of the ‘new generation’ and inspires us to be more direct and out there, especially when it comes to boys! She loves the fact that when she paddles out to surf in Tofino there’s often just as many chicks in the water as there are guys. She thanks Surf Sister for inspiring so many women to get out there!



Our ‘city girl’ who often has flashy fun colours in her hair. Back in 2007 she was a student here at Surf Sister, where she learned from the best. She knew that one day she too would be a surf instructor and sure enough, in 2015 it happened. Tofino is her dream come true. To her nothing beats surfing and working with a solid crew of girls with such a beautiful backdrop. When not being a surf bum, you’ll find her being responsible at her ‘real job’ or on the beach walking her crazy pigtail eared dog Jackson!


ayns nexpa 2011Aynsley.

Mexico has won Ayns over, but we are lucky enough to have her bless us with her presence over the summer months! It was back in Mexico that she first attempted surfing, and even after a near drowning experience she realized that quitting that day was not an option. She was hooked. She’s been working for Surf Sister since 2008 and also teaches surfing and yoga in Mexico. If you’re lucky enough to have her as your teacher you’ll be mesmerized by her calm presence and soothing voice. She will leave you feeling confident and ready to charge!


Rhiannonrhi Balian

Rhiannon is an Assistant Manager and surf instructor and was imported from the UK 10 years ago, when she started with Surf Sister. The UK does not want her back, so now she can be found surfing her 6’0 thruster in Canadian waters. Rhiannon has surfed in France, the UK, Costa Rica, Hawaii, Mexico, Morocco, California and quite possibly other countries as well. Aside from surfing, Rhiannon excels at the art of sarcasm, chopping wood, and dog training/whispering. She also has a degree in Sports Science.



Our sweet Kar Kar arrived at the sisterhood 6 years ago and has been a part of the team ever since. Karley gets around…the world that is. She used to work on yachts and has traveled extensively through Africa, Mexico, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Mexico, Morocco, the Caribbean and Europe. Karley usually surfs a short board and occasionally a quad fish or longboard. Fun facts about Karley are she has 3 legged cat named Lewis, she plays the mandolin in a bluegrass band, she’s a wicked photographer and she loves cereal more than you do.


Laurenlauren pavones

Lauren has been teaching at Surf Sister for 6 seasons, and is good at a lot of things, surfing being one of them. Other skills include skiing, mountain biking, boating, intertidal foraging, interior design, and art. She has also been sighted rollerblading!? Being the most accident-prone Surf Sister, it is ironic that Lauren holds safety certificates in everything from lifesaving to avalanche rescue. She often works ski patrol in the winters as well. It is rare to find Lauren without some sort of disgusting oozing scab or injury. Be careful, Lozza.



Jess is banjo wheeling hairdresser who we hired while on the dancefloor of the Legion. When Jess isnt teaching surfing and sharing her stoke she is likely at her shop Salty Dolls Hair Salon making the world prettier one ‘do at a time. In her down time Jess can be found cruising on her longboard, hanging out with her sideckick dog Georgia Brown or plucking her banjo with her fellow surf sisters in the bluegrass  band, The Poor Pistols.  Jess’s surf adventures have taken her to Nicaragua, Indonesia, California, Hawaii, Mexico and Panama.