Rusty Preisendorfer, Class of 78

Born and raised in San Diego, Preisendorfer started surfing in eighth grade, back when Black’s Beach — his favorite hometown break — was still an undiscovered gem.

In the fall of 1971, Preisendorfer entered his freshman year at UCSD, and immediately joined the surf team. That same year, he created his first board brand: Starlight Surfboards.

Preisendorfer took a break from academia in 1972 and spent the next three years surfing for Gordon and Smith, where he also worked behind the scenes constructing surfboards.

Triumphant after his travels to some of the world’s most famous surf digs, Preisendorfer returned to UCSD in 1975 and chose a major in visual arts. He started his second label — Music! Surfboards — the same year.

After graduating in 1978, Preisendorfer began shaping for Canyon Glassing. He spent the following seven years perfecting his technique and developing his reputation as a top surfboard shaper.

Finally, in 1985, Rusty Surfboards was conceived.

The brand exploded, soon expanding to include skate, snow and wakeboarding gear and sell its merchandise throughout the Americas, Europe and Pacific Asia. In 2008, Preisendorfer was dubbed Surfing Magazine’s Shaper of the Year.

A San Diegan at heart, Preisendorfer still lives in La Jolla, an active fan and donor to Triton athletics, the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the UCSD Moores Cancer Center’s annual Luau and Longboard Invitational.

Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$2505
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The UCSD Guardian
$2505
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal