Honorary Membership

Brad Farmer

Founder of Surfrider Foundation Australia and co-founder of World Surfing Reserves


Born with sand between his toes on Australia’s surf mecca of the Gold Coast, Brad is a third generation surfer and world renowned coastal advocate. He studied journalism at the University of Southern Queensland and has published a number of hard hitting reports and papers since, shifting policy formulation around coastal and surfing management.  A former Greenpeace campaigner in the then Soviet Arctic and later a Senate Adviser in Federal Parliament, Brad has travelled to over 35 beach nations over as many years, by land, sea and air, exploring, researching and documenting the best – and most endangered beaches.  

Brad’s first published Surfing Guide to Australia in 1985 with Nat Young and his current book 101 Best Australian Beaches have been best sellers and he has set benchmarks for beach evaluation and surf amenity with co-author, eminent coastal geomorphologist, Professor Andy Short OAM.

Brad is a pioneer advocate for coastal preservation throughout a storied life of oceans, waves and beaches establishing many award winning non-for-profit organisations, to ensure future generations enjoy and value the salty environments of many nations.  In 2014 he was awarded the Hall of Fame Surfing Spirit Award for establishing and driving National Surfing Reserves.  He also co-founded World Surfing Reserves and the Gold Coast Surf Councilwhich develops Surf Management Plans.  Brad is the founder of Surfrider Foundation Australia and National Ocean Care Day.  Having written regularly for tRACKS surfing magazine for over 25 years and many other surfing related journals including Sustainable Stoke, his main focus now is the development of frameworks for surfing in the 21st century. He was appointed an Australia Day Ambassador by the NSW Government in 2012.  He still surfs often, around the pristine breaks of northern NSW.