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2016 AWSI Board of Directors New Seat Nominations and Profiles


Manager, MACkite Boardsports,
I am fortunate enough to say that the direction of my career was changed by the sport of kiteboarding. During a wonderful experience in the Florida Keys with the Otherside, I was introduced to a lifestyle that allowed me to truly enjoy my work. Throughout my life, I've taken a few different directions - from a brief stint in the recording industry, to litigation support in Chicago and New York, to Pryde Group in Miami. I found my current position to be a supercharged version of my childhood job - retail in the outdoor industry. During my tenure at MACkite, we've experienced some amazing successes and learned greatly from our mistakes, creating one of the most dynamic and exceptional environments I've seen. The team we've developed also happens to be some of my best friends - a rarity, for sure!
My background and perspective allows me to see an industry in its infancy, and I'm most excited to be a part of it's continued growth. This growth, however, is contingent on an industry that understands how to maintain a safe and enjoyable experience for it's participants. I feel that as a retailer, I am able to speak on behalf of a large amount of our community and effectively voice their concerns and opinions. 
As AWSI-related sports continue to expand, I hope to be able to continue to shape the direction to allow for many more to experience the same opportunity that I was able, and have their lives changed by things they love. 





Neil Hutchinson
Born in London, England 4-26-1970
Moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1991
Started kiteboarding in 1998
In 2000 started working for Slingshot Sports
Presently work for Slingshot Sports as sales manager for the eastern side of the USA, Caribbean, South and Central America
Ex pro rider, owned my own school and retail shop
Mainly kite in Florida


Andre Niemeyer
"Trying not to find limits, but define possibilities,"​ that's one of Niemeyer's driving principles. He is the founding president of the stand up paddle industry association and chairman of its research committee; publisher of Supconnect, one of the 4 leading publications in stand up paddling; and he is CEO of i9media, a digital marketing agency in San Diego, which services premium brands in surfing, snowboarding, stand up paddling and more. His background centers around 3 main areas (media, research, and action sports), with experiences like a Ph.D. program at USC, public speaking, panel hosting, consulting, and beyond.



AWSI Freight Savings Plan Offers More!

AWSI Freight Savings Plan offers more choices and better discounts than ever before. This can help you save on everything from an overnight envelope to a full truckload.  


Small Parcel Delivery

Shipping SOS is a new service of the AWSI Freight Savings Plan, offering savings on small parcel shipping. Deep discounts are available on express, ground, residential and international shipping. Click here or call Siriani at 800 554-0005 for details.

Less-than-truckload (LTL) Shipping

Shipping windsurf, kite, or SUP boards, inbound to your business, outbound to your customers or third-party? Call 800 554-0005 for a quote. Siriani offers exceptional pricing with an extensive portfolio of LTL carriers, plus unparalleled customer service.

Not yet enrolled in the AWSI Freight Savings Plan? Sign up at For more information or to get a rate quote, call Siriani at 800 554-0005, email or go to





2015 AWSI Board of Director New Seat Nominations and Profiles. 




Sales Representative, West Coast and Canada

Northsports, Inc.

I bring a good deal of experience to the board from a diverse background both within and outside of the wind/watersports industry.  I was raised on the east coast where I spent summers teaching sailing and windsurfing as a teenager.  Obviously, the natural progression was from there to landscape architecture and on to finance in New York City, where I spent 7 years working as an options specialist.  Throughout my time on Wall Street I was always drawn to the water, using most vacation days in Hatteras or the Caribbean.  I wisely invested the money I saved working finance in an old sailboat, on which I sailed to California to work with my brother and his business partner when they opened a kiteboarding shop in San Diego.  Once there I helped as a shop manager, a kite instructor, and I oversaw the development of a sail repair loft.  It was also my project to branch the shop into SUP, for which I managed both sales and a school/rental program.  

After several years in SoCal I was offered a position as a sales rep/account manager at North Sports, where I continue to work today.  I started as a windsurf, SUP, and kite rep for North Sports' various brands.  My current position has me working primarily in kite and SUP interacting with shops all over Canada and the US.  I help manage North Kiteboarding's North American team riders, North American print ads, and assist in various logistics involved in purchasing/distributing North Kiteboarding gear and developing Amundson SUP.  I'm also active in contributing material to The Kiteboarder and SBC Kiteboard magazines, as well as being the voice for North Kiteboarding on various local, national, and international internet forums.  
As a member of the kiteboarding community and industry I have always worked toward increasing public understanding of our sport while pushing the progression of the sport through sponsorship of riders, events, and communities.  I look forward to the opportunity to continue to push the progression of our industry as a whole as a member of the board of directors of the AWSI.  




Sales Manager for North America-Trident and Field Event Manager for North America-Trident. Dream Team International team member with Signature Board for Starboard.  

I have spent most of my life as professional athlete in kayaking, kiteboarding, and stand up paddling. Here are some of my career highlights: 
  • Co-Founder and CEO of Board of Missoula, Montana’s first snowboard shop 1989-1996
  • Designed and field tested several paddle shapes from the popular Adventure Technology bent shaft paddle which still sells today to a good majority of the shapes in Werner Paddles Sup lineup.
  • 8 Years Sales Representative experience.  Best achievement was taking my territory of 350K to 1.4 Mil in 4 years.
  • Dozens of top finishes in snowboarding, kayaking, kiteboarding, and sup though out my career. 
  • 4 Time National Whitewater Stand Up Paddle Champ (Colorado 2008-2012)
  • 4 Time GoPro Mtn Games SUP Sprint Champion
  • Professional Announce and emcee at paddling events and live webcast hosting
  • Professional Photographer with images published in catalogs and magazines in the paddling industry
  • Professional Videographer Produced and edited The Ultimate Guide to Stand Up Paddling
  • US Distributor for SUPSKIN drysuits with signature model for 2015
  • Signature Board with Starboard Standup Paddleboard’s 2014, 2015, 2016 (2 more boards and a whitewater paddle)
  • World known as a pioneer for whitewater freestyle kayaking and whitewater sup
  • Participated in over 150 SUP competitions 
  • ACA Level 1-2 SUP Instructor Certified
  • ACA Level 3 SUP Whietwater SUP Instructor Certified
  • WSUPA Instructor Trainer
  • 19 years of attendance to Outdoor Retailer (multiple kayak brands, paddle brands, starboard)
  • 7 years attending Surf Expo                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                View photo in message                                                                                                                                  

Mike Duhaime

Kite Sales & Service

Pacific Boardsports, LLC

My name is Mike Duhaime and I am 29 years old. I grew up and spent most of my life in Orlando, FL.  In Florida I really got into wakeboarding, skateboarding and surfing until I learned how to kite in 2007.  I was a kite instructor for about a year and eventually it lead me to the Gorge to work at a ski resort and attempt to break in to the kiteboarding industry.  I was able to get a position with Naish Kiteboarding packing boxes and helping out with anything possible kite related.  Almost 4 years later I am now the kiteboarding sales manager for North America and I love my job.  I really enjoy the Hood River, and the people and activities that come along with it.  I participate on the board of directors for the Columbia Gorge Kiteboarding Association and have a passion for Kiteboarding, SUP, and all other boardsports.  I think being involved with the ASWI would be a great chance to create more relationships in the industry while supporting a great organization that advocates the advancement of the sports I love. 


Best Regards




How to Maintain Balance between Inventory Investment and Profit

Inventory Management

Maintaining a balance between inventory investment and profit can be challenging. If you stock too much inventory, your profits can dip. Too little and you might miss a sale. Ideally you maintain a smaller inventory but have a more frequent delivery schedule. This is where FedEx and the AWSI Freight Savings Plan can help.


FedEx offers day-definite shipping with FedEx Ground, backed by a money-back guarantee.* If the package is not delivered on the standard scheduled delivery day, you can request a refund or credit of your shipping charges. FedEx Ground service maps make it easy to plan inbound shipments so that you can stock only the amount of goods you require and plan delivery to suit your needs.


As an AWSI member, you can save up to 25% on select inbound FedEx Ground® shipments. Just sign up for the AWSI Freight Savings Plan. Enrollment is free, quick and easy. If you have questions or need help routing your inbound shipments, call Siriani at 1.800.554.0005.


*The FedEx Ground money-back guarantee applies to deliveries within the U.S. and to brokerage-inclusive shipments to Canada. Restrictions apply. For details, see the FedEx Ground Tariff.


For eligible FedEx® services and rates, contact your freight savings program provider, Siriani & Associates. All FedEx shipments are subject to the applicable FedEx Service Guide. FedEx service marks used by permission.


Great savings offered for AWSI Members on Father's Day Shipping