Mike Billgren, Master Instructor
Years surfing and competing: 23
Competitive Highlights: 5th 2004 Siargao Philippine International Pro Surf Cup, 2002 College Team National Champion, 2002 UCSB Team Captain, 1998 College Team National Champion, 1st, 2001 NSSA Southwest Conference at Salt Creek, 1994 NSSA most improved athlete award, and many other finals and wins over the last 20+ years.
Travels: Puerto Escondido, Hawaii, Philippines, Indonesia, Haultuco, Puerto Vallerta, Cabo, Costa Rica
Bio: Mikey B was born in Santa Barbara and grew up in Carpinteria where he fell in love with the ocean and mountains at an early age. He was an avid boogy-boarder since the age of 7 and finally traded in the shark biscuit and fins for a proper surfboard at the age of 11. He picked up surfing quick with the prior ocean knowledge and started competing right away.
He was groomed by older generations at Tarpitz and Rincon and by competing in the old CSA’s – which were more often than not held at South Jetty in Ventura. At the age of 14, he moved to Ventura and began getting a taste of more powerful and hollow waves. He competed in NSSA Gold Coast events which further influenced and molded his surfing.
At age 17 the Momentum movement took a hold of Mikey B and he was on his way to Puerto Escondido to get a taste of some real waves. That trip had a profound effect on his love for surfing – particularly big and hollow waves. He has since traveled to many places over the years feeding this desire and love.
Mike traveled for a few years and decided to go to back to school and attend UCSB. He was a regular fixture on the UCSB surf team from 1998 through 2002, including a win, and contributing to a couple of National Championship Victories. This is where he became good friends with Chris Keet, founder of Surf Happens. (However, the two became friends way back when they met at age 13)
Since 2001, Mike has worked with Chris Keet, organizing events, judging contests, instructing, and contributing to the vision of Surf Happens. Mikey B is a professional Wildland Firefighter for the US Forest Service and still gets in the water every day he can. He has been the Beach Marshall for the Rincon Classic from 2006-2010, helps Surf Happens with specialty events, and is a senior instructor.