What Teen Phenom And Second-Generation Aerialist Did Volcom Just Sign?
Hint: she’s thirteen, can punt airs and knife pits, and is the daughter of one of progressive surfing’s true luminaries.
Given the financial firestorm many a surf team have undergone the last eight months—contracts slashed or flat-out ended, and limited opportunities for new additions—today’s news hits particularly hard: Volcom just added their most exciting new talent since Jack Robinson and Noa Deane.
As of today, a young lady many consider the world’s most progressive female, thirteen-year-old Sierra Kerr is the newest Stone Family member.
And we ain’t talking some loose, year-to-year signing. Sierra’s locked in long-term, and no one is more pleased about that than Papa Kerr.
“Volcom’s always done an amazing job of supporting their youth,” says Josh, who was instrumental in Sierra making the move. “They’ve always run their program like a family. They don’t bring on people very often and when they do, they’re in it for the long haul.”
Since 1991, Volcom has fostered teen talents across all board sports, from Ozzie Wright and Yago Dora, to Grant Taylor and Bryan Iguchi, and the very foundation of their women’s surf program, Coco Ho, who was hugely supportive of Sierra’s addition.
“With this decision there was a lot of input from Coco [Ho], who was so cool and supportive about getting Sierra on,” says Josh. “Coco’s been with them since she was 9, helping them build the whole women’s programs. Her and Sierra get along really, really well.”
“My relationship with Coco is super amazing,” says Sierra. “She’s like a big sister to me. She’s always smiling, happy, positive, and she rips. She inspires me, which gets me super excited to be on the team with her and the rest of the Volcom team.”
“It’s special seeing them together for me,” Josh says. “Because when I was first coming to Hawaii I was on the same team as Uncle Derek [Ho], and he looked out for me, so for Sierra thinking about spending time in Hawaii, having Coco and Uncle Mike and the whole Ho family is really special. Just the whole family there, the open arms they extend, it’s really incredible. Though, I don’t think she’ll be staying at the Volcom House quite yet.”
For those somehow unfamiliar with Sierra, she took home the inaugural Stab High Ladybirds all girls airshow in Waco, Texas last year, and is currently in Indonesia surfing and filming in this year’s Ladybirds event. While there’s little doubt competition will be a part of Sierra’s plan moving forward, there’s absolutely no pressure from the brand, nor from pops, to push it in a singlet the next few years.
“We had really great talks with everyone on the team there and we have a great plan to let Sierra move through these formidable years and develop,” says Josh. “Except for Stab High, I’ve sort of kept her out of amateur contest vibes. It just seems intense, but not really critical at her age. Surfing to me is way more about fun and passion than it is about a competitive drive. First and foremost, it’s for the love. Sierra definitely shares that mindset, so I want her to actually enjoy the whole process, and for it to never to feel like work. They have a really cool plan for Sierra, trips with the team and crew, lots of traveling. They’re really giving her opportunities to develop her skills. It’s such a great feeling knowing she’ll be under such good care, and that she can just be herself.”
“Volcom has always been dedicated to passion and progression especially when it comes to the next generation of board sports,” says Ryan Immegart, Volcom’s CMO. “Sierra is all that and more, setting her own path with her surfing plus anything she puts her mind to. More importantly, we love that she is focused on having fun first and foremost which is the foundation of being ‘True To This’. We are excited to support her however she chooses to evolve and are ecstatic to welcome her to the Volcom family for many years to come!”
“My favorite part about surfing right now is I’m just having fun,” says Sierra. “I love getting really barreled and doing airs. I’m really motivated and I’m pretty fired up already, but watching other people go big (such as my dad and friends) fires me up also. It feels so amazing to have a great support system,” Sierra says. “I feel so lucky every day to have family that will support me through anything. They support me, but don’t push me to do anything I don’t want to do. I push myself. They just want me to be healthy and happy in whatever I choose to do.”
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