Jack O'Neill

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Jack O'Neill
Jack oneill 1.jpg
Personal information
Born 27-03-1923 (age 101)


Birth place Denver, Colorado
Residence Santa Cruz, California
Surfing specifications

Jack O'Neill is an American businessman, often credited with the invention of the wetsuit.[2] In 1952 he founded the O'Neill brand while opening one of California's first surf shops in a garage on the Great Highway in San Francisco, close to his favorite bodysurfing break at the time.[2]

This led to the establishment of a company that deals in wetsuits, surf gear, and clothing.[3] Jack O'Neill's name is attached to surfwear and his brand of surfing equipment.[4]

In December 1996 he also began a non profit organization called O'Neill Sea Odyssey which provides students with hands-on lessons in marine biology and that teaches the relationship between the oceans and the environment.[5]

O'Neill resides on a beachfront property in Santa Cruz, California, where he has lived since 1959.[6]


  1. Floater . Surf legend Jack O'Neill hits 89. http://www.epicsurf.com.au/. Retrieved 25 July 2014.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Drew Kampion and Ben Marcus (December 2009). Jack O'Neill. Surfing Encyclopedia. Surfline/Wavetrak, Inc.. Retrieved 8 October 2011.
  3. Willis, Clint (2003). Big Wave: Stories of Riding the World's Wildest Water. Thunder's Mouth Press. p. 281. ISBN 978-1-56025-501-7.
  4. Guisado, Raul; Jeff Klaas (2005). Surfing California: A Complete Guide to the Best Breaks on the California Coast. Globe Pequot. p. 125. ISBN 978-0-7627-2966-1.
  5. Senator Boxer Gives "Conservation Champion" Award to O'Neill Sea Odyssey. Barbara Boxer.
  6. Klinger, Max (May 27, 2012). Jack O'Neill, 89, a surfing legend who endures. San Francisco Chronicle. SFGate.com. Retrieved May 29, 2012.

Further reading

  • Kampion, Drew. Jack O'Neill: It's Always Summer On the Inside. Chronicle Books. ISBN 978-1452102603.

See also