Where are you from? Where have you grown up?
I am from Subic Bay, Olongapo, Philippines. My dad was in the US Navy so I was born on base. Once upon a time Subic Bay was a United States Naval Base. I’ve bounced back from Subic living on & off the base & San Diego to be exact Mira Mesa.
How did you get into skateboarding?
I didn’t get into skating until moving back from the Philippines going into the 5th grade at Ericson Elementary School. I saw some Junior/ High School kids doing boardslide on a doublesided curb at Ericson. I instantly thought it was the coolest thing I’ve ever seen & they were having so much fun. I knew I want to do what they were doing. I was hooked when I eventually got a skateboard.
How is the skate scene in the Philippines differ from California?
Skating in the Philippines can be rough especially out in the raw streets. The ground can be terrible. You just got to search for what good, make it work & have fun. Also just like any other place your hoping to not get kicked out. More & more skaters in the Philippines are trying to get the help of the government but most cases the government is really backing it. So a lot of skaters are taking matters into there own hands & doing D.I.Y.’s It’s pretty rad!
Was your family always supportive of your decision to be a pro skater?
My parents & siblings have always been supportive. I remember may parents asking about maybe going into the medical field like a radiologist. I looked into it a little bit but when I graduated the very next day I went on a Birdhouse Tour for like a month across the United States. It honestly wasn’t a goal for me to turn it really just happened. I turned pro when I was 15 years old. I turned pro for Gordon & Smith (G&S aka &) The roster of legends that rode for G&S just to name a few were Henry Hester, Doug “Pineapple” Salidino, Billy Ruff, Neil Blender, Chris Miller, Steve Claar, the late Sean Miller & Blaze Blouin, Doug Smith, Mark Heinztman, Daune Pitre, & Rob Dyrdek.
What has been your greatest accomplishment so far?
I can’t really pin point my greatest accomplishment but finish this video part this year has been a roller coaster. I’m glad it’s done & happy to move forward onto the next.
How many years have you been with Birdhouse?
I’ve been with Birdhouse since DAY ONE 1992… so 23 years.
At any time did you want to move onto something new?
Sure at sometime possibly but it’s safe to say they have always took care of me & supported my addiction to skateboarding.
When was the last time you had a part in a video and which was it?
DVD video… Willys Workshop “ Film This” & Birdhouse “The Beginning” that both came out in 2008 following that in 2011 I wrapped up a online part for my Pro 20 year anniversary that Satori Wheels spear headed. After that I’ve had just some online stuff here & there but not like an official video part.
What made you decide to take part of “connecting the dots”?
First off I knew that Birdhouse wasn’t going to be working on a team video for sometime. I’ve been filming clips anyways so eventually as stuff piled up. I figured I might as well release a new video part. This was my first time working a solo-part. A couple month ago some friends said you should set-up a premiere. So I mentioned it to Arnette & they were into 100%. Arnette & I had a meeting maybe a month in a half before we figured out the premiere date with THE RIDE CHANNEL. What more can I say… June 10th was GO TIME. The last month in 1/2 I went out as much as I could & filmed to the very last weekend before the premiere.
I’ve done a handful of Street Fighter Arcade Tournaments/ Skate events with Arnette so going into it with the premiere was basically the same formula as we did previously but this time around it was all eyes on me. I was really nervous & happy at the same time.
Filming for this part I wanted to challenge myself with more lines… Basically “Connecting The Dots” with lines out in the streets. Filming in the streets especially can be treacherous like a jungle. For example filming at spots were you are weaving in & out of streets where there’s cars, pedestrians & whatever can be difficult & frustrating. You never know what will you face versus skating a somewhat controlled environment like a skatepark.
My goal also for this part was to get fellow skaters hyped to go skate & have fun after watching it. I wasn’t obviously trying to throw myself down some stairs. I’m not trying to say that I’ve been there & done that either. I respect all spectrums of skating. As long as it’s done clean or ultimately your having a great time with your friends skating. It’s all good in my book. Stay tuned. I will be coming out with more stuff. To be continued…
How long did you work on your part for this video?
Basically on & off the past 2 years
Are you pleased with how it came out?
You can always want more & push yourself but like I said above. If you get hyped to go skate after watching my part. My mission has been accomplished.
You’ve been out of the spotlight for a minute, what have you been up to?
I’ve been always just skating in the spot light or not. I love skateboarding. As for the last 4 years for the my skateshop I would put in more hours to help keep it afloat. Eventually we had to throw in the towel with they way the economy was going. That was 12 year run with Willys Workshop as a skateshop. It was a bitter sweet ending that chapter.
When did you start Willly’s Workshop? And how is it going?
Willys Workshop started in 2000. Since we’ve closed the physical location it’s been a challenge. We are looking forward to doing rad fun things with the brand.
Do consider skateboarding an extreme sport?
It’s just a label. We are SKATEBOARDERS. There’s really no rules I guess until your competing.
You’ve had such a successful career, What do you think you would be doing if you hadn’t gone in to the skate industry?
I really have no idea… Perhaps a radiologist.
Besides skating what are some other things you enjoy doing?
I enjoy spending time with my family. My kids are young so I try to give them as much attention as possible between juggling things. So that includes skateboarding…
What can we expect from you in the following months?
Just in the last 2 months in between wrapping up my video part. My longtime buddy developed a pre-mixture packet. I kid you not & it’s that simple… The directions are in our name… Just Add Beer Bread you can certainly looked up. Add your favor beer & in 45-50 minutes you’ve got a amazing tasty artisan loaf of fresh bread right out of the oven. I’ve been blessed to be THE Global Sales GUY. With the craft brewery explosion this product simply compliments the breweries. It’s really exciting. So I will be doing Global Sales with Just Add Beer Bread, expand on Willys Workshop & continue filming for whatever project comes up… maybe a Birdhouse video… or Willys Workshop in the future & so on. For you reader out there in the worldwide web if you are interested in carrying Just Add Beer Bread at your local brewery, Liquor Store etc. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org The instagram is JustAddBeerBread Oh & if your tripping on the alcohol with Just Add Beer Bread it actually get evaporated when it’s being baked in the oven. So it’s completely safe for all to enjoy & you get the flavors & aroma for your beer of choice.
Any words of wisdom for our readers?
Keep pushing & God bless! – JD