Host of the 10-episode Fitbit’s Facing Waves with Nikki Gregg series and Winner of Stand Up Journal’s ‘Woman of the Year’, Nikki Gregg is known industry-wide as the Queen of SUP. She is one of the most respected and well-rounded athletes, instructors and fitness trainers in the sport of stand up paddling.
Nikki is based out of Hood River, Oregon, although you’re just as likely to find her traveling the globe with her paddleboard looking for the next big adventure.
Having spent a large portion of his life traveling the world, pursuing adventure and his dreams, there’s nothing Ken enjoys more than inspiring others to do the same. After producing his first video 17 years ago, Ken discovered it was the ideal medium for doing this, and he’s never looked back.
Luke Hopkins is recognized as a top athlete in the outdoor industry as a standup paddler and board sport guru. He has over 20 years of experience in the paddlesports industry as a product designer and innovator, professional athlete, as well as a creative sales and marketer who strives for mutual success in all relationships and partnerships.
As someone who is exploring the limits of where to go on a SUP, Luke has had first descents of the New River Gorge, the Lower Gauley River as well as the first successful descent of Lava Falls in the Grand Canyon on a SUP.
Born and raised in the mountains of West Virginia, I developed a love for the outdoors and at a young age spent the better part of a decade working as a whitewater rafting guide and outdoor adventure leader. I discovered stand up paddle boarding when Luke (Hopkins) bought his first board in 2007. While Luke loved the challenge of a new way to navigate whitewater, I loved having a new sport to keep me fit, that was fun and versatile. That versatility of stand-up paddle-boarding continued to evolve for us as we started a family. Our two girls were on our boards before they could walk. We continue to foster our love (and hopefully theirs!) by living and traveling in our RV each summer as we attend demos, races and festivals and also make our own paddling adventures across North America.
Hailing from Mankato, MN, Heather Herbeck has been active all her life. She began with typical school sports, competed in track during her college years, and learned to whitewater kayak from her husband and his father over 15 years ago. Upon moving to the Pacific Northwest, kayaking became a much larger part of her life and she began her own personal training business. Heather is a professional athlete who strives to give back, “It’s not enough for me to reach my personal goals. I strive to excel and motivate others to do the same.”
After a long history as a professional whitewater kayaker, Kelsey Thompson, turned his attention elsewhere. Years of pursuing outdoor experiences while searching for uniqueness in some of nature’s most remote locations lead to a passion for Adventure Filmmaking.
Kelsey has worked on projects for National Geographic, NBC Sports, NBC’s Universal Sports, and Outside Television. He has produced and directed his own web series, completed several feature length documentaries, and is constantly working on short films. He hopes to continue producing films that encourage people to enjoy the outdoors and make environmentally conscious decisions. Kelsey is also principal videographer to North America’s only paddlesport TV series–Facing Waves.
With a camera in his hands and a surfboard beneath his feet, Anthony has always known how to bring his passions together. Pushed by the desire to be uncompromised, Anthony was determined very early in his career to meld his artistic talent with his love for outdoor activities. Showing a capacity to transpose his creative ideas into images, Anthony had a chance to showcase his talent through commercial projects while working for a studio in Quebec City. Seeking a short break from the production world, he dedicated himself to traveling, volunteering, photography, and his biggest passion—surfing. Anthony feels as though he has finally found his perfect playground at Heliconia to keep flourishing as an artist and outdoorsman.