Hello Hula:
Willis Brown

a video by Sarah Kjelleren on July 17, 2023

In alignment with human health, for a sustainable future.

Willis Brown

As a professional skier, I'd spent much of my life exploring deep into mountain ranges and breathtaking backcountry landscapes. As a surfer, I grew up by the ocean and have a deep love of its power, mystery and resilience. The constant pull between ecosystems cultivated an insatiable passion for nature and knowledge.

After a crash at the Freeride World Tour shattered my ankle and a global pandemic synchronously foiled plans for ski and snowboard centric film projects, it was time to evolve. Swapping setbacks for solutions, a couple friends and I pivoted to an aquaculture focused surf and sailing voyage documenting ways in which we can simplify and learn from our Atlantic backyard. Two weeks into the trip, the three of us found ourselves here, surviving on wild sugar kelp and riding out a hurricane.

Fast forward, storm has passed and the adventure continued. Regenerative aquaculturists and farmers, innovative organic chefs and coastal conservationists all welcomed us with open arms and expanded our minds. Kelp, however, was an ever present thread weaving its way through each encounter, ultimately resulting in one final epiphany. 

Floating thirty some miles offshore, aimlessly sifting through thoughts of the future, personal health and how to steward positive impact, it dawned on me. Actually, it kind of smacked me in the face. A convenient and delicious way to chart a new course improving human performance and saving our planet. Offshore Greens

What are some challenges that you have faced that have pushed you to where you are today? What helps you overcome these challenges and get through hard times?

I’ve faced different challenges overtime, as we all do, from loss and uncertainty to more physical self-induced ones. From family and friends passing away to battling exhaustion racing between Hawaiian Islands to flipping off 100ft cliffs in the Canadian backcountry, I approach each challenge as steadily and graciously as I can. I approach with gratitude for every day and every experience with all the amazing humans I’ve come in contact with throughout life and their energy and journeys. I try to think of all the larger and more pressing issues than those of my perceived own, especially those that really only exist through my lens, and push farther to create something(s) that will spread natural and human positivity.

Favorite spots in Vermont?

Sailing and winging in the middle of the lake or biking somewhere deep in the woods surrounded by ferns and granite and tacky dirt.

What is something you’re most proud of?

 I’m proud of the moments in my life when I’ve been able to help others either push themselves or break through a tough, challenging time.

What is something most people don’t know about you?

 I had a crocheted hat/scarf business in middle/high school and I love mountain unicycling.

What is something you’ve been learning about recently that interests you? (emerging tech, art, brands etc.)

Through my work creating Offshore Greens, I’ve been diving deeper and deeper into the benefits of algae for our personal health and our planet’s atmospheric health. I’m fascinated by all kinds of surf and foil technology, it’s a unique experience to read about an emerging technology, test it in the most fun natural playground (waves) and then take your good times back to the drawing board and repeat. Lastly, I’m beyond impressed with Patagonia’s decision to transfer the entire company’s shares into a purpose trust for the planet. They’ve really set the bar for letting actions speak louder than green washing.

Learn more about Offshore Greens here!

Additional images courtesy of Willis Brown; @iandeveau and @sr_drummond