Jack O'Neill (businessman)
O'Neill (left) with United States Congressman Sam Farr
March 27, 1923|
|Home town||Santa Cruz, California|
Jack O'Neill is an American businessman, often credited with the invention of the wetsuit. 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. This led to the establishment of a company that deals in wetsuits, surf gear, and clothing. Jack O'Neill's name is attached to surfwear and his brand of surfing equipment. Although O'Neill is widely believed to be the inventor of the wetsuit, an investigation concluded that UC Berkeley physicist Hugh Bradner was most likely the original inventor.
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.
He graduated from the University of Portland, per the University of Portland Alumni Office.
in 2002, O'Neil was an EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award Recipient for the Northern California Region.
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- O'Neill dynasty
- Ocean Odysseys: Jack O'Neill, Dan Haifley, and the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary