Interview: Tatiana Howard

Madame Butterfly

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The Butterfly Effect is spreading around the world - congratulations! But what's next?
Yes, the Butterfly Effect continues to spread its' wings to all corners of the world. It is very exciting to see where the next effect develops. We have just finished with the first Butterfly Effect trip which was in Tahiti this past September. It went over extremely well and we are looking forward to making more trips in addition to one-day downwind adventures. Juliana Shelef is now organizing the next event in Israel and then we will both meet in December/January for the Brazil 3rd Annual B.E. event. The 2010 schedule will be out soon but at the looks of it, it won't be slowing down at all with bigger and better events. Be sure to check out the website to view all the official events that are coming up.

Some sceptics might argue that - especially with girls doing SUP only - there might in the end not be too many benefits for the sport of WINDSURFING. What do you think? Are all these sports (surf, windsurf, kiteboard, SUP) equal from your point of view?
I think women getting out in the water no matter the sport is a good thing. I started off just surfing and I loved the water so much that I wanted to be out there in every kind of condition. Surfing lead me to windsurfing, then I had to try kiting, and stand-up paddling. I think SUP is a great intro into water sports that will benefit windsurfing and kiting in the end.

You seem to be an excellent organizer! What kind of job are you dreaming of?
I am living my dream job of being an event producer in an event that I am really passionate about. I love how the Butterfly Effect is not only promoting women in water sports but gets involved with the communities that it goes to. In the last effect we "butterflies" had several days of teaching the kids of Tahiti how to do windsurfing and kite-surfing. We also did clinics for women and taught them new techniques and tricks. When we are able to give back to the community we visit and at the same time enjoy the local surf breaks and wind, it is a double bonus!

What do you think about competitive windsurfing, especially the (woman) PWA tour and it's future?
I think competitive windsurfing is good for the sport. The women on the tour are doing a great job. They are really pushing the level and encouraging girls to keep riding and do their best. I would like to see more women be a part of the PWA and more support from sponsors towards women. I am hoping that The Butterfly Effect can be foundation of getting more women active in windsurfing and thus have more women be involved with the PWA. The Butterfly Effect brings more women out on the water to just have fun and that's where improvements for a sport has to begin, with just having fun. From this foundation it will continue to benefit the sport and its' contest because more women on the water will result in more girls continuing the sport to a competitive level.

You are also very professional in getting (and keeping) sponsors. Any tips, any advice for our younger "windgirls"?
If you are begin to receive sponsorships, make sure you treat it as a job. Stay on top of it... fill your sponsors in with what your doing, trips you go on, pictures, contests, and ask for feedback. It's great to build a close relationship with your sponsors and be appreciative of them and their support of you.

Finally: What do you think about our new "World of Windgirls" website and community?
I think "World of Windgirls" is great. There are always cool things for water girls to check out like new blog posts, pictures, wind events from around the world, and friends that share the same passion of water sports. It is a great opportunity for water women in the world to show what their home break is like or to share their dreams of where they would like to go next. I also like it because you can keep in touch with the windsurfing friends you meet along the beach! Thanks World of Windgirls!


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