Mike is a surfer, author, and life coach who writes to help his surfing friends learn about Jesus so we can surf together in heaven.
Linked-in highlights Mike’s 25 years of experience in Silicon Valley as a sales and marketing professional. Upon leaving Oracle Corporation in 2017 Mike took a 1-year sabbatical to become a certified New Ventures West Integral Coach® and moved to Trader Joe’s for a final chapter in his career. Mike won the lottery with a beautiful wife of 30 years (Marla) and two incredible children (Marisa and Matthew) who now drag him out of bed to go surfing.
Mike’s goal is to offer help, encourage, and coach those who struggle to keep it all afloat in this age of endless opportunity. Mike has a passion for helping people tackle work/life integration challenges. He launched “Surfing for Balance in Silicon Valley” in 2014 to blog about his drive to stay afloat and that eventually led him to write a book — publishing in 2023.
Here’s Mike’s resume.
What if there is surfing in heaven?
Surfing in Heaven is Mike’s book (2023) about his life as a surfer finding work/life balance in Silicon Valley by learning to put Heaven first.
About the surfing photograph (above)
The picture on the cover of surfingforbalance.com is the only picture Mike had of his dad, Jack B Mulkey, surfing. It was taken at Malibu circa 1949 by Doc Ball. Here is the original photo:
Jack is riding a 10’9″ Bob Simmons Plywood Foam surfboard (called a “Foam Sandwich”).
More on that era at Malibu and “The Greatest Generation”.
Mark Brown Digital Arts did the wonderful recoloring work.
Jack was living out his dream at 89 years young in Kailua-Kona on the big island of Hawaii when he passed away peacefully in his sleep, after spending a delightful Father’s Day with his daughter Terry (see Kona Jack). This website is dedicated to Jack for all the wonderful lessons in life Mike learned from him through the sport of surfing.
Mike, What a wonderful blog, you are so blessed and thank you so much for sharing this great story/adventure in lifes journey ….God Bless. Bill Purcell class of 1973
Michael: This is Douglas Westfall, historic publisher. Great piece — thank you. I’d really like to hear more — I wrote the book on Corona del Mar (actually two, 10 years apart). Douglas@SpecialBooks.com
Thanks Douglas for the note — I will take a look at your book. Sounds very interesting!
Good talking with you a bit after Road Crew at PBC Palo Alto this morning. After we talked, I opened the Psalms and for some reason began reading Psalm 39, which contains the following verses. I thought they connected well with what you had to say about having an eternal perspective.
“Show me, Lord, my life’s end
and the number of my days;
let me know how fleeting my life is.
5 You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
even those who seem secure. (Psalm 39:4-5)
Fantastic blog… I’m kinda surprise that I don’t think I know you, although you’re about 3 years older than me. I grew up at SanO’ too. My parents, Bob and Babs Fitzgerald, were among the founding members of the club, as well as my Dad being a ski instructor at Mt. Waterman! Charlie French gave me my final lesson at Waterman, when I was 12. His son Scott is one of my best friends (along with Pete Watson, also from Sun Valley, who passed away a few years ago…:( I grew up in Huntington (vs. you in CDM), but the stories are pretty much the same. SanO in the summer and winter weekends skiing at Waterman, with fellow SanO kids: Scott, Kirk Milette, Karen and Traci Peterson, Sam and Shauna Lockett.
Thanks Shawn for your note — GREAT to make the connection!!
if you don’t mind — send me your email ID. I remember the name “Fitzgerald”, probably from the SanO surfing contest, but don’t think we ever crossed. I was always too focused on Eric Hops, wondering if I could ever surf as good as him on that red of his (and of course, I now ride a red board in his memory… my email: firstname.lastname@example.org