July 13, 2022 | Jay Stansell

Skateboard Careers: Tony Hawk guides students through a professional skateboarder career

Check out the GOAT Pro skateboarder, Tony Hawk, an innovator in modern vertical skateboarding!

We humanize career exploration by featuring real humans doing real things. Our mentors provide candid advice on how they got started and the steps to get there.


Tony Hawk gained status as a pro skater by age 14. He often says that his success was unexpected. Growing up, he simply viewed skateboarding as the perfect combination of creativity and athleticism and as an outlet for himself. After graduating from Torrey Pines High School in 1986, Tony Hawk grew committed to learning about others and diversifying communities through a shared love of the sport. He often gifts boards from his own collection to aspiring skaters and sometimes even coaches younger generations of skaters.

“You might not make it to the top, but if you are doing what you love, there is much more happiness there than being rich or famous.”

Tony Hawk, Professional skateboarder and find your grind mentor

In 2002, he created the Tony Hawk Foundation in response to families that expressed frustration at the lack of safe public spaces to skate. The organization has since helped open nearly 600 skateparks across the United States and provided funding for programs in Afghanistan, Cambodia, and South Africa. And, in May 2020 it was announced that the Tony Hawk Foundation will be partnering with the Find Your Grind Foundation to build a brand new skatepark in Detroit in 2021.

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