Kathy Bomeisler from Torrance, California “was one of the first girls to compete in contests with a women’s category” according to Di Dootson. In 1975, at the 1st Annual Southern California Skateboard Championships on the Orange County Fairgrounds, Kathy appears in the results representing Makaha and Logan Earth Ski at age 14. In the Women’s 10-16 category she places first in Freestyle, first in Cross-Country, and second in Slalom. The results were posted in the Fall 1975 issue of Skateboarder magazine.
In October 1976, Kathy had a photo shoot with Warren Bolster at El Cajon, with some of the results shown below:
At her next events, both in May 1976, Kathy is in the mix with the likes of some big-name skaters. She placed 2nd in Slalom and 3rd in Freestyle at the Magic Mountain contest behind Laura Thornhill and Ellen Berryman in LA’s San Fernando Valley. She is then listed as pro status for Logan Earth Ski at the Cow Palace event in San Francisco, placing 3rd in Freestyle behind Ellen Berryman and Robin Logan.
The photo below by Jim Cassimus from the October 1976 issue of Skateboarder, shows Kathy in competitive action at the Magic Mountain contest:
Kathy’s name continued to consistently appear in contest results up against skateboarding legends well known today, but she never seemed to receive any significant limelight until Di Dootson presented her “Special Women’s Section” in the June 1978 issue of the National Skateboard Review. Dootson writes that, Kathy “specializes in freestyle and park riding, but is definitely a top competitor in slalom, pools, and cross country… Formally with the Logan Earth Ski team, Kathie did a bit of traveling throughout Utah and California doing demonstrations for many audiences. She is constantly learning new freestyle tricks as well as improving all kinds of slides on banks and vertical.”
The short bio in the NSR shared that Kathy was hopeful that more women would compete in events like high jumping, distance jumping, and bowl riding, which she got to enjoy while working at Skateboard World in Torrance. Legendary skater of Girl is NOT a 4 Letter Word, Cindy Whitehead was another Skateboard World local, and she acknowledged that it was Kathy who introduced her to bowl riding.
The following year, at the I.S.A. National Freestyle contest in Oceanside, CA in June 1978 Kathy qualified for the finals and came 5th where she was admired for accomplishing two board tricks. Dootson explained that, “For one, she walked one board up onto another, held a nose wheelie, then dismounted the top board,” but her performance wasn’t as precise as Ellen Berryman, Robin Logan, Julie Cheng, or Ellen Oneal. There’s some nice group photos of the top 5 below, with Bomeisler on the left by Jim Goodrich and Spot.
Kathy did receive some unique opportunities like filming commercials, including a ‘BVD’ clothing feature (a company owned by ‘Fruit of the Loom’) intended for Japanese TV, as well as a soda pop commercial for Japan. And then, she was featured in a book by LaVada Weir, published in 1979 called, Advanced skateboarding a complete guide to skatepark riding and other tips for the better skateboarder.
There’s a few photos by Al Moote in Weir’s book with Kathy demonstrating a high jump, bowl carve and powerslide. Weir wrote, “In teaching the techniques of bowl, bank, and channel riding, Kathy Bomeisler, ISA Pro Rider, says, ‘It is all in knowing when to bend your knees. Bend down on the way down; straighten up when you come up.’”
Kathy obviously was passionate about skateboarding, sharing her skills and knowledge with others at Skateboard World, and hopefully more of her story will emerge!
- 1975 – 1st place in Women’s 10-16 in Freestyle and Cross-country, second place in Slalom, at the 1st Annual Southern California Skateboard Championships.
- May 1976 – 2nd place in Women’s Slalom and 3rd place in Women’s Freestyle, Magic Mountain contest in LA’s San Fernando Valley.
- May 1976 – 3rd place in Pro Women’s Freestyle, Cow Palace, San Francisco.
- June 1976 – 3rd place in Women’s Cross-country, at YMCA La Costa contest.
- September 1976 – 6th place in Pro Women’s Freestyle and 10th place in Slalom at the Long Beach Competition in Long Beach arena.
- September 1976 – 3rd place in Bowls Freestyle & Flatland Freestyle, and 4th place in Pro Women’s Slalom at the 2nd annual Hang Ten contest at Carlsbad skatepark.
- September 1977 – 4th place in Women’s Freestyle at the Long Beach Competition in the Long Beach arena.
- June 1978 – 4th place in Women’s Freestyle at the I.S.A. National Freestyle contest at Oceanside, CA.
- Dootson, Di. “Kathie Bomeisler.” National Skateboard Review. June 1978, p. 12.
- Weir, LaVada. Advanced skateboarding a complete guide to skatepark riding and other tips for the better skateboarder (1979).