North Sails LOFT NEWS
Story Contributors: Kelsey Tostenson
WHO WE ARE: KELSEY TOSTENSON
Get To Know Your Local Service Expert
How long have you been sailing and what classes do you compete in?
I started sailing optimist dinghies in 2008 and was instantly hooked on the sport. I sailed skiffs in high school, but now primarily sail keelboats.
What boats/classes do you sail?
I own a Wylie Wabbit, one of San Francisco’s local one design fleets, and do a lot of sailing on Express 27’s, Moore 24’s, etc. When it comes to keel boats, I sail a lot on Santa Cruz 50’s, J111’s, J125’s and other similar boats.
What got you into the marine industry?
I started working in the marine industry in high school as a receptionist at a local boatyard during the week, and a junior sailing coach on the weekends. When I was 17, I was looking for a change and my long time sailing mentor offered me a job learning to make sails.
What’s your favourite thing about sailing?
My favorite thing about sailing is driving (especially offshore at night). I also really love the social component of the sailing community and the sense of camaraderie found in the teamwork on keelboat programs.
What are you most looking forward to with joining North Sails?
The North Sails team has such a deep wealth of knowledge. I am really excited to learn as much as possible from my coworkers all over the world. The San Francisco loft had previously been without a service person, so the prospect of expanding North’s impact on the Bay’s sailing community as a leader in service work is something that I am really passionate about. One of my favorite things about being a sail maker is building close relationships with my customers and living vicariously through their battle stories on the water. I am very excited to start building those personal relationships here. I feel very lucky to be a part of the North team, and to have the opportunity to build something really special here in San Francisco.