SPS Board of Directors 2016

Emmanuel Flier

Image by Emmanuel Obawole

Skaters for Public Skateparks (SPS) updated our Board of Directors in 2016. SPS now has six directors which oversee the daily activities including research projects, consultation and skatepark programs.  Each director brings their own unique experience to the table to make SPS a more effective organization. Our ultimate goal is to see more quality skateparks being built and working with local governments to reach this goal.


Carter Dennis- Executive Director

San Antonio, TX

Carter Dennis frontside air at the LBJ skatepark in San Antonio.

Carter Dennis was one of the founding members of SPS in 2004, and has been skateboarding since 1987. Carter started advocating for public skateparks in 1998, and has helped countless communities in getting public skateparks built. Over the years Carter has dedicated a great deal of time researching skatepark siting, design, construction and stewardship issues. If you need help on your skatepark project please contact us at skateparkinfo@gmail.com

Chad Balcom- SPS Secretary

Portland, OR

Chad Balcom going over the hole at the McMinnville skatepark in Oregon.

Chad Balcom is a founding member of SPS and has worked with numerous cities on developing public skateparks. Chad started his advocacy in the Midwest and now works with cities throughout the Northwest in developing quality public skateparks.


Mike Leeds- SPS Treasurer

Wenatchee, WA

Mike Leeds 5-0 grind on a backyard ramp.

Mike Leeds is a married father of four who started skateboarding in the early 80’s. In 2007, Mike founded the Wenatchee Valley Skateparks and completed their first small DIY skatepark in July of 2010. In early 2010, Mike was adopted into the Skaters for Public Skateparks Non-Profit Organization as a Wenatchee Chapter.



Ben Wixon- Director of Development-Programming & Instruction

Portland, OR

Ben Wixon with a frontside ollie over the doorway at Pier Park in Portland, Oregon.

Ben Wixon is an educator and published author with over 25 years of skateboarding experience. As a skater Ben has endorsed various shop and factory sponsors, competed in international competitions, helped to design and build numerous skateparks, judged contests, and performed in public demonstrations. He has taught and managed skate camps and programs in Tempe, Chandler, and Phoenix Arizona, Maui Hawaii, as well as Portland and Mt. Hood Oregon. In 2009, his book Skateboarding: Instruction, Programming, and Skatepark Design was published internationally by Human Kinetics. Ben is our director for the Drop-In Skatepark Accreditation Program, promoting safety and mentoring skills for skateboarders.



Teresa Waters- Content Coordinator

Teresa Waters skating at the park in Cedar Park, TX.


Teresa Waters started skating in 2010, and enjoys vert, bowls, and slalom.

Teresa has six years experience as a State Chairman for USAG  working with that large nonprofit sports organization, assisting coaches, gyms, judges, and athletes while promoting the sport.   She is an AFPA certified advanced fitness trainer and NESTA certified yoga instructor with over  17  years in the health and fitness industry.

She has worked with various cities to improve skateparks in Virginia, Georgia and Texas, as well as to promote safety awareness and public relations between skaters and the cities they live in.




Ty Smith-Director of Development-Programming & Instruction

Castlegar, BC

Ty Smith teaching the local kids how to skate in Castlegar, BC.

Ty Smith, originally from Moana Beach, Australia started skateboarding in the 80’s when the surf was flat. Picking it up again in the late 90’s after arriving in Canada Ty is a qualified school teacher and is currently the coordinator at the Castlegar Rotary Skatepark and Kinnaird Youth Indoor Skatepark in Castlegar,BC. In the summer of 2011/12 Ty has coordinated a free drop in skateboarding instruction  program at the Castlegar Park which has been accessed by over 300 youth. For the last 3 years he has also been promoting skateboarding through the Kootenay Skateboard Series. Ty is also working with sk8shoes4kids who goal is to get shoes to youth who are not able to afford them. When time permits Ty also blog on bcskateboarding.org. Passionate about the potential to bring skateboarding into schools across North America he is thrilled to be working with SPS team.