The Design Team
Johnson Outdoors (Watercraft) is fortunate to have a number of highly talented and experienced kayak designers in its in design and R&D team. As well new Ocean Kayak™ designs this team is also responsible for designing Necky™ and Old Town™ kayaks.
Spike Gladwin (Head of Design – Johnson Outdoors, Watercraft Division)
Duel British & Canadian Nationality.
A long & notable history in kayaking starting at around age 13 with winning the Junior World White Water title in 1978.
A member of the British Slalom team and later was the Canadian National White Water Champion.
From 1986 onwards Spike was the British Junior Team Coach, The Canadian White Water team World Champs Coach in 1989 and the Assistant Canadian Olympic Coach from 1989 to 1992.
Has also won numerous local and regional surf competitions, placed second at the World kayaking Surf Champs in Costa Rica in 1997.
Not to neglect sea kayaking Spike has also won first placing’ in Marathon Sea kayaking events across the USA.
BA Honors’ Degree majoring in Industrial design.
Worked in Graphic design for P & H Fiberglass, a composite (mainly sea kayaks) kayak builder in the UK.
In 1991 joined Necky Kayaks then based in Canada. Worked in various roles, sales & marketing, head of the R & D team and general management.
While at Necky credited with the creation of the modern planning hull for white water kayaks that revolutionized the sport with the introduction of play boats In 2000 Johnson Outdoors purchases.
Became head of design for Ocean Kayak.
He developed new sit-on top designs and updated older concepts.
Promoted to oversee the development and design of the entire Johnson Outdoors portfolio that includes Ocean Kayak, Necky and Old Town. He is credited with numerous new hull design concepts from sea kayaks, white water kayaks through to sit on tops such as the Prowler shape, Venus and Mysto to name a few.
Other Members of the Design Team:
Tom Swetish (Director of R&D)