California Canoe & Kayak's Instructors and Guides

Education is a core value in our company. Our teaching style is interactive and action-oriented. Our curriculum is nationally recognized for teaching kayaking and SUP skills safely and effectively, for all levels. Our instructors are the best in the business. We accept no less. We provide our students with a dynamic learning environment and flexible curriculum while keeping our programs creative, original, and current.


Lisa Ouellette

  • Over 20 Years of Paddling and Teaching Experience

Lisa has over 20 years of kayak experience. She discovered kayaking in 1997 through an introduction to camping by kayak seminar. After finding out what a sea kayak was, she set out to find the right boat for longer trips and camping and ended up building her own. Her first trip was an unsupported 10-day trip on west coast Vancouver Island with five men she'd never met. Since her first trip, she has week-long trips to the coast of Maine, Belize, Vancouver Island, and frequent shorter trips along the California Coast. She frequently plies the waters of San Francisco Bay, the northern California coast, and the Sierra Lakes and still prefers a night in a tent alongside the water to any night in a five-star hotel. Lisa mixes her culinary skills with her planning skills to keep her fellow paddlers fed on longer trips.When she isn’t kayaking, Lisa is a Structural Engineer. Lisa loves to introduce new students to

kayaking and getting to places by water while sightseeing by kayak. When the water isn't freezing, she'll do a little whitewater on the side.

Laura Zulliger

  • ACA Level 4 Sea Kayaking Instructor
  • Teaches Sea Kayaking, White Water Kayaking, Kayak Rolling, and Whitewater Canoeing
  • Longest distance 32 miles in SE Alaska
  • Longest time 14 hours during an expedition in Taiwan

Award: Women 1st Place Tybee Challenge 2010, Overall 1st place 2013 Call 100 Relay, 1st place ACA Collegiate Downriver Canoe

Laura has kayaked for over 13 years getting her paddling start in the Pacific Northwest and honing her skills in southeast Alaska, coastal Georgia, and coastal California. She’s an ACA-Certified Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayaking Instructor and multi-craft paddler. Laura teaches whitewater kayaking, canoeing, and kayak rolling in addition to a range of coastal kayaking skills. Currently, she lives in San Francisco and loves to explore California’s rocky coastline, playing in waves and pour-overs. In spring of 2017, she and fellow CCK instructor, Kelly Marie Henry, embarked on a 6-week adventure in Taiwan in which they paddled the East Coast of the island nation.  

Sylvia Kung

  • ACA Level 1 SUP  Instructor
  • Over 5 Years of SUP experience

Sylvia is passionate about fitness and paddling and enjoys teaching beginners.  She wants everyone to gain the knowledge and skills to reach their SUP goals,  modest or ambitious.  She believes that once you stand up, you’ll get hooked and want to come back and do it again! Sylvia started paddling in 2012.  She loves paddling around SF Bay and the Bay Area for fitness and sanity. She enjoys challenging herself in choppy water or downwind conditions, but her favorite paddles include brunch after. Off the water, Sylvia spends time at the gym and thinking about the next paddle or trip. She works for Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, CA and is proud to have a part in improving the health of Kaiser members and local communities. 

Jeff Burton

  • ACA Level 2 SUP  Instructor
  • Over 7 Years of SUP experience

I enjoy all facets of SUP but downwinders are my favorite because it combines elements from surfing, touring, racing, and whitewater and mixes them all together into the most fun you can have on the water.  We are fortunate to have great downwind conditions in the bay area, from San Francisco Bay to Tomales Bay and the Santa Cruz area. I love teaching beginners to SUP because I get the immediate gratification of seeing them progress so quickly. The real reward is watching them progress into specialized areas of the sport like racing, surfing, and downwinding.

Ernie Martin

  • ACA Level 4 Kayak Instructor
  • Wilderness First Aid

Ernie is a San Francisco Bay Area native whose first and fondest memories are as a small child growing up on his father's boat. He has been active in water sports his entire life ranging from water skiing and wakeboarding to surfing and whitewater rafting. His favorite types of paddling include long boat surfing, playing in tide races, and transitioning through complex surf zones. He has paddled along many stretches of the West Coast from Oregon to as far south as Mexico. 

Glenn Fleming

  • ACA Level 4 Kayak Instructor
  • Over 17 years of paddling experience

Glenn started working in retail for CCK in 2001. New to the sport, retail was my way to quickly climb the learning curve and meet others with the same interest. Learning the sport in retail was easy. At CCK we weren’t required to sell anything. CCK's philosophy was, educate the customer so that they can make an intelligent decision and the product will sell itself. Two things resulted from this philosophy, a well-educated staff and customers purchased products based on the information they received. After two seasons someone (Kris Krengle, Store Manager) realized my true passion, teaching. Glenn graduated from California State University at Sacramento in 1994 where he earned a degree in Mechanical Engineering and specialized in vehicle dynamics and machine design. As an engineer for Caltrans, Glenn has been involved in the design, analysis and hydro-acoustic monitoring of Marine Pile Driving Energy Attenuation Systems for the past twelve years. Some of his projects include the design of the Bubble Curtain for the San Francisco; Oakland Bay Bridge New East Span Replacement, the New Benicia Bridge and the three bridges that span the Humboldt Bay in Eureka California. After engineering Glenn enjoys kayaking, backpacking and bicycling when he is not making widgets in his machine shop. His greatest accomplishments in kayaking, watching some of his students go on to become instructors.

Jeff Venturino

  • Whitewater Kayak Instructor

Jeff has been paddling and enjoying whitewater for nearly a decade. He learned to paddle in far Northern California from an Eel- drainage river-rat under strict oath that he'd return the favor to other aspiring boaters as soon as able. He now enjoys the luxury of living near enough to the major California highways that the entire Sierra Nevada is within day-trip distance. He firmly believes the Dagger RPM is the finest plastic whitewater craft ever created, and thinks you can probably pick your own way down a rapid given enough encouragement.