Moniz, Tony


Powerful, athletic, easygoing regularfoot surfer from Honolulu, Hawaii; a perennial invitee to the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau big-wave competitions from 1985 through the '00s. Moniz was born (1959) and raised in Honolulu, and began surfing at age five. At 14, one year after winning a boys' division state title, he all but quit surfing and took up motocross, becoming a two-time state champion in the 125cc expert division. At 18 he left motocross and became a Golden Gloves boxer; the following year he returned to full-time surfing, and two years later was competing professionally on the world pro tour.

In the early '80s, Moniz was one of the first to master the lay-forward stance, which allowed a backside-riding surfer to get nearly as deep inside the tube as a frontsider. In 1982, 1983, and 1984 he was a finalist in the Duke Kahanamoku Classic, held at Sunset Beach. By the mid-'80s, Moniz was concentrating on big surf, and he placed sixth in both the 1999 and 2001 Quiksilver-Aikau events at Waimea Bay.

The gentle but fierce-looking Moniz appeared in more than a dozen surf movies and videos, including Wave Warriors (1985), Ticket to Ride (1986), and Liquid Thunder (1990). He launched the Faith Riding Company clothing brand in 1996, and has run the Faith Surf School at Waikiki since 2000.

Kelia Moniz, Tony's daughter, was the 2012 and 2013 women's longboard champion. As of 2015, Josh and Seth Moniz, Tony's sons, were among Hawaii's top-ranked junior surfers.