In today’s marketplace, it is rare to see a manufacturing company celebrating 40 years as an independent, environmentally minded business. Kokatat is proud to be operating in the same town, where it all began. Under the stewardship of founder Steve O’Meara, Kokatat Watersports Wear has been manufacturing industry-leading watersports apparel and gear in Arcata, California since its inception in 1971.
Steve guides the company with an extraordinary vision and mission to create innovative paddle wear and accessories for paddling enthusiasts, from recreational paddlers to extreme kayakers. Over the decades, he has preserved Kokatat as a fun, independent company with a forward-thinking, eco-conscious perspective that inevitably has retained a contented workforce of longstanding employees.
In 2009, Kokatat earned an International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001:2008 certificate, validating their commitment to providing top-quality products and customer satisfaction under the guidance of a superior management system.
Most recently, Kokatat installed a 26-kilowatt solar photovoltaic system, expected to provide 100-percent of the energy required to power the company’s 40+ sewing machines. In 2010, Kokatat was named Arcata’s Green Business of the Year, recognizing Kokatat’s proactive green practices, social equality and economic vitality to their Humboldt County region. Beyond the company’s environmental stewardship to manufacture domestically and integrate recycled materials into their product line, Kokatat’s employees also regularly participate in community development and maintenance projects.
“The evolution of Kokatat would not be where it is today without our amazing & creative team or the support of our friends and patrons,” said O’Meara. “The beautiful natural environment and loyal community of Arcata has inspired our green & social equity business practices.”
Here is a link to an interesting article about the history of the drysuit based on an interview conducted by David H. Johnston with Steve O'Meara, Founder and CEO of Kokatat.
You can see more of the padlers in the second picture here:
It's in Norwegian thou
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