The World Surf League (WSL) announced the appointment of Luiz “Luli” Fernando Steffen Pereira as the Director of Officiating and Head Judge, succeeding Pritamo Ahrendt, WSL Director of Judging, as he steps away from this role to pursue other opportunities.
Photo: WSL / KELLY CESTARI With Pereira’s appointment, the WSL Tours and Competition team has evolved the structure and scope of the Head Judge position. In this new role, Pereira will serve as Director of Officiating and will serve as Head Judge for all WSL Competitive Tours. “We are thrilled to welcome Luli Pereira into the role of Director of Officiating and Head Judge,” said Jessi Miley-Dyer, WSL Chief of Sport. “Luli’s comprehensive understanding of competitive surfing, coupled with his deep commitment to excellence in judging and officiating, makes him the ideal person to lead this team. I am excited to partner with Luli and look forward to the great work that lies ahead.” Pereira brings a wealth of experience to this role. With a distinguished career in competitive surfing that spans over two decades, Pereira has served as a Judge on the Championship Tour (CT) panel for the last 18 years, including serving as the Women’s Head Judge since 2020. Additionally, Pereira served as a judge in surfing’s Olympic debut at the Tokyo 2020 Games. Pereira brings unique experience from his early career as a professional surfer on the South America Qualifying Series. Pereira also has a distinguished educational background, holding a law degree from the Universidade do Vale do Itajaí, Santa Catarina, Brazil, and he is fluent in three languages. "I'd like to express my admiration for Pritamo's leadership as Head Judge and for his extraordinary impact on the sport,” Pereira said. “I am honored to have been selected for this new role and I am looking forward to building on the legacy of excellence in judging and officiating.” Ahrendt served as the Director of Judging and men’s Head Judge for the CT since 2018 and prior to this role, served as Co-Head Judge for eight years. During this time, Ahrendt has been an integral part of WSL's history and played a key role in the evolution of raising performance levels. Ahrendt was also pivotal in establishing the framework of the judging team, developing our judging panels across the world, including naming the first woman as a Head Judge in professional surfing, Tory Gilkerson, Head Judge for the WSL Longboard Tour.
“It has been my honor and privilege to lead judging for WSL for the past six years,” Ahrendt said. “The athletes are the show and it has been incredible to watch them continue to evolve the sport over the years. Luli is one of the best judges I have ever worked with and he is the right person to take judging to the next level.” “I would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to Pritamo for his unwavering dedication and exceptional contributions over the past 25 years,” Miley-Dyer said. “Not only was Pritamo our youngest ever full-time CT judge, but also our longest serving Head Judge and his legacy will always be an integral part of our journey. I look forward to continuing to work with Pritamo, his knowledge and experience will continue to be important as we grow the league.” For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.